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Call for Separate Movements for Aliya and Support of Israel

A proposal to establish separate movements among world Jewry–one for aliya and one for support of Israel — will be raised at next month’s meeting of World Zionist Organization Executive, it was reported yesterday. The new designations replace “Zionist” and “non-Zionist,” the terminology that now characterizes all pro-Israel movements.

Likud MK Avraham Katz, chairman of the WZO’s Youth and Hechalutz Department, said the distinction between “Zionists” and “non-Zionists” affiliated respectively with the Zionist movement and the Jewish Agency is no longer relevant. “There are Zionists who don’t intend to come on aliya but busy themselves with local Zionist politics, and there are non-Zionists who are active fundraisers and plan aliya,” he said.

In place of such distinctions, Katz will propose formation of a new “Bilu” movement for those planning to immigrate to Israel, and revival of the “Hovevei Zion” movement for those who want to help Israel even though they aren’t planning aliya. Katz said he would raise the issue when diaspora members of the WZO Executive meet in Jerusalem with their Israeli counterparts next month.

On other matters, he said that he has decided to send three emissaries each to the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Jewish movements in the U.S. At present, these movements have either one emissary or none at all. “There is little chance that American Jewry will send us mass numbers, but at least you can talk about it, and at least we can meet community leaders and get them interested in Jewish camps, community centers and trips to Israel,” he said.

Katz’s department is presently preparing for the arrival in three weeks of 1400 Jewish youth from Latin America who will participate in “Operation Oranges” during their two-month summer vacation. The youths will tour the country, spend time at kibbutzim, and be hosted at Israeli homes in the main cities.

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