Pangs of the Messiah: The Troubled Birth of the Jewish State

By Martin Sicker | Go to book overview

5
Prelude to Open Conflict

Notwithstanding Weizmann's evident euphoria over the MacDonald letter, other Zionist leaders did not generally view it with much enthusiasm. Weizmann's tenure as head of world Zionism had seen his initial achievement of the Balfour Declaration successively whittled down by the Churchill and Passfield White Papers, and he no longer commanded the authority or respect required to continue to dominate the Zionist movement. For some time the increasingly powerful American Zionists had targeted him as an impediment to a successful challenge of Britain's policy in Palestine. Stephen S. Wise stated in May 1928: "England will not do anything more until it is compelled to. The right kind of Zionist leadership is necessary and a stronger and more aggressive policy toward the mandatory power must be adopted if the Balfour Declaration is to be carried out. Until this change is brought about, England will do very little toward the creation of a Jewish National Home." Apparently irritated by a comment made by Weizmann that "a struggle with England would last five minutes and that will settle it," Wise asked:

How can a self-respecting Jew utter such words as those voiced by the leader of the World Zionist Organization? It means no change or improvement in Zionism until the Zionist leadership is deposed. As one who helped Brandeis to obtain President Wilson's endorsement of the Balfour Declaration, I will not cease to demand the maximum from England unless you want her promise to become a "scrap of paper." 1

-93-

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Pangs of the Messiah: The Troubled Birth of the Jewish State
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction ix
  • 1 - British Military Government, 1918-1920 1
  • Notes 24
  • 2 - The Jewish High Comissioner 27
  • Notes 51
  • 3 - Internal Developments During the Samuel Regime 53
  • Notes 70
  • 4 - The Passfield White Paper 73
  • Notes 92
  • 5 - Prelude to Open Conflict 93
  • Notes 115
  • 6 - The Arab Revolt, 1936-1939 117
  • Notes 149
  • 7 - Palestine During World War II 151
  • Notes 176
  • 8 - The United Resistance 179
  • Notes 201
  • 9 - The United Nations Special Committee 203
  • Notes 222
  • 10 - The Troubled Birth of the Jewish State 223
  • Notes 240
  • Selected Bibliography 243
  • Index 253
  • About the Author *
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