3 JULY 1936, Page 22


[To the Editor of THE SPECTATOR.] SIR,—It would be interesting if Mr. Jeffries would further elucidate his description of the Palestine Arab as " perpetually unheard, perpetually side-tracked." Can he point to any occasion on which Arab representatives have been refused the ear of the High Commissioner in Palestine, or, for that matter, of the Colonial Secretary in London I doubt whether Mr. Jeffries is doing the best service to the cause of peace when he encourages Palestinians to consider their racial problems in terms of " majority 7 or " minority " rights.. But if he must do so, let him reflect which of the two races has most cause to fear being left, or placed, in the position of a minority.

In the past eight weeks, damage has been done to Jewish property in fields, orchards and plantations, estimated at many tens of thousands of pounds. Daring this same period, not one Arab fruit-tree has been uprooted, nor one Arab crop burnt, by Jewish hands. Englishmen who have put their labour, their money or their love into the meadows or wood- lands of their country can perhaps form some faint idea of the intense provocation, and the iron self-control which such a state of affairs must imply for the Jewish agricultural settlers.

In the past twenty years, some 800,000 Jews (a number which, incidentally, does not exceed the increase in the Arab population itself during that period) have entered the land, trusting to the British assurance that they are there " as of right and not on sufferance." Among their numbers are some 80,000 refugees from the Hitler Terror. Palestine, under the Mandate administered by Great Britain, is so far the only country in the world in a position to afford some abiding shelter for the victims of the hideous revival of anti-s-emitisin now defiling Germany. It is sad to find any Englishman who ,takes no pride or pleasure in that fact, but who seems to advocate yielding to the demands of the Arab extremists for the stoppage of immigration, which would, while the Arabs display their present spirit, in the end turn the Jewish National Borne into a death-trap.

Lasting peace in Palestine will not come through the breaking of British promises to either section of the population, but its foundation might be laid through the speedy fulfilment of some of those promises which referred to large scale land development, in order to make room for a larger population. According to the experience and calculations of the best experts on Palestinian agriculture, a family scientifically cultivating irrigated land can live on five acres (as compared with a minimum of twenty-five acres of unirrigated land). There are still available at least three-quarters of a million acres of irrigable land which have not yet.been developed.

The future of the great Arab nation is not bound up with that little notch in the vast territories inhabited by their race which Palestine represents. What that future may be— politically or economically—no man can tell. But so far as it is possible to foresee the trend of events, it does appear likely that the Jewish National Home, established by virtue of historic right in the Land of Israel, will provide at any rate a partial solution for the Jewish problem, which is an inter- national problem, and the direct concern of nearly every country in the world.—Yours obediently, BLANCHE E. C. DUGDALE 1 Roland Gardens, S.W.7.