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1445 ذو القعدة 16 | 24 مايو 2024

Balfour Declaration … 105 years of the UK supporting Israel

Balfour Declaration ... 105 years of the UK supporting Israel
Nour Abu Aisha 2 November 2022

For the last 105 years, the Palestinians have been struggling to live because of a 67-word letter sent by the British minister to the leader of the zionist movement declaring that the Jews have a right to a “national home in Palestine.”

The letter was later known as the “Balfour Declaration”, the spark that ignited the establishment of the Israel State in May 1948 and the occupation of the Palestinian lands.

A 67-word letter caused the misery and struggle of millions of Palestinians.

On the 105th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, Anadolu Agency published the British decisions throughout the years that supported Israel disregarding Palestinians’ struggle to end the occupation.


105 years of the UK supporting Israel



On November 2, 1917, British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour sent a letter to Lord Lionel Walter Rothschild, the leader of the Zionist movement, stating that “His Majesty’s Government views 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”.

Balfour claimed that Britain will protect the rights of other nationalities in Palestine. After the declaration, Britain colonized Palestine during World War I (1914 – 1918) and ended the Ottoman control over the Holy Land and took control. (


1918 – 1920

Britain established a military regime in Palestine to support the establishment of the national home for the Jews.



Britain then established Civil Administration that approved the first order for Jewish immigration to Palestine.

San Remo conference was conducted at which Britain obtained the mandate over Palestine and Transjordan, while also working to keep its promise to implement the Balfour Declaration.



The League of Nations declared the British Mandate for Palestine and stated that “The Mandatory shall be responsible for placing the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the establishment of the Jewish national home”


1920 – 1925

Sir Herbert Samuel, Jewish and Zionist, was appointed to the position of High Commissioner in 1920. He then changed the Ottoman laws to facilitate the transfer of land to Jews.



The first British “White Book” was issued, known as Churchill White Paper, by the British Prime Minister at the time. The book confirmed the country’s commitment to the Balfour Declaration and to reduce tensions between the Arabs and Jews in Palestine the paper called for a limitation of Jewish immigration to the economic capacity of the country to absorb new arrivals and stated that it does not mean the Judaization of all of Palestine, and settlements will not affect their existence.


Pictures of Palestinian Protests
Pictures of Palestinian Protests (Anadolu Images)



Britain issues a law requiring Palestinian farmers to hand over their agricultural lands claiming to publicize it in return for a small compensation.



  • Palestinians discovered a huge shipment of smuggled weapons for the “Haganah” (Zionist paramilitary organization), which Britain, who had control over land and sea transportation, was later accused of allowing.
  • British Mandate Authority provided Jews with privileges that helped facilitate their investments and businesses.



The British Peel Commission issued a report recommending the partition of Palestine between Arabs and Jews after the Palestinian protests in 1936. The first state belonged to the Arabs and included Transjordan and the second belonged to the Jews and included all of the main holy sites.



The establishment of the Jewish Legion, comprising 5,000 volunteers, as an independent military unit in the British Army.



  • The United Nations General Assembly, which was established as per the British request, issued Resolution No. 181 which stated the division of Palestine into two states, giving the Jews 54% of the lands and the Arabs 45%, with the exception of5h3 1% that includes the Holy Sites in Jerusalem.
  • Britain supplied the Jews with large amounts of weapons after the UN General Assembly declaration and the stress rising between the Jews and Arabs.



  • The United Kingdom Government announced that Palestine would no longer form part of the sterling bloc. Palestinian pounds are no longer convertible to the Sterling at parity as they had been previously.
  • Britain announced the end of the mandate over Palestine at midnight on May 15 and the Establishment of the State of Israel was announced.
  • According to many historical records, the Zionist Organisation took over the arms stores that belonged to the British Army.




  • Britain officially recognizes the State of Israel on May 13.
  • Sir Alexander Knox Helm appointed the first British Chargé d’Affairs (later minister) to Israel



Francis Evans was appointed as British Chargé d’Affairs to Israel.



Francis Evans was promoted to British Ambassador in Israel



A draft of a British Cabinet meeting revealed that Britain was secretly shipping military tanks to Israel in the late 1950s.



Britain-Israel Joint Technology Investment Fund was established.



  • British Prime Minister at the time, Theresa May, praise the close economic and political ties with Israel during her speech to the Conservative Friends of Israel party. In the speech, May called the Balfour Declaration “one of the most important letters in history”
  • Theresa My’s government adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of anti-Semitism in December 2016, which considers any criticism of Israel and compares its action to Nazi’s as “Anti-Semitic”



The British government celebrates the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, and holds a dinner with the participation of Theresa May and her Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu, in the presence of members of the Balfour family.



The Palestinian Struggle
The Palestinian Struggle



Israel establishes the fourth largest market for Britain’s exports in the Middle East and North Africa region, while Britain has the third largest market for Israeli products and exports.



According to The Guardian, Israel had used British-made military equipment  to target residential areas in the Gaza Strip



  • Britain and Israel begin negotiations on a new free trade agreement.
  • British Prime Minister Liz Truss says she is considering moving the British embassy from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem, after meeting with her Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid, in the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.




Source: Anadolu Agency



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