Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Betar Greets Menachem Begin in New York, December 1948

MK Menachem Begin, accompanied by Joanna Jabotinsky and Natziv Simcha Rosenberg during his December 1948 visit to New York during which there was a city-sponsored parade, a dinner and a visit to Rosh Betar's grave.

Dave Krakow adds:

The Misdar took place at the Hotel Diplomat in N.Y.C., in late 1948.  Regret I cannot identify the two Betariot.  All the best .  

One more detail:

The pix of Begin and Mrs. Jabotinsky was taken by a friend who was a photographer whom I invited to come with me to the Misdar which took place either the end of November or beginning of December 1948.  It was this friend who took the picture which I recently  gave to my brother Steve who then sent it out on Amhistory-Betar.    Joshua Joe Adler

From JTA reports:

Menachem Beigin, Former Irgun Commander, Arrives in U.s., in Country on Visitor’s Visa
November 24, 1948

Menachem Beigin, former commander-in-chief of the Irgun Zvai Leumi and at present leader of the Irgun-sponsored Freedom Movement in Israel, arrived here today. (In Washington, a state Department spokesman said that neither the British Government nor anyone else had objected to the American Government’s granting Beigin a vise. The Israeli visitor, for whose capture the former Mandatory Power in Palestine offered $40,000, is in this country on a visitor’s visa.)

Beigin Received by N.Y. Mayor; 2,000 Persons Wait Outside City Rail to Greet Him
November 28, 1948

Menachem Beigin, former commander of the Irgun Zvai Leumi, was greeted in City Hall today by Mayor William O’Dwyer while a crowd of 2,000 waited outside. The city’s greetings were extended to Mr. Beigin after he had passed through New York’s garment district at noon time traveling in a motorcade.

Beigin Outlines Freedom Movement Program at Dinner in His Honor; Halls Ben Gurion
December 1, 1948

More than 2,000 guests at a $50-plate dinner in honor of Menachem Beigin, former leader of the Irgun Zvai Leumi and present head of the Irgun-sponsored Freedom Movement in Israel, last night heard him toast David Ben Gurion, “our first Premier who granted me an exit permit to come to the United States.” He emphasized that without the action of the Irgun, Ben Gurion today would have been the chairman of the Jewish Agency executive but not the Premier of a Jewish state.

Interrupted frequently by applause from the guests, the Freedom Movement leader outlined his party’s domestic and foreign policy program for Israel. Firstly, he condemned the Bernadotte plan and then the variation of the British proposal as amended by Philip Jessup, American delegate at the U.N. “Even an American plan allegedly supported by the British still is a British plan, and its purpose is still to choke us within the walls of the ghetto, whatever its name may be,” he said. Beigin insisted that the Jewish state must be comprised of the area on both sides of the Jordan River.

Turning to internal affairs, Beigin stated that Israel must have a system of direct democracy, with the constitution guaranteeing each citizen the right to participate in popular referendums on major issues. He asserted that the Jewish state, even if it were to include the present territory of Transjordan, would still be small enough to permit such procedure.

In the economic field, he pledged that his party would fight all forms of trusts and monopolies, whether they are controlled by individuals, groups or factions. “Monopolies in any form and shape oppose the common man,” he said. However, he emphasized that the Freedom Movement advocates the investment of private capital in the upbuilding of Israel. Asserting that such a program was “practical,” he stated that it was necessary ” so that our country could be made economically sound and absorb the hundreds of thousands of repatriates who shall return to their homeland.”

In conclusion he expressed the belief that “Palestine will be free–all of it’s that millions of Jews will come to Israel; that peace and brotherhood will prevail in the country between Hebrews and Arabs; and, that under the influence of the Jewish state the Middle East will once again become prosperous and progressive.
At a press conference earlier he characterized charges made against him and the Irgun yesterday by three American religious leaders as “distortion of fact” and “part of a smear campaign.” He said that he was in this country on a “mission of good will” and did not come here to quarrel with or attack anyone. He denied that the Irgun-sponsored Freedom Party in Israel was totalitarian, as charged by the clergymen.

Beigin Criticizes Einstein; Reiterates Demand That Israel Comprise All Palestine
December 8, 1948

Menachem Beigin, former Irgun Zvai Leumi chief, last night criticized Prof. Albert Einstein for calling him and other former Irgunists “fascists.” “I daresay I understand more in mathematics than the old venerated professor understands in politics,” Beigin asserted. He addressed more than 2,000 persons in Manhattan Center.

Declaring that he would not answer “smear campaigns” against him, Beigin said his group is “anti-Fascist,” He reiterated his previous demand that all of Palestine and Transjordan be included in the boundaries of the state of Israel.

Beigin Returns to Israel, Hopes United States Will Give Israel All Possible Aid
December 22, 1948

Menachem Beigin, former Irgun Zvai Leumi commander in Israel, whose return to Tel Aviv last night by air was delayed because of inclement weather, expressed the hope in a farewell statement that Israel will be given all possible aid by the United States. He emphasized that his visit to this country convinced him that “the truth of our war of liberation has been deeply inscribed in the hearts of the American people, Jews and non-Jews alike.”



Hotel Diplomat Historian said...

To whom found the outstanding picture taken in the Hotel Diplomat - Grand Ballroom or really what was the past old New York Elks Lodge #1 lodge room that they are standing in. Which was the biggest lodge room in the world till some one came and demolished that great and awesomely ornate building from 1910-1911.
If there are more pictures taken of this event I would shurly like to know where to few more of the pictures of this exact event in the Diplomat Hotel!
this is my email if you find any other photos of this event held in the Diplomat.
Don't hessitate to send some or communicate with me!

Hotel Diplomat Historian said...

If more pictures or video of the Hotel Diplomat are found of its interiors or exterior please don't hesitate to email me at jmcdrums@aol.com ASAP!