New York (Dec. 6)
Meyer Pessin, newly elected president of the Jewish National Fund, declared here that he will call upon American Jewry to “step up its contributions to the be Fund so that the new JNF five-year program for the reclamation of 300,000 dunams of land (a dunam is 1/4 of an acre) for the establishment of dozens of new settlements in Israel and the planting of an additional 25,000 trees can be achieved.”
Addressing the biennial meeting of the JNF Board of Directors several days ago, the New Jersey attorney, Zionist and communal leader said that the 70-year history of the JNF, currently being celebrated in the countries of the free world, “is but a prelude to the new and awesome responsibilities that the Fund is now being asked to assume by the government of Israel.”
Pessin noted that the new settlements being planned “will not see the light of day unless there is an intensified effort” by JNF supporters in the US to “raise the funds necessary to permit the JNF to reclaim the land, build access roads, and to prepare the sites for the proposed settlements in the strategically vital sections of the land of Israel.” He also stated that he will soon announce a new plan for the development of the Arava region of the Negev desert. Pessin, former chairman of the JNF Foundation and a member of the JNF Board for more than 20 years, is a former Corporation Counsel of Jersey City and once its acting Mayor. He succeeded Herman L. Weisman as the head of the JNF.