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Silver Challenges Right of Arab States to Join Discussions on Fate of Palestine

January 27, 1947
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Dr. Abba Hillel Silver, president of the Zionist Organization of America, tonight questioned the right of Arab states to discuss the future of Palestine through their participation in the London conference. He declared that these states have no more right to deal with Palestine than “Palestine has a right to interfere in their internal affairs.”

Addressing a rally in conjunction with the national Z.O.A. mobilization conference here, Dr. Silver charged that if the Jewish people had been permitted during the last 25 years to carry on its work of building in Palestine, there would be a Jewish majority in Palestine today and a Jewish state, instead of riots, hate and “a running sore.” The overflow rally was also addressed by Lieut.-Gov. Hugh W. Cross of Illinois and Daniel Frisch, chairman of the Z.O.A. administrative council.

Recalling the pro-Axis activities of several of the Arab states and the reluctance with which others joined the Allied cause, Dr. Silver said that “it would be tragic if a futile and wrong-headed pro-Arab policy of appeasement, which has proved bankrupt time and again, would commit the British Government at this time either to a continuation of its present policy in Palestine or to a permanent solution which would violate the basic Jewish rights and moral conscience of the world.”

Dr. Silver placed the blame for disorders in Palestine on the shoulders of the British Government, which, he said, has violated its trust and has proved faithless to its obligations. “Is it any wonder that a peaceful folk of pioneers and builders who came to Palestine with a dream and a hope to rebuild waste places and unhappy lives, have been driven into a bitter army of resistance?” he asked. “What has made these decent folk fighting mad is exactly what makes all decent folk fighting mad–broken promises, ruthless tyranny and brutal actions of injustice.”

At a membership session this afternoon, Joseph Goldberg, of Worcester, national chairman of the Z.O.A. membership committee, announced that the period of Feb. 15th to March 15th has been proclaimed “National Zionist Mobilization Month,” dedicated to the nationwide goal of 400,000 members by the end of the year. He reported that the Z.O.A. current membership has reached close to 220,000.

A pledge of $1,000,000 for expanded Zionist public relations and education program was made last night at the first plenary session of the Conference. The $1,000,000 Expansion Fund, which will be raised this year, is “designed to acquaint the American public with the true aims and achievements of the Zionist movement,” a resolution said.

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