Balfour’s shameful legacy: UK Government must say sorry and protect Christian churches in Palestine

To: Rt Hon David Mundell MP, Secretary of State for Scotland

Dear Mr Mundell,

It was a pleasure meeting you at the Dumfries Agricultural Show. If you recall, we talked briefly about Mrs May’s perverse plan to celebrate the centenary of the Balfour Declaration “with pride” and invite Israel’s PM Netanyahu to the jollifications.

The infamous Declaration was a pledge contrived by Zionists inside and outside the British Government. It was in effect a ‘promissory note’ to the Zionist movement for their help in bringing the US into WW1; and it was made with utter disregard to the consequences for the majority Arab population in Palestine. Worse, it amounted to a betrayal of our Arab allies, cutting across an earlier promise for their help against the Turks. There was strong opposition in Parliament even from Lord Montague, the only Jew in the Cabinet. Lord Sydenham remarked: “What we have done, by concessions not to the Jewish people but to a Zionist extreme section, is to start a running sore in the East, and no-one can tell how far that sore will extend.”

Well, we know now. And it’s high time the wound was healed.

The Declaration by Balfour, a Zionist convert, needs to be read in parallel with The Jerusalem Declaration on Christian Zionism, a joint statement by the heads of Palestinian Christian churches which rejects Christian Zionist doctrine as false teaching that corrupts the biblical message of love, justice and reconciliation. “We further reject the contemporary alliance of Christian Zionist leaders and organizations with elements in the governments of Israel and the United States [they could have added the UK] that are presently imposing their unilateral pre-emptive borders and domination over Palestine…. We reject the teachings of Christian Zionism that facilitate and support these policies as they advance racial exclusivity and perpetual war.”

Justice groups are urging the British Government to mark the centenary of the Balfour Declaration in November by saying sorry instead of toasting the blunder in  champagne. Mrs May could do some real good here. She could, at a stroke, help quell the destructive turmoil in the Middle East and begin repairing Britain’s tattered image. She could even open new trade routes into Islamic markets, vitally important as we leave the EU. By apologising on our behalf for 100 years of agony inflicted on lovely people in a lovely part of the world Mrs May could take a giant step for mankind on the world stage.

But no, she’s pressing ahead with the revelry. And her principal guest, the ruthless Israeli prime minister, is on many a wanted list for war crimes and crimes against humanity. He’s also under investigation in his own country for corruption. This is not just poor judgement on Mrs May’s part but insanely provocative when a UN report recently branded Israel an apartheid regime. It’s even more regrettable considering the desperate cry for help a few weeks ago  from the National Coalition of Christian Organizations in Palestine in an open letter to the World Council of Churches and the ecumenical movement, signed by over 30 organisations in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza. You can read this disturbing document here:

They issued a similar cry for help 10 years ago but the tyranny of the occupying forces has gone from very bad to much worse. Their latest message is frighteningly stark: “Things are beyond urgent. We are on the verge of a catastrophic collapse. The current status-quo is unsustainable. This could be our last chance to achieve a just peace. As a Palestinian Christian community, this could be our last opportunity to save the Christian presence in this land.”

“The name of the game: Erasing Palestine” (Miko Peled)

I was encouraged to hear you say that you visited Occupied Palestine independently rather than accept the usual propaganda tour organised by Conservative Friends of Israel and the Israeli government. Nevertheless, claims by the CFoI that 80 percent of Conservative MPs and MEPs are signed up members is alarming and puts us almost on a par with US Congress which is controlled by the Israel lobby through AIPAC. It is ludicrous that a foreign military power which has no respect for international law and rejects weapons conventions and safeguards can exert such influence on foreign policy in the US and UK. Pandering to Israel has been immensely costly in blood and treasure and damaging to our reputation.

Everyone outside the Westminster bubble knows perfectly well that there can be no peace in the Holy Land without justice. Everyone knows that international law and countless UN resolutions still wait to be enforced. Everyone knows that Israel won’t comply unless sanctions are imposed. Everyone knows that the siege on Gaza won’t be lifted until warships are sent.

Miko Peled, son of an Israeli general, former Israeli soldier and now a leading voice in the struggle for Palestinian freedom, tells us that “by 1993 the Israelis had achieved their mission to make the conquest of the West Bank irreversible [and] the Israeli government knew for certain that a Palestinian state could not be established in the West Bank”. What’s more, everyone now knows that the US is not an honest broker and peace won’t come from sham ‘negotiations’ between the weak and the all-powerful. Everyone knows who is the real threat to peace in the Middle East. And everyone knows that Her Majesty’s Government’s hand-wringing  and empty words serve no purpose except to prolong the daily misery and buy time for Israel to complete its criminal scheme to make the occupation permanent.

