Mrs. Samuel W. Halprin, national president of Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, pointed out the danger of the tendency toward speculation in Palestine and deplored the inter-party strife in the country in an address yesterday before the Lower New York State regional conference of Hadassah at the Edison Hotel.
Mrs. Halprin returned from Palestine on Friday after attending the annual meeting of the Actions Committee of the World Zionist Organization in Jerusalem.
“Most of the newcomers in Palestine today,” Mrs. Halprin said, “though highly idealistic, are, I dare to say, somewhat less disciplined. In previous years groups came with the sole idea of building a new Jewish life in a Jewish homeland. They came welded together by the single aim of bringing the Jewish people back to the soil, to create a normal, healthy, productive people. Too many of those now entering Palestine have the individualist viewpoint. Less than 6,000 came on labor certificates, which means that the other 34,000 entered with money. They come as individuals, not as a single motivated group. But the time has not yet arrived when Jews can come to Palestine as individuals only, thinking of their individual problems only. Every Jew must come as a builder for his people, to rebuild the whole of the national life for Jewry. They must come as a part of a disciplined army of Jews, coordinating their aims for the good of the entire community.
“Of course Palestine needs private capital and private initiative, as does every other progressive country, but in addition Palestine needs a strong movement back to the land, the outstanding factor that can help us recreate a Jewish national home. At present there is too much movement to the cities and not enough to the rural districts. One of the chief evils of individualism is speculation, and concentration of the population in the cities fosters this tendency.”