Even if the Powers assisted us in acquiring the sovereignty over a strip of territory --
How are we to transport masses of Jews without undue compulsion from their present homes to this new country?
Their emigration is surely intended to be voluntary.
THE PHENOMENON OF MULTITUDES
Great exertions will hardly be necessary to spur on the movement. Anti-Semites provide the requisite impetus. They need only do what they did before, and then they will create a desire to emigrate where it did not previously exist, and strengthen it where it existed before. Jews who now remain in Anti-Semitic countries do so chiefly because even those among them who are most ignorant of history know that numerous changes of residence in bygone centuries never brought them any permanent good. Any land which welcomed the Jews today, and offered them even fewer advantages than that which the Jewish State would guarantee them, would immediately attract a great influx of our people. The poorest, who have nothing to lose would drag themselves there. But I maintain, and every man may ask himself whether I am not right, that the pressure weighing on us arouses a desire to emigrate even among prosperous strata of society. Now our poorest strata alone would suffice to found a State; these form the strongest human material for acquiring a land, because a little despair is indispensable to the formation of a great undertaking.
But when our "desperados" increase the value of the land by their presence and by the labor they expend on it, they make it at the same time increasingly attractive as a place of settlement to people who are better off.
Higher and yet higher strata will feel tempted to go over. The expedition of the first and poorest settlers will be conducted by Company and Society conjointly, and will probably be additionally supported by existing emigration and Zionist societies.
How may a number of people be directed to a particular spot without being given express orders to go there! There are certain Jewish benefactors on a large scale who try to alleviate the sufferings of the Jews by Zionist experiments. To them this problem also presented itself, and they thought to solve it by giving the emigrants money or means of employment. Thus the philanthropists said: "We pay these people to go there."
Such a procedure is utterly wrong, and all the money in the world will not achieve its purpose.
On the other hand, the Company will say: "We shall not pay them, we shall let them pay us. We shall merely offer them some inducements to go."
A fanciful illustration will make my meaning more explicit: One of those philanthropists (whom we will call "The Baron") and myself both wish to get a crowd of people on to the plain of Longchamps near Paris, on a hot Sunday afternoon. The Baron, by promising them 10 francs each, will, for 200,000 francs, bring out 20,000 perspiring and miserable people, who will curse him for having given them so much annoyance. Whereas I will offer these 200,000 francs as a prize for the swiftest racehorse -- and then I shall have to put up barriers to keep the people off Longchamps. They will pay to go in: 1 franc, 5 francs, 20 francs.
The consequence will be that I shall get the half-a-million of people out there; the President of the Republic will drive up "a la Daumont"; and the crowds will enjoy and amuse themselves. Most of them will think it an agreeable walk in the open air in spite of heat and dust; and I shall have made by my 200,000 francs about a million in entrance money and taxes on gaming. I shall get the same people out there whenever I like but the Baron will not -- not on any account.
Translated from the German by Sylvie D'Avigdor
This edition published in 1946 by the American Zionist Emergency Council
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