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London Times Views ‘black Side’ of Balfour Stand; Laments Arab Refugees

The Times today took note of the 50th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration by lamenting “the black side” of the record of events that led to the creation of a Jewish national home in Palestine and, subsequently, the sovereign State of Israel.

The Times described the Declaration as an attempt “by men of good will to bind their fellow countrymen to what they believed to be the only honorable course for the treatment of a minority. They succeeded in doing so, but the political cost was higher than they could ever have imagined.” The record is, said the Times, that a quarter of a million Arabs “have jogged along as second class citizens, and 1,000,000 have been left without homes, let alone rights.”

The paper conceded, that “in view of later events — Hitler, the growth of territorial nationalism, the decline of Empire — it is hard to see how a (Jewish national) home could in fact have stopped short of a state. The only really surprising thing is that the state came about by conquest and that, in 1967, it stretched not from Dan to Beersbeba but from within striking distance of Damascus to the Suez Canal.”

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