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Weizmann Submits Text of Agreement on Zionist Reservations Concerning Survey Commission’s Recommenda

December 23, 1928
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Urges Its Adoption; Substitution of Three-Year Agency Period by Status Quo Ante Formula, Land Policy, Colonization Form, Immigration, Jewish Labor and Hebrew Language Dealt with in Document (Jewish Telegraphic Agency)

The full text of the agreement reached between the American non-Zionist Committee of Seven being the organization committee chosen by Mr. Louis Marshall following the non-Zionist conference in New York, and the authorized representatives of the World Zionist Organization, on the “reservations” made by the Zionist General Council at its session in Berlin last summer, with regard to the recommendations of the Joint Palestine Survey Commission, was presented to the Zionist General Council at its extraordinary session here Thursday afternoon.

The document, which remained unpublished until today, is dated New York, November 20, 1928, and deals with the cardinal points of difference which for a while seemed to threaten the consummation of the plan for the extension of the Jewish Agency. If this agreement is approved by the Zionist General Council at its present session, there would be no further obstacle to the consummation of the plan.

In presenting the document, which is divided into two parts, one presenting a formula for the removal of the three year condition for the extended Jewish Agency, imposed in a resolution adopted by the Zionist Congress held in Vienna in August 1925, and the second, dealing with the other reservations made by the Zionist General Council, Dr. Weizmann declared that this agreement has his full approval and urged its adoption. He read a communication from M. M. Usshishkin, head of the Jewish National Fund, who was one of the prime movers of the reservations at the summer session of the General Council. Mr. Ussishkin congratulates the president of the Zionist Organization on the result of his American negotiations.

The agenda for the session as adopted is as follows:

1. Report on the American negotiations concerning the Jewish Agency (reports by Dr. Weizmann and Nahum Sokolow); discussion.

2. Establishing the principles for the creation of the extended Jewish Agency in countries other than the United States.

3. The internal constitution of the Jewish Agency.

4. The political situation in Palestine and the Wailing Wall question.

5. Proposals concerning education, immigration, land policy, Jewish National Fund insurance.

6. Proposal to transfer to Palestine Dr. Herzl’s remains.

7. Designating time and place of the Sixteenth Zionist Congress.

Dr. Weizmann’s report occupied the entire first day of the session. In his report Dr. Weizmann submitted the agreement with the Marshall group which read in full as follows:

“Memorandum: At the meeting of the authorized representatives of the World Zionist Organization and of the Organization Committee of the Non-Zionist Conference of American Jews held in New York on November 3, 1928, attention was directed to a Resolution adopted at the Zionist Congress held in Vienna in August, 1925, to the effect that the enlarged Jewish Agency then in contemplation be formed provisionally, subject to renewal after three years. On behalf of the Organization Committee it was urged that this action was taken without consultation with those identified with the so-called Non-Partisan Conferences held in February, 1924, and March, 1925, that in its opinion a temporary Jewish Agency would be impracticable, would interfere with the adoption and carrying out of effective constructive policies, and would inevitably tend to delay the realization of those aims which actuated the efforts to enlarge the Jewish Agency.

“After discussion it was learned that the Zionist Organization deemed it necessary to provide for the contingency of a possible dissolution of the enlarged Jewish Agency and the legal effect of such dissolution upon Article IV of the Mandate for Palestine approved by the Council of the League of Nations on September 16, 1922. This being regarded as a proper prudential measure it was thereupon agreed:

“First, that in order to obviate any question which might arise should such dissolution ever occur and to assure the continuance in any event of a Jewish Agency as contemplated by Article IV, appropriate action be taken to secure the sanction of the Mandatory Power, or of such other authority having jurisdiction, to the proposed plan of the enlargement of the Jewish Agency coupled with a proviso that in case of a future dissolution of the enlarged Agency all of the rights and privileges now vested in the Zionist Organization pursuant to the terms of Article IV shall revert to it in all respects;

“Second, that after the arrangement set forth in the foregoing first paragraph shall have been made, the Zionist Congress be requested to rescind its Resolution above referred to, Dated, New York, November 20, 1928.”

