The Stein Family Haggadah: Einstein on the obstacle to peace in Israel (1935)

3 Apr

This one comes from Look at the Punim’s Chelsea and the Jewish News Archive:

APRIL 22, 1935

Einstein Scores Revisionists at ‘third Seder’


A severe attack against land speculation inPalestineand against Revisionism was made by Prof. Albert Einstein, speaking at a Passover celebration Saturday evening in the Manhattan Opera House.

“If Palestineis to become a Jewish National center, then thePalestinesettlement must develop a model way of life for all Jewry through the cultivation of spiritual values,” Prof. Einstein said.

Declaring that the Revisionists are “inner enemies,” Prof. Einstein urged the establishment of friendly relations with the Arabs and warned against viewingPalestinemerely as a place of refuge.


“Under the guise of nationalist propaganda,” Prof. Einstein said, “Revisionism seeks to support the destructive speculation in land; it seeks to exploit the people and deprive them of their rights. Revisionism is the embodiment of those harmful forces which Moses with foresight sought to banish when he formulated his model code of social law. Furthermore, the state of mind fed by Revisionism is the most serious obstacle in the way of our peaceable and friendly cooperation with the Arab, people who are racially our kin.”

Touching upon the anti-Jewish persecutions in Europe, Prof. Einstein declared:

“The Jewish people have frequently lived through such periods in the past. It has lived through even worse periods and emerged from them strengthened and purified. The secret of our apparently inexhaustible vitality lies in our strong tradition of social justice and of modest service both to our immediate community and society as a whole.

“Long periods of ease are more dangerous to this life-giving biblical tradition than periods of suffering and outer menace. How few trees break in the storm and how many decay in the warmth of sunshine.”

“The Jews,” he continued, “must beware of viewingPalestinemerely as a place of refuge. The young men and women who went there before and after the World War made immense sacrifices and envisaged the creation of a Jewish commonwealth which would approximate the traditional ideals of justice and selfless love of man-kind more closely than did the European countries from which they came, and it is in that spirit Jews should regard Palestine for the future.”

Other speakers at the celebration included Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, Joseph Schlossberg, Irma Lindheim and Zalman Rubashow. The celebration was arranged by the National Labor Committee forPalestine, as a “third Seder.”


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