World Zionist Congress Opens Today; Political Parties Discuss Issues

The 25th World Zionist Congress opens here tomorrow to map plans for intensifying Jewish immigration to Israel and expanding Hebrew education in countries outside of Israel, as well as to attract non-Zionist fraternal organizations into the ranks of the world Zionist movement.

Prior to the opening of the Congress, various world conferences are taking place here of Zionist parties for the purpose of outlining their attitudes to the issues which will be taken up by the Congress. Some 100 delegates from 33 countries met here yesterday at the opening session of the two-day conference of the World Confederation of General Zionists, headed by Dr. Israel Goldstein and Mrs. Rose Halprin.

Dr. Goldstein announced that there will be no voting block at the Zionist Congress between this Confederation and the World Confederation of General Zionists headed by Dr. Emanuel Neumann. Dr. Goldstein also outlined a “five-year-plan” for an aliyah of 25,000 persons from the United States. The plan was opposed by Mrs. Halprin, asserting that no goals should be set because aliyah was a question for the individual to decide.

Simultaneously, the Confederation of General Zionists headed by Dr. Neumann is also holding a two-day world conference in Tel Aviv of its delegates to the Congress. Addressing the parley, Dr. Neumann suggested that the World Jewish Congress be merged with the world Zionist movement. He also urged that Israel’s young generation be taught to understand the mutual responsibility of Israel and the Jewish people outside of Israel. Max Bressler, president of the Zionist Organization of America, discussed the role of the ZOA in expanding Jewish education in the United States.

DEBATE ON IMMIGRATION FROM WESTERN COUNTRIES ANTICIPATED

One of the major topics to be debated at the sessions of the Zionist Congress is the issue of immigration to Israel from Western countries. At the conferences of both Confederations of General Zionists, this issue formed the center of discussion. It was also widely discussed at a world conference of the Achdut Avoda Party. now taking place here, attended by about 150 delegates, half of this number being delegates who represented the party in countries outside of Israel.

The left-wing Mapam party is similarly holding a session here to take stand on the issues facing the Zionist Congress. At a meeting of its political committee, the Mapam suggested that the Jewish Agency should give up some of its functions and concentrate most of its efforts on increasing pro-Israel feelings among Jews in the lands of the Diaspora. It also suggested that fraternal members of the Zionist Congress be given a “special frame” in which they could work for Israel.

The Mapai, Israel’s leading party, announced at its world conference today that it would propose a complete separation between Jewish Agency and Israel Government functions, so that the Agency would deal with absorption and housing. The announcement said Mapai would suggest that 10 percent of the Jewish Agency budget should be set aside for Hebrew education and to encourage halutzic and Zionist youth movements.

The right-wing Herut party, which is also holding a pre-Congress world convention here, heard an address by its leader, Menahem Beigin, in which he stated that Herut’s position on Zionism at the Congress would be that the Zionist movement must be continued, and that every effort must be made to strengthen it. “Herut deplores any attempt to divide Jews into good and bad Zionists,” he declared. He demanded that the Congress should demand from the Israel Government that it transfer the remains of Vladimir Jabotinsky, the late leader of the Revisionist party to Israel for re-burial. Mr. Jabotinsky is buried in New York, where he died suddenly during a visit to the United States.

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