Z.O.A. Convention Asks U.S. to Protest Israel; Opposes Arming Arabs
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Z.O.A. Convention Asks U.S. to Protest Israel; Opposes Arming Arabs

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The 60th anniversary convention of the Zionist Organization of America concluded here today with the adoption of resolutions on American policy in the Middle East, counteracting of the Arab boycott against Israel, encouraging American Jews to settle in Israel, and the situation of Jews in the Soviet Union.Dr. Emanuel Neumann was re-elected president of the ZOA.

The delegates appealed to the U. S. Government to make Israel’s security a pivotal feature in its policy. They expressed, in the resolution, the “gravest concern over the alignment of Syria with the Soviet Union, ” and called upon the U.S. “to act decisively and in time” to avert Soviet threat to the Middle East.

“Soviet penetration will not be stopped by arms shipments to the Arab states of the Bagdad Pact, whose only thought is to use such arms against Israel, ” the resolution said. ”Nor should our government arm such states without at the same time providing the fullest guarantee to Israel’s security.” At the same time, the resolution stressed the need for an “expanded and intensified” American economic aid program in the Middle East. It also asked the U. S. to apply “the full weight” of American influence and authority to end the Arab-Israel conflict.

In another resolution, the convention condemned the Arab boycott against Israel and deplored any yielding by governments and business firms to Arab pressure.”It should not be forgotten that such pressures are double-edged, ” the resolution emphasized. It urged all Zionists in this country to lay before the American people the full facts of the Arab boycott and Its threat to world trade and peace. ” Fortified by this knowledge and awareness, the American people will vigorously react with characteristic devotion to freedom and to peace.” the resolution stated.


Expressing the convictions that American Zionists must more closely identify their lives and their interests with the development and welfare of Israel, the convention instructed the incoming ZOA administration to devise ways and means for the stimulation and facilitation of personal identification with life in Israel in three areas of effort:

1. The settlement in Israel of American Jews who are willing and able to settle permanently; 2.The placement of those who are prepared to spend a period of their lives in work or study in Israel; 3. The flow of privately invested capital and resultant personal involvement in the development of Israel, so that much chalutzic efforts may establish a real partnership with the people of Israel in the process of the building of the State.

In the resolution on Russian Jews, the convention deplored the restrictions of Jewish life in the Soviet Union and the “systematic effort” of the Soviet Government to suppress and ultimately destroy” free expression on the part of Russian Jewry.

“We earnestly hope, ” the resolution stated,”that this policy will prove to be temporary and that the leaders of the Soviet Union will permit their Jewish citizens to exercise, on an equal basis with the other peoples composing the Soviet Union, free and unlimited opportunity to live their lives as Jews, religiously and culturally, and to build up such institutions as will enable them to do so. Knowing that there are many Jews in the Soviet Union who may wish to emigrate to Israel and become citizens of that country, we express the hope that the government of Russia will permit them to do so, ” the resolution concluded.


Israel Ambassador Abba Eban,addressing the closing session of the convention tonight, reaffirmed “the strong sense of friendship and common purpose between America and Israel in their official and unofficial relation” and called attention to the fact that “in the stress of recent weeks, the United States has repeatedly affirmed its fidelity to the preservation of Israel’s independence and integrity against aggression from any quarter.”At the same time, he emphasized that there is now an ‘increasing need to reinforce all available deterrents against aggression in the Middle East.

French Ambassador Herve Alphand told the ZOA delegates that ‘France will never waver in her friendship towards Israel. ” He spoke glowingly of the contributions of Zionism to the birth of Israel and to the welfare of the Middle East, asserting that in France the Zionist movement is held in “high esteem. ” Israel, he added, “stands today as your crowning achievement — a bulwark of democracy in the Middle East.

Lord Russell of Liverpool, another major speaker at the convention, charged that the United Nations had taken no effective action in Israel’s behalf.


President Eisenhower, in a message to the convention read last night by Dr. Emanuel Neumann, greeted the delegates and said: “All Americans are vitally interest in the establishment of a just and enduring peace in the lands of the Near East. We have made clear our desire to assist the peoples of that area to work toward this great goal and shall continue our efforts in this direction with the help of God and all men of good will.”

Former President Harry S. Truman saw a glorious future for the State of Israel “not just as another sovereign nation, but as an embodiment of the great ideals of our civilization. ” Speaking at the convention last night, he urged the United States” to cherish and help those nations and cultures which support the dignity of the human individual” and to strive to defend human rights and to expand the enjoyment of freedom abroad as well as at home, “

Referring to the present disorders and frictions involving Israel, Mr. Truman said “they can, and I hope, will be solved through the United Nations, of which Israel if one of the newest and one of the most devoted members. They can be solved through forbearance and patience and the search for the truth. ” He called upon the United Nations and the United States to work towards the ideal of peace and progress in the Near East “for the well-being of all the nations of that area and the safety and prosperity of the whole West depend upon it. “

Recalling the establishment of the Jewish State ten years ago and the role of the United Stated in that historical event, Mr. Truman said: “It has never seemed to me that I deserved any special credit as an individual for what I did about Israel when I was President of the United States.In recognizing the new State of Israel and in giving careful consideration to its needs and its problems after 1948,I believe I was only expressing the sentiments of the people of the United States, regardless of political party or religious belief. And I also believe I was acting as the President of the United States ought to act — that is, in the interest of the United States.”

Dr. Abba Hillel Silver, addressing the session, declared that “the first line of Israel’s political and economic defense is world Jewry ” and that “even Israel’s superb army must in the last analysis depend upon the material resources which, in large part, the Jews of the world must make available. “The great world powers, he asserted, have not opened, nor are they likely to open their arsenals to Israel, as they have to the Arabs. “Each of the world powers is arming its own protege, Israel is the protege of neither, ” he said.

He answered the criticism directed against American Zionists who do not settle in Israel, saying that to make Zionisim synonymous with the personal obligation of every Zionist to emigrate to Israel is “a distortion” of the classic Zionist position. He stressed that “without an organized and mobilized world Jewry, the State of Israel would never have been established – and without it – it cannot be sustained.”

Dr. Nahum Goldmann, president of the World Zionist Organization, who is now in Europe, sent a lengthy message to the convention in which he outlined his views on the major issues facing the Zionist movement at this time. He appealed for cooperation from all parts of the movement and for a “spirit of unity and comradeship above and beyond all minor differences of partisanship and organizational conflicts. ” (The high points of his statement will be published in the Bulletin tomorrow.)

The convention discussed a $2,000,000 budget for next year, to be devoted chief to the establishment of Hebrew schools in the United States.This sum is almost twice last year’s budget and is meant to throw the Zionist movement behind increased Jewish education in this country, Dr. Neumann declared. A total of $200,000 was contributed toward this project at the convention,$50,000 by Joseph Foster of Leominster, Mass

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