Cables reveal 1948 threats from State Dept.


WASHINGTON (JTA) —  A U.S. State Department official in 1948 threatened to release anti-Semitic documents in response to the establishment of the State of Israel, according to diplomatic cables. 

The Washington Free Beacon reported Thusday that according to recently unearthed diplomatic cables, Undersecretary of State Robert Lovett told Nahum Goldmann, the president and founder of the World Jewish Congress, that he was ready to disseminate a white paper that would “do great harm to the Jews.”

According to the cables, Lovett told Goldmann that the State Department would seek a truce with the Arab countries and if Israel prevented the truce by declaring independence on its own terms, the State Department would prevent any assistance from reaching the infant Jewish state. 

Lovett apparently favored a Jewish entity that stopped short of full statehood. Within weeks of the April 22 cable, President Harry Truman ignored such counsel and was the first leader to recognize Israel on May 14, when it declared independence.

Rafael Medoff, the director of The David Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies discovered the cables while conducting research for his recently released book, "Herbert Hoover and the Jews: The Origins of the ‘Jewish Vote’ and Bipartisan Support for Israel."  

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