NON-JEWISH ZIONISM: ITS ROOTS AND ORIGINS IN ENGLAND IN RELATION TO BRITISH IMPERIALISM, 1600-1919
The phenomenon of non-Jewish Zionism has been little known and often only vaguely understood. It has been found and continues to exist in many countries, for example, the United States, West Germany and France. The Zionist idea itself has its organic roots deep within the European imperialist movement. Nowhere in Europe was support for Zionism as widespread and popular over the ages as in England.
Non-Jewish Zionism existed and flourished in England long before the birth of Jewish political Zionism. In fact, some of the most enthusiastic and ardent supporters of political Zionism were Englishmen who saw England's interests best served by the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine. The idea of Jewish restoration in Palestine became prominent in England where it developed into a doctrine that lasted well over three centuries 1 Nahum Sokolow, the well-known Jewish historian of the Zionist movement, commented on this permanent connection between England and Zionism: "English Christians taught the underlying principles of Jewish nationality." He expressed his gratitude to the many "English thinkers, men of letters and poets throughout the ages," who championed the Zionist cause. "For nearly three centuries Zionism was a religious as well as a political idea which great Christians and Jews, chiefly in England, handed down to posterity."2
Chaim Weizmann thus very well knew why he chose England as the starting ground from which to labour to gain international diplomatic support and legal assurance for his Zionist political schemes.3 He had early recognized the importance of non-Jewish support and had moved to England "on the conviction that the British were the most promising potential sympathizers of Zionism."4 In his words: "The English Gentiles are the best Gentiles in the world. England has helped small nations to gain their independence. We should try and get Gentile support for Zionism."5 Most credit for the issuance of the Balfour Declaration goes to Weizmann and his unbounded energy, determination and singleness of purpose. But such interpretation is too simple and just as inadequate as that given by Lloyd George in his War Memoirs, where he suggests that the Balfour Declaration was given to
England of the seventeenth century was, in Carlyle's own words, an England of "awful devout Puritanism."7 Puritanism meant the invasion of Hebraism as transmitted through the Old Testament, but distorted by the effort to apply the ethics, laws and manners of the Old Testament Hebrew people, a people that lived in the Middle East more than two thousand years earlier, to post-Renaissance England.8 William Cunningham described the Puritan society: "The general tendency of Puritanism was to discard Christian morality and to substitute Jewish habits in its stead."9 They baptized their children by the names not of Christian saints but of Hebrew patriarchs or warriors. They "turned the weekly festival by which the church had from primitive time commemorated the resurrection of her Lord, into the Jewish Sabbath."10 The concept of Jewish race thus came to play a special role in English thought and understanding of the existing world order. The idea that Palestine had to be restored to its Hebrew ancestors had its beginnings here, Palestine had up until then been remembered as the Christian Holy Land, unfortunately lost to Islam. But in seventeenth century England it came to be regarded as the homeland of the Jews, whose return to Palestine was, according to Old Testament prophecies, inevitable for the coming of the Second Advent of Christ. Before long some Englishmen had organized a movement calling for the return of the Jews to Palestine. In 1649 a petition was sent to the English government: "That this Nation of England, with the inhabitants of the Netherlands, shall be the first and the readiest to transport Izraell's sons and daughters in their ships to the land promised to their forefathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob for an everlasting inheritance."1 Its authors were Joanna and Ebenezer Cartwright, two English Puritans residing in Amsterdam.12 They further requested that the Jews be allowed again into England from which they had been banned by Edward I 350 years earlier.
Reentry of the Jews was based on the Puritan belief that since Puritanism was in its doctrine very close to Judaism, the Jews, once in contact with it, would no longer resist conversion to Christianity. A similar request was made in 1650 by Manassah ben Israel, a rabbi of Amsterdam who wanted the extension of the Jewish Diaspora into England so that the worldwide Jewish dispersion might be complete, in order for the "ingathering of the exilees in Zion" to begin.
