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The Balfour Declaration

Seldom in history has so brief a document been the foundation of so great a world-commotion as the Balfour Declaration upon Zionism. It is merely a single sentence of sixty-eight words addressed by Mr. A. J. Balfour, on November 2, 1917, to Lord Rothschild. Yet the Zionists of every country acclaimed it as the charter of a new state, the assurance of a new day for universal Jewry.

The text has been continuously under a microscope, and the phrase "a national home" is still a matter of controversy. In the bitter struggle that has raged over the Declaration, the Zionists have stressed the first half of the nicely-balanced document; while the Anti-Zionists, especially in Syria, have laid emphasis upon the latter portion. The British tax-payer and the House of Lords has laid anathema upon it all!

Here is the full text of the Declaration:-

"His Majesty's government view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.

This document has been copied with permission from the World War I Archive (specifically: Treaties).
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