Warsaw (Mar. 8)
We have no desire to help in creating a Jewish Polysia even with its capital in Brisk, the “Gazeta Warszawska”, one of the chief organs of the antisemitic National Democratic Party writes in objecting to the suggestion that the Polysian marshes might be drained with a view to Jewish land settlement in the reclaimed areas, Mr. A. Goldberg, the editor of the Jewish daily, the “Najer Hajnt” reveals in an editorial in his paper to-day. There are millions of unemployed Polish peasants on Polish soil, he quotes the “Gazeta Warszawska” as saying, and they must have priority over the Haluzim. The Arabs know how to defend themselves against the Jews, it adds, and we, too, will know how to defend ourselves.
The Arabs learn from our antisemites in Poland and in other countries, Mr. Goldberg comments, and the Polish antisemites are now going to learn from the Arabs.
The draining of the Polysian marshes has been broached again, this time, thanks to the American Jews, the editorial goes on.
Why should not something be done in Poland on a large scale to settle Jews in agriculture like in Soviet Russia, they think over there. There is no free land in Poland, but there are the Polysian marshes, which are not included in the plans which the Polish Government has made for the Polish peasantry. The swamps can be drained and Jews can be colonised there. Jews drain marshes themselves in Palestine, so it could certainly be done in Poland with the aid of the Government machinery. The idea was suggested by the Jews in Poland. The Polish Jews living in America took up the idea and talked it over with the Polish Ambassador in Washington, M. Filipowicz, who gave them certain assurances. It appears that he wrote about it to Warsaw, and Government circles are considering the project. We cannot prophesy what will come of it. But it would be a great mistake for the Jews both in Poland and America to give too much attention to it, or to permit ourselves to be carried away by the enchanting music of “some day” and to forget our daily needs and requirements, which can and must be given satisfaction in an antirely different way. The mere talk about it, meanwhile, has quite upset the Polish antisemitic press, and has put it into a panic over the possibility of such a thing as Jewish colonisation in Poland.
A procest against any idea draining the Polysian marsh lands for Jewish settlement was made by the “Gazeta Warszawska” immediately after the question was raised by the Polish Ambassador in the United States some time back. It is better to let the swamps rot in the sun rather than that they should be drained and colonised by Jews, Emanuel, one of the chief editorial writers on the “Moment”, commented in quoting from the “Gazeta” at the time. In the matter of colonising Polysia, the “Gazeta” said, we are approaching the stage of territorial and strategic problems and the Polish Government has gone very far indeed in promising certain things through its Ambassador which have a far greater value for Jews than an end of antisemitism. We Jews, Emanuel concluded, do not regard the Polysian swamps as a real concrete matter. It is too reminiscent of a fairy tale, and we have more urgent every-day questions here, like compulsory Sunday closing, the Jewish right to work in State and Municipal institutions, and lots more questions of the same kind.