American Jews Provided Nearly 7â½ Million Dollars for Palestine in Less Than Two Years Since August
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American Jews Provided Nearly 7â½ Million Dollars for Palestine in Less Than Two Years Since August

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Mr. Morris Rothenberg, the National Chairman of the present American Palestine Campaign of the Jewish Agency, who has acted previously as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Keren Hayesod in American and of the United Palestine Appeal, and was last year one of the National Chairmen of the Allied Jewish Campaign, issued a public statement here to-day, for presentation to the forthcoming Zionist Congress and Jewish Agency Council session, showing that American Jews contributed and made available in the period since they last met in August 1929, less than two years ago, sums totalling 7,331,253 dollars in public and semi-public and investment funds for works of reconstruction, relief and economic development in Palestine.

Mr. Rothenberg’s statement reads as follows: (1) Agency Budget: The several funds in the United States from which the Jewish Agency received money remittances during the period since August 1929, when the last sessions of the Zionist Congress and the Jewish Agency Council were held at Zurich, either as the result of pledges collected from previous campaigns or contributions made to the current campaign, are the United Palestine Appeal, Keren Hayesod, Hadassah, Allied Jewish Campaign, and the present American Palestine Campaign. These several funds remitted to Palestine during the period specified for the Jewish Agency Budget, inclusive of the Hadassah, the amount of 1,455,579 dollars. This sum does not include 500,000 dollars made available to the Jewish Agency for its budget by way of loan from the Deutsche Bank in Berlin, on the personal guarantee of Mr. Felix M. Warburg and Herr Oscar Wassermann, and a further loan of 100,000 dollars made by Mr. Warburg to the Keren Hayesod at Jerusalem.

(2) The Emergency Fund. The Emergency Fund for Palestine raised by popular subscription in the United States and sent to Palestine immediately following the riots of August 1929 and preceding the inauguration of the Allied Jewish Campaign, 2,125,000 dollars. This last-mentioned sum did not go to the Jewish Agency, but nevertheless is part of the contribution of American Jews for the purposes of relief and reconstruction in Palestine.

(3) The Jewish National Fund of America. This, the agency of the Jewish National Fund of Jerusalem, an institution which acquires and holds land in Palestine on which the Jewish Agency carries on its work of colonisation, remitted during the period referred to 452,673 dollars.

(4) The National Labour Committee. The National Labour Committee for Palestine, which is engaged in this country in raising monies to assist the Labour organisations in Palestine by providing funds to carry on in that country agricultural, social and industrial institutions sponsored by that organisation, remitted 180,000 dollars since August 1929.

(5) Hebrew University. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem received from various sources in the United States approximately 300,000 dollars during the same period.


(6) Palestine Endowment Fund. The Palestine Endowment Fund, which obtains subscriptions through private donations made available through the same period for economic, educational and other Jewish social purposes in Palestine since August 1929 250,000 dollars.

(7) Palestine Economic Corporation. There is one other outstanding American source through which considerable sums have gone to Palestine towards the promotion of Jewish settlement and the furtherance of the economic development of the land. That is the Palestine Economic Corporation. While this Corporation is organised as a private business enterprise, it may properly be described as a semi-public body, since the larger portion of its funds have been derived from subscription to its stock by the Joint Distribution Committee. The operations of the Palestine Economic Corporation have been largely in the sphere of credit and housing activities. It has through itself and its affiliates in Palestine extended agricultural loans for the development of orange groves and general farm improvement. It has given housing loans and small industrial credit advances to labourers, to enable them to build houses and barns and to purchase poultry, cows and other equipment required for the establishment of workers’ settlements. It has substantially participated in several important Palestinian industrial projects. It has taken part in the amelioration and drainage of Jewish National Fund land, and has also loaned considerable sums that institution for the purchase of land for workers’ houses. All these activities, while conducted on a business basis, are essentially intended to place Jewish settlers in Palestine upon a selfsustaining basis. The Palestine Economic Corporation has invested through itself and its affiliates during the last two years in connection with the activities mentioned, now funds amounting to 618,000 dollars. This sum does not take into account definite commitments which have not yet been paid out, aggregating 265,000 dollars, nor a sum of 455,000 dollars which has been appropriated and which will shortly be expended by the Palestine Economic Corporation for housing credits and water supply for the settlers in connection with the plan for settling a thousand families on small orange plantations.


(8) Investments. The above items have all referred to public or semi-public funds. A considerable amount of money has gone from the United States to Palestine during the past two years in the way of investment in Palestinian agricultural and industrial enterprises which give employment to many of the new settlers and contribute greatly to the economic development of the country. Data is at hand as to only a limited number of the more important of such private enterprises. Mr. Felix M. Warburg has within the past two years paid 200,000 dollars in subscriptions for stock. The Palestine Potash Corporation, Ltd., organised to extract mineral and chemical deposits in the Dead Sea, has obtained from a group of American investors during the period referred to 230,000 dollars. Gan Chaim, Hadar Rashall and Rehoboth, are orange plantations in Palestine financed by several groups of American Jews who have invested an aggregate sum of 500,000 dollars during the past two years in those enterprises. The New York Achuza Aleph Organisation, responsible for the founding and development of an important Jewish Settlement in Palestine, invested 300,000 dollars in the same period in that project.

(9) Conclusion. From figures contained in this statement it appears that since the last Zionist Congress and the session of the Council of the Jewish Agency held in August 1929, a period of less than two years, there was remitted from the United States to Palestine from public funds for various Jewish activities 4,763,253 dollars (exclusive of Mr. Warburg’s share of the loan noted above) and there was remitted and made available from semi-public funds, 1,338,000 dollars and a further sum of 1,230,000 dollars as investments, aggregating in all 7,331,253 dollars.

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