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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa (in two parts)

Israel,   pp. 533-1707 ff. PDF (461.4 MB)

Page 1291

the British on a joint program in the Assembly, if on the merits of the
case such action should seem desirable. To be quite frank about it,
both of our political parties are irrevocably committed to support of
the PGI; there is not: likely, therefore, to be any substantial change
in our position with regard to the peaceful settlement inPalestine;
we have an excellent opportunity to consult leaders of bloth our
parties and the future would therefore be no better time than the
present to work out with the British a joint policy if the circumstances
in Palestine warrant.
  14. London's 3484, in particular paragraph 12, reveals what we feel
is another persistent error in British thinking about Palestine. This
is the idea that the British are the advocates for the Arabs, although
prepared if necessary to "cold-shoulder" them, while the US is
the ad-
vocate, ffor the Jews. The objective facts 'are, as we see them, haat the
US has just as;much interest as the UK in the development and main-
tenance of good relations with the Arabs, while the UK, on the other
hand, has just as much interest as the US in the development and
maintenance of good relations with Israel, both considered in terms of
our mutual political, economic and strategic interests in the Middle
  We should not continue thinking,.therefore, that it is the task of the
UK alone to bring -about Arab acquiescence (paragraph 13).any more
than we should think that it is the task of 'the US to bring about
Israel a-cquiescence in the futuure settlement. As we see it, both we and
the UK have a joint and equal task in bringing about the acquiescence
of both Arabs and Jews.
   The first step in this direction, we venture to recommend most
 strongly, would be to work out with the UK at the earliest possible
 moment the coordinated recognition by the US of Transjordan, and
 by the UK of Israel.
 761.00/8-648: Telegram
     The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Douglas) to the
                           Secretary of State
 TOP SECRET                        LONDON, August 6, 1948-7 p. m.
   3567. 1. Bevin asked me to call late yesterday and spent one and
 half hours expounding deep concern of British Cabinet re security
 situation in the Middle East in general and Palestine in particular
 (Embassy's 3545, August 5 ').
   2. Bevin opened by saying that if we get out of our Berlin dif-
 ficulties it will be because the USSR finds Western Europe too hard
 to tackle at this time. Past performance has shown that USSR when
 thwarted at one point soon transfers its attentions to another. Middle
 East is normally a "soft spot" from point of view of its social,
 and ethnic difficulties. Such groups as Kurds offer ready targets for
 Soviet activities. To this pattern has been added Palestine conflict
 which threatens joint US-UK strategic objectives in Middle East and
   1 o printed.

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