For the religious fanatic Oliver Cromwell these reasons were enough, but they were not decisive. As a statesman, Cromwell's motive was self-interest — the aid that he and many later statesmen believed the Jews could render in a critical situation. In the case of Cromwell it was commercial profit mixed with religious justification. Civil war had badly affected England's position as a trade and maritime power. The British business and commercial class, almost exclusively Puritan, was particularly jealous of the Dutch, who had seized the opportunity to gain control over the Near and Far Eastern trade routes. The Dutch Jews were especially active in the expansion of Dutch trade during the time of the English civil war. When Cromwell agreed to the readmission of Jews he was engaged in a series of trade wars with Portugal, the Netherlands and Spain. Each of these countries had a considerable Jewish community known for its wealth, commercial skills and international contacts. Thus the Jews "could be useful to him as intelligencers whose connections, threading across Europe, could bring him information on trade policies of rival countries and on royalist conspiracies abroad."13 The large amounts of capital that Jews would bring with them was an added incentive.
On the religious level Cromwell showed more interest in the ingathering of the Jews in England than in Zion. But his England was not yet the British Empire and his interests were not yet imperial but merely commercial. With British overseas expansion during the following century the issue of Jewish restoration in Palestine became increasingly colored with imperial considerations. The Puritan tradition of Zionism contented itself merely with the hope that Jewish restoration in Palestine was imminent. It saw no political role for England in its realization. Nevertheless, the very idea of Jewish restoration in Palestine was cultivated as the prelude to the Second Coming of Christ. It continued to be the religious dogma of Protestant English thought and, especially during the nineteenth century, was used to cover up British imperial interests in Palestine.
At the beginning of the nineteenth century England experienced an evangelical revival: "Now the pendulum had swung back again, after the Hellenic interlude of the eighteenth century, to the moral earnestness of another Hebraic period. Eighteenth century skepticism had given way to Victorian piety, eighteenth century rationalism was again surrendering to Revelation".14 The English establishment, shocked by the French Revolution which they regarded as the result of rationalism, returned to the Bible and its revelations. Evangelicalism, often called the "Israel for Prophecy sake" school, dominated England until the beginning of this century. It even spread to the United States where it is called Fundamentalism. Its dogma rested on the literal acceptance of the Bible as God's word: "The Bible is God's word written from the very first syllable down to the very last and from the last back to the first."1 These, the words of Lord Shaftesbury, who considered himself the "Evangelical of the Evangelicals."
Shaftesbury (1801-1885) had the vision of a Jewish state in Palestine and occupies a central place in the tradition of non-Jewish Zionism. His Zionism was based on biblical prophecies and their fulfillment but it was also justified by the political realities of Victorian England. Like Oliver Cromwell, he was interested in the Jews as a nation, but his work concentrated on bringing this nation to Palestine. Shaftesbury certainly was not an advocate of Jewish civil emancipation. He consistently opposed it as a violation of religious principle. True, the Emancipation Bill was passed by Parliament in 1858, but it was not the Evangelicals who favored admitting the Jews to full citizenship on equal terms, but the less pious Liberals!
Shaftesbury's constant preoccupation with the Jewish return to Palestine made him the plan's chief advocator with the British political and imperial establishment. Unlike Cromwell, he believed that he personally, and England as a nation, had to work for the great event of Jewish restoration in Palestine. He was convinced, much more so than the Puritans ever had been, that human instrumentality could bring about divine purposes, a principle unacceptable to the orthodox Jews of the time. Shaftesbury made it his task to convince his Christian fellow Englishmen that the Jews "though admittedly a stiff-necked, dark-hearted people, and sunk in moral degradation, obduracy, and ignorance of the Gospel were not only worthy of salvation but also vital to Christianity's hope of salvation."16 He preached his idea at a politically opportune time, because apart from prophecy, benevolence and philosemitism, Jewish settlement in Palestine became a political desideratum for England. Three major British interests involving the area of Palestine commanded the attention of many British statesmen during the nineteenth century: the European balance of power; the security of India threatened by France and Russia; and the unimpaired transit and route of communication with India via Syria. Thus began what William Polk described as "the curious union of empire policy with a sort of paternalistic Christian Zionism which is evident in British policy in succeeding generations."17
Early British Imperial Zionism: Lord Palmerston and the Eastern Question Lord Palmerston (1784-1865) was a very valuable political advocate for Shaftesbury's idea.18 Although Palmerston did not know Moses from Abraham; he could be appealed to in terms of practical British self-interests. Shaftesbury was well aware of this and presented his appeal not in terms of biblical prophecies and their eschatological fulfillment but in terms of contemporary political realities and power politics. Foreign Secretary Palmerston's major concern was the complex Eastern Question and he was particularly receptive to Shaftesbury's proposal to use the Jews as a British wedge within the Ottoman Empire. The political situation in the Middle East after Mohammed Ali's defiance of his overlord, the Sultan, required that England do everything in its power to keep the Ottoman Empire intact. It was argued that England needed a protege in the Near East to guard Britain's future interests. "France, as the leading Catholic power, had large numbers of ready-made clients in the Levant. Protestant England had next to none."19 Even the Russians had been at various times recognized by the Sultan as the protectors of the Russian Orthodox Christians living within the Ottoman Empire. Both France and Russia were eagerly awaiting the death of "the sick man of Europe," hoping to receive their share of his empire. England, under Palmerston, was willing to do everything in its power to prevent the sudden disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, and the Jews were to represent a key element in bolstering the Sultan. On August 11,1840, Palmerston sent a letter to his ambassador in Constantinople, M. Ponsonby, urging him to press the Sultan on the issue of Jewish settlement in Palestine. On September 4, 1840 Palmerston again reminded Ambassador Ponsonby:
... don't lose sight of my recommendation to the Porte to invite the Jews to return to Palestine. You can have no idea how much such a measure would tend to interest in the Sultan's cause all of the religious party in this country, and their influence is great and their connexion extensive. The measure moreover in itself would be highly advantageous to the Sultan, by bringing into his dominion a great number of wealthy capitalists who would employ the people and enrich the Empire.'20
The issue of Jewish settlement in Palestine was further discussed in an article in the Times on August 17,1840 which particularly commended Shaftesbury for his "practical and statesmanlike plan to plant the Jewish people in the land of their fathers."21 It also stated that this plan was now under serious political consideration in the Foreign Ministry.
For Palmerston, a Jewish presence in Palestine was connected with two advantages that were to serve British interests, both directly and indirectly. A direct advantage was the presence of a pro-British partisan group in an area where Britain heretofore had none and which was becoming increasingly vital for British imperial interests abroad. Additionally, an indirect advantage was seen in the influx of Jewish capital urgently needed by the Sultan in order to prop up his almost bankrupt economic system and to make it easier for him to maintain the territorial integrity of his empire. But the Sultan showed no interest in the British proposals. He remained adamant in refusing to concede to England a special status in relation to the Jews. Despite the Sultan's refusal Palmerston continued in his course of policy. British involvement in the Jewish question and the Near East was no longer seen as a political option, but as a political necessity.
Palmerston was not alone. Contingency plans were made for future developments and various political as well as economic reasons were found to defend British policy vis-à-vis Jewish restoration in Palestine. E.L. Mitford appealed in 1845 to the British government to work for the "reestablishment of the Jewish nation in Palestine as a protected state, under the guardianship of Great Britain." He also referred to the "final establishment, as an independent state, whenever the parent institutions shall have acquired sufficient force and vigor to allow of this tutelage being withdrawn, and the national character shall be sufficiently developed, and the national spirit sufficiently recovered from its depression to allow of their governing themselves."22 Mitford saw some "advantages of incalculable importance:" a Jewish state would "place the management of our steam communication entirely in our hands and would place us in a commanding position in the Levant from whence to check the process of encroachment, to overawe open enemies and, if necessary, to repel their advance."23 Colonel George Gawler, the former governor of South Australia, put forth similar justifications and proposals: "Divine providence has placed Syria and Egypt in the very gap between England and the most important regions of her colonial and foreign trade, India, China, the Indian Archipelago and Australia ... A foreign power... would soon endanger British trade ... and it is now for England to set her hand to the renovation of Syria, through the only people whose energies will be extensively and permanently in the work — the real children of the soil, the sons of Israel."24
Charles Henry Churchill25 was yet another Gentile Zionist during the Palmerston era. As a staff officer in the British expedition to Syria which had aided the Sultan in the overthrow of Mohammed Ali, Churchill had realized the strategic importance of Palestine for British interests. But he also was a critic of Palmerston's policy to keep the Ottoman Empire alive at all costs. Instead, Churchill advocated the early liberation of Syria and Palestine under British protection. He envisioned the Jews as colonizers and guardians. Unlike Palmerston, however, he had a much more realistic understanding of the Jewish condition in Europe at his time. He knew very well that there was no "strong notion among Europe's Jews to return to Palestine". But all his efforts were geared into this direction, namely, to create such a notion among Europe's Jews. In his correspondence with Montefiore, president of the Jewish Board of Deputies, on June 14,1841 he wrote:
I cannot conceal from you my most anxious desire to see your countrymen endeavour once more to resume their existence as a people. I consider the object to be perfectly obtainable. But two things are indispensably necessary: Firstly that the Jews themselves will take up the matter, universally and unanimously. Secondly that the European powers will aid them in their views.26
Surprisingly enough, it was Churchill, a non-Jew, who called upon the Jews to assert themselves as a nation, forty years before Leo Pinsker, in his Auto-Emancipation, proclaimed to his Jewish coreligionists: "We must reestablish ourselves as a living nation."
