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Banquet Tonight for Washington Forest in Palestine; Each Guest to Pay for Planting of 5 Trees

February 19, 1933
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The series of Washington Birthday celebrations planned by many groups in the city for the coming week, will begin with a banquet which will be held this evening, at the Astor Hotel, under the auspices of the Jewish National Fund of America, of which Nelson Ruttenberg, Deputy Police Commissioner, is president.

The banquet will be attended by more than 1,000 persons, it is anticipated, and is being held for the purpose of furthering the realization of a plan to plant in Palestine, in commemoration of the bicentennial anniversary, a forest of eucalyptus and pine trees in memory of George Washington, on an area of 8,000 dunams between Haifa and Nazareth, on land set aside for this purpose by the Keren Kayemeth Le Israel, the Zionist agency which redeems the soil of Palestine as the property of the Jewish people.

The project is similar in scope to the one carried out by the Jews of Great Britain in memory of Lord Balfour, the father of the Balfour Declaration, which inaugurated the post-war Zionist upbuilding work in Palestine.

Grover Whalen, chairman of the New York City Bicentennial Commission; George Gordon Battle, Dr. Israel Goldstein, Robert Szold, former President of the Zionist Organization of America; Abraham Goldberg, Zionist leader and writer; Isaac Allen, President of the Order Sons of Zion, and Rev. Z. H. Masliansky will be the speakers at the banquet. Mr. Ruttenberg will act as toastmaster.

The reforestation of the Holy Land in memory of George Washington will be advanced considerably as a result of the celebration this evening, as each of the guests present will have contributed $10, which pays, in addition to the cover price, an amount sufficient for the planting of five trees in the George Washington Forest in the name of the person designated.

Louis S. Haas was re-elected president of Congregation Emanu-El of San Francisco at the annual meeting of the board of directors, which followed the yearly meeting of the full congregation membership. Other officers re-elected were: Max Sommer, vice-president; Frederick J. Hellman, treasurer; and Edwin S. Newman, secretary.

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