Yitzhak Gruenbaum

"We must begin an open war against Nazi Germany without giving any consideration to the fate of the Jews in Germany", Gruenbaum said. He proposed examining the possibility of "smashing the windows in all their embassies" and organizing mass demonstrations. "German Jewry will obviously pay for this," he noted, " but there is no alternative. If we do not do it now, the fate of the Jews in Poland and Poland will be like that of the Jews of Germany today."

Yitzhak Gruenbaum at the JAE, 13 Nov 1938, Central Zionist Archives, Jerusalem

Yitzhak Gruenbaum was chairperson of the Jewish Agency's Rescue Committee during WWII.

In the beginning of February, 1943, Yitzchak Greenbaum addressed a meeting in Tel Aviv on the subject, "The Diaspora and the Redemption" in which he stated: "For the rescue of Jews in the Diaspora, we should consolidate our excess strength and the surplus of powers that we have. When they come to us with two plans--the rescue of the masses of Jews in Europe or the redemption of the land--I vote, without a second thought, for the redemption of the land. The more said about the slaughter of our people, the greater the minimization of our efforts to strengthen and promote the Hebraization of the land. If there would be a possibility today of buying packages of food with the money of the "Keren Hayesod" (United Jewish Appeal) to send it through Lisbon, would we do such a thing? No! and once again No!" (Holocaust Victims Accuse, p. 26)

Gruenbaum's response to the plea of Rabbi Yitzhak Itshe Meir Levin, a leader of the Ultra-orthodox Agudat Yisrael who stated, "Take the Jewish National Fund money...won't you halt the work in Palestine during such a period, when they are murdering, slaughtering Jews by the hundreds of thousands, even millions? Don't establish new settlements, take the money for those needs." Greenbaum responded: ". . . . Let them say that I am anti-Semitic....Let them say what they want. I will not demand that the Jewish Agency allocate of a sum of 300,000 or 100,000 pounds sterling to help European Jewry. And I think that whoever demands such things is performing an anti-Zionist act."

(January 18, 1943, Yitzhak Gruenbaum and Others at the Zionist Executive Committee; Gruenbaum, Days of Destruction, p.68)

In his book, "In Days of Holocaust and Destruction," Yitzchak Greenbaum writes, "when they asked me, couldn't you give money out of the United Jewish Appeal funds for the rescue of Jews in Europe, I said, 'NO!' and I say again, 'NO!'...one should resist this wave which pushes the Zionist activities to secondary importance."
(Holocaust Victims Accuse, p. 26)