Berlin Quotes Palestine Papers As Opposing Anti-nazi Boycott

Sentiment among the Jews in Palestine is against the boycott of German products, declares the Judische Rundschau, organ of the German Zionist Federation. The boycott is a weapon of battle and revenge while Palestine’s Jews have been trained in the school of constructive endeavor, the Rundschau points out.

“As in other countries, propaganda urging the boycott of German goods has also been carried on in Palestine,” the Rundschau states. “This propaganda was not supported by Jewish official circles. Of course, Jewish public opinion in Palestine is opposed to the management of the Jewish policy in Germany, but wide circles, especially in Palestine, reject the boycott of German goods. Palestine Jewry, its thinking schooled on Zionist lines, is of the opinion that the Jewish question cannot be solved by such demonstrations, but that the Jewish question must be solved by the Jews themselves, and, indeed, first of all by the building up of the Jewish National Home.

“The difficulties which have arisen in Germany should not, it is argued, be judged from the point of view of internal German affairs, but from Palestine. It is interesting to note that the Hebrew newspapers of Palestine, which otherwise do not in general agree in their points of view, have expressed themselves in strong terms against the anti-German boycott. In the Doar Hayom, the right wing newspaper of Jerusalem, Moshe Smilanski, leader of the planters’ organization, publishes an article in which he attacks the responsible members of the executive for insufficient activity on behalf of Jewish emigration from Germany. In this connection he also has occasion to mention the boycott and declares that in handling this question the emphasis should not be placed upon feelings of war and revenge, but that first thought should be of the work of construction.

” ‘After the World War,’ Smilanski writes, ‘a peculiar psychosis gained ground everywhere. People now revel in declarations of war, feelings are aroused and thought is stifled. Among us in Palestine, too, people take it amiss when anyone asks the meaning of such a “struggle” and what is expected of it. For us, the chief thing is not revenge but rather salvation and the Jewish cause. Collections of money in Palestine on the one hand, which did not yield enough for the first needs of the refugees, and the boycott watchword on the other hand have stifled and weakened the private initiative, the mobilization of the means of the German refugees, the gradual liquidation of their property with the aid and permission of the German government.’

“At the same time Moshe Beilinson, editor of the labor newspaper Davar, turns against the boycott,” the Rundschau declares. ” ‘In the period after the war,’ he writes, ‘we have seen many attempts at political boycott, and all ended in failure. Clemenceau attempted to erect a wall of iron around Soviet Russia and his attempt ended in failure. The Socialist International and the Trade International inflicted a boycott upon Hungary and had no success. In the oriental countries the Comintern attempted to organize a boycott against English and French goods—without success. The Hindus proclaimed, in vain, a boycott against English wares. In vain, too, was the propaganda for a boycott of Italian wares after the assassination of Matteoti. And the Arab boycott of Jewish wares in Palestine ended in failure.’

“Beilinson also mentions the benevolent neutrality which the German government adopts towards the Zionist emigrants (see the Transfer-Edict of the Reich Minister of Economics) and the powerful rise of the Zionist Organization in Germany, which represents, for the development of Palestine, a positive fact of tremendous importance.”

According to recently published statistics, Palestine imports from Germany in the first half of this year were substantially larger than for the same period of the previous year.

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