National U.J.A. Conference Sets $272,455,800 As Target for 1950; Morgenthau Reelected
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National U.J.A. Conference Sets $272,455,800 As Target for 1950; Morgenthau Reelected

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The national conference of the United Jewish Appeal concluded its three-day session here today adopting the figure of $272,455,800 as representing its “essential minimum requirements” for its program of further immigration and settlement in Israel, for overseas rehabilitation and relief and for refugee aid in the United States. The resolution on American Jewry’s responsibility pointed out that the part other Jewish communities may play in meeting these requirements is “very limited.”

Henry Morgenthau, Jr., was re-elected, by acclamation, general chairman for 1950. A special resolution which praised his “consecretation to the life-saving tasks of the U.J.A. and his untiring energy in mobilizing maximum resources,” was passed.

The critical need for removing to Israel large numbers of Jews from danger points in North Africa and the Near East moved the 1,600 delegates to call for self-sacrifice on the part of local Jewish communities, and for the mobilization of maximum funds. The resolution on the requirements for 1950 called upon American Jews to contribute to the United Jewish Appeal this coming year on “a scale commensurate with the minimum needs of its constitutent agencies — the Joint Distribution Committee, the United Palestine Appeal and United Service for New Americans. The conference also set up a committee to recommend quotas to local communities.

Another resolution called on American Jews to “exert unparalleled efforts to accomplish the great tasks which history has set before them.” The resolution expressed “distress at the fact that almost 100,000 Jews remain unhoused in Israel” and that “impelling forces make it urgent that additional tens of thousands of Jews be given speedy opportunity to depart from various parts of the world where to remain would entail actual peril to their lives.”


Community representatives presented checks totalling $5,900,000 to Mr. Morgenthau for this year’s drive. The conference adopted a resolution on the occasion of Dr. Weizmann’s 75th birthday expressing “profound gratitude for his great and historic service to the Jewish people.”

Addressing the conference from his home in Princeton, N.J., over a radio hook-up, Dr. Albert Einstein stressed the importance of “consolidating that which has been accomplished in Israel with amazing energy and unequalled willingness for sacrifice.” Paying tribute to the sacrifices made by the Jews of Israel, Dr. Einstein said they were now making an additional sacrifice in absorbing the vast in flux of immigrants. The economic means of the Jews of Israel are not sufficient to bring this tremendous enterprise to a successful end, he added, “it must not happen that this work breaks down because Jews of this country do not help sufficiently or quickly enough.”

In a message read to the conference yesterday, Israel Premier David Ben Gurion stated that because of the Arab states’ refusal to conclude final peace agreements with Israel, the Jewish state must pour its resources into guaranteeing its physical security. As a result, he said, the people of Israel find it necessary to appeal to American Jewry to assist them in the task of bringing immigrants to Israel and in absorbing them into the economy.


Israel Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett expressed hope that the war would not be resumed despite what he described as “sabre rattling” among the Arab nations. “Some Arab states are busy rearming,” he added. Israel, he said, was preparing to meet any possible peril by overhauling and strengthening its defenses. Mr. Sharett charged that the Arab states were insincere in their negotiations and that “conciliation was not only of no avail but liable to do harm. It has enabled the Arab states to have it both ways, to refuse to negotiate and appear as if they were engaged in the process,” he said.

“The attainment of a permanent and lasting peace,” said the Israel leader, “remains a primary objective of Israel’s foreign policy and the armistice agreement which Israel concluded with its four Arab neighbors in 1949 are a secure basis for such a peace.” The entire Jewish world is awaiting anxiously the outcome of the U.N. debate on Jerusalem, he asserted, expressing the hope that the U.N. would not set up “an illusory international regime which might well plunge the city into chaos from which it has emerged after so much suffering.”

Dr. Nahum Goldmann, chairman of the American section of the Jewish Agency, appealed to the conference not to allow local communal needs to deflect them from continuing large-scale support of Israel. The controversy over local needs, said Dr. Goldmann, versus overseas needs is meaningless. “Nobody denies the importance of local needs. The question is not one of principle but of timing,” he pointed out.


Judge Morris Rothenberg, national chairman of the U.J.A. and national chairman of the U.P.A., revealed to the delegates the details of a new plan, under which agricultural settlement in Israel has been accelerated. The new plan is based on the principle of placing a new immigrant on the soil before he has had any training and having him build his own home instead of his own farm as part of a community of 100 settlers. This plan has resulted in the establishment in the past year of 63 settlements of immigrants without any previous agricultural experience, he said.

Moses A. Beckelman, executive vice-chairman of the European Council of the J.D.C., declared that “there are areas in the Near East from which Jews are emigrating on a basis strongly reminiscent of the Nazi days before the war.” Mr. Beckelman estimated that the J.D.C. would be called on in 1950 to move a minimum of 140,000 Jews to Israel and other countries. Of these he said, at least one-third will be fleeing for their lives. The ability of the J.D.C. to “transfer these 140,000, and possibly more if Iraq expells its Jewish population, depends solely on the response of American Jewish communities to the 1950 drive of the U.J.A.”

Dr. Israel Goldstein, former Jewish Agency treasurer, who returned from Israel a short time ago, told the conference that to “the Jews in Israel, as well as to the Jews waiting to come to Israel, this United Jewish Appeal conference is a major event.” The Jews in Israel look to it because the results of the U.J.A. campaign will determine to what degree their own burden will be lightened, he said, adding that Jews waiting to come to Israel look to the results of the U.J.A. campaign because these will determine whether they can get an “economic certificate of admission” into the Jewish national home.

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