Flushing Meadow (Sep. 19)
The center of interest at the General Assembly today was the report from London that the British Cabinet is considering the possibility of withdrawing all troops from Palestine.
The British delegation which was scheduled to make a statement during the general debate postponed it until tomorrow, apparently anticipating a change in the section of the statement pertaining to the Palestine question.
Members of other delegations welcomed the possibility of Britain reducing the number of its troops in Palestine. Some of them indicated that the Jews would be able to maintain order in Palestine and even to help in the implementation of the partition recommendations of the UNSCOP majority, if the Haganah were legalized as a Jewish militia. Members of the American delegation, anticipating heated discussions on Palestine early next week, were busy studying a 188-page official document prepared for them in Washington.
The document emphasizes that “it is necessary to note that every President of the United States from Woodrow Wilson up to the present time has expressed interest or sympathy with Jewish aspirations in Palestine.” It also draws attention to the fact that President Roosevelt “promised the Jewish people that he would help to bring about the establishment of a Jewish commonwealth.”
Reviewing the attitude of the U.S. Government to the Palestine problem during World War II, the document refers to the Congressional resolution on Palestine passed in 1945. It calls attention to the fact that when the war broke out the Jews in Palestine “entered into willing support of the British Empire while the Arabs seemed indifferent to the war.” It stresses the fact that Jewish recruitment of all types of military personnel in Palestine between 1939 and 1946 amounted to more than 27,000 persons, while the Arabs “out of a population twice as large as the Jewish” recruited only about 12,000.
The survey covers the activities of the ex-Mufti during the war. It accuses him of instigating a pogrom against the Jews of Bagdad during the unsuccessful pro-Nazi revolution in Iraq. It says that he sought sanctuary in the Japanese legation in Iran after fleeing from Iraq, adding that later he met with Hitler and Joachim (##)ven Ribbentrop in Nazi Germany and helped them recruit Moslem units. It emphasizes that “he gave aid to spies and saboteurs in Arab lands” during the war.
REVEAL ATTLEE ASKED TRUMAN TO SEND U.S. FORCES TO PALESTINE
The document analyzes the position of the displaced Jews in Europe and the recommendations of the Anglo-American Committee on Palestine. It reveals that Prime Minister Attlee had requested of President Truman an American force of two infantry divisions, two armored divisions, two fighter plane groups and one mixed brigade to help the British implement the proposals of the Anglo-American Committee.
The survey also reveals that the U.S. Government considered the Anglo-American report to be advisory and its recommendations not binding. The interest of the U.S. in the questions dealt with by the report, it says, was based on: 1. A desire to assist victims of Nazi persecution. 2. The fact that American citizens have been contributing for a number of years to the Jewish National Home in Palestine. 3. The mutual beneficial relations between the U.S. and the countries of the Near East, and 4. The value the U.S. placed upon the contribution of the Near Eastern countries to the cause of world peace and prosperity.