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Weizmann, Ben-gurion Ask U.S. Zionist Leaders to Go to London

June 29, 1937
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Dr. Chaim Weizmann and David Ben-Gurion, leaders of the world Zionist movement, today cabled to Dr. Stephen S. Wise and other American Zionist leaders urging them to come to London promptly to aid in fighting threats against the Jewish National Home.

The invitation was received at the fortieth annual convention of the Zionist Organization of America at the Hotel Roosevelt here a few hours after Dr. Wise had assailed the world Zionist leadership for failing to consult American Zionists in the face of the expected recommendation for partition of Palestine by the Royal Commission.

“In the difficult days that lie ahead the voice and support of American Jewry may be decisive,” Dr. Weizmann and Mr. Ben Gurion declared “We greatly hope that immediately following the close of the convention it may be possible for Dr. Wise and other leading colleagues to make themselves free to come to London to give us the benefit of their advice and assistance.”

That the American leaders would insist on a strong stand toward the British Government if it has any intention of partitioning Palestine was indicated in addresses by Dr. Wise. Louis Lipsky and Rabbi Abba Hillel Silver before tonight’s session of the convention.

All three denounced Britain for having failed to carry out the spirit of the Balfour Declaration and the League of Nations mandate for Palestine.

“Partition means scuttling,” Dr. Wise declared. He warned the British Government that Jews the world over were no longer disorganized suppliants but that they were united in their purpose to maintain the Palestine national home.

“The Jewry of 1937 is not the Jewry of 1897,” Dr. Wise said.

He declared that not only the Arabs, but Britain, had benefited by Jewish development of Palestine, converting a waste land into a prosperous and populous country which is now “almost alone among governments in having for years had an annual surplus.”

At the afternoon session, Mrs. Rose G. Jacobs, president of Hadassah, women’s Zionist organization, bringing the greetings of that group, assured the convention that Hadassah delegates to the World Zionist Congress in Geneva would form a united front with the General Zionist delegates.

“The women’s slate did not mean hostility to the General Zionists,” Mrs. Jacobs said. “It meant educating the women to get out and cast a vote.”

Mrs. Jacobs’ statement meant that the General Zionist cause will claim forty mandates from the United States at the congress, as against thirty-two for the Labor Zionist Party and eighteen for the Mizrachi, opposition groups.

Another speaker who brought greetings from an affiliated organization caused a moment’s flurry in the convention. This was Jacob Polish, of Cleveland, twenty-four-year-old student at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, representing Young Judea, who included in his message a fervent scolding to the Zionist Organization for failing to encourage the youth group sufficiently.

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