British Mapam Party Opens Parley; Bentov Assails Policies of Israel Government

Israel cannot fulfill the task of gathering in Jews from all parts of the world without the help of the world Zionist movement and the Jewish people as a whole, Yigal Alon, former commander of the Palmach, declared here last night at the opening session of the annual conference of the British Mapam Party.

Mr. Alon asserted that the part played by the Mapam Party in the realization of the Zionist ideal is greater than it would appear from a comparison of the relative strength of the various Zionist parties. He insisted that the Mapam must be the “guiding force” in guaranteeing the security of the Jewish state by “turning the army into a popular pioneering force.”

Mordecal Bentov, Mapam member of the Israel Parliament, told the conference that the Mapam Party does not accept the separation between Jews and Israelis and between socialism and Zionism, which the party considers inseparable. He severely criticized the Israel Government for rejecting, 18 months ago, a plan for the mobilization of manpower and capital and for increasing production. He insisted that a year after this rejection, Finance Minister Eliezer Kaplan was forced to resort to similar measures.

Mr. Bentov denounced the “rising tide of clericalism” as “one of the deplorable by-products of this regime.” He also criticized the Mapai’s “westward drift,” adding that “until the Mapai is ready to transfer its center of gravity from the right to the left we will continue to remain in opposition.”

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