Zionist Leader Explains Issues in the Zionist Congress Elections

Controversy within the World Zionist Organization over the decision by the Zionist General Council to foreign elections to the next World Zionist Congress, under certain conditions, has been misrepresented in press reports from Israel, according to Mrs. Charlotte Jacobson, chairman of the World Zionist Organization-American Section, who has just returned from the Jewish Agency Assembly and General Council meetings in Jerusalem.

Pointing out that two separate issues are involved, Mrs. Jacobson explained that the recent Jerusalem vote does not affect internal organizational elections to assure opportunities for new delegates to attend the Congress.

“What is at issue,” she said, “is the number of delegates each Zionist party is entitled to. This is generally decided by the proportion of votes cast in the elections. In the United States it is subject to two limitations: the largest group is not to have more than 50 percent of the delegates to the Congress, and the smallest is not to have less than three delegates.”

Elections to the forthcoming Congress are to be waived in any country where 90 percent of the factions represented in the Zionist Federations are agreed on the number assignment of delegates per faction. “Ninety percent represents a very large percentage and prevents a small group from majorizing the decisions,” Mrs. Jacobson stated.

Ironically enough, she continued, it is the Israelis “who talk about ‘the same tired people arguing the same tired issues,’ who are most aroused over the General Council ruling: it is the Israelis who do not vote for delegates. They do not have Congress elections in Israel and have their delegations assigned by the party hierarchies. Let the Israelis fight for democratic procedures in Israel. Democratic election of delegates from the U.S. organizations is not at issue.” * * *

Israel’s daring rescue of the more than 100 hostages from the Entebbe Airport in Uganda is being commemorated by the establishment of a special Perpetual Scholarship Fund set up by the Women’s Division of the American Society for Technion. The fund will be named for Israel’s Lt. Col. Jonathan Nethanyahu, who led the mission and paid with his life.

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