24 JUNE 1960, Page 7

Zionism and Anti-Semitism


r710NISM is now the only successful settlers' ,lobby in the Anglo-Saxon world. Settler interests in Central Africa still write their letters to the Times, but they are fighting a rearguard action and they know it. Not so the Zionists.

That the Right should traditionally have been friendly to Zionism is easy to understand. The Balfour Declaration was consistent with the policy of dividing Arao territory between Britain and France, as opposed to the policy envisaged in the British promises to the Arabs of giving them independence. Zionism would colonise, civilise and help to control the Arab world as well as safeguard the British position in the Suez Canal. Hence the great British Imperialists Churchill, Amery, Milner were all Zionists. Amery, in Weizmann's words, 'realised the importance of a Jewish Palestine in the British imperial scheme of things. .

The attachment of liberal and leftish opinion to Zionism is, even allowing for the natural sympathy and horror evoked by the Nazi persecu- tion, less consistent. As Alan R. Taylor* points out in his excellent brief study of Zionist diplo- macy from 1897 to 1947 (which deserves a pub- lisher over here), the liberal solution of the Jewish problem is assimilation Zionism is the nation- alist solution. Political Zionism. indeed, is founded on a racial myth similar to Hitler's vicious non-Aryan nonsense : there is in fact no Jewish race. As the leaders of the British non- Zionist Jewish community said in 1917 (and as the anti-Zionist American Council for Judaism say today), political Zionism has to be based upon 'a secular Jewish nationality recruited on some loose and obscure principle of race and ethno- graphic peculiarity.' And Zionism, Mr. Cooket emphasises, holds that in religion, race, and secular loyalties 'Jewishness is hereditary and indelible in all three aspects.'