Locker Fears Stavsky Case Imperils Peace
Menu JTA Search

Locker Fears Stavsky Case Imperils Peace

Download PDF for this date

A plea to the Jewish people not to create “further and unnecessary dissension by insisting that the nation is on trial” in the case of Abraham Stavsky, Zionist Revisionist convicted of the murder of Dr. Chaim Arlosoroff, was made by Berl Locker, Laborite member of the World Zionist Executive, who spoke at the opening session of the third annual convention of Poale Zion-Zeire Zion held here at the Hotel Sherman. More than 2,000 persons were present.

Mr. Locker said the Poale Zion merely desired to see justice done Stavsky, and every effort should be made to determine if the man is guilty. He warned, however, that the case is dangerous and peace must be preserved in Palestine.


The speaker brought greetings from the World Zionist Organization and recalled the fact that at the Poale Zion convention in 1927, delegates returned from the thirty-fifth annual convention of the Zionist Organization of America and reported that they had been told that they were incapable of carrying out political action and should be content with building cities and working as laborers.

“But” he said, “in 1934 a Laborite ### greet you in the name of the ###rld Zionist Executive.”

### hailed the recognition of the political ability of the Laborites as a great victory for the organization and stressed the role that the workers’ party is now playing in the upbuilding of Palestine. The Laborite leader pointed out that every action of the Laborite member, of the Zionist Executive must be approved by the 250,000 Jewish workers who voted the Laborite ticket.

Discussing the conflict between Zionist factions in Palestine, Mr. Locker said that neutral people are not helping to ease the situation especially when they are “neutral only on paper.”


“The Poale Zion has the interests of the Jewish masses at heart, and as a representative of the Jewish masses I believe that only through labor can a new life be built in Palestine. The Labor party there has played an important role in the rehabilitation of the country and has also assumed the lead in the political role.”

Mr. Locker told questioners that the Poale Zion merely desired to see justice done in the case of Abraham Stavsky, convicted of the murder of Dr. Chaim Arlosoroff and whose case comes up for appeal on July 16. He said that the Laborites believe that every possible effort should be made to determine the guilt or innocence of Stavsky, but added “it is dangerous and unnecessary to try to create further dissension by insisting that the Jewish nation is on trial and thus help create further antagonism.”

He declared that organized labor in Palestine is always ready for peace. “However,” he said, “let those who speak about peace first change their tactics. Labor is not afraid of threats. The Bacchanalian dance must cease because of the very real danger involved in the atmosphere of suspicion.


“The world must know that Jewish organized labor thinks of only one thing, the upbuilding of Palestine, and will not be frightened by any threats or intimidations. The defenders of Tel Chai are also willing to defend the development of Palestine without fear of personal sacrifice. Jewish labor is not seeking revenge. It stands always for peace, loyalty and constructive work in Palestine.”

Other speakers included Joseph Sprinzak, Palestinian Laborite; Chaim Greenberg, editor of Der Kaempfer; Goldie Meyerson, David Wertheim, David Pinski, Isaac Hamlin, Louis Segal and B. Miller of Milwaukee, representative of the American Socialists.

The remaining sessions of the convention will be held in the Midwest Athletic Club.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund