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PALESTINE: Shadow Over Promise

2 minute read
TIME

The Jews of Zion, convening last week at Geneva, Switzerland, received from their U. S. brethren $250,000 more to buy land in Palestine. But before week’s end, the wings of war hovered dark over that land.

From Geneva the Zionists scattered to their home countries like quail flushing before a hawk. Their noisy objections to Britain’s plans for establishing an Arab State in Palestine with the Jews as a minority were silenced by the spectre of other powers, less friendly to Jews, controlling Palestine. And in Britain’s mind, the fate of Jews there dwindled to insignificance beside the fate of the Suez Canal, for which Palestine is a northern rampart, and of the oil pipeline from Iraq which reaches tidewater at Haifa. Realizing this, Zionist President Chaim Weizmann, a brilliant chemist who contributed synthetic acetone to World War I, announced: “In spite of the White Paper [establishing an Arab-dominated State in Palestine] the Jews support British Democracy in the present darkest hours.”

>Police and troops in Tel Aviv were amazed last week to see the S.S. Parita steam in from sea heading straight for the sandy beach instead of her wharf. She ran aground, stuck fast, and over her railings into the water swarmed 125 Jewish refugees, bundles & all, squealing and gurgling to set foot on their Promised Land. Police herded them, and 750 more still on board, into a concentration camp. They came from Germany and Czechoslovakia, said they had been sailing without a captain for eleven weeks.

>Some 50,000 fully trained young Jews were available in the Holy Land to swell 10,000 Jews already under arms. British troops in Palestine number about 20,000. To cut off German munitions bootlegged to unruly Arabs, the British last year built a wall along the Trans-Jordan border. They have courted Arab favor (over Italian-German incitement) with some success, rely on Turkey and her army of 1,500,000 to keep the Arabs in line and help hold the Suez as well as the Dardanelles. Last week the specially friendly, oil-rich Kingdom of Iraq bought 15 Douglas Northrop military ships, for October delivery.

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