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British Jews Hall Abolition of Racial Laws in Sicily; Raise Fund for Post-war Aid

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Hailing the announcement of the abolition of all racial laws in Sicily by AMGOT, Professor Selig Brodetsky, president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, last night expressed the hope that a similar policy will be followed in all liberated territories as the allied armies advance further into Axis Europe. He recalled that no such announcement was made when the Allies conquered Tunis.

The newly-elected Board voted to raise a minimum “fighting fund” of $600,000 to aid the Jews in Europe after the war. Prof. Brodetsky declared that the outstanding problems facing the Board were victory and the status of the Jews, which, he said, had steadily deteriorated since 1933. He stressed that it was imperative that British Jewry make clear that Jews everywhere must be guaranteed the right to live like free men and women after the war, and that the Jews of Palestine be allowed to develop a national existence there. He appealed to all Jews, even non-Zionists, to support the demand for large-scale immigration into Palestine.

“When peace comes,” Prof. Brodetsky continued, “we will be able to state that the Jews fought and suffered for both their own freedom and for the freedom of the world. Therefore, they should at least be allowed to participate in working out a program of Jewish rights acceptable to Jews in all free nations.” Emphasizing the dangers of anti-Semitic propaganda after the war, he urged that steps be taken to safeguard the position of the Jews and to “see to it that anti-Semitism be treated as an illness which cannot be tolerated.”

Among those elected to the executive committee of the Board at last night’s meeting were Sir Robert Waley Cohen, Lavy Bakstansky, Leslie Hore-Belisha, Barnett Janner, Lord Nathan and Mrs. Rebecca Zieff. Candidates supported by the Zionists comprise two-thirds the membership of most of the other committees. Among the 15 members of the Foreign Affairs Committee are Mr. Hore-Belisha, Viscountess Bearsted, Lord Nathan, Simon Marks and Mr. Janner. The Palestine Committee is composed of 14 Zionists and two non-Zionists.

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