Policy of Arab-jewish Rapprochement Outlined by Israeli Envoy at Magnes Memorial

Leaders of all walks of Jewish life tonight attended a memorial meeting honoring the late Judah L. Magnes, former president of Hebrew University in Jerusalem, who died here in October. Eliahu Epstein, Israeli representative in Washington, and former Governor Herbert H. Lehman, were among the principal speakers at the memorial, which was held at Temple Emanu-El.

Paying tribute to Dr. Magnes, Epstein said that although Magnes’ practical suggestions to reach relations of mutual friendship and trust between Jews and Arabs may be outdated by now, his underlying conception is fully shared by the people and government of Israel today.

“While we consider the strengthening of Israel as the main guarantee for our survival, we will simultaneously launch a far-sighted and statesmanlike policy of rapprochement and understanding with the Arab countries,” the Israeli envoy stated. “We wish to preserve and continue to develop the western features of our civilization. We must remember, however, that our destiny will depend in many respects on what will happen in the Middle East. Nothing would be more dangerous than to follow a policy of ‘splendid isolation’ or complete indifference to developments in Arab countries, Turkey, Iran and even India.”

Lehman emphasized that “Dr. Magnes could have remained a greatly beloved and respected member of our American Jewish community, which offered him many honors and a safe and comparatively easy life. His deep-rooted interest and devotion, however, lay in Palestine.”

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