Mrs May praises Israel for being “a thriving democracy, a beacon of tolerance”, when it is obviously neither. She says our two countries share “common values” when we obviously don’t; and given the Istraeli regime’s incessant crimes against humanity and cruelty to the indigenous people it terrorises such a remark is insulting to anyone who lives by Christian values. She even claims that Israel is a country where people of all religions “are free and equal in the eyes of the law” and “Israel guarantees the rights of people of all religions, races and sexualities, and it wants to enable everyone to flourish”. This is arrant nonsense. The lady needs to tone down her misguided adoration of the rogue regime.

She also needs to call off attempts to ciminalise the successful BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) campaign calling it wrong and warning that her government will “have no truck with those who subscribe to it”.  Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights bestows on everyone “the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”.

As the Secretary of State for Scotland, the senior Central Government figure hereabouts and a member of the Cabinet you have the ear of the PM on heavyweight matters of state — such as this. I hope you’ll allow me, please, to pursue the  through your goodself (keeping my MP Alister Jack informed).  I do not wish to receive the usual proforma reply from the Foreign Office about the UK’s adherence to the 2-state solution — a futile position, as anyone paying attention to the situation has known for years. What I do hope for is reasons why HMG is still exporting weaponry to Israel when it is used against the Palestinians to maintain the illegal occupation, why no move is made to break the 10-year blockade of Gaza which has brought nearly 2 million citizens to the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe, why HMG keeps rewarding Israel for its other never-ending crimes, its contempt for international law, its disregard for the provisions of the UN Charter, and its continued breaches of the EU-Israel Agreement. And why Mrs May seeks to appeal against the recent court decision defending our right to boycott Israel. Does she not realise that HMG’s inaction leaves civil society no choice but to resort to BDS?

In particular I’d like to know, please, Mrs May’s reaction to the desperate plea from the Christian churches in the Holy Land, and I hope you’ll bring to her notice that letter to the WCC if she hasn’t already seen it. She wears her Christianity on her sleeve, is seen regularly attending church etc, but her faith credentials will be in question if she ignores the contents of the letter.

Whether the questions raised here are tiresomely ducked as usual or given the consideration they deserve, the story will find wide circulation. This request is therefore sent as an open letter.

Stuart Littlewood

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5 Responses to "Balfour’s shameful legacy: UK Government must say sorry and protect Christian churches in Palestine"

  1. JohnZ  August 13, 2017 at 5:32 am

    May has sealed her fate. She is on her way out the door anyway so why would she stop now,being a zionst stooge? The British people must feel embarrassed over May. Otherwise their election of Jeremy Corbyn would not have taken place. It is very clear who controls the British government who also controls the U.S. government.
    Britain’s foolish vanity and lust for world dominance have reduced it to a crawling street begger. The royals have buggered it into poverty and along with other leaders like Thatcher have reduced it to beggery.
    It’s support for KSA is beyond the pale. Selling weapons to the Saudis is an international war crime.
    The Parliament like No.10 Downing St. has become nothing more than a clown circus act. Not to mention the House of Lords, repleat with its aging old members, senile and deaf to the world.

    • JohnZ  August 13, 2017 at 5:42 am

      The Balfour Agreement has been proven to be the worst mistake in centuries. The creation of the state of israel based entirely on delusion and lies, since 1947, the middle east has known no peace and will continue to be true for decades to come unless israel has the reins put to it. Onw ould have thought the bombing of the King David Hotel or the U.S.S. Liberty attack would have caused both Britain and the U.S. to rethink their support for israel but no.
      The idea of celebrating such an awful passage in history would be akin to celebrating the massacre of the American Indians.
      The world will celebrate the passing of israel though.

  2. wjabbe  August 12, 2017 at 6:44 pm

    Think of the parasites in the Royal family, born as billionaires, living the good life off the toil of others, running around getting photo ops, while Palestinians and many others in the world suffer. What would be a proper adjective to describe these people? The wealth and physical being of these worthless pieces of human garbage is protected by the full military armed force of England. Observe the deafening silence of these arrogant insolent elitists to so much suffering in Palestine and the world while they look the other way. Are they even human? Do they possess a conscience? In many ways the evil activities of Israel against its neighbors and most of the world images arrogant elitist England. Are there any limits to the depravity Israel could do to its neighbors before the cowards of the world would stand up and put a stop to it? I doubt it. I think May behaves more like a robot than a human being. You can’t tell when she is smiling. That she was elected in England shows how far down they have fallen.

    • wjabbe  August 12, 2017 at 6:59 pm

      Frankly could it be the world would have been better off if Hitler had won? Who is more evil, Israel and England and the U.S. today or Germany then? All these three evil empires did was copy him anyway no? Germany probably had more combined intelligence than all three put together.

    • JohnZ  August 13, 2017 at 5:36 am

      Parasite is an accurate description for the royals. I would add to it: inbred crime family. They are an anachronism, a conundrum, archaic and otherwise an embarrassment. That wretched old queen and her senile old husband need to be put out to pasture somewhere in the Yorkshires.

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