NEW YORK (Dec. 1)
The 45th annual convention of the National Committee for Labor Israel Sunday concluded with the adoption of a $6,000,000 goal for the 1969 Israel Histadrut campaign on behalf of health, educational and social welfare programs in Israel. This sum will go toward an overall budget of the Histadrut assistance fund of $16,340,000 with Histadrut, the Israel labor federation, contributing the balance. The convention adopted twin goals for the coming year – $5 million in cash to be derived through the Histadrut Campaign, and $5 million in deferred income through the American Histadrut Development Foundation. The Foundation, with assets of $11 million, is expected to yield the $1 million in cash required to finance the $6,000,000 budget. Special emphasis was placed on the development of vocational high schools and on scholarship funds for needy students in Israel, with an overall total of $2 million for that purpose, of which $725,000 will be sought in the United States. The convention adopted a resolution assailing Russia for its continued supply of modern, sophisticated weapons to the Arab states and called on President-elect Richard M. Nixon to “follow through” on the sale of American Phantom jets to Israel now being negotiated.
Dr. Leon H. Keyserling, newly-elected Committee president – internationally known economist and a former economic advisor to President Eisenhower – said his interest in Israel stemmed mainly from what the nation does for “the betterment of its people.” Israel, he said, “with less than half of the United States’ per capita income and with a defense program twice, if not three times as high as ours, gives higher priority to the human needs of the people, cutting out the gloss and tinsel. Israel sets an example for the world to follow in its concern for the welfare of the individual, in health and in other social needs,” Dr. Keyserling said. “Israel has a great diversity of people of different races, language and culture flowing into its borders in so short a time that it would be comparable to 66 million people immigrating into the U.S., yet it goes ahead using public schools to create a homogenous nation. Israelis have a marvelous record of agriculture, but they do not juxtapose agricultural abundance to malnutrition as…we have in this country where many are starving in the midst of plenty.”