Page 70 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 5 (1946-1947)

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earlier years he devoted himself to various causes, explorations
in Africa, socialism, and different progressive movements. But
when Zangwill formed the Jewish Territorialist Organization,
Dr. Eder joined him, and after the Balfour Declaration he joined
Dr. Weizmann in the first Zionist Comission, and went to Pales-
tine where he remained for several years as head of that Commis-
sion, winning the hearts of all by his idealism, selflessness, courage
and devotion; qualities that endeared him to all who came into
contact with him, including even such a strange genius as D. H.
Lawrence, the novelist, who was ready to settle in Palestine be-
cause Dr. David Eder and his wife Edith — a sister of Sir Sidney
and Sir Maurice Low — lived there. The volume, edited by
Mr. J. Hobman, is an appreciative estimate of David Eder and
his varied works. Palestine and the Hebrew University, which he
did much to advance, occupy a considerable section of the book.
Chaim Weizmann
; a tribute on his seventieth birthday (Gol-
lancz), edited by Paul Goodman, is notable for its many and distin-
guished contributors. A similar book of homage was published in
the United States, (Chaim Weizmann — Statesman and Scientist
edited by Meyer W. Weisgal) but while the section dealing with
Dr. Weizmann as a scientist is identical with that of the American
volume, the other parts are wholly different. I t has the distinction
of a Foreword by Lloyd George, a Preface by L. S. Amery, and
among the contributors are, to name but a few, Viscount Samuel,
Col. Meinertzhagen, Wickham Steed, and Professor Harold Laski.
While many of the writers deal with the main characteristics of
Chaim Weizmann’s personality and achievements, or with some as-
pects of Zionism, some touch upon the general Jewish problem.
Professor Laski’s essay is of peculiar interest in view of his singular
position in political thought in Britain. Referring to the Jewish con-
tribution to civilized life, Professor Laski says that in the hour of
its deepest tragedy, its (Jewish) greatness seems only to be thrown
into a nobler perspective, adding that “even to a few for whom
the precepts of the Jewish religion have no more than a rich his-
torical interest, not less in themselves than through the vast world
influence they have exerted, there is something sacred in the soil
of Palestine.”
Believing that this new attitude of his requires some explanation,
Professor Laski observes . . . “That is why our agnostic Jew,
steeped by birth and training in the tradition of British politics
and British thought, can still feel that his right hand would lose