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Near & Middle East Titles:
Israel: Political and Economic Reports 1948-1953
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ISBN: (13) 978-1-84097-310-5
Extent: 7 volumes, 4,000 pages



Editor: R.L. Jarman
Author:N/A
ISBN: (10) N/A
Published: 2010
Paper: Printed on acid-free paper
Binding: Library bindings with gilt finish
See sample pages: not available




To enquire about a PRINTED version of this title, please use the button ADD TO ENQUIRY LIST. Then, go to ENQUIRY FORM page and follow the instructions.


Resumé

This project is the first in a new series of collections of British political and economic reports on Israel. It examines the first premiership of David Ben Gurion and the British relationship with the new Israeli State, which was an important one, given the former British Mandate in Palestine.
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Historical Overview

These 4000 pages are the collected British government political and economic reports on the State of Israel from its creation in May 1948 to the end of the first Premiership of David Ben Gurion. Ben Gurion, regarded as the "Father of Israel", held the posts of Defence Minister, and Prime Minister, during the first 5 years of the Israeli State, throughout the War of Independence, the first wave of immigration, the implementation of mass settlement, development projects and the signing of a reparations agreement with Germany: one of the most important periods in the history of the Middle East and the Jewish people in particular.
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Documentary Importance

The documents are written by contemporary British civil servants working in Tel Aviv, Haifa or Jerusalem and show the difficulties faced by the new administration in its relations with  its Arab neighbours, the US and UK governments and international bodies such as the United Nations.
The different types of documents include:
Despatches/Reports from: British Consulates-General in Jerusalem and in Haifa; British Legation/ Embassy in Tel-Aviv; British diplomatic representatives in neighbouring Arab countries of Amman, Beirut, Cairo, and Damascus; British diplomatic representatives in Washington, New York (at United Nations), Paris, and Bonn;
Internal minutes of the Foreign Office in London;
Research papers of the Foreign Office Research Department;
Cabinet Papers;
Letters/memoranda from Buckingham Palace and the Prime Minister's Office.
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Arrangement of volumes



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Contents Outline

Volume 1: 1948


PART 1 Periodic reviews of the period
1.1 Weekly reviews from FORD (Foreign Office Research Department)
1.2 Monthly general reviews from the British Consulate-General in Jerusalem
PART 2 Final British withdrawal from Palestine
PART 3 Political and general developments within Israel
PART 4 Relations between Israel and the United Kingdom
PART 5 Relations between Israel and neighbouring Arab countries (The 1948/49 Arab–Israel war: the fighting and the international ramifications)

 

Volume 2: 1949


PART 1 Periodic Reviews of the period
1.1 Weekly reviews from FORD (Foreign Office Research Department)
1.2 Monthly general reviews from the British Consulate-General in Jerusalem
1.3 Monthly press summaries from the British Consulate-General in Jerusalem
1.4 Periodic Summaries from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.5 Annual Report from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
PART 2 Political and general developments within Israel
2.1 Internal Political Situation
2.2 The situation in the different areas of Israel
2.3 Social and economic developments
2.4 Jewish immigration and outside financial support
2.5 Situation of the Arab inhabitants of Israel
PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel
3.1 General principles
3.2 Israel and her Arab neighbours
3.3 Israel and the UK: British/US policy towards Israel and the Arabs
3.4 Israel and the UK: British de facto recognition of Israel
3.5 Israel and the UK: Exchange of diplomatic representatives
3.6 Israel and the UK: British de jure recognition/admission to the United Nations
3.7 The question of Jerusalem

 

Volume 3: 1950


PART 1 Periodic Reviews of the period
1.2 Monthly (Political) Reports from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.3 Monthly Economic Reports from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.4 Annual Report from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
PART 2 Political and general developments within Israel
2.1 Internal Political Situation
2.2 Social and economic developments
2.3 Jewish immigration and outside financial support
2.4 Situation of the Arab inhabitants of Israel
2.5 The armed forces of Israel
PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel
3.1 General principles
3.2 Israel and the UK: overview
3.3 Israel and the UK: British de facto recognition of Israel
3.4 Israel and the UK: Military co-operation and British arms sales
3.5 Israel and the UK: The problem of Jerusalem
3.6 Israel and her Arab neighbours: Jordan
PART 4 Personalities in Israel