The Jewish and Non-Jewish Zionist Collusion
After the 1860s, England had officially become an empire. Its entrenchment in the Middle East began in 1875 with Disraeli's purchase from the Khedive of Egypt's shares in the Suez Canal Company. In 1878 came the British occupation of Cyprus to be followed by the occupation of Egypt in 1882.27 By the end of the nineteenth century, the
new generation of non-Jewish Zionists. They were still possessed with the curious amalgamation of religious and imperial motives. But gone were the apocalyptic slogans and the Shaftesbury-type religious verities. These new generation Zionists were empire builders, fully aware of the strategic advantages to be gained from a British sphere of influence in the Middle East. Pro-Zionist literature written by non-Jews during the 1870s created a wave of public sympathy, and the idea of a British annexation of Palestine, through the medium of a British-sponsored restoration of Israel, began to appeal to many heretofore indifferent.29
At the same time, the Jews themselves began to actively take part in the gradual reopening of the Jewish path to Palestine. Shaftesbury, Palmerston and the others had been premature in their Zionist policy. Their estimate of the Jews as a people had been based on a total ignorance of Jewish history and aspirations. Only during the 1890s did Zionism begin to assert itself as a minority movement among European Jews.
Jewish Zionists actively lobbied among non-Jews, and even Herzl, after having failed with the Kaiser and the Sultan, had in 1900 turned to England. During the 4th Zionist Congress, held in London during 1900, he proclaimed: "From this place the Zionist movement will take a higher and higher flight. ... England the great, England the free, England with her eyes fixed on the seven seas, will understand us."30 Herzl also set high hopes in the Anglo-Jewish community itself. But British non-Jews were much more receptive to Herzl's proposals than were their Anglo-Jewish contemporaries. The latter generally refused to he associated with the Zionist movement.31
Joseph Chamberlain, the colonial secretary, and Arthur Balfour, the prime minister, in many ways personified the new type of non-Jewish Zionist. Chamberlain's first concern was the British Empire. Biblical prophecy was of no concern to him; neither was he moved by humanitarian considerations or a sense of moral debt to "God's ancient people." But like Palmerston he recognized that Zionist prognostications presented legitimate opportunities for extending the British Empire. "He saw the Jews as a ready-made group of European colonizers available to settle, develop and hold all but empty land under the British aegis."32 Chamberlain, in his efforts to extend the empire, was in continuous search for colonizers and settlers to bring civilization to the "lesser breeds" that lived without the law. His Zionism was not a philosophical one but a very practical one. Thus, when he offered Herzl Al Arish on the Sinai for Jewish settlement, he did not mind compromising on a major axiom of Zionism, namely that Zionism can only accept Palestine as the territory for the Jewish homeland.33 There is some disagreement among scholars as to why Chamberlain decided to be a Zionist. His biographer, Julian Amery, first suggested humanitarian motivations and only later recognized that a "Jewish colony in Sinai might prove a useful instrument for extending British influence in Palestine proper when the time came for the inevitable dismemberment of the Ottoman empire."34 Christopher Sykes paints another picture of Chamberlain's Zionism:
In Chamberlain's enthusiasm for Zionism and it was a passionate thing with him, we must not suppose that we see another manifestation of the Millennial tradition. Here was no successor of Lord Shaftesbury, no spiritual brother of Hechler and Sibthrop. Chamberlain's interest in Jewish fortunes was financial.35
If Chamberlain had any humanitarian concern for the Jews it was not a very serious concern, especially when it came to have unpleasant repercussions in England. During Chamberlain's time as colonial secretary, England's chief domestic problem was unwanted immigration, mostly Jews from Eastern Europe. Together with other Zionists, Jews and non-Jews alike, Chamberlain was very much in favor of restricting Jewish immigration created by the pogroms in Eastern Europe. His major fear was that of cheap labor competition and other social problems.36
Chamberlain's efforts were supported by Lord Balfour, who was prime minister (1902-1905) and later foreign secretary (1916-1919) under the premiership of another Zionist, Lloyd George. As prime minister, Balfour did his best to support the El Arish project even though be believed that Chamberlain's proposal had one major defect, "it was not Zionism".37 Lloyd George, as a member of Parliament in 1904, was employed as legal counsel by Greenberg and Herzl to draw up the Uganda proposal in 1904.