The part of the document dealing with the “reservations” of the Zionist General Council read in full:

“The Report of the Joint Palestine Survey Commission and the recommendations therein contained, bearing date June 18. 1928, having been submitted to and considered by the Zionist General Council at its meeting held in Berlin on July 19-31, 1928, which adopted a series of resolutions relating to such recommendations, and the Report having been submitted to the Non-Zionist Conference of American Jews held in the City of New York on October 20-21, 1928, at which resolutions were adopted respecting such Report and the proposed extension of the Jewish Agency and pursuant to which resolutions an Organization Committee was appointed which, among other things, was empowered in anticipation of the formation of the enlarged Jewish Agency to adjust with the duly authorized representatives of the World Zionist Organization any difference that may have arisen or that may arise with respect to the interpretation, effect or operation of any recommendations contained in the Report of the Joint Palestine Survey Commission, and such Committee having to that end conferred with the duly authorized representatives of the World Zionist Organization, the following understanding has been reached:

“(1) It is recognized that the various recommendations contained in the Report of the Joint Palestine Survey Commission are to be regarded merely as a basis for future action, that from time to time conditions are likely to arise which may make modifications advisable, and that when the proposed enlarged Jewish Agency shall come into operation, that body will naturally be expected to deal with the subjects coming within its scope in such a manner as will best conduce to the economic, spiritual and cultural development of Palestine.

“(2) It is considered to be a fundamentally sound policy as to the acquisition of lands in Palestine with funds derived from the Jewish Agency, except as hereinafter specified, that they shall be purchased under the direction of the Jewish Agency through the medium of the Jewish National Fund (Keren Kayemeth L’Israel), and that the title to the lands so acquired shall be taken in the name of the Jewish National Fund, to the end that the same shall be held as the inalienable property of the Jewish people: Provided, however, that the terms and conditions upon which the property so held by the Jewish National Fund shall be used, occupied, leased or possessed by any person, association or corporation shall be first approved and sanctioned by the Jewish Agency, and that any changes or modifications that may at any time be made with respect thereto shall likewise have the approval and sanction of the Jewish Agency; and provided, further, that this shall not be deemed as intending to discourage the purchase of lands with private funds so long as such lands are not acquired for speculative purposes or in hostility with the plans of the Jewish National Fund or of the Jewish Agency, and that the latter shall in the exercise of its discretion be enabled to invest part of its funds for the purchase of the shares, bonds, debentures or other securities of any corporation now existing or hereafter organized in order to facilitate the purchase of lands in Palestine by private individuals; nor shall it be deemed to interfere with the carrying out of any policy that may be adopted by the Jewish Agency to aid those seeking to settle upon the land with means of their own in such manner and upon such conditions as shall not be inconsistent with the fundamental policy herein set forth.

“(3) Without intending to determine the form of land settlement that shall hereafter be pursued in Palestine (Moshav, Kvuzah, or otherwise), it is to be understood that it shall be left to the judgment of the Jewish Agency to determine the economic soundness and practicability of any proposed plan of settlement or of colonization before appropriating any of the funds within its control for any particular settlement or colony.

“(4) So far as Jewish immigration into Palestine is concerned, it is obvious that it should be encouraged and furthered both by the Jewish Agency and the Government of Palestine to the fullest extent practicable and in consonance with the general principles set forth in the recommendations of the Joint Palestine Survey Commission, it being recognized that immigrant workers as well as immigrants with independent means shall be accorded favorable consideration.

“(5) In all works and undertakings carried out or furthered by the Jewish Agency, Jewish labor shall be employed.

“(6) The Hebrew language and Jewish culture are to be fostered. Dated, New York, November 20, 1928.”

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