To the Editor, Jewish Daily Bulletin:
Strange and unexpected incidents do happen, but to all appearances the Brodetsky gesture, inviting the Revisionists to return to the Zionist Organization fold, comes too late, and is made under circumstances that sap its virility.
In Europe where the details of the Jerusalem session of the Actions Committee have been followed closely the fact that Berl Locker was free to blue pencil a reference to the Jewish State in President Nahum Sokolow’s formal address is regarded both as the keynote of the Congress campaign and indicative of the deep inner cleft in the Zionist ranks.
In America an attempt is being made to explain the Histadruth as a simon-pure trade union, or to claim that only the trade union ###ase of the Histadruth is being supported by the Zionist Organization of America and Hadassah.
A POLITICAL BODY
This attitude finds not the slightest acceptance elsewhere. Zionist parties recognize the Histadruth as a political organization. Its opponents and its friends pay little or no attention to the trade union aspect. Opponents, I am not quoting a Revisionist, recognize in Berl Locker the leader of a group seeking to convert “Palestine into a branch of the Internationale”. Friends of the Histadruth in their attacks on the program of the “B group” do so on the ground that it represents a bourgeois outlook. The lines are thus fairly drawn though no one knows the exact number of sub-divisions which have arisen on either side as a consequence of the situation created by the victory of the Hashomer Hazair over the Poale Zion on the Jabotinsky-Ben Gurion peace pact.
Brodetsky has before now es-###ed the role of a middle-of-the-#oad man but he has no personal backing outside of the Weizmanists who have no compromise to offer which will not imperil the support of the Left Wing for Weizmann, and as Ben-Gurion is at the moment a defeated leader, or the leader of the minority party within the Histadruth, he has no mandate with which to approach the Revisionists.
PLANNED WORLD BLOC
From personal knowledge I can state that the Revisionists were prepared to enter a world bloc against all combinations of the Left Wing, and the program they advanced for the bloc was identical with that which they proposed for a round table conference, acceptance of the major Zionist principle, the Jewish state, and the abolition of the theory of one big union in Palestine, in other words deliberate and positive opposition to Socialist and Communist control and policy. They clung to the round table conference plan as the logical means, in their judgment, of preventing a breach, but when the Revisionist members withdrew from the Actions Committee sessions the die was cast.
The formation of a new Zionist organization impends. The idea is still unpalatable to the older generation, but the younger generation seems to have no qualms about the matter, and the intolerance of local leaders of the Z.O.A. and kindred organizations does not tend to smooth matters. There has therefore been created an atmosphere which favors the non-partisans, the dissidents, and the members of the minority parties withholding themselves from the approaching Congress elections, permitting the conflicting groups in the Left Wing to fight it out among themselves and of electing Weizmann as president of a Socialist or Communist Zionist congress, according to which group achieves the majority. No such decision has yet been taken, according to my information, by any of the accredited factions but leaders are making a wry face at the idea of providing either branch of the Left Wing with a face-saving front.
The “watchful waiting” attitude, maintained apparently with some difficulty by party leaders, may present a remote opportunity to the would-be conciliator but to obtain a hearing he would have to announce publicly a plan or terms agreeable to the followers of both sides, and all groups, for the struggle is in the open and is no longer, if it ever was, a difference between leaders contending with each other.
Jacob De Haas
New York City
CHIDES ISSERMAN CRITIC
To the Editor, Jewish Daily Bulletin
I must confess I was amazed to read the letter which Rabbi A. M. Heller of the Flatbush Jewish Center, Brooklyn, wrote recently about Rabbi Isserman and his participation in the meeting of the National Union for Social Justice in Detroit, as I was to note the fact that you published it, thereby impressing your readers with this man’s objection to Rabbi Isserman’s participation in this meeting. You know there are always two sides to a story.
Furthermore, as a layman, I feel it would have been more in keeping with the traditions of the rabbinate if Rabbi Heller had written to his colleague before condemning Rabbi Isserman in public, and thus himself basking in the light of the very publicity which he condemned.
Perhaps Rabbi Heller ought to be reminded of the Talmudic maxim read in the Synagogue last week: “Pass not judgment upon thy neighbor until thou art come into his place.”
St. Louis, Mo.