Both Balfour and Lloyd George were self-confessed Zionists, ardent and united in their support for the Zionist cause. Balfour was a Conservative and Lloyd George a Liberal Party member. Balfour's Zionism had biblical roots. "Though he was the reverse of Shaftesbury, not ardent but a skeptic, not a religious enthusiast but a philosophical pessimist, he was nevertheless strongly infused, like the Evangelicals and the Puritans, with the Hebraism of the Bible."38 His biographer and niece, Blanche Dugdale, herself a devout Zionist, describes Balfour as deeply religious, strongly believing that "Christian religion and civilisation owes to Judaism an immeasurable debt, shamefully ill repaid."39
Lloyd George, too, hints at his early religious upbringing as the reason why he was drawn to Zionism. The memories of his childhood in Wales include the prophecies which foretold the restoration of the Jews to Palestine. "I was taught far more about the History of the Jews than about the History of my own people."40 Chaim Weizmann, too, recalled that the "Lloyd George advocacy of the Jewish homeland long predated his succession to the Premiership."41 In his own memoirs, Lloyd George gives most of the credit for his conversion to Zionism to Weizmann. His now famous phrase, "I am his proselyte ...acetone converted me to Zionism"42 also implies that the Balfour Declaration was given as a reward for Weizmann's acetone process. Yet, however great Weizmann's skills in chemistry and persuasion might have been, Lloyd George was certainly predisposed to be receptive to Weizmann's arguments in favor of a Jewish national home in Palestine.
Weizmann's first personal acquaintance with Lloyd George was in January 1915. But Lloyd George advocated Zionist goals before that meeting. On November 9, 1914, he had met with Herbert Samuel, a member of the Asquith cabinet and a Jew, and had told him that he "was very keen to see a Jewish state established in Palestine." When Samuel, in January, 1915, circulated his memorandum on the Future of Palestine, Lloyd George, as minister of munitions, together with Edward Grey, the foreign secretary, were the only cabinet members in favor of Samuel's proposal to combine British annexation of Palestine with British support for Zionist aspirations.43 Prime Minister Asquith, however, single-mindedly rejected Samuel's "dithyrambic memorandum" and describes Lloyd George as "the only other partisan of this proposal... who I need not say does not care a damn for the Jews or their past or their future, but thinks it will be an outrage to let the Holy Places pass into the possession or under the protectorate of agnostic, atheistic France."44
Lloyd George's responsibility for the Balfour Declaration was far greater than that of Balfour. The Zionist Review, a semi-official organ of the Zionist Movement, assigned to him "the foremost place inside the Cabinet among the architects of this great decision."45 When Lloyd George ascended to the premiership in December 1916, the British government began to seriously consider a public statement of policy on Palestine and opened official talks with the Zionists. By then the Palestine question had become part and parcel of the war's most complicated, entangled and mutually conflicting diplomatic maneuvers. But with Lloyd George at the wheel, Zionism had nothing to fear. Balfour was foreign secretary. Other Zionists like Mark Sykes, Leopold Amery, Lord Milner, Robert Cecil, Col. R. Meinertzhagen, Harold Nicolson, General Smuts and C.P. Scott also held important positions from which to work in the interest of Zionism.