 

Volume 4: 1951


PART 1 Periodic Reviews of the period
1.1 Monthly (Political) Reports from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.2 Monthly Economic Reports from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.3 Annual Report from the British Embassy in Tel Aviv
PART 2 Political and general developments within Israel
2.1 Internal Political Situation
2.2 Social and economic developments: finance and the economy
2.3 Social and economic developments: industry and agriculture
2.4 Social and economic developments: trade unions
2.5 Jewish immigration and outside financial support
2.6 Situation of the Arab inhabitants of Israel
PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel
3.1 General principles
3.2 Israel and the United States
3.3 Israel and the UK: The political dimension
3.4 Israel and the UK: Financial aid and investment
3.5 Israel and the UK: Military co-operation and British arms sales
3.6 Israel and the UK: The problem of Jerusalem
PART 4 Personalities in Israel

 

Volume 5: 1952


PART 1 Periodic Reviews of the period
1.1 Monthly (Political) Reports from the British Legation in Tel Aviv
1.2 Annual Report from the British Embassy in Tel Aviv
PART 2 Political and general developments within Israel
2.1 Internal Political Situation
2.2 Social and economic developments
2.3 Jewish immigration and outside financial support
2.4 Situation of the refugees and non-Jewish inhabitants of Israel
2.5 The armed forces of Israel
PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel
3.1 Israel and Palestine
3.2 Israel and the United States
3.3 Israel and the UK: Overview
3.4 Israel and the UK: Financial aid and investment
3.5 Israel and the UK: Military co-operation and British arms sales
3.6 Israel and the UK: The problem of Jerusalem
PART 4 Personalities in Israel

 

Volume 6: 1953 Part I


PART 1 Periodic Reviews of the period
1.1 Monthly (Political) Reports from the British Embassy in Tel Aviv
1.2 Monthly Economic Reports from the British Embassy in Tel Aviv
1.3 Annual Report from the British Embassy in Tel Aviv
PART 2 Internal Affairs
2.1 Internal Affairs: The Political Situation
2.2 Social and economic developments
2.3 Jewish immigration and outside financial support
2.4 Situation of the Arab inhabitants of Israel
2.5 The armed forces of Israel
PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel
3.1 General principles
3.2 Israel and the USSR
3.3 Israel and the United States
3.4 Israel and the UK: Overview
3.5 Israel and the UK: Military co-operation and British arms sales
3.6 Israel and the UK: The problem of Jerusalem

 

Volume 7: 1953 Part II


PART 3 The Foreign Relations of Israel (Continued)
3.7 Israel and Palestine/Jerusalem
3.8 Israel and its Arab neighbours: overview
3.9 Israel and Jordan: the situation in the Jerusalem area
3.10 Israel and Jordan: infiltration and border incidents
3.11 Israel and Jordan: the Israeli attack on Qibya and its consequences
3.12 Israel and Jordan: Conference under Article XII of Armistice Agreement
3.13 Israel and Syria
3.14 Israel and Egypt
PART 4 Personalities in Israel


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Key documents



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Maps




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Editor's Introduction

From the Editor's Introduction


The first publication in this series covers the six years from 1948 to 1953, which corresponds almost exactly to the first term as Prime Minister of David Ben Gurion, the first and arguably most charismatic of Israel’s Prime Ministers.  The continuity in Israel’s government was not echoed in the USA or the United Kingdom.  In the USA, the Democrat President Truman was replaced by the Republican President Eisenhower, and Eisenhower’s Secretary of State Dulles was not prepared to give Israel the unquestioning support that Truman had given.  In the United Kingdom, the Labour Prime Minister Attlee (whose Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin had been so opposed to the new State of Israel) was replaced in 1951 by the Conservative Winston Churchill (who was known to call himself a Zionist).  A brief outline of these six years, extracted from the documents in this publication, is as follows:

