This might have been a jubilant day for the Jews, but it resulted in future turmoil between many Arab countries and the soon to be proclaimed land of Israel. This document was written and signed by Sir Arthur James Balfour in the United Kingdom, but affected the people living in Palestine at the time (Palestine, 2011). The document was published and received by Baron Rothschild on November 2, 1917 (British Official Statement on Palestine, 1951). Baron Rothschild was a leader of the British Jewish community at the time.
Palestine was a piece of land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, and various adjoining lands. The document entitled a Jewish homeland for Jews in the land of Palestine (Balfour Declaration, 2011). Arthur Balfour states in the letter that, “…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. The Jewish community would not dare go against with what was written in the letter, in fear of the consequences that could take place. The real frustration started when the Arabs living in Palestine, at the time, were taken off their land and became jealous of the fact that the Jews were able to produce agriculture in forsaken desert land, when all attempts were made by the Arabs (Official Statement of British Policy in Palestine, 1951). The location of the land given might not have been exact for Zionists, but at that point, it was not an option.
The reaction of people and places around Palestine and even in at the time was major. In large groups, Jews started to travel over to Palestine at once, which created the Zionist Movement (Palestine, 2011). Zionism is the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel, advocated, from its inception, tangible as well as spiritual aims. (A Definition of Zionism, 2011) Another response and different outlook to the signing of the Balfour Declaration was immediate stoppage of Jewish immigration to Palestine by the Arabs.
The Arabs feared that if enough Jews were to eventually populate Palestine, the Arabs would have to deal with expulsion. As much as they tried to stop Jews from entering Palestine, a plethora still managed to enter (Summary of the Arab Demands in Palestine, 1951). As time went on, tensions between the Jews and Arabs greatly increased (Palestine Liberation Organization, 2011). Many terrorist groups were formed later on. One group formed was called Hamas. On June 26, 2006, they captured a 19-year-old Israeli solider named Gilad Shalit.
For more than five years, they held him hostage with no connection to the outside world. He had no idea of when it was day and night what day of the week it was, or the current date. He was released recently on October 18, 2011, upon the conditional release of 1,027 Palestinian terrorists (Gilad Shalit, 2011). The reaction of the declaration was beneficial to the Jews who were seeking a Jewish homeland, but caused atrocious behavior by Arabs. There were many favorable reforms of the Balfour Declaration, while at the same time, many dreadful occurrences were prone to take place.
Some advantageous improvements for the Jews caused by the document could start with the fact that with the already owned Jewish land, the Jews could proclaim independence in the near future (United State Recognition of the New State of Israel, 1951). They also now had a place where Jews could gather and feel safe in the “Holy Land” together. The Jewish people might not have been wealthy or prosperous, but they felt connected and mentally opulent (The Balfour Declaration, November 2, 1917, 1918). Gruesome is the nice way to put how future wars were to become.
The Arabs were furious at the Jews for “stealing” land from them, and eventually reached a boiling point (Arab-Israeli Conflict, 2011). In 1920, during one of the most holy holidays for Jews, Passover, an Arab riot broke out, killing six Jews and injuring almost 200. Thankfully for the preliminary organization of Jewish defense, the number killed could have gone up immensely. (Arab Riots of the 1920’s, 2011) Neither can we forget the unspeakable, outrageous act of violence towards Jews labeled the Holocaust.
From the infamous “inspiration and determination” of one man, Adolf Hitler, he himself was able to brainwash thousands of people into believing that the Jews were evil and satanic. He soon instructed those people, titled Nazis, to go out and start to kill any Jew, handicapped, and other sections of people in the Germany, Poland, and other European countries. In the end, about six million Jews were killed in this tragic war. One last dramatic event was the Yom Kippur War in 1973. On October 6, 1973, Egyptian, Syrian, and Arab terrorists attacked Israel on one of the holiest days of the year for a Jew.
Close to 2800 Israeli soldiers were killed, and close to 8000 were injured. After the war, Israel became more secure and founded a better military. As superior of a declaration it was to the Jews, it would later on create dreadful experiences to the Jewish population. In the end, the Balfour Declaration could be said that it is the cause to the most enduring and explosive of all of the world’s conflict (BBC News, 2011). For the past millennium, numerous acts of terrorism and racism have resulted in millions of deaths to Jews.
Half of the Jewish population today is in Israel, almost nearly all of the other half of the Jews live in the United States, leaving the rest scattered around the world. As of 2007, there were 13. 2 million Jews in the world out of the world population of 6. 97 billion. Out of the total population of the world, . 2% were Jews. Because of the Balfour Declaration, the population size and distribution around the world was affected then and still remains today. The revolution of the Balfour Declaration was mainly to establish land for the Jewish population.
At the time, the Jews intension was to create a place where they could live and feel safe, but also for people of others religions to live in harmony. They knew that the land was sacred to more than just them. There were many reactions of the Balfour Declaration. Some were devastating to the Jews and some were joyous days for the Jewish community. The major reactions of both the Jews and Arabs could include the numerous acts of violence toward the Jewish population including acts of terrorism and the Holocaust, but also includes the fact that they were able to declare independence and statehood.
As for the reforms, the Jews were able to gain statehood, at the cost of millions of deaths, terrorism towards the Jewish religion, and ongoing wars between the Jews and the Palestinians and Arabs. Annotated Bibliography Citations- Primary Source “British Official Statement On Palestine, November 1938. ” Documents and Readings in the History of Europe Since 1918. Chicage: Lippincott, 1951. World Book Advanced. Web. 30 Oct. 2011. This article tells us that the Balfour Declaration was published in 1917. It shows how far back the document was brought to action, and the time proceeding it in which hatred towards one another can still continue. First World War. com – Primary Documents – Balfour Declaration, 2 November 1917. ” First World War. com – A Multimedia History of World War One. Web. 30 Oct. 2011. <http://www. firstworldwar. com/source/balfour. htm>. The document states that it has sympathy with Jewish Zionism. Foreshadows jealousy with Arabs towards Jews and future conflict. “Gilad Shalit – Israel News, Ynetnews. ” Israel News: Ynetnews. Web. 30 Oct. 2011. <http://www. ynetnews. com/articles/0,734,L-4115417,00. html>. States how Gilad Shalit, a 19 year old Jewish soldier, was kidnapped by Hamas, an Arab terrorist group.
Helps me understand the true turmoil between the Jews and the Arabs. Key Press Release on the Recognition of the State of Israel. World Book Advanced. Web. 30 Oct. 2011. Chaim Weizmann, who was a Zionist, persuaded Arthur Balfour and the British Government to issue a document favoring establishment of a Jewish national homeland. It helped me realize that Chaim Weizmann played an important role for receiving the document. “Official Statement Of British Policy In Palestine, 1930. ” Documents and Readings in the History of Europe Since 1918. Chicage: Lippincott, 1951. World Book Advanced. Web. 30 Oct. 2011.