In the controversy of how to conduct the war, Lloyd George chose to support those who saw the Near East as the major theater of English war effort after the deadlock on the Western front. According to Scott, Lloyd George regarded the Palestine campaign as "the one really interesting part of the war."46 Lloyd George's fears were centered not only on the German-Turkish alliance but also on the threat of future French influence in the area. "The French will have to accept our protectorate; we shall be there by conquest and shall remain."47It became clearer than at any other time before, that British and Zionist interests coincided and were complementary. The Jewish Zionists, Weizmann in particular, did their part in identifying their own interests with those of Britain. For England, the acquisition of Palestine had become an irreducible strategic requirement. But a claim based on military conquest alone could not be reconciled with the principle of non-acquisition of territory by war, as advocated by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, and would have alienated world opinion. Thus, open annexation was out of the question. The only course open to England was to link its own war aims with the principle of self-determination. The Jewish Zionists fitted very well in such a plan. For Balfour the Zionists were "the guardians of a continuity of religious and racial traditions ... they were a great conservative force in world politics,"48 and therefore could be relied upon. British non-Jewish Zionism found it appropriate to enter Palestine as a trustee for its Old Testament proprietors. It not only quieted the British conscience but left the door open for future British interests in the region. Mark Sykes once wrote to Lord Robert Cecil: "We should so order our policy that, without in any way showing any desire to annex Palestine or to establish a Protectorate over it, when the time comes to choose a mandatory power for its control, by the consensus of opinion and desire of its inhabitants, we shall be the most likely candidate."49 The Balfour Declaration provided the effective moral attitude, the good cause. When the Peace Conference turned to the Mandate issue, the British mandate for Palestine was no more than the inevitable recognition of an already accomplished fact.
Gentile Zionism and Anti-Semitism
Non-Jewish Zionism is not derived from philosemitism. In fact, most ti'jn-Jewish Zionists felt the same prejudices as their anti-Semite contemporaries. It was not love for the Jews that motivated their Zionism, but their own selfish interests, be they religious fulfillment of prophecies or imperial expansion. Christian Zionists favoured Jewish Zionism as a step leading not to the perpetuation but to the disappearance of the Jews. In this respect the old Lord Shaftesbury-type religious Zionists advocated Jewish restoration in Palestine only to hasten the event of the Second Advent. Any deep analysis of early Puritan Zionism suggests that it was not for the sake of the Jews, but for the sake of the promise made to them according to Puritan biblical teachings. For most Puritans, the Jews were not a people but a mass Error that had to be brought to a belief in Christ in order that the whole chain of reaction leading to the Second Coming and the redemption of mankind might be set in motion.
Arnold Toynbee, in his Study of History, touches on the subject of Gentile Zionism and suggests that the pro-Zionist inclinations of non-Jews are generally derived from a sense of guilt arising out of a subconscious anti-Semitism.50 He intimately relates Zionism and anti-Semitism. In theory, as well as in praxis, Zionism and anti-Semitism operate on the same plane, they are complementary to each other. One reinforces the other. Recent studies on Nazi-Zionist collaboration, for example, clearly bring to light such a relationship. Jewish emigration to a Jewish state served the cause of both the Nazi anti-Semite elite, who wanted to free Germany from its "Jewish yoke," and the Zionists who were in desperate need of increased Jewish immigration in order to create their Jewish state.
When Jews in England were working toward the goal of their complete civil emancipation, they most often were opposed by non-Jewish Zionists. Lord Shaftesbury spoke against the 1858 Emancipation Act and in 1905, Balfour introduced and fought for the Aliens Bill which restricted Jewish immigration from Eastern Europe to England, because of the "undoubted evils that had fallen upon the country from an immigration which was largely Jewish."
Much more vulgar were the remarks of other Gentile Zionists, such as Richard Meinertzhagen or Mark Sykes. The former, a chief political officer for Palestine in the British Foreign Office, turned to Zionism because "the Jews are virile, brave, determined and intelligent" as a race. The Arabs, on the other hand, he described as "decadent, stupid, dishonest and producing little beyond eccentrics influenced by the romance and silence of the desert". That his Zionism was most likely a cover-up for the latent anti-Semitism shows in the following statement: "But if the Jews are going to gain a predominant influence in this country (England) in profession, in trades, in universities and museum, in finance and as landowners, then of course we shall have to act against them."51 Sykes, who in 1915 was appointed assistant secretary to the War Cabinet, was known for his anti-Semitic slogans, but most of all because he was before his conversion to Zionism a true anti-Semite, immovable in his prejudices.
