Monday, November 2, 2015

The Palestine Problem: 98-years Old Today

98 years ago today saw the issue, by the British war cabinet of David Lloyd George (PM) and Lord Balfour (Foreign Secretary), of the worst foreign policy decision ever made by any Western power in modern times.

Dubbed the Balfour Declaration, it reads as follows:

"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, 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 or political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country."

At the time, 92% or more of the population of Palestine were Arabs - both Muslim and Christian.

Think of the implications of describing the overwhelming majority of a country as EXISTING NON-JEWISH COMMUNITIES.

Then think about the plight of those EXISTING NON-JEWISH COMMUNITIES today, the majority in exile, and the rest under a 'shoot first, ask no questions later' military occupation or living as barely-tolerated 3rd class citizens in a Jews-first state.

Now ponder this.  

When required (for his weekly column in The Australian) to come up with an example of British colonial bastardry in the Middle East during World War I, this is the best Philip Adams, one of Australia's leading intellectuals and commentators, renowned for his erudition, humanitarian concern, and avuncular manner, can do:

"Much of the mess in the Middle East is a consequence of colonialism - and the wholly arbitrary designation of nations by bureaucrats from Britain... They'd literally nail a piece of tin on a palm tree and say 'this is Kuwait, the other side's Iraq'." (What is it good for? The Weekend Australian Magazine, 26/9/15)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Not only the worst foreign policy decision ever made by any Western power in modern times but the greatest betrayal in modern history. Simply, the Arab nation, allies of the British, was betrayed following their military victory in World War 1 and Palestine handed to alien invaders with the rest of the Arab world divided. The world, and the Arab nation in particular, is suffering for this blunder.

What is it about human nature that following one stupid decision further stupid decisions, to back up the original blunder, are routine?

The time has come to admit the series of blunders like adults and begin to set things right. Free Palestine!