 

1948 saw the declaration of the new State of Israel and its recognition by the USA and the Soviet Union.  The United Kingdom, however, refused to grant recognition, even on a de facto basis, although the British consulates-general in Jerusalem and Haifa continued to operate.  At the end of the year, Israel was still governed by a Provisional government and hostilities with the Arabs were still in progress.

 

1949 saw the holding of elections in Israel for an Assembly and the establishment in February of a government backed by a parliamentary majority.  Hostilities had ceased in January 1949 and, although no final peace settlement was in sight, nearly all Israel’s gains in the fighting had been embodied in a series of armistice agreements with her neighbours.  By the end of the year, Israel had become a member of the United Nations and had been recognised by 58 countries.  The United Kingdom granted Israel de facto recognition on 29th January and the British legation was opened in Tel Aviv on 17th May with Sir Knox Helm as the first minister.

 

1950 saw the beginnings of a growing alignment with the West in the ideological struggle with the Soviet Union.  Relations with the United Kingdom improved with the signing on 30th March of the Anglo-Israel Financial Agreement and the granting on 27th April of de jure recognition to Israel and de facto recognition of the occupation of Jewish Jerusalem; and there was a start to military co-operation between Israel and the United Kingdom..  Israel’s relations with the USA remained cordial, but there was a deterioration in relations with the neighbouring Arab states. In January the Knesset voted a proclamation that Jerusalem was the capital of Israel.

 

1951 was described by Sir Francis Evans, the new British minister in Tel Aviv, as a bad year for Israel.  Although mass immigration of Jewish communities went on throughout the year, rising to a peak of 30000 a month in the spring, political and economic affairs were bleak.  For most of the year the government had no majority in the Knesset; there was a serious economic deterioration which led to a shortage of foreign exchange, severe inflation, and a widespread black market; and there was no sign of any break in the deadlock between Israel and her Arab neighbours.  Talk of military co-operation with the United Kingdom increased with the visit to Israel of General Robertson and discussions about the creation of a Middle East Command to defend the Middle East against any Soviet aggression.

 

1952 was a better year for Israel than 1951.  However, the country’s economic position remained precarious, but the situation was improved in September with the conclusion of an agreement with West Germany under which Israel received substantial reparations for the Nazi treatment of the Jews.  Relations with the Arab neighbours remained as bad as ever.  Relations between the United Kingdom and Israel remained cordial despite the refusal of the British government to sell jet aircaraft to Israel.

 

1953 saw a growing sense of insecurity within Israel.  There was a deterioration in Israel’s relations with its neighbours, culminating in the universally-condemned Israeli attack in October on the Jordanian village of Qibya.  Israel’s relations with Syria worsened because of the Israeli attempt to divert the waters of the River Jordan for irrigation: United States annoyance over this irrigation scheme caused it to suspend temporarily economic aid, and the Russian action in suspending diplomatic relations because of a bomb blast outside their Legation in Tel Aviv made Israelis anxious about the situation of Jews in Russia.


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Related Titles:
Israel: Boundary Disputes with Arab Neighbours 1946–1964
Land Legislation in Mandate Palestine
Minorities in the Middle East: Jewish Communities in Arab Countries 1841–1974
Minorities in the Middle East: Religious Communities in Jerusalem 1843–1974
Palestine and Transjordan Administration Reports 1918–1948
Palestine Boundaries 1833–1947
Political Diaries of the Arab World: Palestine and Jordan 1920–1965
Records of Jerusalem 1917–1971
Records of Jordan 1919–1965
Survey of Western Palestine 1882-1888
Zionist Movement and the Foundation of Israel 1839–1972, The


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