Non-Jewish Zionists look at nations and people in terms of belonging to certain races. The Jewish race was praised but only came second to the English one which Chamberlain called "the greatest of governing races the world has ever seen."52
1 - F. Kobler, The Vision was There (London, 1956), p.7.
2 - Nahum Sokolow, History of Zionism, 1600-1918, 2 vols. (London, 1919), 1: xxvi-vii.
3 - Chaim Weizmann, Trial and Error (New York, 1949), p. 258. At that time the main office of the Zionist organization was still in Vienna. Its intellectual center was mainly in Berlin, Germany, while its manpower was in Russia. But, as Weizmann rightly assumed, the movment's political importance could only be found in England in conjunction with British imperial schemes and ambitions.
Such thinking was not commonly accepted by other leading Zionists during the early years of the movement. Moses Hess, the German Zionist Jew, speculated that "France will undoubtedly lend a hand to the founding of Jewish colonies in the land of their ancestors." See Moses Hess, Rome and Jerusalem (New York, 1918, 1945), pp. 129-130. About half a century later, Theodor Herzl himself thought his best allies to be Germany and Turkey. See ESCO Foundation for Palestine, Inc., Palestine, A Study of Jewish, Arab and British Policies, (New Haven, 1947), 1:43. Only after he had failed to obtain the legalization for Jewish colonization in Palestine from Germany and Turkey, did he then concentrate his efforts on England. See Sokolow, History of Zionism, 1:295.
4 - Alan R. Taylor, Prelude to Israel, An Analysis of Zionist Diplomacy, 1897-194 7 (Beirut, 1970), p. 10.
5 - M. Weizgal & J. Carmichael, eds., Chaim Weizmann: A Biography by Several Hands (New York, 1963), p. 92.
6 - Lloyd George, War Memoirs, 3 vols. (New York, 1933), 1:50. Lloyd George is supposed to have asked Weizmann: "Is there nothing we can do as recognition of your valuable assistance to the country?" Weizmann answered: "Yes, I would like you to do something for my people". This, remarks Lloyd George was the "fount and origin" of the Balfour Declaration.
7 - Thomas Carlyle, Oliver Cromwell's Letters and Speeches (Boston, 1884), 1:32.
8 - In the words of Matthew Arnold, "Puritanism was a revival of the Hebraic spirit in reaction to the Hellenic spirit that had animated the immediately preceding period of the Renaissance." See Matthew Arnold, Culture and Anarchy (London, 1869), chap. 4.
9 - William Cunningham, Growth of English Industry and Commerce, 3 vols. (Cambridge, 1892).
10 - T.B. Macaulay, history of England, 5 vols. (Philadelphia, 1861), 1:71.
11 - As quoted by Don Patenkin, "Mercantilism and the Readmission of the Jews to England," Jewish Social Studies, July 1946.
12 - Amsterdam had become the refuge for Puritans, while they were still persecuted by Charles I (1625-1649), as well as for Jews driven out of Spain and Portugal by the Inquisition.
13 - Barbara Tuchman, Bible and Sword (London, 1956), p. 89. It is interesting to note that Cromwell sent Manasseh ben Israel a passport to come to England to plead his cause one day after he had passed the Navigation Act which gave rise to the war with the Netherlands.
14 - Ibid., p. 115.
15 - Edwin Hodder, Life and Works of the 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, 3 vols. (London, 1886), vol. 1, chap. 6.
16 - W.T. Gidney, The History of the London Society for the Propagation of Christianity among the Jews (London, 1908).
17 - William R. Polk, Backdrop to Tragedy (Boston, 1957), p. 40.
18 - Palmerston, a member of the Liberal Party, was British Foreign Secretary between 1830 and 1841 and again from 1846 until 1851. He then was appointed Prime Minister in 1855 and held that office until 1865. He also was Lord Shaftesbury's stepfather-in-law.
19 - Leonard Stein, The Balfour Declaration (New York, 1961), p. 8.
20 - Charles Webster, The Foreign Policy of Palmerston (London, 1951), p. 762.
21 - As quoted in Tuchman, Bible and Sword, p. 113.
22 - Albert Hyamson, British Projects for the Restoration of Jews to Palestine (Philadelphia, 1918).
23 - Israel Cohen, The Zionist Movement (New York, 1946), p. 52. The advent of steam navigation during the 1840s made the Near East important in the route to India. Steamships required frequent recoaling and therefore the British ships used the Mediterranean-Red Sea route with transhipment at Suez rather than the long Cape road.
