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June 18, 1971 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1971-06-18

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

3 Detroiters at Agency Sessions 6,000 Soviet Jews Reached Israel
Since Jan. 1; Privilege Charge Denied

In addition to Max M. Fisher, who is slated to assume the chair-
manship of the Jewish Agency, Paul Zuckerman (center) and Hyman
Safran will attend the sessions in Israel next week. Zuckerman is
slated for one of the top 11 executive committee posts in the reor-
ganized Jewish Agency.

Boris Smolar's

`Between You
and Me

...

Editor-in-Chief Emeritus, JTA
(Copyright 1971, JTA Inc.)

HISTORY REPEATED: History repeats itself, although not always
in exactly the same way. The reconstituted Jewish Agency for Israel—
which opens its Inaugural Assembly in Jerusalem on June 21—proves it.
Prolonged friendly negotiations between Dr. Chaim Weizmann,
the late head of the World Zionist Movement, and Louis Marshall and
Felix Warburg, the two outstanding non-Zionist leaders of American
Jewry, led to the expansion of the Jewish Agency in 1929, as a world
JeWish body composed of. Zionists and non-Zionists to represent the
interests of world Jewry vis-a-vis the British government which was
entrusted by the League of Nations with the Palestine Mandate. Dr.
Weizmann was then elected president of the Jewish Agency and Louis
Marshall became chairman of its council.
Prolonged and friendly negotiations during the last years between
Louis Pincus, present chairman of the Jewish Agency, and Max M.
Fisher, the highly respected American Jewish leader—who, like Louis
Marshall, is not a Zionist but deeply interested in the development of
Israel—have led to the current reconstitution of the Jewish Agency
and to the holding of its first Inaugural Assembly. The assembly will
be attended by 89 Jewish leaders from the United States and seven
from Canada.
the historic conclave, in which several hundred Jewish leaders
from communities all over the free world will participate, will mark
a major change in the responsibility and involvement of the Jewish
communities in policies, decisions and work of the Jewish Agency. The
assembly will give new direction to the Jewish Agency on a partnership
basis between Zionists and non-Zionists. American Jewry will watch
the Jerusalem gathering. The largest part of the hundreds of millions
of dollars which the. Jewish Agency spends on immigration and absorp-
tion of Jews from countries where they are being oppressed comes
from American Jewry through the Jewish Federations and Welfare
Funds to the United Jewish Appeal.
MANTLE OF LEADERSHIP: To wear the mantle of Jewish leader-
ship once worn by Marshall is no small honor. Also no small respon-
sibility. By being chosen to the top leadership of the reconstituted
Jewish Agency—which will he working completely separated from the
World Zionist Organization—Fisher becomes Marshall's successor. He
will be taking the place which Marshall held when the non-Zionists
joined the Zionists in the Jewish Agency in 1929.
Fisher also is the chairman of the executive committee of the
American Jewish Committee of which Marshall was one of the found-
ers, and president for many years, and its guiding spirit till his sudden
death. Fisher follows the footsteps of Felix Warburg, another great
leader in American Jewry who, together with Dr. Weizmann and
Marshall, was an architect of the expanded Jewish Agency in 1929. It
was Warburg's dream to see the. Jewish philanthropic and communal
work organized in Jewish federations in each community. He was the
"father" of the New York Federation of Jewish Philanthropies.
Fisher is, among his other activities, also the president of the
Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds—the central body
of all Jewish federations and welfare funds that came to life during
the last 40 years. He is thus instrumental in fulfilling Warburg's dream.
Fisher's dedication to Israel knows no limit, as seen from the
years when he was the national chairman of the United Jewish Appeal
and from the role he played in helping to cement Israel's economic
position ever since the establishment of Israel.
NEW RESPONSIBILITIES: The Jewish Agency expanded by Dr.
Weizmann and Marshall served as a representative instrument of all
elements in world Jewry vis-a-vis the League of Nations and the British
Administration in Palestine. Now the Jewish Agency has no such
function. It is no longer a political body. It represents all elements
in world Jewry not vis-a-vis a foreign power but vis-a-vis the Israel
government.
This imposes upon the reconstructed Jewish Agency quite different
obligations. It imposes partnership obligations on the part of world
Jewry toward Israel.
The reconstructed Jewish Agency—in which American Jewish
leaders will now play a predominant role—will be responsible for
emigration and absorption of immigrants in Israel; social welfare
services related to immigration and absorption; health services related
to immigration and absorption; education; institutions of higher learn-
ing and research; youth care and training; and immigrant housing.
Hitherto, the WZO has conducted within the framework of the
Jewish Agency its educational, cultural and related services. This will
not be the case now that the Jewish Agency and the WZO have become
twa separate autonomous entities. Each will have its own governing
bodies, separate finances and separate operations. Continuing coopera-
tion in the future is recognized by having the WZO designate one-half
of the membership of the governing bodies of the Jewish Agency.

NEW YORK (ZINS) — Since the
first of the year, 6,000 Soviet Jews
have reached Israel, it was dis-
closed by Premier Golda Meir
during her Scandinavian trip.
The report, carried by the New
York Times, describes the prob-
lems and difficulties of finding
suitable employment in Israel for
the newcomers from the USSR.
Part of the difficulty is due to un-
familiarity with the Hebrew lan-
guage, which is not easy to ac-
quire.
Efforts to house the new olim
adequately also have evoked bitter
protests from Israel's Oriental
community, which demands equal
treatment with the Soviet arrivals
in employment opportunities and
housing.
There is a notion in many circles
that certain privileges extended
to new immigrants are at the ex-
pense of the settled population.
The authoritative Haaretz, in a
leading article, calls it an un-
founded belief. To begin with,
Haaretz says, funds for the ab-
sorption of new immigrants are
provided by fellow Jews through-
out the world. The measure of
their contributions is directly pro-
portional to the size of the immi-
gration, and they would doubtless
contribute less if the immigration
were smaller.

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Furthermore, says Haaretz,
these funds are expended locally
and represent an economic bene-
fit to the community as a whole.
Not only that, but many of the
so-called old-timers were once new
immigrants themselves and en-.
joyed comparable privileges on
their arrival in Israel.
The article also underscores
that most of the new arrivals from
the free world bring with them
very high educational standards.

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16—Friday, June 18, 1971

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