Talk:Faisal–Weizmann Agreement

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"In preparation for the meeting, the British had written to Faisal that "we know that the Arabs despise, condemn and hate the Jews", but that the Jewish race is "universal, all-powerful and cannot be put down"." is a strange and wondrous fabrication. I bet you can have a citation for that as well?

Some citations[edit]

  • Weizmann's opinion of the Palestinian Arabs was given in a long letter to Arthur Balfour, dated 30 May 1918. The Letters and Papers of Chaim Weizmann (ed. Weisgal) Series A, Volume VIII, p197-206. Some more extracts: "The Arabs who are superficially clever and quick witted, worship one thing and one thing only - power and success."; "the treacherous nature of the Arab...He screams as often as he can and blackmails as much as he can."; "This system does not take into account the fact that there is a fundamental qualitative difference between Jew and Arab. The Turk, being himself of inferior culture, saw in the Jew a superior to himself and to the Arab, and so by virtue of his intelligence and his achievements the Jew held a position in the country perhaps out of proportion to his numerical strength. The present system tends on the contrary to level down the Jew politically to the status of a native, and in many cases the English Administrator follows the convenient rule of looking on the Jews as so many natives."
  • Weizmann's report on Faisal's opinion of the Palestinian Arabs is from a letter to his wife dated 17 June 1918 (original in Russian). I quoted the English translation from the same collection, Series A, Volume VIII, p210.
  • British letter to Faisal in advance of the Faisal-Weizmann meeting: Segev, One Palestine, Complete, p110-111. Segev cites Reinharz's biography of Weizmann, p255.

All of the above are well known and frequently cited.

In interpreting the agreement, it is important to remember that it was all done under British eyes. It seems to be a common belief that the actual written text was the work of T.E. Lawrence, but I didn't mention that because I don't know if there is solid evidence for it. You can see the British influence in the way the actual role of the Jews in Palestine is vague and refers back to the Balfour Declaration. Just as in the B.D., there is no explicit mention of Jewish sovereignty and this was entirely deliberate.

--Zero 23:50, 9 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Thank you for the citations.

Clearly the British played a large role in the formation of the documents as did the other parties involved. Everyone expected to gain from it. That is often the nature of agreements between parties.

Still it needs to be asked what relevance Weizmann's quotes above have to the agreement. What light do they provide that they should be included on this particular page? OneVoice 01:18, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

A deliberate choice was made by the Zionists to not try to strike an agreement directly with the Palestinian Arabs. There were a variety of reasons for that and one was the attitude (common amongst Europeans of the time) that the Arabs were a primitive race (Weizmann said "at least four centuries behind the times") and one does not negotiate with primitives. Many of the British felt the same way (which could be included in the article). One should also ask the question of why Faisal was so easily persuaded to give up Palestine despite it having earlier been promised to his father. The two reasons given here are not the whole story but are key parts of it. --Zero 02:53, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The page does not give the impression that its a European attitude or a British attitude but rather a Jewish or Zionist attitude only. How can we address this?

What does "support close Jewish settlement" mean....cant parse the word 'close' in this phrase...from the page, of course. OneVoice 02:58, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

"Close settlement" was a common expression back then; e.g. it is in the Mandate text twice. The word "close" is used in the sense of "dense", so "close settlement" means settlement by a lot of people. I'll answer the other question later. --Zero 04:08, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)


If close is dense, then that would mean a concentrated population irrespective of size, so long as enough people are there to obtain a density of population. For example: if 1000/mi2 is common, then one might say that dense is 2000/mi2, and a minimum population of 2000 (this is rough) would be needed. OneVoice 10:38, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

IMO the term "close" in the Balfour Declaration as well as the "derivative documents" (i.e. the Sévres Treaty and the League of Nations declaration of 1922 establishing the British Mandate) has to be interpreted as a settling paradigm different from "dispersed" settlement. This means that settling should be done in organized communities, allowing for the allocation of major work groups for any cultivation project but also to provide security. Furthermore "close settlement" in this way allowed for creation of Jewish communmities which later could gain local political autonomy. (KE)