24 - Hyamson, British Projects, p. 37;Cohen, The Zionist Movement, p. 52.
25 - Charles Henry Churchill was a grandson of the Duke of Marlborough and therefore an antecedent of Winston Churchill.
26 - Cohen, The Zionist Movement, p. 51.
27 - Strangely enough, Britain's eastward expansion in the latter nineteenth century was under the guidance of Disraeli, England's first prime minister of Jewish descent. Disraeli, although baptized in the Anglican church, still had kept his pride in his race. For a complete and detailed analysis of British penetration into the sphere of influence of the Sultan, see James A. Marriott, The Eastern Question, An Historical Study (Oxford, 1940), and John Marlowe, A History of Modern Egypt and Anglo-Egyptian Relations, 1800-1893 (New York, 1954).
28 - George Antonious, The Arab Awakening (London, 1938), pp. 261-62.
29 - To mention here only George Eliot and her novel Daniel Deronda, published in 1876. Through her hero Daniel, the author advocates Jewish nationhood: "The idea that I am possessed with is that of restoring a political existence to my people, making them a nation again, giving them a national center. "See also Tuchman, Bible and Sword, pp. 150-52.
30 - Alex Bein, Theodor Herzl, (Philadelphia, 1954), p. 346.
31 - In 1880 there were about 60,000 Jews in England, many of them British born and nearly all of them more of less anglicized. But between 1880 and 1905 about 100,000 Jews came to settle in England from Eastern Europe. Most Jewish Englishmen were very adament in their opposition to Zionism, which they believed threatened their status and recognition just recently gained. See Leon Simon, The Case of the Anti-Zionists (London, 1917), p. 9.
32 - Tuchman, Bible and Sword, p. 189.
33 - This Sinai offer, made in 1902, did not materialize; it was rejected by Lord Cromer as politically unfeasible for England and Egypt and many Jewish Zionists believed El Arish to be economically unsuitable for Jewish settlement.
34 - Julian Amery, The Life of Joseph Chamberlain, 4 vols., (London, 1951), 4:261.
35 - Christopher Sykes, Two Studies in Virtue (London, 1953) p. 162. Most Zionist financial institutions were located in London: the Jewish National Fund, The Jewish Colonial Trust and the Anglo-Palestine Company.
36 - In 1905, Balfour, as prime minister, signed the Aliens Bill into law, restricting immigration from Eastern Europe. Balfour himself fought for the passage of the Bill in Parliament on the grounds that every country has the right to choose its immigrants and because "undoubted evils had fallen upon the country from an immigration which was largely Jewish." See House of Commons, July 10,1905, Official Record, Col. 155 and House of Commons, May 2,1905, Official Record, Col. 795. See also V.D. Lipman, Social History of the Jews in England, 1850-1950 (London, 1954), pp. 141 ff.
37 - Sokolow, History of Zionism, Introduction.
38 - Tuchman, Bible and Sword, pp. 198-99.
39 - Blanche E.G. Dugdale, Arthur Balfour, First Earl Balfour, 2 vols. (New York, 1937), 1:324.
40 - Philip Guedalla, Napoleon and Palestine (London, 1925), p. 48.
41 - Weizmann, Trial and Error, p. 192.
42 - Guedalla, Napoleon and Palestine, pp. 49-51.
43 - Viscount Samuel, Memoirs (London, 1954), pp. 139 ff.
44 - Earl of Oxford and Asquith, Memories and Reflections, vol. 2 (London, 1928), p. 65.
45 - Zionist Review, December 1917, p. 214.
46 - C.P. Scott's Journals, as quoted by Stein, The Balfour Declaration, p. 145.
47 - The Diary of Lord Bertie of Thome (London, 1924), vol. 2, p. 122. Lord Bertie was British ambassador to France.
48 - Dugdale, Arthur Balfour, vol. 2, p. 158.
49 - Leslie Shane, Mark Sykes: His Life and Letters (New York, 1923).
50 - Arnold J. Toynbee./l Study of History (London, 1953), p. 308.
51 - Richard Meinertzhagen, Middle East Diary, 1917-1956 (Paris, 1967).
52 - S.H. Jeyes, Joseph Chamberlain (London, 1896), p. 245.
Back to Main Page