JERUSALEM (Jan. 14)
Leaders of the Jewish community have not abandoned hope of persuading the Irgun Zvai Leumi to cease terrorist activities, despite the proclamation of continued resistance issued by the Irgun yesterday and despite the blasting of Haifa police headquarters this week by the Stern Group.
Pressure on the dissident groups to discontinue their attacks on British military installations and police stations is continuing and the outlook for success is promising at least as far as the Irgun is concerned, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency learns. At the same time, resentment is rising in the Jewish community, heightened by the explosion at the Haifa police station in which two British and two Arab policemen were killed and many British, Jewish and Arab policemen wounded.
Following the report made yesterday by David Ben Gurion to the Palestine section of the World Zionist Executive on his talks in London with the British Colonial Office, informed Zionist circles reiterated that there is little possibility of Jewish participation in the Conference on Palestine which is scheduled to resume in London a week from today. Their pessimism is based on the fact that Ben Gurion’s discussion with the Colonial Secretary did not result in any basic change in the situation, which the Zionist Congress made a prerequisite to attendance.
The meeting of the executive concluded last night without making public the decisions adopted. However, its decisions will be conveyed to the branches of the World Zionist Executive in Washington and London. Additional meetings of the executive will be held on Thursday in Jerusalem and London. It is believed here that Ben Gurion, Moshe Shertok and Dr. Moshe Sneh will remain in Britain during the London conference to observe developments and to be on hand in the event that changing conditions make possible new discussions with the government.
Meanwhile, an Agency spokesman today flatly denied report appearing abroad that Acting High Commissioner Sir Henry Gurney warned Ben Gurion yesterday that martial law would be imposed if extremist outrages did not cease. However, other sources report that Gurney gave the Agency chairman a virtual ultimatum to curb terrorism before the army took over.
A 17-year-old member of the Irgun, Youda Katz, was sentenced to life imprisonment by a military court today for participating in a raid on a Jaffa bank last September. Katz told the court that the raid was planned to obtain the “return” of money stolen from Jews by the British and to finance the purchase of arms. The president of the court told the young defendant that he was “too young to be hanged and too old to be flogged.”
PALESTINE ARABS WILL OPPOSE PARTITION AT LONDON PARLEY
The Arab Higher Committee announced officially today that it is sending a delegation to the London conference, adding that “At the outsat, the Palestine Arabs resolutely oppose partition in any form as a solution of the Palestine problem.” The
The so-called Arab army Najada has been holding public military drills in Gaza as part of a drive for recruits, it is reported here. Local British officials have taken no action to halt the military display.
Twenty-two Jews have been arrested on the Syrian border while attempting to cross into Palestine, according to word received here. Their Arab guides were also detained. Syrian border police are reported to have tightened frontier controls in recent weeks.