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August 02, 1968 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1968-08-02

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Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951

Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit, Mich. 48235,
VE 8-9364. Subscription $7 a year. Fo'eign $8.
Second Class Postage Paid at Detroit; Michigan


Editor and Publisher


Business Manager


Advertising Manager


City Editor

Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the ninth day of Av, 5728, the following scriptural selections will be
read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portion, Deut. 1:1-3:22. Prophetical portion, Isaiah 1:1-27.
Scriptural Selections for Tisha b'Av, Sunday
Pentateuchal portions: Morning, Deut. 4:25-40; afternoon, Exod. 32:1-14, 34:1-10.
Prophetical portions: Morning, Jeremiah 8:13 :9:23; afternoon, Isaiah 55:6-56:8. Book of
Lamentations will be read Saturday night.

Candle lighting, Friday, Aug. 2, 8:32 p.m.

VOL. LILL No. 20

Page Four

August 2, 1968

Hebrew University's Foundation Stones

An important -anniversary was - observed
on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem last week. July
24 marked the 50th - year of -the laying of the
foundation stones for the Hebrew University, - .
and the occasion was , an .event arousing
recollections of the trying= tines, during which
Jews, while stwggling for their very lives,
were dreaming of a university; it was an
casion to reconstruct the historic occurrences
during which Zionism emerged as one of the
world's most significant libertarian causes
but was nevertheless handicapped by pledges
that meant little unless Jews themselves
created the foundation stones for statehood
and linked nationhood with the legacy that
stemmed from prophecy and learning.
• The foUndation stones were laid on Mount
Scopus. The university began to function-.
seven years later. It was exiled during Israel's
War of Independence. Now, after 20 ,ears
away from the roots of its founding — al-
though in the meantime great offshoots de-
veloped not far away in the New City of Jeru-
salem—the great school of learning is back
where it started. There is a reunion of the Old
and the New Cities of Jerusalem—a re-estab-
lished link between the initial spot of the
university's existence and the expanded cam-
pus. In such an atmosphere of reconstruction,
the 50th anniversary of the laying of the foun-
dation stones was occasioned by celebration
and thanksgiving.
The anniversary serves to recall the role
of Cultural Zionism as an adjunct to Political
Zionism. Dr. Chaim Weizmann, who labored
for the fulfillment of a dream of a lifetime
when 'he presided over the laying of the foun-
dation stones as president of the World Zion-
ist Organization, had a deep interest also in
the Cultural-Spiritual Zionism propagated by
the greatest of the Jewish philosophers and
essayists, Ahad Ha'Am (Asher Ginsberg).
Ahad Ha'Am had missed the foundation stone
laying and he took occasion, shortly- there-
after to write to Dr. Weizmann, who later was
to become the first President of Israel, em-
phasizing "the true embodiment of the Jew-
ish spirit as expressed in the aims for a He-
brew University. Ahad Ha'Am wrote to Dr.
Weizmann from London, Aug. 12, 1918:
London, 12th August, 1918.
My Dear Weizmann,
The news about the laying of the foun-
dation-stones of the future Hebrew Uni-
versity on Mount Scopus unfortunately
reached me only after the 'event had al-•
ready taken place. Having, by this delay,
been deprived of the pleasure of sending
you a word of congratulation at the proper
moment, I still feel it my duty to express
to you — even though post factum — my
deep satisfaction and heartfelt joy on the
occasion of this historical event. I know,
that owing to present conditions, the erec-
tion of the building will have to be post-
poned, so that for a long time—Heaven
knows how long—the laying of the foun-
dation-stones will remain an isolated epi-
sode without p r a c t i c al consequences:
Nevertheless I consider it a great histor-
ical event. We Jews have been taught by
our history to appreciate the real value
of laying foundations for future develop-
ments. Our share, of a people, in the build-
ing up of the general culture of Humanity
has been nothing else than the laying of
its foundations long before the super-
structures were built upon these founda-
tions by other peoples.
When in time to come the Hebrew
University stands proudly erect on the
historic Mountain, equipped with all the
ancient and modern instruments for the
. . .
. .


