"THANKS TO THE HEALTHY, CLEAR-SEEING SPIRIT OF THE 'ARBEITSGEMEINSCHAFT', THE YOUTH ALIYAH HAS TAKEN THE RIGHT—THE ONLY ROAD—TO THE JEWISH HOMELAND"
(ISRAEL) WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL ZIONIST ORGANISATION. Pioneers and Helpers. WITH: Pioniere und Helfer. London: [Editorial Board of the WIZO], 1936. Two volumes. Tall quarto (8-1/2 by 11 inches), staple-bound as issued, original self-wrappers; pp. 12 (English) and pp. 16 (German). $900.
First editions, both English and German issues, of the second number (January 1936) of this newsletter issued by the Women's International Zionist Organisation, intended to encourage and raise funds for aliyah to Palestine as Europe stood poised on the brink of war.
These newsletters, issued by the Women's International Zionist Organisation headquartered in London, were intended as both recruitment and fundraising tools. By January 1936, the date of the newsletters, the tide in Germany—and, indeed, the continent—had turned for the worse. The Nuremberg Laws had passed the year before and prosecutions under the Laws were authorized. While many Jewish citizens had already been sent to prisons and concentration camps, the official proscription against race-mixing made life for those still living free in Germany exponentially worse as Jews found themselves barred from schools, employment, and public life. For many—particularly the young—aliyah to Palestine offered an alternative to the persecution that was sweeping the continent even before Nazi invasion. Jewish organizations began in Europe, setting up agricultural training camps and selecting likely participants for aliyah who were then prepared with basic skills such as farming and Hebrew. That step is mentioned in these newsletters. Once in Israel—methods for arriving are showcased in advertisements in the newsletters—the young men and women worked hard to establish kibbutzim (communal farms). By 1937, one sixth of Jewish-owned vegetable areas were under the guidance of WIZO leadership. These newsletters discuss the women (in particular) who fought to achieve so much, even as their lives were in turmoil. The English and German issues have slightly different layouts; the German issue is two pages longer and has a few more photographs. Both advertise placements for children in London and passage to Israel, but these advertisements have been moved to the interior in the German issue, perhaps to escape the attention of the authorities.
A few small stains to interiors and staple rust, corner of page 7 of English issue torn, vertical foldlines to both issues, German issue with splitting to spine, mild toning to self-wrappers. Extremely good, but scarce in any condition.