Friday, November 13, 2015

Seven US Factors 1947

Let the document speak for itself:

Memorandum by Mr. Fraser Wilkins of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs1

[Washington,] January 14, 1947.secret
The Palestine question is one of the most difficult problems with which the Department is faced. Our policy toward Palestine is based on seven factors:

1) Present responsibility of Great Britain for administration of Palestine under League of Nations mandate to which administration United States consented in American-British-Palestine Mandate Convention of December 3, 1924.
2) The intense desire of Jewish DP’s in Europe to emigrate to Palestine.
3) Support for Jewish National Home in Palestine as expressed in Presidential statements, Congressional resolutions and party platforms.
4) The Arab population of Palestine outnumbers the Jewish population two to one. The Arabs in Palestine and neighboring countries are opposed to the partition of Palestine and to Jewish domination in any form.
5) Religions importance of Palestine to Christians, Jews and Moslems.
6) Strategic and economic importance of American oil, aviation and telecommunications facilities in Palestine and neighboring countries.
7) Practically speaking, the unsettled Palestine problem, made more difficult by the pressure for post-war migration of displaced Jews from Europe to Palestine, is an irritant in Anglo-American relations. It is also prejudicial to American-Arab relations in the fields of education, trade, petroleum and aviation. Continued agitation and uncertainty regarding the Palestine question, by weakening the Anglo-American position in the Near East, permits a more rapid extension of Soviet Russian objectives, and is distressing to Christians everywhere because the Christian interest in Palestine tends to become submerged in an Arab-Jewish controversy.
American policy in Palestine, as now developed, has five principal aspects:

1) In Palestine, which now contains 1,250,000 Arabs and 600,000 Jews, neither group shall dominate the other. Palestine should be neither a Jewish State nor an Arab State, but the people of Palestine should be granted full independence as soon as practicable in one or more states in which the form of government will satisfy as nearly as possible the national aspirations of both Jews and Arabs. Accomplishment of such a solution through a workable partition of Palestine, with the exception of the Holy Places, into an Arab State, which might join a neighboring Arab State, and a Jewish State, in control of its own immigration and economic policies, could be supported by the United States. Pending full independence, Palestine would enjoy partial self-government under United Nations trusteeship.
2) Immediate transfer of 100,000 Jews from European DP camps to Palestine. Immigration laws of other countries, including United States, should be liberalized to permit admission of other DP’s from Europe.
3) Continued development of Jewish National Home in Palestine through immigration and land purchase, both of which are now restricted, if partition proves impracticable.
4) Broad political, economic and cultural development of Arab population in Palestine.
5) Obtaining acquiesence of all Arab states to whatever solution gives promise of settling the Palestine question.

1 Mr. Wilkins was the desk officer in charge of Palestinian affairs.


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