LOS ANGELES (Oct. 8)
Israel’s transformation from privation and adversity to a flourishing economy was described here last night by Israel’s Foreign Minister Mrs. Golda Meir at a dinner in her honor in the Beverly Hilton Hotel, sponsored by Los Angeles Israel Bonds Committee. “Israel has developed new, healthy problems, ” she stated, ” problems of food surplus and shortage of labor, because more people are coming in and, as they come, more has to be done.”
Attended by 700 community leaders and diplomatic officials, the dinner marked the launching of the 1963-64 Israel bond drive in Los Angeles. Proceeds amounted to $2, 355, 880, bringing to $3, 986, 000 the total of Israel bonds raised in this city during the first nine months of 1963.
Pointing to education as a major national problem, Mrs. Meir said Israel must contend with the wide cultural gap separating the literate from the illiterate in the country. “More children went to school in Israel on October 1st than there were Jews in the country in 1948 when the state was established, ” she declared. “Not all of these are children of educated parents. Thousands are children of immigrant parents from countries which are two or three centuries behind the times.
“The crux of the problem is what will happen after this children finish elementary school, ” she continued. “Can we afford the luxury that only certain groups will go to high schools and universities? Who are going to be our teachers, our scientists, our technicians, our writers–only those who come from developed countries? It is our business to take in all Jews and to make out of all of them one educated, highly cultured people.”