Should the State of Israel Have Been Created Elsewhere?
General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
Leon Pinsker, MD, Zionist and leader of the Russian Assimilationist Movement, in an 1882 essay titled Auto-Emancipation," wrote:
"The goal of our efforts should not be the 'holy' land,
but a land of our own. What we need is a large tract of land for our
poor bretheren, our own possession, whence no strange master shall have
the power to drive us forth.
Thither we should carry with us the
holy treasures we rescued from the overthrow of our native land- the
God-idea and the Sacred Scriptures. They and they alone- not Jerusalem
and not the Jordan- are what sanctified our olden home.
lucky chance the Holy Land itself happens to become our land, so much
the better. But above all- this is the one thing needful- it must be
determined what land is available land, at the same time, fit to offer
to the outcast Jews of all countries a safe, undisputed, productive
Ami Isseroff, DSc, Director of MidEastWeb website, in an essay (accessed Sep. 14, 2006) titled "A History of Zionism and the Creation of Israel," wrote:
before they [Britain] had conquered Palestine from the Ottoman Turkish
Empire, owing to the efforts of Zionists [since 1880's], the British
government declared its intentions, in the Balfour declaration [of
1917], of sponsoring a 'national home' for the Jews in Palestine.
Britain was given a League of Nations Mandate [in 1922] to develop
Palestine as a Jewish National home."
The Jewish Virtual Library, an online encyclopedia, in a section related to Zionist factions titled "Territorialism," (accessed Sep. 14, 2006), offered the following information:
"Territorialism preached the formation of a Jewish collective in
Palestine, or anywhere else, on the basis of self-rule. The
territorialist outlook coalesced in the debate over the Uganda Program.
It attempted to locate territory suitable for Jewish settlement in
various parts of Africa, Asia, and Australia, but with little success. The Balfour Declaration and the resulting Zionist awakening negated the movement and led to its dissolution in 1925.
Other territorialist [non Zionist] attempts... were
undertaken in the Soviet Union between the two world wars. The first was
in the southern Ukraine and the northern Crimea, where four
noncontiguous 'national districts' (raiony) were established in the
early 1920s and obliterated when the Nazis invaded. The second was in
Birobidjan, where a 'Jewish Autonomous Region' was proclaimed in 1934.
In 1935, in response to the Nazi accession to power in Germany, Isaac
Nachman Steinberg established the Freeland League in the United States.
This organization attempted, unsuccessfully, to pursue Jewish autonomy
by obtaining a large piece of territory in sparsely populated areas in
Ecuador, Australia, or Surinam. "
Israel Zangwill, founder of the Jewish Territorial Organization, in a Aug. 4, 1905 Los Angeles Times article titled "Zionist Leaders Disagree, Refusal of Land Offered by the British Government for Colony Considered a Mistake," stated:
"The majority of the
[Zionist] Congress does not represent the interests of the Jewish
nation... A great mistake was made in refusing the land [in
Uganda] offered by the English government as the site for a
It would have been the beginning of a movement that
would have had world-wide significance, and would have made a
haven where persecuted Jews could have taken
Should the State of Israel Have Been Created Elsewhere?
Theodor Herzl, Doctor of Law, Father of Zionism, in the "Palestine or Argentine?," section of his 1896 book titled The Jewish State, proposed the following:
"Shall we choose Palestine or Argentine? We
shall take what is given us, and what is selected by Jewish public
opinion. The Society will determine both these points. Argentine
is one of the most fertile countries in the world, extends over a
vast area, has a sparse population and a mild climate. The
Argentine Republic would derive considerable profit from the
cession of a portion of its territory to us."
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, PhD, President of Iran, stated the following at a Dec. 8, 2005 summit of Muslim nations in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, as reported by Salah Nasrawi of the Associated Press:
"Some European countries insist on saying that during World War II, Hitler burned millions of Jews and put them in concentration camps...
Let's assume what the Europeans say is true ... Let's give some land to the Zionists in Europe or in Germany or Austria... They faced injustice in Europe, so why do the repercussions fall on the Palestinians?"
Emil Hirsch, Rabbi and spokesman for the radical wing of the Reform Movement, in the 1890 "Conference on the Past, Present and Future of Israel," held in Chicago, stated:
"No Jew interpreted
his prophecies to mean the re-gathering of his race into the land
of their ancient home. No expectation was expressed of an earthly
kingdom, Messianic or other, with Jerusalem as its capital....We,
the modern Jews, do not wish to be restored to Palestine.
