Today and tomorrow I am bringing a two-part book review, written by "Matthew", one of the Revisionist activists who prefers to be known by his pseudonym.
( I personally dislike the use of pseudonyms in this spiritual struggle for Truth, but I realize that people have jobs and families, and not all are equally brave.)
Read on about "The Devil's Triangle"
The Palestine Triangle: The Struggle for the Holy Land, 1935-48 by Nicholas Bethall is a very able study of the immensely complicated interaction of Arabs, Jews and Englishmen which determined the fate of the Holy Land in the period referenced. A story which has more often than not been slanted by partisan distortions is here told fairly and impartially without bias toward any side.
The initial stages of the Zionist-Arab controversy are briefly but accurately summarized. The real history of the Palestine Triangle begins with the great Arab revolt of 1936 and 1938-39.
As a consequence of that formidable three year period of strife, which cost the British mandatory authorities so much effort to quell, the recommendation of the Peel Commission to partition Palestine into two separate Arab and Jewish states was dropped. As an alternative, the new Colonial Secretary, Malcolm Macdowell, issued the (in)famous White Paper of 1939 which proposed allowing a final immigration quota of Jews of 75,000 spread over five years, beyond which no Jews could enter Palestine without Arab consent, prohibition on land sales to Jews, and the intent of creating an independent Arab state within ten years with Jewish consent.
The story of The Palestine Triangle is the story of the never resolved debate within HMG on whether to stand on the White Paper or to revert to partition.
Although the Zionist leadership initially erupted against the White Paper in undisguised furor, they eventually decided to accept an initual Jewish state, which could be expanded later, "Lebensraum style", by "making facts". The exception to this Realpolitik were the Revisionist-Zionists of Vladimir Jabotinsky and his ideological disciples, the Irgun and the LEHI, who insisted on nothing less than the historical-biblical borders of "Greater Israel."
The White Paper of 1939 was issued on the eve of the outbreak of the Second World War. This fact temporarily shelved both the legality and the desirability of the White Paper policy. The British calculation at the outbreak of war was quite simple: They could not afford to alienate the Arabs and drive them into the arms of the Axis by repudiating the White Paper and allowing Jewish immigration into Palestine during war. The Jews, however, had no choice but to stand by Britain during her struggle with Nazi Germany.
And so it was. The Jewish Agency, which functioned alongside the Mandatory Authority as a kind of co-government, instructed the Yishiv to collaborate with the British during the joint struggle against the Germans. The British view, that their Middle East position had to be supported against the Axis was reinforced by three military actions and threats.
First, the British invaded and occupied Syria. The Germans had occupied Crete earlier in 1941. The Imperial High Command calculated that the Germans could invade the coast from Crete and then march northward into South Russia to link up with the impending invasion from Poland.
The Syrian operation forestalled this threat. The pro-British Prime Minister of Iraq, Nuri-es-Said, had been replaced by the pro-German Rashid Ali. In joint action with the Irgun commander, David Raziel, the British overthrew Rashid Ali and installed a regime more congenial to their interests.
In Egypt, Farouk, "The Last Pharaoh", had also replaced the pro-British Prime Minster with a German one. The British ambassador, Miles Lampson, surrounded the King's palace with British soldiers and tanks and threatened immediate bloodshed, unless the King remedied his breach on the 1936 Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of Alliance. The King, as intimidated as any Czech minister in Berlin, immediately complied.
Throughout the war and thereafter, the Colonial and Foreign offices of His Majesty's government took the view that Britain had oil interests and political alliances throughout the Middle East, which would be jeopardized by the creation of a Jewish state. This was not at all different from the similar views percolating through the US State and War Departments.
Neither the British nor the Americans during the war evinced much enthusiasm for "rescuing" Jews from the purported "Holocaust". As one official put it, this could lend credence to the charges of Hitler that ". . . we are fighting this war at the instigation of our Jewish citizens." During the war, Winston Churchill appointed a Cabinet Committee to reexamine the suspended partition idea. The Committee came out in favor of partition. However, in November 1944 came a shattering event which forever quelled Churchill's enthusiasm for Zionism - the assassination, in Cairo, of the British High Commissiner and Churchill's lifelong friend, Lord Walter Moyne. Churchill, the master of words, is certainly worth quoting on this occasion:
"If our dreams for Zionism should be dissolved in the smoke of revolvers of assassins and if our efforts for its future should provoke a new wave of banditry worthy of the Nazi Germans, many persons like myself will have to reconsider the position that we have maintained so firmly for such a long time."
Churchill continually delayed acting on the Cabinet Committee's recommendation and showed no enthusiasm for the proposal when it was finally disclosed. Churchill perhaps finally perceived the folly of his lifelong support for Zionism when the revolt of the Irgun and the LEHI began in 1944.
These followers of Jabotinsky began a murder and terror campaign which the Jewish Agency and the Haganah had thus far eschewed. (And not because they were incapable of it. In 1941 and 1942 they had been trained in all the techniques of underground warfare, dynamiting and assassinations by the British SOE-Special Operations Executive - in anticipation of Rommel's arrival in Palestine.) The Irgun and LEHI - otherwise known as the Stern Gang - believed that compromise with the British "occupier" was impossible and that only underground warfare would make creation of the state of Israel possible.
It would be impossible in the space of a short review to list all the assassinations, bombings and murders of these "killers for Zion", but a few notable examples will be discussed.
The famous bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem on July 22, 1946 arose from a multiplicity of motives. The British had previously raided the offices of the Jewish Agency and discovered clear evidence of complicity between the Jewish administration and the Jewish underground. Since some of the captured documents had been taken to the King David Hotel, which was the partial headquarters of the British military and civilian authorities, one possible motivation for the dynamiting was to destroy the captured documents.
There is also reason to believe that the operation was independently conceived and that the documents were merely an 'add-on". The Haganah had commissioned the Irgun to plant the bombs, but only on the express condition that there be adequate warning and no loss of life. The declassified British documents reviewed by Bethell indicate that the Irgun "warnings" were issued by telephone only as, or minuntes after, the main bombs in the basement of the hotel had been set off. When the Southwest wing of the King David collapsed, the death total was over 90 and the propaganda disaster for the Irgun and Haganah was complete.
The King David disaster confirmed the British view that they were dealing with a movement of thugs and murderers. The Irgun reinforced that view with a long series of assassinations of British security police and officials, kidnappings and hangings. For instance, on September 29, 1944 Tom Wilkin, an English policeman, who the Zionists greatly feared because he knew Hebrew and had successfully penetrated their operations, was assassinated. Gevla Cohen, the famouls "Woman of Violence" commented:
"Wilkin had Jewish eyes and a Jewish mind...We knew that so long as he was alive, many of us would be dead. I'll never forget the sigh of relief we all breathed when we heard that our boys had killed him."
Tomorrow: Part II of The Devil's Triangle
Thought for the Day:
"Calls to a sampling of prominent American Jewish thinkers from across the political spectrum revealed that most are shaken, if not despondent, about the depth of Arab violence and deeply discouraged that Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat took no action to quell the unrest.
Back to Table of Contents of the Sept. 2000 ZGrams