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APPENDIX B.—-REPORT ON JEWISH SCHOOLS IN PALESTINE.4?
to form a very high, opinion of the good work that is being clone by M. Nissim Debar. I must confess that of all the people I saw during my stay in Palestine none impressed me so highly as this gentleman. Anyone who has visited Jerusalem and attempted to make inquiries into Jewish matters will be able to appreciate the very difficult and trying position in which he is placed. Where most men would have failed, he has succeeded by his unfailing tact. By knowing where and when to give way, and where and when to stand firm, he has gained the support of many who were at first strongly opposed to him. It is a mistake to suppose that all the Rabbis at Jerusalem are opposed to secular instruction, when combined with religious teaching. The Chaeham Bashi, R. M. Panigel, in answer to my question as to his opinion of this school, called it the BWTjlM KHp, an expression which in the East is equivalent to " the acme of perfection." The Rabbis J. S. Eliaschar, President of the Sephardi Congregation, and Salant, Chief Rabbi of the Ashkenazim, expressed their approval of the School. There is no doubt that at first there was very strong opposition to this School on the part of the Rabbinical party, but a vastly improved feeling now exists, and the party hostile to it is daily losing ground, and is now confined to a comparatively uninfluential body, who, either through bigotry or self-interest, fear the spread of secular knowledge amongst their co-religionists. The present moment is a critical one in the history of the Jews of Jerusalem ; more numerous than they have been for centuries, the Jewish population being now estimated at between 15,000 and 16,000, the result will be perfectly appalling if the rising generation are brought up without education, and unable to earn their own living. This School is fighting a double enemy. Allied against it are those bigoted Jews who, for motives of self-interest would keep their brethren bound in the chains of ignorance and mendicancy, and those feeble-minded, though well-meaning Christians, the tools of the so-called converted Jews, who, in the expectation of saving a soul, do not hesitate to use any means however immoral. For this reason it is of the utmost importance that this school should be well supported and its scope enlarged. Funds should be forthcoming, not only to enable a larger number of children to receive an education, but to develop the experimental workshops of M. Nissim Behar into a real industrial School, so that the boys may be enabled to earn a livelihood after quitting the establishment. The present workshops are far too cramped; larger ones should be constructed, and any money spent in this direction would bear good fruit.
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