Balfour Declaration

(1917)

The Balfour Declaration was conveyed in a letter addressed by Arthur James Balfour, the British secretary of state for foreign affairs, to Lord Walter Rothschild, a prominent member of the British Jewish community. In the letter, Balfour proclaimed that Britain would support Zionist aspirations by facilitating in Palestine the establishment of “a national home for the Jewish people.” By declaring Britain to be Zionism's patron, Balfour's signature completed a process begun twenty years earlier at the First Zionist Congress, held in 1897 in Basel, Switzerland. It was then that a...

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Edmund Allenby enters Jerusalem through the Jaffa Gate. (Library of Congress)

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