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Balfour And The “Jewish State”

author Friday November 02, 2012 13:31author by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC Report post


It was 95 years ago today, when the British Foreign Secretary, Arthur James Balfour, decided to shift “the Jewish problem” away from Britain that occupied Palestine as well as many other Arab countries, and issued his infamous declaration known as the “Balfour Declaration” promising the land of Palestine to the Jewish people.

Amidst increasing racism and antisemitism against the Jews in Europe, way before the name Adolf Hitler has ever surfaced, Britain decided to get rid of the Jews by throwing them away, sending them to the land of Palestine, by granting them a promise.

Balfour sent the letter to Baron Walter Rothschild, the second Baron of the UK and Ireland, and senior leader of the Jewish Community in Britain, promising to grant the land of Palestine to the Jewish people.

-- -- -- --

“Dear Lord Rothschild,

I have much pleasure in conveying to you, on behalf of His Majesty's Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Cabinet.

"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this goal, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious' rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country".

I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation.
Yours sincerely, (Signed) Arthur James Balfour

-- -- -- --

Commemorating the 95th anniversary for this illegal promise, several Palestinian factions and groups, held a meeting and demanded Britain to issue an official apology to the Palestinian people, and to compensate them for harm and loss inflicted on them since then, until this very day.

The factions said that Palestine is an Arab land, and that nobody and no government has the right to give it away, by stripping the Palestinians from their historical right in the land, and forcing on them the displacement, abuse, and the ongoing crimes carried out by Israel.

Balfour and his country did not gift the Jews a land that the UK owned, it's a land that was occupied by Britain, and its people were facing constant crimes and attacks.

Mistakenly, some people say that the Jews needed a homeland because of what they faced by the Nazis during the holocaust. Of course, there is no nation that deserves to be annihilated, murdered, and wiped-out, but the simple fact that some people choose to ignore is that when the Balfour declaration was made, there was no holocaust yet.

But the Jews were considered the problem in Europe and were facing outrageous abuse, humiliation and discrimination, they were dehumanized and were treated like a nation that was born to the devil.

Britain, as one of many colonial countries, was occupying Palestine and wanted to get rid of its problem by promising a Jewish homeland in Palestine. By exporting “its problem” and promising a land it never owned, a land it occupied and persecuted its people.

It is a simple, rarely spoken, if ever, fact that while Jews were facing racial discrimination, hostilities and abuse in Europe, way before the holocaust, Palestinian and Arabs Jews enjoyed normal life, and were living side by side with their Arab, Muslim and Christian neighbors.

But by promising a homeland for the Jews in Palestine, Britain wanted to beautify its face, by pretending it cared enough for the Jews to promise them a homeland, not in a province of the U.K, or other European state, but by promising them a land where they can go and “relieve Europe from this burden”.

Belfour did not only get rid of his “problem”, he managed to create a lengthy, still ongoing, bloody conflict in the historic land of Palestine.

Many Palestinian Jews even left Palestine after the Balfour declaration was made, simply because they wanted to live with their neighbors, instead of being turned into the enemy and the occupier.

The Palestinians became a nation of refugees, displaced people, living under constant attacks and abuse by the Israeli occupation, while millions are living as refugees in various refugee camps in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and abroad.

An entire nation that once had trade, agriculture, and rich culture, is now being denied its very own right, the right to live in its homeland as a free nation, as a sovereign and an independent nation.

The massive massacres against the Palestinians were intensified just before and during the establishment of Israel, and continued after that, continued to this very day, but the assault openly came into light after the First Zionist Conference, in Basel – Switzerland, in 1897.

Back then, Theodor Hertzel became known as the father of the so-called “Modern Political Zionism” that determined the urgency of getting rid of the indigenous population of Palestine, in order to establish a Jewish State on its ruins, and on the lands that were once owned by the Palestinians.

Hertzel was initially disappointed to learn that many rich Jews did not want to fund his project, his plan was to create a Jewish homeland in Palestine, Argentina or Angola.

The Zionist conference came up with several agendas topped by the need to establish a Jewish homeland in Palestine by all means. To achieve this ultimate goal, the conference called for encouraging Jewish immigration into Palestine, organizing the Jews and connecting them with the Zionist movement, and achieving international legitimacy for the Zionist agenda.

The conference then decided to form the International Zionist Federation headed by Theodor Hertzel, and also decided to form the Executive Branch of the Jewish Agency to implement the resolutions and to be in charge of collecting money to use in purchasing lands, and sending Jewish immigrants to start establishing settlements and colonies on lands that were owned by the indigenous Palestinian population.

After its establishment, the Zionist Federation decided, during the First Zionist Conference in 1897, to act on the implementation of a national homeland for the Jews in Palestine, an issue that came into light with the occupation of Palestine in 1948, and the establishment of the state of Israel.

The promise Balfour made was an important step towards fulfilling the resolutions of the Zionist Conference, his promise came to grant “legitimacy” for raping the land of Palestine, and displacing its people.

Balfour and his government wanted to look good, wanted to claim they cared for the Jews, wanted to give them a homeland, in a country he and his country never owned, this way he can ensure continued control over Palestine, while at the same time looking as the man who gave a homeland to the Jews.

Hundreds of Palestinian villages and towns were wiped out, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians displaced, lost their homes and lands, so that a state can be established, a state that defines itself as the state of the Jewish people, as state that regards the indigenous Arabs and Palestinians as a strategic threat. It became a Zionist state that many Jews around the world do not want to be part of.

category palestine | refugees/immigration | opinion/analysis author email saed at imemc dot org
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