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May 22, 1959 - Image 2

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1959-05-22

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THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS -- Friday, May 22, 19 59-2

Purely Commentary

A Glorious Invitation to Israel
A "Vacation in Israel" pamphlet, issued by the Israel Tourist
Bureau, introduces the descriptions of the Holy Land's attractions
with this legend:
"EAST IS EAST AND WEST IS WEST, and never

the twain shall meet . • ."

Rudyard Kipling
But R.udyard had it wrong!
In Israel, East is West, and both are South.
And the "twain" meet so often they have become
one. Israel blends the cultures of the ancient East and
the modern West, and both flourish • in the benign,
warmth of the southland sun.
— you may stand. in the Bedouin camel market in
Beersheba and drink from the well dug by Father
Abraham;
—you may bathe — as Jesus did — in the Sea of
Galilee; .
— or ride along the path that the Mongol raiders of
Genghiz Kahn took to Tel-el-Kadi; but you go by modern
bus or car.
This is a land of Jew, Christian and Moslem; of
Persians, Dru,ze, Englishmen, Indians, Yemenites, Ameri-
cans, Bedouins, Kurds . . . An are at home here, as you
will be when you come. This is the meeting of EAST
and WEST.
This excellent bit of advertising copy attests to the ingenuity
of the Israelis who are so anxious to attract the tourists to the
interesting little country that has become the very center of
democratic activities in the turbulent Middle East.
Israeli projects, generally, have been marked of late by
clever appeals. El Al Israel Airlines has won coveted prizes for
attractive ads. The tourist bureaus are relating the glories of
the reborn State of Israel in remarkable fashion and with a
sense of realism. We pay due honor to the able spokesmen for
the progressive Medinat Israel.

Rocks in Israel — 'Shteiner fun Hartzen'
We pass on to our readers one of the best stories we have
heard in relation to Israel and to Yiddish.
Why, it is asked, are there so many rocks in Israel? And the
answer is given in Yiddish: that they observe that "es falt zei
arop shteiner fun hartzen"—"stones roll off their hearts."
Those who understand Yiddish expressions will be more
appreciative of this truly delightful story. But even in English
translation it makes sense and provides the deserved chuckle.
*
*

Jewish Attitude on
. Two
Death Penalty
Fine Israeli Items

Israel Award to Poet

By Philip Behind Iron Curtain
Slomovitz
JERUSALEM (JTA) — The

only by the due process of law and by giving the accused the
benefit of the doubt can justice be attained. The lynching of
Leo Frank, the innocent young Atlanta Jew, proved the cruelty
of any death penalty. The Mack Charles Parker case proves the
cruelty of the bestialities inherent in the lynchers.
The battle for , humane action by civilized society goes on.
The campaign inaugurated by the Union of American Hebrew
Congregations for the abolition of the death penalty is a most
creditable one.
*
The Old Testament Studies Conference
Two full days of discussions of the Old Testament, how it
was compiled and edited, its translations, the "higher criticism"
involvements and other issues, drew unprecedentedly large audi-
ences to the Wayne State University campus.
There was in evidence a great interest in the subject dis-
cussed and in the scholars who attended the conference. Several
of the most noted Jewish and Christian authorities on the Bible
were here for the sessions, and the audience response carried
with it an assurance that high standards need not be sacrificed
in communal programming.
The overflow audiences who heard the public addresses by
Profs. E. A. Speiser and W. F. Albright proved that high level
lectures still can draw good audiences. It is not necessary to
burlesque our programs. We have many scholars who can bring
important messages to us, and the standards of entertainment
need not be dragged down to a low level.
The Conference on Old Testament Studies at Wayne State
University owes its success to the dedicated efforts of the head
of the WSU Semitics Department, Dr. Abram Spiro. His deter-
mined will has made the conference possible, and it now seems
certain that it will continue as an annual project of our
university.

