15 AUGUST 1958, Page 17


SIR,—In thanking you for publishing my letter on the Middle East, 1 must point out that it was 1942 (not 1952) when we forced the Russian Ambassador and Nahas Pasha on King Farouk, by surrounding the Abdin Palace, thereby setting up a base for• Bolshevik sedition, which ten years later provided Egypt with a Leader, and the Kremlin with an Agent, in the shape, of Colonel Nasser. The fart that he was allowed to remain in Cairo controlling the Arab radio is the occasion for our present disasters, if not the cause.

In my turn I unreservedly withdraw the implication that the Spectator's article contained the phrase 'un- fortunately, we were manoeuvred by the financial power• of America into appearing to support the in-

vasion of the Arab countries of Palestine with millions of Jewish refugees.'

• The article to which i was alluding was 'Revolution According to Pattern' in the Spectator of July 18. The writer pointed out very clearly the universal Arab belief that the West had supported the Jews, and deprived them of their land. Unfortunately this is completely true. Between the wars the Turkish landowners sold their estates to the Jewish Agency which was liberally provided with dollar funds. Immigration certificates were then issued for settlers to come and work the land which the Agency had bought. This meant that the Arab peasants, generally living in villages on the high ground, with only enough work on their own plots to occupy them for two days in the week, found themselves deprived of their main source of livelihood for the other five.

In 1917 there were 45,000 Jews living in Palestine, who were long established citizens, living at peace with both Moslem and Christian Arabs. By 1939 the Zionist invasion protected by BritiSh arms had increased the population to nearly a million. The description of the Arab officers in your article was completely accurate. .1 hey possess absolutely none of the qualities. loyalty. honour and sacrifice, on which an Officer Corps can he built.

The economic misery• brought about by the count- leSs refugees has undoubtedly increased their bitter- ness and hostility to the West.

We would never have the present trouble in the Lebanon if there had not been a great influx of Moslems. into what had previously been a pre- dominantly Christian country.—Yours faithfully. JAMES FRIEND Chartres Hall. Nr. Eccleshall. Stafford [We regret that through a misprint 1942 became 1952.—Editor. Spectator.]