Berlin (Aug. 28)
Negotiations for the import into Germany of Palestine oranges and for the export of German goods in German vessels to Palestine are being conducted between the Reich’s ministry for food and the foreign department of the Palestine Government, the Deutsche Landhandelsbund, the Nazi department for agrarian trade and industry, informed the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. The agreement, as announced yesterday in the Berlin press, has not yet been concluded, it was said, but this is likely within the next few days.
The agreement provides for the import from Palestine of oranges to the value of eight to ten million marks and the purchase in Palestine of double that amount in German products, all shipping to be done in German bottoms.
Considerable mystification exists here as to the purported Nazi-Palestine agreement providing an outlet for Palestine oranges and a market in Palestine for German goods, with the general impression being that reports of the agreement are incorrect and an attempt to create feeling among the Jews that will lead to a breaking down of the boycott.
Inquiries by Jewish Telegraphic Agency correspondents in Palestine have failed to reveal the identity of any parties negotiating with the German Government. The Palestine Government and the British Colonial Office here deny any knowledge of the reported negotiations. It is believed that the reports may have some basis in the possible attempt of some individual orange-grower to obtain a German market.
The World Zionist Organization offices here, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency and other sources of information received scores of inquiries over the week-end for details of this astonishing and ambiguous agreement. It is pointed out that even were the reports true, apart from the moral aspect of the deal on the anti-Nazi boycott, the agreement would represent a bad bargain since the Palestinian negotiators would have undertaken to buy twice as much as they would sell and would have to entrust the shipping to German concerns only.