Basle (Dec. 26)
Whether or not Dr. Chaim Weizmann is to be re-elected president of the World Zionist Organization continued today to loom as one of the major issues before the Zionist Actions Committee, which concluded its second day of deliberations without reaching any agreement on the composition of the executive which it has been authorized by the World Zionist Congress to elect.
The delegates of the Palestine Labor Party are insisting that whatever the composition of the new executive, Dr. Weizmann must be included in it. The World Federation of Zionist Laborites demands that Dr. Weizmann be recalled to lead the World Zionist Executive until the conclusion of the Palestine Conference which is resuming next month in London. Afterward, a World Zionist Congress could be convoked and a new executive elected, the Laborites say.
The General Zionists and some of the Mizrachi members of the Actions Committee are strongly resisting the inclusion of Dr. Weizmann in the executive. They propose that David Ben Gurion be elected chairman of the executive in Jerusalem and Dr. Abba Hillel Silver be chairman of the executive in Washington, while the London branch of the executive would be composed of Prof. Selig Brodetsky, a General Zionist, Berl Locker, a Laborite, and S.Z. Shragi, a Mizrachi Laborite.
Since the Labor delegates have made the inclusion of Dr. Weizmann one of their major conditions, the General Zionists today began to consider the possibility of forming an executive without Laborites. They realize, however, that an executive based on General Zionists and on the Mizrachi would encounter great difficulties, as it would leave the Palestine Labor Party, the strongest element in the Yishuv, without representation on the Jerusalem executive.
The principal demands–aside from the position of Dr. Weizmann–which the Laborites have made in the course of their conversations with Dr. Silver are: 1. Establishment of a coalition executive on the basis of participation in the London Conference on Palestine; 2. Transfer to the executive of the power granted by the Congress to the Actions Committee to decide whether the political situation has changed sufficiently to enable Zionist leaders to attend the London parley; 3. Questions of policy in Washington should be controlled by the Jewish Agency executive, and should not be under the control of the American Zionist groups.
SILVER OPPOSES FREE HAND TO EXECUTIVE TO DECIDE ON PARTICIPATION IN LONDON PARLEY
Dr. Silver, in the course of today’s inter-party negotiations made it clear that he vigorously opposed the demand of the Laborites that the Actions Committee yield to the executive its authority to decide on participation in the London
The question of Dr. Weizmann’s presidency hinges on this issue and if a formula is found covering participation in the London talks, Dr. Weizmann will be the logical man to head the Jewish delegation.
The General Zionists are proposing the formation of an executive of 20 members composed of 8 General Zionists, 8 laborites–including two of the Achduth Avodah faction–and 4 Mizrachists. However, the Laborites argue that the Achduth Avodah seats should not be lumped with theirs and are holding out for at least one more seat.
Meanwhile, nerves are getting frayed in the inter-party struggle. Leaders of the General Zionists today hurled the accusation that the Laborites are dragging out the negotiations in a war of nerves and attrition, while some of the Laborites accused the General Zionists of “playing a dangerous game” by trying to form an executive without Laborite representatives.