Opinion: Britain should apologize for undermining the Balfour Declaration

Anti-Israel activists demand that Britain apologize for the Balfour Declaration, but in fact they should apologize for undermining the historic document.

By: Daniel Krygier, Political Analyst, World Israel News

Israel’s enemies demand that Britain ”apologize” for the Balfour Declaration. According to the false anti-Zionist narrative, Britain gave the Jews a land that belonged to the Arabs.

The centennial of the British Foreign Secretary James Arthur Balfour’s famous letter to Jewish leader Lord Rothschild in 1917 serves as a good opportunity to revisit history and set the record straight concerning Britain, the Jews and the Arabs.

First, the British never gave Israel to the Jews. Second, the Jews are the indigenous population of Israel. Third, there was never an Arab country or state in the land of Israel, and much of the local Arabs were recent immigrants from Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Egypt.

The ink on the Balfour Declaration had barely dried before Balfour’s Christian Zionism was replaced with British anti-Zionism that appeased extremist Arab leaders at the expense of the Jewish people. Not only did Britain not create modern Israel; post-Balfour London did everything in its power to prevent Israel’s rebirth. The support for a Jewish national homeland was replaced by the infamous White Paper in 1939 that undermined and postponed the reestablishment of the Jewish state by a decade. As a result of London’s cynical anti-Jewish policies, millions of Jews perished in the Holocaust, since they had nowhere to go and Britain prevented Jews from returning to their ancestral homeland. If Britain should apologize for anything relating to the Balfour Declaration, it should be for London’s failure to implement its promise to Lord Rothschild and the Jewish people.

Corbyn’s ‘Shocking Ignorance’

Britain’s leftist leader Jeremy Corbyn refused to attend the Balfour Centennial gala with Prime Minister Theresa May and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The British Labor leader also demanded that London recognizes “Palestine.” Mr. Corbyn reveals a shocking ignorance of his own country’s history. In 1921, Britain illegally established the artificial Arab state Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan on 78 % of the Palestine Mandate territory. This area became Jew-free and the ongoing Arab-Jewish conflict is driven by an Arab refusal to recognize the existence of a Jewish state within any borders of the remaining 22 % of the territory. Britain openly sided with the Arabs during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948. Britain armed the Arab Legion, which was led by British officers including Lieutenant General John Glubb. London only recognized Israel’s existence in 1950, two years after the failed Arab aggression.

The legal foundation of modern Israel is not found in the Balfour Declaration, but in the new world order that emerged at the international San Remo Conference after World War I. Led by the US President Woodrow Wilson, the international community recognized the self-determination of nations worldwide from Czechs in Europe to Jews, Arabs and Kurds in the Middle East. The Jewish people’s right to self-determination was based on its historical and national rights in their ancestral homeland Israel.

The reborn spirit of Bar Kokhba and the Maccabees – and not Balfour – paved the way to Israel’s rebirth. Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion proclaimed modern Israel in 1948, which is the legal heir of the Jewish kingdom established by King David 3000 years ago.