Sunday, August 24, 2008

A Letter Sent

To the Haaretz English edition:-

Professor Norman Rose deserves appreciation for pointing out that the "sensational revelation" of Chaim Weizmann's support for collaborating with the British occupier was already published some 30 years ago (letter, Aug. 20). Nevertheless, I would suggest it is quite sensational to be reminded by Prof. Rose that Weizmann's policy predated the official Yishuv "Saison" operation by some six months. Of course, his grading his grief for his son Benjamin, lost in an air battle over Britain, as less than that of his mourning for Lord Moyne, has been well publicized.

Nevertheless, Rose's desire to see the "wider perspective" which includes Lehi's personal assassination (when is assassination not personal?) operations and its "flirtation with the Axis powers" is problematic. When the Hagana assassinated several Jews in 1940, suspected of informing on arms caches, and when the Palmach assassinated a British officer in Jerusalem in 1946 who tortured prisoners at Biriah, did that stain them the way that the Irgun and Lehi were ostracized? Or was Weizmann's opposition mor e political than moral?

Moreover, as the "flirtation" he notes occured in 1940-41, and as Stern had been personally assassinated by the British in 1942 and therefore a whole new chapter had begun in the fight for Israel's liberation, one in which the Hagana and Palmach joined the so-called "dissidents" in November 1945 in the United Resistance Movement framework, perhaps Weizmann was wrong in his grovelling before the British?

Yisrael Medad

Will it be published?


Anonymous said...

Do you have a link to the original article? Or to Prof. Rose's letter?

YMedad said...

Your sensational revelation in Haaretz of August 15 regarding Chaim Weizmann's letter to Churchill is anything but a revelation, and is certainly not sensational. On April 12, 1944, Weizmann wrote to John Martin, Churchill's private secretary, employing the exact language - word for word - that you quote in your article. The letter to Martin was first published over 30 years ago. It appears in the series "The Weizmann Letters" (1979), v. XXI, no,149, p.156.

But to put the matter in a wider perspective, it would have been worthwhile for you to mention Lehi's policy of personal political assassination, to say nothing of its flirtation with the Axis powers during World War II.

Professor Norman Rose


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the letter, by any chance do you have the original article? What exactly did Weizmann write or say? I couldn't find anything with a google search, altho I did find this web page which may be germane:

YMedad said...

I put it here