Category Archives: Articles

Britain needs to recognise Palestine as an independent state

Ian Black It’s time to get off the fence and resolve this most toxic of global conflicts in the only way possible Over the Bank Holiday weekend, coinciding with the start of the Ramadan fast for Muslims and the run-up … Continue reading

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The U.S. Recognition of Israel, 14 May 1948. Part II: Truman’s Belated Support

William M. Mathew The obvious question presents itself: given the near-universal presidential negativity, how was it possible for Truman to make the clear decision in mid-May 1948 to recognise the new state of Israel within minutes of its creation? Our … Continue reading

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The U.S. Recognition of Israel, 14 May 1948. Part I: Roosevelt, Truman, Marshall: A Sequence of Contingencies

Part I: Uncertainties William M. Mathew Abstract Zionism`s two most notable international successes in the 20th century were the U.K. Balfour Declaration, 2 November 1917, and the U.S. recognition of the nascent state of Israel, 14 May 1948. Neither, however, … Continue reading

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Palestine and Britain: forgotten legacy of World War I that devastated the Middle East

Rare photograph of the formal transfer of Jerusalem to British rule. By James Rodgers. For those of us of an age to have known only peace in Western Europe, the centenary of the end of World War I is a … Continue reading

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Swedish recognition of Palestine: politics, law, and prospects for peace

Dr Jacob Eriksson, University of York Sweden’s decision to recognise Palestine on 30 October, 2014, was a controversial one and this article explores two key aspects. First, it contextualises the decision in relation to doctrines about the recognition of states … Continue reading

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“The Jewish Question” in 19th century Europe

Ian Portman Abstract Faced with increasing  antisemitism in Europe towards the end of the 19th century, many Jews chose to join the great waves of European emigration  to the United States. Since the high middle ages, most of the world’s … Continue reading

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Evangelicals, the Balfour Declaration and Zionism

By Roger Spooner When talking about the Balfour Declaration with a pastor from Bethlehem, he commented,’ the problems of the Palestinians didn’t start in 1917, they started in 1840′. Literal reading of the Bible which had developed in the 17th … Continue reading

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A calamitous promise

The Guardian’s Long Read of 17 October was headlined ‘Britain’s calamitous promise’. Author Ian Black writes ‘The brief document that bears Balfour’s name is seen as marking the beginning of what is today widely considered the world’s most intractable conflict.’ … Continue reading

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Balfour, Weizmann and the Creation of Israel by Charles Glass

Charles Glass, writing in the London Review of Books in 2001, reviewed two books looking at the period of the British Mandate in Palestine. It was also published in the Guardian under the tilte: The Mandate Years; colonialism and the … Continue reading

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McMahon, Sykes, Balfour: Contradictions and Concealments in British Palestine Policy 1915-1917

by WILLIAM M. MATHEW Lecture given to the History Group of The Norfolk Club, 14 April 2016 to mark the centenary of the Sykes-Picot Agreement 1916 Abstract These three war-time initiatives are presented as part of a compressed, uncoordinated, two-year … Continue reading

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Rescuing Balfour: Winston Churchill at the Colonial Office 1921-22, By William Mathew

                    Given the sheer improbability of the Balfour Declaration, its source in temporary war-time contingencies, its activation of inter-communal conflict in Palestine, and its exposure to increasing opposition both at home and in the Levant, the 1917 War Cabinet pledge … Continue reading

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Christian Zionism’s flawed vision of Israel, by Rabbi Dow Marmur

My dictionary defines Zionism as “a movement for the re-establishment of a Jewish national homeland and state in Palestine.” This was realized in May 1948 when the State of Israel was established. Many Jews are Zionists and committed to the … Continue reading

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Struggling to Maintain the Mandate’s Iron Cage, 1930 – 1947 by Peter Shambrook

Peter A. Shambrook presents the history of the British Mandate for Palestine in the period 1930-1947, highlighting its very negative outcomes for the Palestinian population. In doing so, Shambrook calls for Britain to accept responsibility for its past wrongdoings as … Continue reading

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Dec 11th 1917, General Allenby shows how a ‘moral man’ conquers Jerusalem

On this day he entered Jerusalem, modestly on foot, two days after the Turks surrendered it, after several attempts. By David B. Green | Dec. 11, 2014 | 3:46 AM  from Haaretz In December 11, 1917, General Edmund Allenby, commander … Continue reading

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British policy and Arab Displacement in Palestine, 1915-23: Contingency. Imperialism and Double-Dealing

            By  William M. Mathew, Senior Fellow in History, University of East Anglia Lecture given as part of the Contemporary Middle East Lecture Programme,               School of Oriental and African Studies, 28 October 2014                                                      I I should begin by … Continue reading

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