The Palestine Authority is planning to bring a legal case against the UK Government for the promulgation of the Balfour Declaration in 1917 (!), that played a key role in the formation of the Jewish State. First, this Declaration was included in the Treaty of San Remo in 1920 that divided up the former Turkish Empire and second it formed the basis of the Mandate for Palestine that was granted to the UK by the League of Nations in 1922 and that was ratified by its successor the UN when it was formed after WWII. Many in Britain are worried about this court case, that asserts that the UK Government had no right to grant “a Homeland in Palestine for the Jewish people.” But, here is the answer of PM Theresa May in a recent speech:
“It is one of the most important letters in history. It demonstrates Britain’s vital role in creating a homeland for the Jewish people. And it is an anniversary we will be marking with pride.”
—British Prime Minister Theresa May on the upcoming centenary of the Balfour Declaration
May also called Israel “a remarkable country” and “a beacon of tolerance”—noting the “crucial” ties between the two countries. This is the kind of resolute public support for Israel that has been missing in the US for the past 8 years of the Obama Administration
This week the first two of 50 F-35 advanced fifth generation fighter jets from the US arrived in Israel. Each plane costs m$100 and the deal is financed by the b$3 that the US grants to Israel every year for the purchase of military hardware in the US. The Obama Administration made this deal. Although this might seem contradictory to Obama’s general attitude towards Israel, nevertheless this is a great deal for the US manufacturer McDonnell-Douglas. After all it has to sell these jets to subsidize the US purchase of them.
Last week PM Netanyahu paid a visit to the two central Asian Republics of Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. In speeches and press conference with the two presidents Netanyahu emphasized that these two countries are both Muslim states, and he pointed out that this has not prevented the development of excellent and reciprocal relations between them and Israel. If they can do it why can’t other Muslim countries. He stated that this was the beginning of a new era of relations of Israel with other countries, including many in Africa and the Sunni Arab States.
The projected move of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel’s capital Jerusalem is another anticipated resolute action by the incoming Trump Administration. If it happens it will bring US relations with Israel in line with those of all other countries, where the capital is determined by the host county, not by the political decisions of the US.