Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The Balfour Declaration Turns Ninety

On the 2nd November 1917 British Foreign Secretary Lord Arthur James Balfour wrote Lord Walter Rothschild, representative of the Jewish community and the Zionist Federation, a short letter reading as follows:

His Majesty¹s 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 and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.

Jerusalem Post: "Balfour At 90"

"Almost a century later, the latest tyrants seeking Israel¹s destruction, Iran¹s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Arab jihadi allies, habitually pretend that Israel exists only as redress for the Holocaust, and claim that the Muslim world is bearing the burden of the genocide in Europe against the Jews. But the truth, as Olmert¹s statement alluded, is exactly the opposite: If the Jewish state had been founded earlier, history, including the Holocaust, would have been very different. (...)

Long before the word "Zionism" was coined, a strong current of "restorationism" ran through the Christian world and strongly influenced many of the founders and almost all the presidents of the United States. Restorationists deeply believed the Jews should be "restored" to their ancient land. The British cabinet of 1917 did not act on a whim or in a vacuum, but in a political-religious landscape in which its action, while engendering some controversy, was considered natural and just. (...)

Ninety years ago, no less than today, there were those who saw the recognition of Jewish national rights as a provocation and irritant. Since 9/11, if not before, it should be clear that the "irritant" to the Islamic extremist ideology is not Israel or any other Western manifestation, but the existence and independence of the West itself." >>>

What happened after the Balfour Declaration, as they say, is history.

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