NEW YORK (Dec. 15)
The 30th annual National Conference of the United Jewish Appeal ended today after 3,000 delegates re-elected Edward Ginsberg of Cleveland as general chairman with a mandate to conduct a massive, nationwide “no limit” campaign in 1969 to meet “crucial human needs” in Israel and 30 other countries throughout the world. Max M. Fisher of Detroit was re-elected president. Mrs. Bernard Schaenen of Dallas was elected national chairman of the Women’s Division succeeding Mrs. Harry Jones of Detroit, and Gordan Zacks of Columbus, Ohio, was elected chairman of UJA’s National Young Leadership Cabinet, succeeding Herbert J. Garon of New Orleans.
The 1969 UJA campaign will have no goal, Mr. Ginsberg stated, “because the needs are too great to be circumscribed by any limitations.” Since its inception 30 years ago, the UJA has raised nearly $2 billion for Jewish rescue, relief and reconstruction programs in Israel and 30 other countries throughout the world. The funds to be raised in 1969 will be devoted to: “needs that must be met on behalf of more than 350,000 Jewish immigrants now living in Israel, as well as for the 30,000 other newcomers whose arrival is anticipated in 1969; and to carrying on existing programs outside of Israel, on behalf of more than 400,000 Jews, principally in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East,” he said. Needs in Israel will be met primarily through continuation of the UJA’s Israel Emergency Fund, a “no goal” fund-raising effort launched in June, 1967, on the eve of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Mr. Ginsberg said, “The people of Israel, forced to divert all of their economic strength and resources to defense, must turn over to world Jewry the problem of maintaining vast and costly programs of relief, social welfare, child care and other measures needed to aid a huge and impoverished segment of its society, composed chiefly of unabsorbed immigrants. The post-war security burdens Israel’s people carry now, and will continue to carry, add up to hundreds of millions of dollars.” he said. “The Israelis will bear these costs themselves, but they ask us and our fellow Jews throughout the world to continue to meet the human needs of Israel’s people and arriving immigrants.”
Mr. Ginsberg noted that UJA funds are allocated not only to the people of Israel but also to assist Jews victimized by recent upheavals in Eastern Europe. He said, “the virulent outburst of anti-Semitism in Poland, the flight of 3,000 Libyan Jews to Italy, the post-June 1967 exodus of about 25,000 Jews from Morocco and Tunisia to Israel and France were all major events involving hard work to care for many needs.” He stated that through the Joint Distribution Committee, UJA funds must assist more than half of the remaining 20,000 Jews in Poland. In 1967 the Rumanian Government granted JDC permission to resume assistance to the more needy among the 100,000 Jews in that country. Mr. Ginsberg told delegates to the three-day parley that since the beginning of December, 1968 some 4,000 Czechoslovakian Jews have fled that country. He said that more than 2,700 of this number had come to the JDC office in Vienna for assistance.
RABBI FRIEDMAN EXPLAINS HOW $365 MILLION SPENT ON SOCIAL WELFARE
Earlier in the conference, Rabbi Herbert A. Friedman, the UJA’s executive vice chairman, told the delegates that 20 per cent of Israel’s gross national product – estimated at $5 billion – will be spent on defense next year. “These crushing defense costs will consume almost the entire income available from Israeli internal revenue,” he said, adding that fiscal 1969 defense costs will be 2.5 times as much as in fiscal 1967, when the Arab-Israel war was fought.
Rabbi Friedman estimated the total social welfare bill for Israel during 1969 at $365 million. Of this a great portion must be borne by U.S. Jews, he said. He told the delegates that the $365 million would be spent this way: $100 million, social welfare, including immigration and absorption; $50 million, health services; $75 million, education; $35 million, institutions of higher learning; $6 million, youth care and training; $24 million absorption of immigrants in agricultural settlements; and $75 million, immigrant housing.
President-elect Richard M. Nixon sent the UJA parley a telegram, addressed to Max M. Fisher, expressing good wishes for a successful campaign. He said, “the humanitarian record of the UJA and its beneficiaries in saving human lives and assisting more than three million in 30 years has earned the admiration of millions of Americans and men of goodwill everywhere.” Conference delegates also heard speeches by Henry Ford II, chairman of the board of the Ford Motor Co. and Louis Pincus, chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel.
JDC BUDGET OF $24,665,000 APPROVED, ALMOST $2 MILLION GREATER THAN 1968
A budget for 1969 of $24,665,000 submitted by the Joint Distribution Committee was approved at the UJA conference. The budget is almost $2 million greater than the 1968 one and provides for a broad range of health, welfare and rehabilitation services for some 350,000 Jews in 27 countries overseas, said Louis Broido, general chairman. For 1969, assistance to Jews in Rumania, Yugoslavia and other East European countries has been budgeted at $1,385,000, Mr. Broido noted. The agency will also spend $4,800,000 to maintain its health, welfare and educational activities for Jews in Moslem and Arab countries. Its single largest program, Mr. Broido noted, is in Israel, where JDC’s health and welfare program on behalf of aged, ill and handicapped new immigrants, known as Malben, will have a budget of $6,800,000 during the coming year. Another $950,000 will go for support of religious and cultural activities in the Jewish State. Since JDC also provides financial assistance for the vocational training activities of Organization for Rehabilitation Through Training (ORT) in Israel, 1969 JDC expenditures in Israel will reach almost $9,000,000, more than a third of the organization’s total budget.