NEW YORK (Dec. 18)
The 18th annual national conference of the United Jewish Appeal concluded here last night with the adoption of a regular nationwide goal of $105,000,000 for 1956 and a resolution to press forward vigorously with the simultaneous raising of the extraordinary Special Fund originally set at $25,000,000 but opened up at the conference to make way for the raising of the greatest possible amount, in the light of Israel’s growing economic needs.
The 1,400 delegates from all parts of the country re-elected William Rosenwald general chairman of the UJA for the second year in succession. Edward M.M. Warburg was renamed president and Rabbi Herbert A. Friedman was re-elected executive vice-chairman.
Mrs. Golda Myerson, Minister of Labor in the Government of Israel and the principal speaker at last night’s final session, scored Egyptian Premier Nasser’s “accumulation of arms while setting up a smokescreen of talk about peace.” She said: “In Jerusalem, we s## no single reason why Mr. Nasser’s protestations regarding his desire for peace should be taken at their face value,” she declared. When we see Nasser accumulating arms,” Mrs. Myerson stated, “we in Israel can only come to the conclusion that one and or equals two.”
With respect to Israel’s policies and actions, Mrs. Myerson declared: “I challenge anybody anywhere to prove one single instance of Israel aggression against its Arab neighbors. I am speaking of any act taken on the initiative of the Israel Government without provocation. There have been acts of retaliation of retaliation, but that is because we have the authority to believe that Israeli blood is as important as the blood of anyone else.”
Mrs. Myerson called upon the delegates to assure the success of the United Jewish Appeal’s twofold efforts in 1956, asserting that “aid today for programs of immigration and settlement is more necessary than ever before in view of the fact that our own slender resources are not enough to cope with both this and the threat to our independence and freedom.”
1955 BROUGHT HALT TO DOWNWARD TREND IN GIVING, ROSENWALD REPORTS
Mr. Rosenwald, in a keynote address that brought an assessment of this year’s campaign, told the delegates that “1955 brought a halt to the downward trend in giving” and lauded American Jews for what he described as their “magnificent response to the UJA in an hour of mounting tension and danger for Jews in many areas.” He pointed out that “for the first time since 1948, the United Jewish Appeal will be able to appropriate to the United Israel Appeal and to the Joint Distribution Committee, its two main agencies, more money from the proceeds of its current campaign than from the previous year’s campaign.”
Rabbi Friedman told the final session that “withering of the Geneva spirit” has been caused in large part by Soviet action in sponsoring the arming of Egypt. “Not only must the free world rally to the support of Israel,” he declared, “but Jews especially must understand and respond to the fact that Israel is beleaguered and endangered.” He emphasized that “the UJA’s task with respect to Israel is to help it keep its gates open and to assist it in the absorption of all who are brought from lands of danger so that it can go forward in strength to meet whatever tests lie ahead.”
Dewey D. Stole, national chairman of the United Israel Appeal, in outlining the 1956 budgetary requirements of the UJA constituent agencies, told the people of Israel “today live in the pincer of two emergencies, the Communist-Egyptian threat to their survival, and the mass inflow of Jewish immigrants from North Africa.” IN spite of his “threat to their existence, “he stressed, “Israel’s people are determined that 45,000 Jews from North Africa shall be taken in during 1956.” The main way in which American Jews can help, he emphasized, is to provide all the funds for immigration so that Israel’s people can be relieved of this financial burden as “they gird themselves” for possible attack and aggression.
Joseph Meyerhoff of Baltimore, Md., and Fred Forman of Rochester, N.Y., were named chairman and vice-chairman, respectively, of the UJA’s top level National Campaign Cabinet. Samuel H. Daroff of Philadelphia, the outgoing chairman of the Cabinet, was elected as one of the UJA’s seven national chairmen and cited in a distinctive award for its “inspiring leadership” of the Cabinet in the past three years. Mr. Stone and Rabbi Jonah B. Wise of New York, vice-chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee, another of the UJA constituent organizations, were re-elected national chairmen representing their respective agencies.
Also returned to office as UJA national chairmen were Morris W. Berinstein of Sy#cuse, N.Y., Joseph Holtzman of Detroit, Sol Luckman of Cincinnati, and Jack D. We#er of New York. Mrs. Henry Newman, prominent Kansas City civic leader, was named chairman of the National Women’s Division. The coming year will mark the tenth anniversary of the National Women’s Division, which was organized in 1946. In the last 10 years, through their community campaigns, women have contributed more than $12#,000,000 in “plus” gifts.