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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1937. The British Commonwealth, Europe, Near East and Africa

Palestine,   pp. 881-922 PDF (15.0 MB)

Page 890

  "As His Majesty's Government is aware, the American Government
and large sections of the American public have for many years taken a
close interest in the development of the Jewish National Home in
Palestine. As early as August 1918, President Wilson expressed pub-
licly 11 his satisfaction at the progress which the Zionist movement
had made in the United States and in the allied countries as a result
of the declaration made on November 2, 1917, by Lord Balfour,lz on
behalf of the British Government, in favor of the establishment in
Palestine of a National Home for the Jewish people. Each succeed-
ing President has on one or more occasions expressed his own interest
in the idea of a National Home and his pleasure at the progress made
in its establishment. It will be remembered likewise that the Ameri-
can Congress adopted, and President Harding signed on September 21,
1922, a joint resolution 13 favoring the establishment of the National
Home.   Numerous private organizations in the United States have
from time to time expressed their sympathy for such a Homeland. It
is perhaps pertinent to mention that the British Government itself has
tended to encourage the interest which American nationals have takeTs
in the Jewish National Home and in the general question of Palestine.
As one example of this encouragement, reference is made to Lord
Balfour's letter of January 13, 1922,'14 to the Secretary of State, a
pertinent section of which reads as follows:
  'The task which the British Government have undertaken in Palestine is
of extreme difficulty and delicacy. At Paris I always warmly advocated that
it should be undertaken, not by Britain, but by the United States of America;
and though subsequent events have shown me that such a policy would never
have commended itself to the American people I still think that, so far as
Middle East is concerned, it would have been the best. However this may be,
the duty has devolved upon Great Britain; and I hope the American Govern-
ment will do what they can to lighten the load.'
  When to this general interest there is added the fact that several
thousand American nationals have established themselves in Pales-
tine and have made large investments there in agricultural, industrial
and philanthropic enterprises, it is not surprising that our people
should be deeply concerned with the future of the country.
  It seems altogether fitting and proper again to bring this interest
and concern to the attention of His Majesty's Government at this
time when it is considering what steps should be taken, consistent with
its existing obligations, to establish and maintain peace in the Land
which is Holy to three great faiths."
  n In a letter to Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, August 31, 1918; for text of letter,
R. S. Baker and W. E. Dodd (eds.), The Public Papers of Woodrow Wilson, War
and Peace, vol. i, p. 243.
  12 See Foreign Relations, 1917, supp. 2, vol. i, p. 317, footnote 1.
  12 Congressional Record, vol. 62, pt. 10, p. 9799, or 42 Stat. 1012.
  14 Foreign Relations, 1922, vol. iI, p. 268.

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