cultivation, of mind and soul,—what else
will be its function but the laying of fowl-
:: datiott-Stones, on which our future na-
• tio.nal life will be rebuilt? Since-the begin-
- ning. of our national movement in con-
,nection with the colonizatiOn of Palestine,
we have always felt—many of us uncon-
scithisly—that the reconstruction of our
national life is possible only upon spirit-
ual foundations, and that, therefore, the
laying of _those foundations must be taken
in hand simultaneously with the coloniza-
tion work itself. In the first embryonic
period, when the whole work in Palestine
was still of very small dimensions and in
a very precarious condition, the spiritual
effort was concentrated in the then very
popular Hebreip School at Jaffa, which
was as poor and unstable as was the colo-
nization itself. In the following period, the
colonization work having been consider-
ably enlarOa - and improved, the need for
laying spiritual foundations made itself
felt more vividly and found its expression
in the creation of the "Hebrew Gym-
nasium" at Jaffa—an institution incom-
parably superior to its predecessor. Now
we stand before a new period of our na-
tional work in Palestine and soon we may
be faced by problems and possibilties of
overwhelming magnitude. We do not
know what the future has in store for us,
but this we do know: that the brighter the
prospects for the reestablishment of our
national home in Palestine, the more ur-
gent is the need for laying the spiritual
foundations of that home on a correspond-
ing scale, which can only be conceived in
the form of a Hebrew University. By this
I. mean—and so, I am sure, do you—not
a mere imitation of a Eurcipean university
with Hebrew as the dominant language,
but a university which, from the very
beginning, will endeavor to become the
true embodiment of the Hebrew Spirit of
old and to shake off the mental and moral
servitude to which our people has been so
long subjected in the Diaspora. Only so
can we be justified in our ambitious hopes
as to the future universal influence of the
"Teaching" that "will go forth out of
This historic letter now is part of archives
that throw light on aspirations that may have
seemed hopeless for a time but which became
realities, thanks to the determined will of a
people whose roots are in an imperishable
Perhaps these aspirations, too, are part of
the will to live that has assured the re-emerg-
ence of Israel, thereby guaranteeing the inde-
structibility of the people's heritage.
Seven years after the laying of the founda-
tion stones for the Hebrew University, Arthur
James Balfour, author of the Balfour Decla-
ration, and the heads of leading universities
from all parts of the globe joined with Dr.
Weizmann in laying the cornerstone of -the
Hebrew University which has functioned
since 1925, uninterruptedly, in defiance of
threats and dangers. Now this university
serves Jews and non-Jews, Israelis and Arabs,
both on Mount Scopus and in the great com-
plex that forms the campus in the hills of
Jerusalem that are part of the New City that
is flourishing as the capital of the State of
From the Hebrew University, truly, the
Hebrew Spirit flourishes as a mark of the con-
tinuity—of hemshekh—that is the role of the
State and the People of Israel. The annivers-
ary just observed re-emphasizes the hopes for
all Israel inherent in these roles.

Story of Brandeis' Zionism
Enriches Movement's Library

Zionist history is so replete with dramatic historic events and is so
much a major part of the history of the Jewish people of the past 75
years that all addenda to what has already been accumulated for
publication continue to serve great -pur-
poses, and unending research enriches
knowledge about the events that had led to
the rebirth of the State of Israel.
While much has been written about Su-
preme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis, all
new recollections and collected papers
emanating from the Zionist archives in rela-
tion to his services retain great value. That
is why the new volume, "Justice Louis D.
Brandeis: The Zionist Chapter of His Life"
by Ezekiel Rabinowitz, published by Philoso-
phical Library (15 E. 40, NY16), must be
viewed as a work of great merit.
The author-compiler, a writer-translator who has served on the
editorial staff of the Yiddish Day, makes a distinct contribution to
Jewish historical research by having gathered the papers that are basic
for a knowledge of the role of Mr. Justice Brandeis in tasks for the
upbtiilding of Israel.

This work contains the important letters Brandeis wrote to
prominent statesmen, his exchange of views with Jewish leaders,
annotations indicating his attitude on Palestinian matters and on
events that affected Jews from the time he began his leadership in
Zionism in the second decade of this century until 1933. Reviewing
the history of Zionism in the United States before Brandeis, indicating
the movement's struggle, Rabinowitz rightfully states, after describ-
ing "the low ebb of the Zionist movement" in 1914: "The appearance
at this critical period of the attorney Louis Dembitz Brandeis was a
real miracle."

Many exceedingly interesting aspects of world Jewish develop-
ments are reflected in the Rabinowitz book. It commences with refer-
ences to the charges of "dual allegiance" and the manner in which
they were either counteracted or, at the outset, condoned by some
Jews; and there is an explanation how anti-Zionism eventually emerged
as non-Zionism in the ranks that were populated by Jacob Schiff, Louis
Marshall and others.
Then there are the chapters of American involvements, the role
of President Woodrow Wilson, the negative views of his Secretary of
State Robert Lansing.

Louis D. Brandeis, soon to become Supreme Court Justice after
a bitter struggle in the Senate, became "the public Zionist leader" whO:(
emphasized the lack of conflict between loyal Americanism and activity
in efforts to re-establish Jewish nationhood and thereby solve the tragic
problem of Jewish homelessness.
Giving an account of Brandeis' relationships with Jewish leaders,
Rabinowitz lists the activities of Jacob de Haas, who was credited
with having interested the noted jurist in Zionism; Judge Julian Mack,
David Ben-Gurion, Dr. Stephen S. Wise, Chaim Weizmann, Justice
Felix Frankfurter, Shmarya Levin and many others.


In a sense, the Rabinowitz book is a major chapter in Zionist history
because it takes into account many of the internal Zionist affairs as
well as the occurrences on the political fronts and on the international
arena during and after World War I.
Brandeis' activities prior to the issuance of the Balfour Declaral
and his services to the Zionist cause during those trying times,
avowed interest that influenced American opinion and subseque.
events are recorded in this book.
President Wilson's affirmation on Oct. 16, 1917, that he approved
of the Balfour Declaration formula is part of the exciting record pro-
vided by Rabinowitz. The events that followed similarly are enumerated
in this volume.
Of special interest is the concluding item which quotes Ben Gurion's
revealing information how Brandeis became interested in his plan for
Jewish colonization in the Negev and in Eilat and gave him $100,000 for
that purpose. Ben-Gurion confirmed this figure and that occurence in a
statement to Rabinowitz on July 4, 1965.
Thus, in this revealing book about Brandeis, the author provides
valuable. Zionist historical data and earns for his compilation of letters,
statements and exchanges of views an .important place jn Zionist history,


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