I've addred two important additions, one a quote of Faisal about his opinion of the Jewish side and the Jewish proposal. Second is the territory actually been discussed for the Jewish. Amoruso 07:14, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
it's both sourced and important ! don't change back. Amoruso 10:41, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
why did you change it again ? you're really being unfair pitchford. Amoruso 08:24, 7 August 2006 (UTC)
Battleground is a notorious propaganda volume. Please source material to reliable works. --Ian Pitchford 15:28, 7 August 2006 (UTC)
says who ? Battleground is a historical book which is regarded very highly. It's in itself full of sources and references to this information as well. this information is widely known too. you asked for the source after I linked to webpages saying the same, which were also reliable. So this is good enough I believe. Amoruso 01:35, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
The quotation from Weizmann might be admissible if there is a reliable source for it. What source does Katz give? Secondly you gave Katz's opinion on something. If we are going to quote the opinion of a historian, we should choose a mainstream eminent historian, not an activist who thought Menachem Begin was too far to the left. Thirdly you proved why we cannot take Katz's word for anything (assuming you quoted him accurately): "It should be noted that the proposals covered Palestine - from the Mediterranean through the entire Galilee, up to the Litani River, hundreds of miles east of the Jordan River through all of current day Jordan, and into part of the Sinai." Complete rubbish; not even the most optimistic proposal put forward by the Zionists included that much territory. --Zerotalk 14:06, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
Wrong on so many accounts. First of all, it's not Katz's opinion. I'm simply stating that it's quoted from Katz's book so people know where the source is. Secondly, Katz is one of the most respected historians. Thirdly, Katz is correct. And later on I will also add the maps. These were annexed to the agreement. He is exactly right on all accounts, nothing rubbish here, and please conform to wikipedia's standards when editing things. Right now it's just vandalism because things don't suit your POV political views. Amoruso 14:17, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
You wrote "through all of current day Jordan" but Katz wrote "west of Hedjaz Railway". You wrote "into part of the Sinai" but Katz wrote "In the south a frontier to be agreed upon with the Egyptian Government." I apologise to Katz; it was you who is unreliable on this. --Zerotalk 14:09, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
I've quoted Katz in exact words. I have his book right here in front of my. Amoruso 12:28, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
I'm quoting the actual Zionist proposal to the peace conference, which is what you are claiming to be describing. Moreover, the text of that proposal is supposed to be reprinted in Katz, see [1]. How can you explain the difference? The descriptions are completely incompatible since the Hedjaz Railway is never more than about 40 miles east of the river and usually less. I repeat: the description you keep putting into the article is not the Zionist proposal to the peace conference. Maybe Katz is talking about some other proposal. --Zerotalk 14:02, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
The propsal I wrote is the same. Into the Jordan it goes all the way to Amman indeed until the railway, including parts of the sinai and north to the litani and parts of the golan. You're arguing about nothing. Amoruso 15:39, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

I've replaced: "...the British had written to Faisal that 'we know that the Arabs despise, condemn and hate the Jews', but that the Jewish race is 'universal, all-powerful and cannot be put down'." with "...British diplomat Mark Sykes had written to Faisal about the Jewish people '...this race, despised and weak, is universal and all powerful and cannot be put down'." This quote of Mark Sykes can be found here:

--4m33s 13:47, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

proposal comment[edit]

this dubious comment has nothing to do with the faisal - weizman agreement. The only reason the proposal was quoted is for the reader to see what territory was being discussed in Faisal's eyes. Interpretation of the actual regime of this state (if the quote is geniune, Weizman is simply stating the state will be democratic and provide rights for all citizens, exactly repeated in the Declaration of Independence in 1948) is irrelevant to the article. There are many comments on the proposal by prominent zionist, including whole passages by Weizman. For starters, quote the entire proposal if you intend to add comments to it. Subsquently, selective quoting of Weizman's comments on the proposal are irrelevant. If he said something directly to Faisal then it will fit in the article. Amoruso 16:00, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

