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No Direct Danger for Palestine. Shertok Says; Arabs Urged to Launch Pogroms on Jews

The opinion that the present military situation in Egypt does not constitute any direct danger for Palestine was expressed here today by Moshe Shertok, head of the political department of the Jewish Agency, addressing a gathering arranged by the Association of Jewish Journalists. Shertok based his opinion on the fact that “increased British reinforcements will halt the enemy.”

At the same time, however, the executive members of the Jewish Agency and of the Jewish National Council of Palestine held a joint meeting at which they discussed the present military developments as well as a program of action for the Jews in Palestine in all eventualities. A committee was elected at the meeting to issue a new appeal to the Jews in Palestine for increased enlistment and also instructions for the Yishuv for any emergency that may arise. A session of the Small Zionist Actions Committee will be held tomorrow to consider the same problems.

The Kantara railway station, which connects the Palestine railway line with Egypt and which is a part of the Palestine-Egyptian border, was bombed last night by enemy planes. Enemy filers also appeared over Haifa, but dropped no bombs. An air raid alarm was sounded today in Tel Aviv but no enemy planes were seen.

MARKED INCREASE IN JEWISH VOLUNTEERS AT RECRUITING STATIONS

There is a marked increase in the number of Jewish volunteers at the recruiting offices all over Palestine. The central committee of the Revisionists organization, after a special meeting in Tel Aviv today, proclaimed compulsory recruitment for all members of the Revisionist Party who are of military age.

The Axis radio broadcast, “Voice of Free Arabs,” which is supervised by the ex-Mufti of Jerusalem, today urged the Arabs in Egypt and Palestine to launch pogroms against the Jews and to take away their property. The broadcaster stated: “Take your revenge on them. Break them before they break you. Kill them. Set their houses on fire. Close their stores.”

While declaring that no direct danger threatens Palestine, Shertok in his address pointed out that “there is good reason to believe that the whole Allied strength will be massed for the defense of this sector.” A German victory in this part of the world does not mean complete defeat of England but would mean the destruction of Israel’s hopes and strenuous efforts of three pioneer Zionist generations, Shertok stated.

The office of the Jewish Agency today received a cable from the Zionist Federation of Australia and New Zealand expressing the hope that Palestine Jews will be allowed to defend their homeland. “For the Jewish people, Palestine is not merely a strategic point among many, but the pivotal point of Jewish hopes and aspirations,” the message said. “500,000 Jews will defend Palestine as the English defended Britain in its supreme hour of trial.”

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