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Western European Nations Supporting U.S. Policy of Backing Bernadotte’s Palestine Plan

September 23, 1948
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Secretary of State George C. Marshall’s position of backing the proposals on Palestine contained in the report of the late mediator, Count Folke Bernadotte, was today gaining support among the delegations to the General Assembly sessions. It was seen as a foregone conclusion that the western European nations will back the U.S., following a caucus of the representatives of the Benelux on this point.

A member of the U.S. delegation intimated that strong pressure will be brought to bear on Israel to accept the Bernadotte plan. The same source made it clear that Israel could not expect support of its application for U.N. membership or an American loan unless the Bernadotte proposals are accepted.

An Israel mission spokesman pointed out that under the Bernadotte plan–the basic point of which involves an exchange of the entire Negev for Western Galilee–the Jews would obtain 420 square miles of land in Galilee for 3,800 square miles in territory of the 5,500 square mile state laid out for the Jews by the original partition decision. The spokesman also indicated that another feature of the Bernadotte plan is unacceptable–the failure to provide a land corridor linking Israel and Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, Charles Malik of Lebanon has challenged the section of Bernadotte’s report which accepts the existence of Israel as a state. Malik declared that the Arabs would continue to fight against all attempts to cream an independent Jewish state.


The Assembly’s General (steering) Committee adjourned tonight after a four-hour session without taking any formal action on placing the Palestine question on the Assembly’s agenda. Earlier today Secretary-General Trygve Lie asked the committee to include Bernadotte’s report on the agenda as well as the question of supplying a U.N. guard in Palestine and providing reparations for injuries incurred in the service of the U.N.

It is expected that the General Committee will discuss the Palestine question at tomorrow’s session. A spokesman for the American delegation indicated that the U.S. will support Lie’s request for furnishing a U.N. guard for its Palestine personnel. British Under Secretary for Foreign Affairs Hector McNeil served notice that he will call for the formation of a Palestine Ad Hoc Committee, similar to the one created at last year’s Assembly session.

Israel today signed its first official agreement with a United Nations specialized agency when it concluded a pact with the International Children’s Fund to provide emergency aid for children and mothers in Israel. Jewish victims will receive some $60,000 from a total of $400,000 allocated by the Fund for the relief of refugees in Palestine, the remainder going to Arab victims of the war.

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