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Secretary Marshall Calls for Admission of Israel and Transjordan into United Nations

September 24, 1948
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Secretary of State George C. Marshall called on the United Nations this morning to admit Israel and Transjordan to membership, in his opening address to the 58 nations of the General Assembly. Singling out Palestine as the first of seven recurrent problems which must be settled if the world is to move toward peace, Secretary Marshall declared that the Assembly’s aim should be:

“A Palestine free from strife and the threat of strife, with both the Jews and Arabs assured the peaceful development envisaged by the actions of the General Assembly and the Security Council; an early demobilization of armed forces to permit the return to conditions of peace and normal living in Palestine; the repatriation of refugees who wish to return and live in peace with their neighbors; economic aid to Jews and Arabs to restore and strengthen their economic well-being; the admission of Transjordan and Israel to membership in the United Nations.”

The Secretary paid tribute to the late U.N. mediator, Count Folke Bernadotte, as a man who worked “brilliantly and courageously” in the cause of peace. He urged the Assembly to act promptly on U.N. Secretary-General Trygve Lie’s proposal for a U.N. force of armed guards, “This great world organization should not send its servants on missions of peace without reasonable protection,” Secretary Marshall insisted. Turning to the problem of human rights, the head of the American delegation expressed the hope that the Assembly would approve by an overwhelming majority the Declaration of Human Rights as a standard of conduct for all; and let us as members of the United Nations, conscious of our own shortcomings and imperfections, join our effort in good faith to live up to this high standard.”


Foreign Minister Zigmunt Modzelewski of Poland, making the first declaration by any of the Eastern European nations, blamed the Palestine war on the resistance of the oil interests to the effective implementation of the original U.N. partition decision. He demanded that the Assembly permit no deviation from the first road of peaceful and final settlement. That final settlement, he emphasized, “should be crowned by the admission of the state of Israel into the United Nations.”

Britain has decided to recognize Israel if the Bernadotte proposals for Palestine partition are accepted, it was learned here today in circles close to Hector McNeil, British Secretary of State and second in command of the United Kingdom delegation. Britain attaches great significance to the incorporation of the Negev into Transjordan and is proposing this to the Israeli mission here, these same sources said. This proposal, it was stressed, represents the joint policy of Britain, the United States, France and the Benelux nations. The British may be prepared to discuss with the Israeli Government the northernmost limits of the territory to the designated as the Negev, these sources indicated.

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