the edit was reverted using pop-ups by Ian Pitchford. Pop-ups is an anti-vandalism tool and Ian Pitchford has repeatdly abused this feature in the past and is doing the same thing right now. I've explained the reason to omit the edit, and therefore it won't be included, unless good explanations are provided. Amoruso 20:47, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
How could Feisal's opinion of the proposal be relevant, but not Weizmann's, in an article on the Faisal-Weizmann Agreement? --Ian Pitchford 21:12, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
I respectfully ask you will remove the comment until this is settled or it will go to arbitration. I will personally remove the comment myself tomorrow, and I think it's better you revert it yourself. As to your question, you have phrased it wrongly. Faisal's letter is directed towards the Zionist movement and Weizman in specific. That letter I can quote in full if you wish, it's signed by Faisal himself. Your comment is firstly dubious, I don't know if it exists or not, secondly it's about the proposal without any connection to Faisal... it's a whole differnet subject - if you intend to start analysing the proposal, then it will take a whole new page altogether. Therefore any comments on the proposal are irrelevant unless they're directly linked to Faisal - Weizman connection. Your attempt at quoting a dubious sentence said by Weizman out of context can not be taken seriously, since only part of the proposal is even written (by you). If you left the article as it was, with the proposal only covering the part to clarify the territory in question it will make sense. Amoruso 21:35, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
In other words, what you're attemptly trying to say is that Faisal only agreed that it's moderate and proper if Israel won't form a state. Now that firstly is a wrong interpretation of Weizman, that IF he did say those things, he was only talking about Democracy in future Israel and nothing more - secondly, you have no source saying that Faisal was aware of this comment - Faisal's comments were attributed only to the proposal. Any further comments made on the proposal aren't relevant here and open to interpretation. The proposal spoke for itself. Note that if Weizman meant anything, he will include it in the actual paper, just like Faisal put all his thoughts into the agreement, even in his hand writing. Therefore, your comment is false in any respect. Amoruso 21:38, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
Weizmann's comments are not particularly ambiguous. I don't see how you can claim that the opinion of one of the parties to the agreement is irrelevant when you've added to the article what is supposed to be a comment about the Balfour Declaration by the father of one of the parties to the agreement as reported by an Irgun propagandist. --Ian Pitchford 22:05, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
Isarig brought you the reference from another established historian. But ok, you convinced me. The quote from Weizman can stay. I'll add the other quotes discussed below now (not reverting anything). Amoruso 22:54, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

(another) ultimate reason for deletion of comment[edit]

in 1947, in the U.N assembly talks, this was said :

Sir ABDUR RAHMAN (India): You were reported to have said in "The Times" of 1 March 1918. We do not aspire to found a Zionist State. "What we want is a country in which all nations and all creeds shall have equal rights and equal tolerance."

Mr. WEIZMANN: I may have said that; I do not know. I have forgotten it. You must never quote a public man's speeches which have been made twenty-five years ago, because in those twenty-five years a great deal has changed.

Sir ABDUR RAHMAN (India): I only quote them because you have quoted what happened twenty-five years ago. It is only relevant in that connexion.

Mr. WEIZMANN: That is quite right. We did not want to speak of a State then. We spoke of a National Home. But the characteristic of the thing, whether it is a National Home or whether it is a State, remains the same. We think that in the Jewish State all peoples will live in amity and freedom. [2]

Note : Weizman is not even sure he said those things, he doesn't stand behind them, and he explains that at any case national home at the time meant state ! and what he meant was that just all people should have democratic rights (essentially the same like arab citizens in Israel). Therefore, if you insist on having this comment, the entire transcript of this U.N assembly talk , and also other comments will be added to the article, which I think is redundant. Proposal speak for itself, and therefore comment will be deleted.

Incidentally, I will add though from the assembly Weizman's assesment of the treaty in 1947. Faisal's quotes on the "aftermath" of the treaty should be referenced, as they are not. Amoruso 21:53, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

So Weizmann tried to put a different spin on his comments 28 years later. --Ian Pitchford 22:05, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
no, you're trying to put a differnet spin on something he might very well have never said. In contrast, Faisal and Hussein never denied their comments. Amoruso 22:51, 17 August 2006 (UTC)

The answers Weizmann gave in 1947 were I believe quite truthful. In 1918 the Zionists really did want a state, but they decided as a strategic device to say "national home" instead. There are plenty of Zionist documents making clear that it was a carefully chosen phrase. The British were happy about this code too, since it enabled them to lie to the Arabs about what the future held. --Zerotalk 13:59, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

A problem with dates in one cite[edit]

As it stands, the article draws an analogy between the quoted letter from Faisal to Felix Frankfurter - the relevant portion here is: "Our deputation here in Paris is fully acquainted with the proposals submitted yesterday by the Zionist Organization to the Peace Conference" (my emph.) - and the next quote, a Jewish proposal regarding borders in Palestine and submitted to the conference. The letter is dated March 3, 1919 (so "yesterday" in the quote should be March 2), but the Jewish proposal was actually submitted February 3 of that year (according to the cite). Thus, the analogy is broken. This also concerns the map in the article. It's not incredibly important, and I've left it as is, but there's a problem. -- Steve Hart 22:24, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

You'd notice the dates do overlap. The Times article shows that too, as the conference was still in process. There is only one set of proposals from the zionist delegation, and the important detailed has enormous historical importance. I restored material concerning this. (talk) 09:57, 16 June 2008 (UTC)