Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

ZOA Parley Backs World Leadership; Federal State Urged by Dr. Senator

June 27, 1939
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Zionist Organization of America today pledged unqualified support to the world Zionist leadership in combating Britain’s Palestine policy.

“Bravely and firmly lead; we will devotedly and enthusiastically follow,” declared a cable to Dr. Chaim Weizmann in Paris and David Ben Gurion in Jerusalem which was offered by Dr. Stephen S. Wise at a convention dinner last night at the Hotel Commodore and approved by the more than 1,000 delegates present.

This stand is expected to be elaborated in resolutions which were being considered this afternoon by the resolutions committee, headed by Charles A. Cowen. It was learned that the committee was planning a sharp resolution which would proclaim defiance of the British White Paper. As one form of protest, it was understood, a suggestion was made in the committee that a resolution be submitted proposing that the Jewish Agency move its offices from London.

At a plenary session tonight, Dr. Werner Senator and Mrs. Rose Jacobs, members of the Jerusalem Executive of the Jewish Agency, stressed the importance of American Jewry in the struggle against the British policy.

Dr. Senator, advised American Zionists to give careful consideration to a federal plan for a union of Arab and Jewish states on the basis of parity between the two peoples as “a constructive solution of the whole Palestine problem.” He reminded his listeners that the British Government had “never made an earnest attempt to bring about reconciliation between Jews and Arabs.”

Emphasizing the importance of self restraint on the part of the Palestine Jews, Dr. Senator declared that the Jews’ abstention from retaliation since the outbreak of Arab violence in 1936 “has made possible cooperation between the military authorities and the Jews in the establishment of many new Jewish colonies.” Palestine Jewry together with the American Jews he termed “the two pillars of strength” of the homeland, and urged American delegates to the Zionist Congress to “give strong expression to their support.”

Mrs. Jacobs stressed the importance of greater participation by American Zionists in central Zionist bodies through the appointment of American representatives to the policy-making agencies in London and Jerusalem. She also urged closer contact between American Zionists and American Jews living in Palestine. While American Jewry is generous with material support it has failed to supply manpower to help determine Zionist policies, she said.

On the agenda for tonight’s session there was also the election of officers, but it was believed possible that this would be put over until tomorrow. Reelection of Dr. Solomon Goldman of Chicago as president was generally considered to be a foregone conclusion.

Except for a luncheon session, the day was devoted largely to committee meetings and institute sessions on various aspects of Zionism. At the luncheon, Rabbi Irving Miller of Far Rockaway, presiding, pointed out that there would be a record number of 115 American delegates at the Zionist Congress and they would have a “tremendous responsibility” to “help formulate policies” and “mobilize the millions of American Jewry.” Other speakers were Abraham Goldberg and Ludwig Lewisohn.

At an institute on Palestine economy, speakers declared that the Holy Land could absorb 5,000,000 Jewish immigrants. Rehabiah Lewin-Epstein, director of the American Economic Committee for Palestine, who recently arrived here from Tel Aviv, declared that Jewish investments in Palestine had reached $400,000,000, including $23,000,000 invested in the past year, and that Jewish economy was progressing despite disturbances. Abraham Revusky, journalist and economist, joined Dr. Lewin-Epstein in stressing Palestine’s absorptive capacity, with particular emphasis on the expansion of the agricultural population which would be made possible by development of irrigation facilities. Other institutes were held on “Palestine Funds” and on “Jewish Youth.”

Recommended from JTA