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Internationalization of Palestine Urged at American Forum on Near East

Internationalization of Palestine and international control of the strategic waterways of the Near East, not only would resolve many of the rivalries in that area but also would be an important contribution to world peace, according to Quincy Wright, Professor of International Law at the University of Chicago.

Speaking on “The Future of the Near East” today in the final public lecture of the University’s Harris Foundation Institute, Dr. Wright examined the background of Near-Eastern diplomacy and projected future plans for that area on the basis of a United Nations’ victory and implementation of the Atlantic Charter.

“The policy of the United Nations as declared in the Atlantic Charter and other documents,” Dr. Wright said, “is to make universal the principles of the League of Nations and establish moire effective machinery of control. Their victory will give them the power to initiate such a course of development. By the first article of the Atlantic Charter, the United Nations renounce aggrandizement, territorial or other. This implies the renunciation of imperialism in the Near East and elsewhere. If the strategic and commercial advantages accruing from the control of narrow waterways and strategic islands are to be eliminated, such controls might be transferred to an international organization.”

Despite the emphasis upon self-determination of peoples contained in the Atlantic Charter, Dr. Wright pointed to important arguments for internationalizing Palestine. “While such a solution would disappoint the hopes of both Zionists and Arabs,” he said, “it is doubtful whether in view of the rivalry of the two and the force of Christian interest in the Holy Land, either of these hopes was ever achievable. Palestine is perhaps the outstanding area of the world in which self-determination is inapplicable because of the greater weight of external, as compared with internal, political forces in shaping its destiny.”

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