Mapai Leads, but
Shows Drop in
Histadrut Vote

TEL AVIV, (JTA) — With
only about 75 percent of the
635,000 eligible voters casting
their ballots, national elections
conducted by Histadrut, the Is-
rael Federation of Labor, indi-
cated that the candidates of the
ruling Mapai Party won 55 per-
cent of the votes, against 57
percent in the last Histadrut
elections, several years ago.
Early tabulations indicated
these figures for Mapai showed
the left-wing Mapam Party gar-
nering 121/2 percent of the vote,
the same as four years ago;
Ahdut A v o d a h, 16 percent,
against a previous 141/2 percent;
Haoved Hazioni, sponsored by
the Progressive Zionists, '7 per-
cent against the previous 5.3
percent; Communists, 4 percent,
the same as in the last elec-
tions.
Other parties running candi-
dates for Histadrut office were
the General Zionist Workers,
whose vote was somewhat less
than that given Haoved Hazi-
oni; and the Religious Work-
ers. While not final, the trend
in the tabulations seems to be
holding, as more votes come
into Histadrut headq u a r t e r s
here.
The Communists showed loss-
es in the big cities, but record-
ed gains in new immigrant cen-
ters. In Tel Aviv, the Commu-
nists lost two percent of their
previous vote. A feature consid-
ered significant is the gain
shown by Ahdut Avodah in
Beersheba and Haifa, against a
Mapai decrease in the same ci-
ties.

Capital Punishment: the Jewish Tradition
With the publication of a pamphlet, "Man's Right to Life,"
•by Ruth Leigh, the Union of American Hebrew Congregations'
Commission on Social Action far Reform Judaism has instituted
a campaign of education for the abolition of capital punishment.
Michigan is one of the states that has abolished the death
penalty. The legislation banning the death penalty went into
effect on March 1, 1847. The State of Israel abolished it in 1954.
Frequent attempts are made to restore capital punishment
in our state. Thus far, the effort has failed. It has been proven
that the death penalty is not a deterrent to crime. When an
effort was made to restore the extreme penalty in this state,
about 30 years ago, during a crime wave here, there were news-
paper editors and a number of ministers who propagandized for
capital punishment. But there were enough level-headed people to
defeat the proposal. It will be recalled that the American League
to Abolish Capital Punishment at that time enlisted the aid of
Henry Ford, among many others.
The Jewish position is well known. The late Prof. George
Foote Moore, one of the great Christian Old Testament and
Talmudic scholars, in his three-volume work, "Judaism," which
remains to this day one of the most authoritative evaluations of
Jewish law, explained the traditional Jewish standpoint. Describ-
ing the procedures relating to capital punishment and the infre-
quency of resort to the death penalty during Jewish Statehood,
Prof. Moore wrote:
"It is clear, that with such a procedure, conviction in capital
cases was next to impossible, and that this was the intention
of the framers of the rules is equally plain. The Mishnah
itself brands a court which executes one man in seven years
as ruinous. R. Eleazar ben Azariah said 'one in seventy years.'
R. Tarfon and R. Akibah said, 'If we had been in the Sanhe-
drin, no man would ever have been put to death.' "
The eminent author, James Montgomery Flagg, many years
ago expressed his abhorrence of capital punishment in this "little
sermon," under the title "Thou Shalt Not Kill":
You, Society, are cowardly. You hire some misguided
wretch for money to kill your victims. Neither you nor your
members have the courage to do it with your own hands.
Some of your members might commit murder in a rage; but
would you kill in cold blood?
The fascination of the death house to the weak-minded,
and the morbid yearning millions of our fellow countrymen
have for recitals of their neighbors' agonies will be largely
turned into healthier channels when murderers are, upon con-
viction, automatically immured, instead of being slaughtered
slowly as a pastime for the people.
The time is coming when the hangman's rope and the
electric chair will be seen only in glass cases in museums, and
our children's children will gaze on them with the same sort
of contemptuously amused horror that we feel when we see
the rack, the wheel and the "iron maiden" of yesterday's even
more barbarous people.
One of the great social reformers of our time, the late
Charles Edward Russell, at one time reproached himself for not
having fought against the death penalty by recalling the case
of a man who was hanged on the charge of having murdered his
daughter-in-law. Ten years later, his son—the husband of the
murdered woman—admitted the guilt and committed suicide.
"The chance is too terrible," Russell wrote. "We take it in nine
cases in ten when we condemn men to death."
Yet there always undoubtedly will be people who will
attempt to perpetuate the death penalty.
The lynchings in the South should have convinced people that

1959 Israel Independence Day
literary awards included for the
first time a prize to an author
who writes from a country be-
hind the Iron Curtain. The au-
thor, a Yiddish poet who writes
under the pseudonym Y. Goleh,
was voted the award for a poem
"Massah Gog"—the Burden of
Gog.
The awards were announced
last week at a ceremony at
the Hebrew University by Zal-
man Mane, Minister of Educa-
tion. The ceremony was pre-
ceded by a reception given by
Mayor Gershon Agron. Izhar
Smilanski shared the poetry
prize.
A prize for research in Islam-
ic culture was awarded post-
humously to the late Prof. Leo
Meyer. Rabbi S. I. Zevin was
honored for his work on the
Talmudic Encyclopedia. Prof.
Ephraim Katchalski and Dr.
Michael Selah were awarded
prizes in the natural sciences
and Prof. Hillel Openhaimer
was honored for his research
in citrus growing. Yosef Zarit-
ski won the award for painting
and sculpture and Yeshoshua
Bertonov for acting.

