It will be the problem of the Jews and of Palestine to give real and lasting peace to the world, declared Mrs. Richard Gottheil yesterday at a luncheon of the Women’s League for Palestine at the Hotel Astor. About 1,200 women were present.
The occasion was the presentation to Mrs. Gottheil, honorary president, of a tablet for her work in organizing the League. The tablet is to be hung in a special room dedicated to her in the League’s Palestine headquarters.
Mrs. Albert Einstein, the guest of honor, did not speak, but it was announced that, after listening to the luncheon address, she had decided to become a member of the League.
Mrs. Gottheil spoke after Mrs. Elisheva Kaplan, representing the Palestine Working Women’s Council, which claims a membership of 22,000, had lauded the League for its work in providing a home for immigrant children and working women in Palestine. Mrs. Kaplan praised the heroism of the Jewish women pioneers in the Holy Land. Others on the speakers’ list were Rabbi H. Levinthal, Mrs. Rebecca Kohut and Mrs. William Prince, president of the League.
A message from Mayor M. Dizengoff of Tel Aviv expressed gratification at the work of the Women’s League in Palestine. Henrietta Szold wrote, “I trust that you will find strength, opportunity and will to carry out your plans in Tel Aviv (the plans for building a home for immigrant children).”
In presenting Mrs. Gottheil with the tablet, Mrs. Prince said, “To us has been given an Esther, a Hannah and a Deborah â€” Mrs. Gottheil.”
Mrs. Gottheil, answering, delivered an impassioned plea for Jewish Palestine.
In Germany, Mrs. Gottheil declared, mothers “such as you gladly part with their children, perhaps forever, so that they can go to Palestine and not be obliged to endure the Hitler regime.” She described how Jewish children in Germany are forced in schools to sit on special “Jew benches” or are compelled to sit on platforms while the teachers explain Jewish features at great length, using the children as models. Often, she said, the Jewish school children faint from sheer humiliation.
Praising the pioneers who bring “luster and glory to the name of Jew,” Mrs. Gottheil declared that the Palestine Chalutzim are “proving to the world that the Jew does not want to stretch out his hand for charity and that when he does it is only because of the persecution of centuries.”
“We are a free people,” she declared, “and free we want to remain. And it is only on the soil where our prophets spoke that we can become a free nation.”
She described the work of the League in aiding the absorption of Jewish girls into the life of Palestine and placing them in work for which they are fitted.
Dwelling on the question of peace, Mrs. Gottheil said, “People speak of peace, but there is no peace. It will yet be given to the Jew and to that little country, Palestine, to devise ways and come to the world.” She prophesied that Palestine will become an inspiration for social justice and equality.
Touching on Prof. Albert Einstein, Mrs. Gottheil declared, “We are proud that Einstein has chosen our country, America, to honor by making it the place of his work.”