STARLIGHT, Penna. (Aug. 26)
Dr. Aryeh Nesher, who fought in the anti-Nazi underground during World War II, and in the Israeli army during the Jewish state’s war for independence, told 350 teen-age convention delegates at Camp B’nai B’rith there can be no peace in the world if the world permits the destruction of Israel. Russia’s maneuvers in the Middle East, he said, recall Hitler’s conquest of small countries that triggered a world war. Dr. Nesher, director of the Israel Education Fund of the United Jewish Appeal, warned leaders of the Aleph Zadik Aleph and the B’nai B’rith Girls that “tens of thousands” of anti-Israel spokesmen, including Arabs and American adherents of the New Left, are spreading “poison” on the campus and in lecture halls. In addition, he cited television and newspaper opinion-makers who have been “disillusioned” with Israel ever since its victory over the Arabs in June, 1967. “For hundreds of years we were martyrs, scapegoats–losers. Humanitarians sympathized with us when we died by the millions. But when we decided to fight back and refused to die and made our oppressors die instead, we lost much of this ‘humanitarian’ sympathy, which now goes to our enemies.”
The German-born social scientist sharply condemned the increasingly-vocal fringe of radical Jewish youth whose presumed “humanitarianism” leads them to side with the Arab cause. He recalled his own radical outlook as a socialist youth in Germany, when he was jailed for political activity, along with three non-Jewish friends. “Our hearts bled for the oppressed Chinese, the persecuted Cubans under dictator Battista, the enslaved Africans–for all the suffering people of the world. But when the Nazis came to power, my three humanitarian Marxist ‘comrades’ were wearing Hitler youth armbands.” In those days, said Dr. Nesher, the Nazis justified their destruction of the Jews by linking them with the Communists, while today Communists try to justify destruction of Jewish life by depicting Zionism as a ‘Nazi’ philosophy. Concerning the current Middle East situation. Dr. Nesher said Israel’s crisis may be greater than that preceding the war of 1967. Dr. Nesher was guest speaker at Camp B’nai B’rith, where youth leaders from all over North America as well as 22 delegates from Israel and others from England and Uruguay are holding a week of deliberations. The 47th international convention of Aleph Zadik Aleph and the 26th international convention of the B’nai B’rith Girls were concurrently in progress last weekend.