Jerusalem (Aug. 6)
A Jewish Agency delegation attempting to see High commissioner Sir Alan G. Cunningham today to protest the arrest of numerous Jewish leaders, including three mayors, yesterday, was turned away at Government House with the comment that the matter was “purely military” and that the civil authorities had nothing to do with it. Meanwhile, three more Revisionist leaders were seized, but their names were not made public immediately.
A delegation from the Jewish National Council this morning visited the detainees in the Latrun detention camp and brought them as many items, such as food, religious articles and radios, as are permitted under camp regulations. First reports from Latrun indicated that Mayor Israel Rokach of Tel Aviv, who suffered a heart attack when he was arrested, is in need of constant medical attention.
The prisoners, for whom nothing had been prepared except beds and bare mattresses, were in high spirits today after a warm welcome from the “permanent political presidents.” The old-timers arranged a dinner in honor of the new “guests” last night.
A clandestine broadcast on the Irgun Zvai Leumi’s transmitter, “Voice of Fighting Zion,” tonight declared that the underground organization interpreted the arrests as a threat to Jewish Agency leaders that if they did not cooperate with the government in the campaign against the Irgun and Stern Group, they too would find themselves in Latrun. The announcer continued that the arrests had no effect on the Irgun’s military strength, which, he asserted, would be demonstrated in the coming weeks.
TEL AVIV CHAMBER OF COMMERCE RECOMMENDS GENERAL STRIKE
At an emergency meeting tonight the members of the Tel Aviv municipal council protested the arrests and demanded the immediate release of the prisoners. The vice-mayor reported on the failure of a municipal delegation to receive a satisfactory answer from the local district commissioner when it protested the seizures. Included among the delegates was the vice-mayor and Petach Tikvah’s mayor.
A meeting of the Tel Aviv Chamber of Commerce decided to recommend to tomorrow’s meeting of the Jewish National Assembly that it call a 24-hour general strike, despite the fact that it would cost Jewish industry and labor about $1,000,000. This is the first time that a business organization has made such a proposal.
(Reuters today reported in London that political observers believe that Britain may be planning to withdraw some troops from Palestine. Commenting on Prime Minister Clement R. Attlee’s statement in Commons that Britain will reduce its armed force by some 200,000 men by next March, they said that he might be assuming a U.N. settlement of the Palestine issue by then, which would permit the withdrawal of part of the 100,000-man occupation force.)
A hand grenade exploded in Jeruslaem last night. There were no casualties, ## Amonge to property and no arrests.