NEW YORK (Mar. 10)
Dr. Stephen S. Wise, first delegate to return from the London conferences, last night told some 2,000 Zionist leaders that Jewish non-cooperation would make it impossible for Britain to establish an independent Palestine state, but he pledged the Jews’ aid to England in the event of war.
Speaking at a reception for him and Mrs. Wise arranged at the Hotel Roosevelt by various Zionist organizations, Dr. Wise was bitter in his denunciation of British policy on Palestine, expressed the opinion that the Jews had been brought to London as “scenery” for a decision perhaps prepared in advance, declared he would rather see Jews die than live in a Palestine “ghetto” and vowed the strongest resistance to any Palestine state plan.
But, at the same time, he cautioned the Zionists not to be too harsh in their judgment of Britain. The British, he said, were acting out of dread of the Fascist governments, and “I think that if England today were ready to meet its enemies, the conference would not have been held.” He declared: “In the conflict that is to come between England and the Fascist powers, we will give all that England may triumph.”
Arguing that London could take no just decision under the pressure of present circumstances, he urged the British Government to postpone for a year a decision on Palestine’s future, meanwhile continuing Jewish immigration. He made reference to a “grand plan” that was being considered by Jews for development of Palestine and surrounding Arab countries, about which he declared he could not reveal more at present.
Dr. Wise’s conviction that a Palestine state could not be established now and that Jewish upbuilding would continue were shared by Dr. Solomon Goldman, president of the Zionist Organization, who drew cheers when he introduced Dr. Wise as “the Jewish Gibraltar,” by Lady Reading, who made a brief farewell speech before sailing for England on the Queen Mary on Saturday, and by telegrams from regional Zionist groups.