Jerusalem (Nov. 7)
Palestine’s bomb-battered rail network was completely paralyzed today as the government ordered a one-day suspension of service following the derailment of an eight-car troop train this morning. The train, which was en route to Egypt, was derailed by a land mine near Tel Aviv, wounding three soldiers.
Although the official announcement said that the rail service was being suspended to allow for repairs, according to reliable sources the suspension was caused by the refusal of Arab personnel, including brakemen and engineers, to continue to man the trains in view of the constant bombings.
The government has, therefore, hired English engineers and has recruited trained army personnel to replace some of the Arabs. Continued disruption of the rail service will seriously affect the country’s economy. Citrus growers have already protested the transport delays, pointing out that they will result in spoil age and cancellation of contracts.
The Irgun Zvai Leumi distributed leaflets in Jerusalem tonight stating that with the lifting of the country-wide curfew on road traffic, it will cease mining the roads and will concentrate on rail traffic.
An unsuccessful attempt to rob Barclay’s Bank in Tel Aviv was made early this morning when three armed men described as Jews assaulted watchmen and attempted to break into the bank’s vaults. They fled when police arrived.