Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Balfour Declaration

But Britain should apologize to the victims of its colonialism for the injustice that it had inflicted upon them by erecting a racist colonialist state on the ruins of their society.

By Hasan Afif El-Hasan
Special to PalestineChronicle.com

"......Lloyd George stated in 1936 that what induced Britain to issue the declaration was to enlist the support of the Jewish people, including the American Jewish community, during the war when Britain lost the confidence in its allies. Other motives for the declaration had to do with the ideologies and the attitudes of the British leadership. It was suggested that Lord Balfour, the main architect of the declaration that carries his name, and Prime Minister Lloyd George were ardent supporter of the Zionist movement due to their religious belief in the Bible and the Jews right of return. They were “deeply religious men and knew the Bible” according to Chaim Weizmann. Arthur Balfour closed a memorandum he wrote on August 11, 1919 by stating that whether Zionism is right or wrong, “good or bad, is rooted in age-long traditions,…, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land.”

Majority of British politicians believed that a Jewish state allied with Britain would serve the British interests in the Middle East and help protect the lines of communications with the Indian subcontinent, the Jewel of the British Crown. The support for Zionism and disregard for the Palestinians’ grievances became the basis for the policies of the British governments that succeeded Lloyd George administration. Some analysts suggest that British policy makers might have co-operated with the Zionists in order to divert East European Jewish immigrants to Palestine rather than to Britain......."

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