Azf Launches Commission on Zionist Ideology; Polish Named Chairman

An American Zionist Federation Commission on Zionist Ideology has been launched and its first conference will be Jan. 21, it was announced by Faye Schenk. AZF president, Rabbi David Polish of Chicago, president of the Chicago Zionist Federation, will be chairman of the commission to which 31 Zionist scholars and leaders have been invited as members.

The commission, Mrs. Schenk said, will meet several times during the year for a series of high deliberations designed to develop answers to such questions as what is the contemporary character of Zionism, is the ideology of Zionism of 1976 essentially the same as the Zionism of 1945-1956, how does one distinguish between Zionism and pro-Israel activity, and does Zionist philosophy need updating and revision?

“The recent UN resolution equating Zionism with racism, and the resulting acceleration of interest in Zionism has created historic challenges and opportunities for the Zionist community.” Mrs. Schenk stated. “Never before in recent years have so many people been interested in hearing about, or discussing, Zionism. One important by-product of this phenomenon is the need to clarify and interpret the meaning of Zionism.”

Among those invited to participate in the commission are Prof. Howard Adelson, Dr. Judith Diesendruck, Rabbi Arthur Hertzberg, Charlotte Jacobson, Philip Klutznick, Rose Matzkin, Rabbi Alexander Schindler, Dr. Judah J. Shapiro, Dr. Joseph Sternstein, Kalman Sultanik, Prof. Marie Syrkin, Jacques Torczyner and Rabbi Mordechai Waxman. The 31 invitees represent all groupings in the Zionist movement.

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