Jewish Groups Here Hit Palestine Legislative Council
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Jewish Groups Here Hit Palestine Legislative Council

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A resolution adopted by representatives of Zionist and other Jewish groups branding the proposed Palestine legislative council as “undemocratic and contrary to the spirit and intent of the Mandate” was forwarded today to the British Ambassador of Washington for transmission to his government.

Organizations represented at the meeting in the Hotel Astor last night at which the resolution was adopted included the Zionist Organization of America, the Poale Zion-Zeire Zion Party, Mizrachi, the Hashomer Hatzair and Hadassah. In addition, messages supporting the protest were received from Dr. Maurice J. Karpf, American non-Zionist member of the Executive of the Jewish Agency for Palestine; the Union of Orthodox Jewish Rabbis; the National Council of Jewish Women; Morris D. Waldman, secretary of the American Jewish Committee and various Zionist and non-Zionist leaders throughout the country.

Dr. Karpf in his message emphasized that Jewish objections to the Council are based not on “opposition to democratic self-government in Palestine but to its form and degree of Jewish representation in it.”

Morris Rothenberg, who presided, scored the council proposal as” an attempt to whittle down the Balfour Declaration and the Mandate.” He charged that a council in which elements hostile to the mandate would participate would be unfair. Other speakers were Judge Julian W. Mack, Joseph Schlossberg, secretary of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers; Dr. Israel Goldstein, president of the Jewish National Fund; David Wertheim, secretary of Poale Zion, and A. L. Gellman, president of Mizrachi.

Dr. Karpf’s message, sent from St. Louis where he attended the conference of the National Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds, follows:

Hope you will make clear to the assembly and press that Jewish objections to proposed Legislative Council are not due to opposition to democratic self-government in Palestine but to its form and degree of Jewish representation in it. The Jewish people through- out their history favored and fought for democratic forms of government. They favor no less a democratic government in Palestine provided it is truly democratic, makes possible real cooperation between principal peoples in Palestine, is in accord with the spirit of the Mandate, and does no violence to the status of the Jewish people in Palestine granted them by international agreement through the League of Nations after two thousand years of waiting.

The proposed Legislative Council meets none of these requirements. This is the reason for its unacceptability to Jews. It is no more acceptable to the Arabs according to the declaration of the Arab Youth Federation and the Palestine Arab Party in their reply to the High Commissioner as reported in New York Times of January 20 last. I feel therefore that by opposing the type of Legislative Council proposed and by urging changes which will make it more representative of the real forces which are producing the modern miracle that is Palestine today the Jewish people are serving not alone their own interests but the best interests of all the people in Palestine.

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