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The U.S.-British Entente on Palestine:
The Two Powers Join to Safeguard Israel

- Abstract

Despite surface indications of ultimate victory over the Arabs, the friends of a Jewish state in Palestine still walk in dread of some sinister diplomatic maneuver to undermine or reverse the happy ending of the first chapter in Israel’s brave new history. They are not entirely precise about the nature or the source of the anticipated hostile thrust. Perhaps, they say, it will be the State Department, sabotaging the White House by covert action in the Middle East or delaying a settlement beyond November in hope that a Republican triumph would give Washington’s “Arabists” a clean slate for fresh skullduggery. Or it might be the British, awaiting the United Nations General Assembly in Paris in September to make a combined assault with the Moslem potentates on the whole idea of partition and the very existence of Israel. Whatever the source of the blow, it is said, a blow will fall as surely as Albion is perfidious and our Division of Near Eastern and African Affairs a society for the advancement of Islam.

Such forebodings are natural in any venture whose success has been almost too good to be true. Fear of treachery is especially understandable for the Jews, whose chronicles are measured off and divided by disaster. And it would be foolhardy indeed, in the light of the Great Powers’ dismal record of twisting and turning on Palestine, to give hard and fast assurances that there will be no eleventh-hour turnabout, no last-minute conspiracy to plunder Israel of her prize. Nevertheless, there is some reason at this juncture to declare that what seems to be is real, that Israel’s prospects for internationally-ratified independence are good, that the United States government is persuaded, the British reluctantly converted, and the Arab League in full retreat. Though the Arabs may continue for a time to go through the angry motions of a fight to the death, it will be mostly hopeful sound and fury to squeeze out a better bargain.

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