LONDON (Dec. 21)
Dr. Chaim Weizmann, president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine and the World Zionist Organization, left London yesterday for a visit of several months in the United States. It was understood he would board the Pan-American Clipper at Lisbon on Dec. 29.
(Dr. Weizmann will stop off in Paris en route to Lisbon, Arthur Lourie, his personal representative, informed the J.T.A. in New York. Mr. Lourie, who arrived here ten days ago to prepare for Dr. Weizmann’s visit, said Dr. Weizmann would proceed to Lisbon by easy stages and might possibly leave earlier than Dec. 29.
Dr. Weizmann departed after taking leave of Government officials, and utilizing his last opportunity for several months to discuss the Palestine situation with them. Fears that the Government might take some action regarding the Palestine White Paper were allayed by assurances from the highest quarters that no change in the status quo had been decided upon by the Government, which had agreed to consult the Opposition before taking any major steps.
While the Zionist leader naturally will thoroughly inform American Zionist leaders of all developments in the political situation, the principal purpose of his visit to America is to secure increased economic support for the Jewish homeland from the American Jews, both through the Zionist funds and through investment of American Jewish capital in Palestinian enterprises.
Stressing the gravity of the present situation, Dr. Weizmann is expected to seek to interest American Jewish capital in two developments with which he is in tensely concerned:
(1) Development of the pharmaceutical industry in Palestine, which Dr. Weizmann believes holds out excellent prospects, particularly because of the possibility of capturing German markets in the Near East;
(2) Establishment of industries based on citrus by-products, one of the results of which would be the strengthening of citrus-growing, Palestine’s largest industry.
(According to Jerusalem reports, Palestine scientists are working on a process for mass squeezing of oranges, producing juice which can be converted into alcohol and a residue useful as cattle fodder. It is also planned to use orange peel as a raw material for acetone, the explosive manufactured according to a process which Dr. Weizmann, who is a famous chemist, developed for Britain during the last war. Other contemplated by-product uses of citrus fruits are in manufacture of plastics, medicines and absorbents for use in gas masks.)
It is understood here that Dr. Weizmann also may take up organization questions, such as the position of American non-Zionists, and may seek to widen non-Zionist participation in the Jewish Agency.
Leaving London at the same time as Dr. Weizmann was Moshe Shertok, head of the Jewish Agency’s political department, who went by air to Palestine to confer with members of the Agency executive. He is returning to London in January.