Zionist Convention Ratifies Hadassah Share in Naming Prague Delegates; Choose Weizmann As World Lead
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Zionist Convention Ratifies Hadassah Share in Naming Prague Delegates; Choose Weizmann As World Lead

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An agreement whereby the Zionist Organization of America and Hadassah will each name ten delegates to the World Zionist Congress at Prague on a coalition ticket was ratified by the conference here late last night after bitter discussion on the floor. The convention also approved the recommendation that the committee on organization terminate the present agreements with the affiliated bodies, Hadassah and Order Sons of Zion, by November, and have the administration negotiate for a new deal.

The convention went on record through a resolution adopted as favoring the elevation of Dr. Chaim Weizmann to world Zionist leadership. The resolution called on all Zionist parties and factions to unite to meet the present crisis under coalition leadership by the world organization, and urged the World Zionist Congress “to call upon Dr. Chaim Weizmann to assume his place in such a leadership.”


Dr. Weizmann, in paying a farewell visit to the convention, referred to the world congress and promised that “If there is work to be done I shall try to do my share.” He electrified the audience with his announcement that Dr. Einstein has agreed to head the Institute of Physics in the Hebrew University. Reforms urged by Dr. Einstein in the structure of the university administration would be carried out, Dr. Weizmann declared. He urged a “powerful, proud and peaceful Palestine” as the best answer to the anti-Semitic allegation that Jews are unconstructive and live off the cultures of other people.

The placid holiday tone of the convention was sharply interrupted several times yesterday when delegates overrode reports of the nominations committee, precipitating many vocal clashes on the floor. The first of these clashes arose when James Waterman Wise, Rabbi Solomon Goldman, of Chicago, and other persons fell upon the resolution thanking the Central Conference of American Rabbis for their support of Zionism. Reform rabbis were sharply criticized for their non-Zionist stand by Rabbi Goldman, who said that non-Zionist Jews should be condemned. The resolution finally was withdrawn by Rabbi William I. Rosenblum, of New York, after bitter discussion and scenes of disorder.


The second occasion for excitement followed the nominations committee’s report, delivered by Harry Friedberg, of Kansas City. The list did not include the name of Abraham Tulin, of Kansas City, for a post on the administrative committee, so a minority report was made by Rabbi Victor Epstein, proposing the addition of Tulin’s name. A storm of approving and disapproving remarks broke out over the hall. Louis Lipsky, who succeeded Judge William Lewis in the chair, was able to maintain order only with the utmost difficulty. After a prolonged argument Tulin’s name was added to the administrative committee when a large vote in his favor recorded the will of the convention.

A resolution affirming support for the World Zionist Congress, sponsored by the American Jewish Congress, was adopted by the convention, as were resolutions expressing regret over the death of Dr. Chaim Arlosoroff; thanking retiring officers; protesting at Germany’s persecution of Jews as “a return to barbarism,” and empowering the administrative committee of the congress to name the administrative council.

Nathan Straus, Jr., was one of the vice-presidents newly elected by the delegates. A plan to reduce the deficit in the organization by $65,000 through a settlement payment of $25,000 was announced by the convention. Each district will be obligated to raise $100 toward this sum, it was announced. An administrative budget of $60,000 was adopted by the convention.


After an agreement with Hadassah for a division of mandates was quietly adopted, with many delegates unaware of this action, a storm broke loose when Dr. Weizmann’s supporters tried to secure backing for him from the complete delegation. The argument centered around a resolution proposed by Robert Silverman, of Providence, R. I., stating that delegates to the world congress ought to be morally bound by designation to support Dr. Weizmann’s election to the presidency. This resolution was opposed by Louis Lipsky, Robert Szold and other persons. The resolution narrowly avoided being tabled and went to a close vote taken amid scenes of great confusion. It was carried by a narrow margin. It was pointed out by Lipsky, however, that the resolution could not bind the Hadassah delegates to Dr. Weizmann’s ticket.

The Hadassah chapter delegates refrained from voting for delegates after a strong attack on their attitude was made by Lipsky and other persons. Morris Rothenberg, newly-elected president, heatedly protested their intention to vote for Zionist Organization of America delegates since they had their own.


The Z.O.A. delegates named to the world congress were Jacob Fishman, Abraham Goldberg, Rabbi Solomon Goldman, Judge William M. Lewis, Louis Lipsky, Dr. Samuel Margoshes, Morris Margulies, Morris Rothenberg, Elihu D. Stone and Meyer Weisgal.

Lipsky explained that Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, Julian W. Mack, Israel Brodie, Jacob de Haas and Robert Szold would be named on the Hadassah slate.

An important action taken by the convention was the laying of the groundwork for intensive youth Zionist work. A sum of $5,000 was allocated for educational work, providing the funds are available. The development of the youth program along the lines of Israel Chipkin’s report of the Commission for Youth and Education was determined upon by the convention. Delegates recognized the newly-merged Masada Youth Zionist Organization of America as an affiliated body.


Among speakers at the convention yesterday was Dr. I. D. Berkson, who recently returned from Palestine. Referring to the death of Dr. Chaim Arlosoroff, he ascribed its cause to lack of discipline and dissension in Jewish life.

Emanuel Neumann, speaking at the Avukah luncheon here yesterday, stressed the importance of the development of a cultural interest in youthful elements in order effectively to reenergize Zionist life in America. Rabbi Meyer Berlin, James W. Wise, Rabbi Samuel Blumenfeld and Rabbi Joseph Shubow also spoke yesterday.


The organizing of Hebrew classes throughout the country in order to prepare American Jews for the settlement of Palestine was decided upon here yesterday by the Histadruth Ivrith at the conclusion of its annual convention.

Two hundred delegates who were also attending the Zionist convention were present at the Histadruth sessions. Speakers besides Rabbi Goldman included M. Ribalow, Abram Goldberg, Dr. Samuel Feigin, and M. A. Friedland.

Rabbi Goldman was elected president of Histadruth Ivrith. Dr. M. Waxman, Dr. A. L. Honor and C. H. Friedland were elected vice-presidents and Abram Goldberg, chairman of the executive committee.

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