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      The Balfour Declaration 1917:
      When Zionism “Found” Land

      By Max Tennant

      Almost one year before the end of World War I in 1918, with the defeat of the Ottoman Empire almost guaranteed, the British, along with France, were preparing to carve up the Ottoman Empire's Middle Eastern territories for their own interests. The plan was not only to create a Jewish "Home Land", but rather to create an imperialist outpost to advance their interests by suppressing and dividing the Middle East and North Africa. The advancement of technology and industrial revolution in Europe and the US, necessitated the exploration and plunder of new lands to provide the necessary raw materials for their industrial and technological development. Imperialist countries, namely Britain and France, had their eyes on the immense natural resources, especially oil, or black gold, of the Middle East and North Africa. Notably, this plan included occupying Palestine with the assistance of the Zionist movement, solely to keep the flow of needed resources to imperialist countries.

      This was made very clear on November 2nd, 1917, almost 100 years ago, when the Balfour Declaration was created. It was a letter sent from the British Foreign Minister Arthur James Balfour on behalf of the British cabinet to a prominent Zionist leader in England, Lord Rothschild. It was the first acknowledgement by the British Government of their support of the Zionist cause for a “Jewish” national home in Palestine.

      The strongly worded letter clearly states “His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.” This open support by the British Government was not a matter of some kindness towards Jews facing persecution. It should be noted that during this time the majority of Jews did not support Zionism or a migration to Palestine. Therefore, it was a very conscious move made by the British government to use Palestine as a wedge for British, and then later other imperialists countries, to intervene and meddle in the Middle East.

      Let this upcoming 100th anniversary of the Balfour declaration – the blueprint of the Israeli Occupation of Palestine – encourage Jews and all human loving people to, more than ever, increase our efforts for the liberation of Palestine.

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