Boris Smolar's

' Between You
• • . and Me'

(Copyright, 1959
Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Inc.)

Washington Moods:
Washington officials are talking openly of the United States
policy with regard to economic and financial aid to Israel .
They say that the major objective of the U. S. aid program to
the Jewish state is to assist Israel in achieving the maximum
degree of economic independence, possibly by 1963 . . . They
came to the conclusion that, by that year, Israel's income in
foreign currency will be substantially reduced . . . Not only will
the German reparations to Israel end by 1963, but Washington
expects that German restitution payments to individual Jews
in Israel will be reduced to a fraction of the present level • .
Also, that Israel's net income from borrowing will be Consider-
ably increased by 1963 because of the necessity for servicing
present international debts . . . At present, Israel's income in
foreign currency from German reparations and restitution pay-
ments is about $130,000,000 a year . . . Another $140,000,000
come from the United Jewish Appeal, the sale of Israel Bonds
in the United States, and other institutional and personal re-
mittances . . . Washington foresees that the sale of Israel Bonds
in his country will reach $43,000,000 this year but will go down
to $38,000,000 in 1960 . . . The Washington experts estimate that
the UJA and other institutional and personal remittances to
Israel will remain the same in 1959 and in 1960 . . . They are
of the opinion that Israel's ability to provide its own food re-
quirements from domestic production is one of the most im-
portant considerations in the country's drive toward economic
independence • . . They anticipate that Israel will continue to
seek from the United States agricultural commodities she has
been receiving since 1955, 2nd for which she pays in Isfaeli
currency, thereby saving its equivalent in foreign currency.
Financial Sentiments:
In summarizing the present U. S. policy on aid to Israel,
Washington officials reveal that the State Department has come
to the conclusion that Israel's continued reliance upon official
U. S. assistance at constant levels is "unwarranted" . . . Also
that continued U. S. assistance to Israel should be "on a loan
basis" . . . These officials take the attitude that U. S. official
assistance to Israel is predicated on the belief that it will not
be continued at high levels, but will diminish correspondingly
as Israel's efforts toward self-support become successful . . .
They consider that, of growing importance to Israel now, is not
so much the direct grant aid which she receives from the United
States — about $7,000,000 a year — but the Development Loan
Fund created by the U. S. to finance economically sound and
Socialists Expel Bigot technically feasible development projects in various countries
.. . Washington officials emphasize that the U. S. stands ready
After Attack on Jew
of
PARIS, (JTA) — Ferdinant to assist Israel, .through this fund, in the implementation
projects
which
will
increase
Israel's
export-earning
and
import-
Auberger, a member of the
saving potential . . . Israel has submitted applications to the
French Senate, and Mayor of Development Loan Fund, but received only $15,000,000 last year,
Belle Rive - sur - Allier, near
$5,000,000 this year . . . Altogether, Israel has received from
Vichy, was expelled from the and
the U. S. Government about $670,000,000 since 1950 in various
Socialist Party on charges that forms of aid, including $162,550,000 in loans from the Export-
he used anti-Semitic materials,
in his recent municipal election Import Bank.
Diplomatic Manipulations:
campaign.
Indications in Washington show that the State Department
According to the charges,
Auberger inserted into the mun- is considering the shaping of a new policy on the Middle East,
icipal journal of his town some under which the United States would renew her support to Col.
violent, anti-Semitic attacks Nasser, the Egyptian dictator . . . There is a school of thought
against one of the opposing in the State Department which advocates renewal of American
candidates for the mayoralty, aid to Nasser as a counter-step to Communist-controlled Iraq
. . . Israel, as well as Turkey and Iran — who are against Nasser
Ben Hamou, who is a Jew.
Auberger will appear in court no less than they are against Communism—oppose any reversal
is puzzled
on formal charges probing into of American policy with regard to Nasser . . Israel
with American
to
Iraq
by
the
British
action
of
sending
arms
the validity of his election as
to Iraq,
Mayor of Belle Rive-sur-Allier. approval . . . John J. Jernegan, U. S. Ambassador
discussion before
has
been
recalled
to
Washington
for
a
full
However, his senatorship is not
the State Department formulates its new Middle East policy.
in question,

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