NEW YORK (Feb. 5)
Gratification over the results of the visit of the British Jewish delegation to the United States in behalf of the German Jews was expressed by Sir Herbert Samuel in a press conference at the Waldorf Astoria before sailing for London on the Majestic tonight with Viscount Bearsted. Simon Marks, the third member of the delegation remained in New York.
Acting as spokesman for the trio, Sir Herbert stated that they were gratified at the sentiment expressed by non-Jews as well as Jews and by promises of cooperation from non-Jews. He said they had found complete agreement among the American Jews as to the objects to be pursued and the general methods to be adopted in expatriating German Jews.
The next step, he disclosed, will be to set an executive committee, including American members which, in consultation with the Joint Distribution Committee and the Jewish Agency for Palestine, will proceed to work out the details of emigration.
It is planned to launch a $5,000,000 drive in Great Britain as part of the four-year $15,000,000 budget for removing about 100,000 Jews to Palestine and other countries at an average cost of $150 per person. He said that leaders in France, Belgium and Holland will also be invited to make fund-raising efforts. The British drive will, in reality, only involve $4,000,000 since $1,000,000 has been pledged by “three or four persons,” Sir Herbert stated.
The question of transferring capital of the emigrating Jews remained indefinite. Replying to a question, Sir Herbert said the delegation had no plans for transfer and would leave the problem to be arranged by the German Jews.
Discussing emigration to Palestine, Sir Herbert described the benefits that had accrued to the country from Jewish immigration. He pointed out that German Jews required training to fit them for occupations in the Holy Land.
While stressing that the delegation had had no communication with the German Government, Sir Herbert said that the Government had stated it was willing to provide facilities for training Jews provided that it was guaranteed they would emigrate. He added that the Government was unwilling to provide facilities for Jews who proposed to remain within the country.
Sir Herbert was asked by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency whether an effort would be made to have the British Government liberalize Palestine immigration laws. It was recalled that the German Zionists last night appealed to Great Britain to open the gateway to Palestine.
Sir Herbert replied that immigration into Palestine was governed by absorptive capacity. At this point Lord Bearsted interpolated that “it would not benefit either the German Jews or Palestine” if they entered beyond the country’s absorptive capacity.
Asked about the attitude of the Arabs toward Jewish immigration, Sir Herbert said that “the Arab population is always restless with regard to Jewish immigration and I fear they may continue to be so.”
The trio were in the United States a fortnight. During that time they consulted with about twenty Jewish leaders, addressed meetings in New York, Baltimore, Chicago and St. Louis.