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Palestine Government Grants 1,500 Immigration Certificates to Jews for Current Month

March 18, 1946
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Palestine Government today announced the allocation of 1,600 immigration certificates for the period March 15 – April 15. Of these, 1,500 will be assigned to Jews and 100 to non-Jews.

Two American engineers, John L. Savage, designer of the Grand Coulee and Boulder Dams, and James B. Hays, formerly with the TVA and chief engineer for the Commission for Palestine Surveys, told the Anglo-American inquiry committee at a closed session on Friday that the use of the Jordan River waters for irrigation and generation of electric power would add at least 1,500,000 people to the absorption of Palestine, it was disclosed here today.

Savage told a press conference that realization of the “Lowdermilk Plan” would annually add to Palestine’s economic wealth a sum equal to the entire cost of the project-approximately $250,000,000. Irrigation of semi-arid lands, historically among the most fertile in the world, would bring an additional 600,000 acres under cultivation, and provide a livelihood for a minimum of 400,000 farm population, he said. The development, which could be built in ten years, would provide immediate work for 4,000 people, according to Hays.

At the hearing, Hays said, he had pointed out that if the Jordan Valley had been in Southern California it would have been irrigated a century ago. The valley lies in the same latitude as Southern California and enjoys much the same conditions of temperature and rainfall, except that the growing season is longer in Palestine. Hays added that the Palestine Government did not seem interested in the project.

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