We have given up the hope in the coming of a political,
personal Messiah. We say, 'The country wherein we live is our
Palestine, and the city wherein we dwell is our Jerusalem.' We
will not go back...to form again a nationality of our
Let our religious life be clothed in the symbols of the life we see
living round about us. Let our synagogues speak the language of the
cities in which we dwell. Let our ceremonial be constituted in harmony
with the culture by which are surrounded."
Malcolm MacDonald, MA, British Colonial and Dominions Secretary, in an Nov. 24, 1938 Los Angeles Times article titled "Britain Rejects Zionist Appeals, Colonial Secretary Says Palestine Offers No Hope for Refugees," was quoted as follows:
we promised to facilitate a national home for the Jews in Palestine we
never anticipated this fierce persecution in Europe. We made no
promises that Palestine should be the home for everyone who is seeking
to scape such a calamity. Palestine's rather meager soil cannot support
more than a fraction of the Jews. The problem... can not be settled in
Palestine, it has to be settled over a far wider field."
The League of Nations, an international organization created after the First World War, stated in The Palestine Mandate signed on July 24, 1922:
the Principal Allied Powers have agreed, for the purpose of giving
effect to the provisions of Article 22 of the Covenant of the League of
Nations, to entrust to a Mandatory selected by the said Powers the
administration of the territory of Palestine, which formerly belonged
to the Turkish Empire, within such boundaries as may be fixed by them;
Whereas the Principal Allied Powers have also agreed that the Mandatory
should be responsible for putting into effect the declaration
originally made on November 2nd, 1917, by the Government of His
Britannic Majesty [Balfour Declaration],
and adopted by the said Powers, in favor of the establishment in
Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly
understood that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil
and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine,
or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other
Whereas recognition has thereby been given to the historical connection
of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for
reconstituting their national home in that country."
Bernard Horwich, Chicago representative at the Zionist Congress, was quoted in an Aug. 27, 1903 Los Angeles Times article titled "May Locate Zion in East Africa,":
"[We] urge Congress to leave the African
proposition to the Executive Committee. Zion is not to be abandoned
until all efforts are abandoned. If we abandon the Palestine
colonization project, Zionism is dead. All our efforts have been
directed toward establishing the Jewish nation in Zion. East
Africa may be a desirable place, for colonization, but is not our
Ber Borochov, founder of the Marxist Zionist party Poalei Tziyon, in a 1905 essay titled "To the Question: Zion and Territory," wrote:
"The dogmatic territorialist must give up, as a matter of
principle, any freedom of choice and he must take the first
territory that happens to come along, the one that is given to him
on the basis of secured rights of autonomy and where it is
possible to establish a sanctuary for the majority of persecuted
and scattered Jews.
However territorialism cannot retain its
lofty, theoretical, abstract principle, because the Zionists of
Zion remain true to the belief that the national advantage of the
Land of Israel, as an object of special endearment, doesn’t allow
us to give up Eretz Israel as long as there is hope of acquiring
it on the basis of our needs.
And here, the
territorialists, after removing themselves from the purity of
dogma, after removing themselves from free choice, are compelled
to move on step further and negate the Land of Israel."
Napoleon Bonapart, French Commander-in-Chief, in a 1799 letter to the Israelites after the conquest of Jerusalem titled "Buonaparte, Commander-in-Chief of the Armies of the French Republic in Africa and Asia, to the Rightful Heirs of Palestine," wrote:
"Israelites, unique nation,
whom, in thousands of years, lust of conquest and tyranny have
been able to be deprived of their ancestral lands, but not of name
and national existence!... Arise then, with gladness, ye
A war unexampled in the annals
of history, waged in self-defense... offers to you at this very
time, and contrary to all expectations, Israel's patrimony!...
The great nation [France] ...herewith calls on
you not indeed to conquer your patrimony ;nay, only to take over
that which has been conquered and, with that nation's warranty and
support, to remain master of it to maintain it against all
Now is the moment, which may not return for thousands of years, to
claim the restoration of civic rights among the population of the
universe which had been shamefully withheld from you for thousands of
years, your political existence as a nation among the nations..."