A century of Balfour's betrayal

A century of Balfour's betrayal
Special coverage: The Balfour Declaration set the stage for the creation of the state of Israel and the mass ongoing displacement and dispossession of Palestinians.
1 min read
02 November, 2017

It was the sort of colonial arrogance that betrays the nature of empire. One hundred years ago, the British foreign minister gave away what wasn't his.

On November 2, 1917, Arthur James Balfour wrote a three-paragraph letter to Lord Rothschild, a British aristocrat and leading light of the burgeoning Zionist movement, promising the British government's support to establish a home for the Jewish people in Palestine.

And with that - a deal between two rich white men thousands of miles from Jerusalem - the rights of Palestinians to live in their ancestral home was signed away.

The anniversary has sparked no shortage of controversy. British Prime Minister Theresa May has promised to celebrate the centenary with pride, despite the wide and varied political troubles in which her government is currently embroiled. Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn is, meanwhile, boycotting the commemorations.

Catch up with all the latest news, views and analysis with our special coverage.