Palestine – Carr’s Lakemba Mosque Declaration – Policy On The Run?…asks David Singer

August 18, 2013 by David Singer
Read on for article

Foreign Affairs Minister Bob Carr’s announcement in the heat of an election campaign that Labor Party policy does not recognize the legal right of Jews to live in the West Bank – seems to have been hastily cobbled together without any serious discussion or consideration by the Labor Party.
Speaking at the Lakemba Mosque in Sydney on 8 August at celebrations marking the end of Ramadan – Carr reportedly stated:

“I’ve been to Ramallah, I’ve spoken to the Palestinian leadership, and we support their aspirations to have a Palestinian state in the context of a Middle East of peace. And that means respect for the right of Israel to exist. But we want that Palestinian state to exist, in the context of a peace in the Middle East, and that’s why we say, unequivocally, all settlements on Palestinian land are illegal under international law and should cease. That is the position, of Kevin Rudd, the position of the Federal Labor Government, and we don’t make apologies for it.”

Carr’s shock announcement has brought forth sharp criticism from peak Jewish organisations in Australia including the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ),  the Zionist Federation of Australia (ZFA) and the Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC) – as well as a blistering attack by Opposition Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop.

Ms Bishop has released correspondence disclosing that Senator Carr did not seek any advice from the International Law Office within the Attorney General’s Department – relying instead only on legal advice supplied by his own Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) – before committing Prime Minister Rudd and the Labor Party to the policy enunciated at the Lakemba Mosque.

DFAT legal advice had only looked at the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention and their applicability in the West Bank. It had failed to consider the relevance and applicability of article 6 of the Mandate for Palestine and article 80 of the United Nations Charter which preserves the right of Jews to live in the West Bank conferred on them by the Mandate.

If you only consider half the law – you can only provide the Minister with half an answer that can turn out to be totally unreliable – as has happened in this case.

DFAT, Senator Carr, Prime Minister Rudd and the Labor Party were obviously unaware of a letter signed on 22 July by more than 1000 prominent international lawyers and politicians addressed to Baroness Catherine Ashton  – High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President  of the European Commission (EC).

In their letter the signatories asserted that Jews are legally entitled to live in the West Bank and questioned the relevance and the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

The signatories stated:

“The long-held view of the EU as to the illegality of Israel’s settlements is a misreading of the relevant provisions of international law, and specifically Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which is neither relevant to the unique circumstances of Israel’s status in the area, nor was it ever applicable, or intended to apply to Israel’s circumstances in Judea and Samaria (The West Bank – ed)”

Senator Carr needs to explain how he could “unequivocally ” commit the Labor Party to a policy based on the Fourth Geneva Convention when its applicability had been thrown into grave doubt by the Ashton letter – and especially as no binding legal decision exists that supports the DFAT advice given to Carr.

But the signatories went even further in making it very clear that Jews had the legal right to live in the West Bank:

“The legality of Israel’s presence in the area stems from the historic, indigenous and legal rights of the Jewish people to settle in the area, as granted in valid and binding international legal instruments recognized and accepted by the international community. These rights cannot be denied or placed in question. This includes the 1922 San Remo Declaration unanimously adopted by the League of Nations, affirming the establishment of a national home for the Jewish People in the historical area of the Land of Israel (including the areas of Judea and Samaria and Jerusalem) as well as close Jewish settlement throughout. This was subsequently affirmed internationally in the League of Nations Mandate Instrument, and accorded continued validity, up to the present day, by Article 80 of the UN Charter which reaffirmed the validity of the rights granted to all states or peoples, or already existing international instruments (including those adopted by the League of Nations). “

Who in DFAT provided Senator Carr with legal advice that failed to even consider these highly relevant international legal instruments?

Both Senator Carr and Mr Rudd have so far failed to disclose when the Labor Party adopted this contentious and controversial  policy before it was announced at the Lakemba mosque.

Whilst Senator Carr makes no apologies for this policy – the Labor Party has clearly not made its decision after carefully considering all the relevant international law dealing with the issue.

Repeating the mantra that Jewish settlements in the West Bank are illegal in international law may bring the Labor Party crucial votes – especially in tightly held Labor marginal seats where large Moslem populations reside.

But this policy could also prove electorally damaging if it was made on the run without any detailed policy formulation to enable it to stand up to the intense scrutiny that every piece of policy announced by any party must inevitably be subjected to from the media, the voters and affected interest groups.

The Lakemba Mosque Declaration smacks of political opportunism thrust onto an unwitting and unprepared Labor Party on the steps of the mosque.

Senator Carr and Mr Rudd now need to answer four questions well before voting day:

1.    On what date was the Lakemba Mosque Declaration adopted as Labor Party policy?
2.    Who were the persons present when such policy was adopted?
3.    What international law was relied on to enable the Labor Party to “say unequivocally” that Jews had no legal right to live in the West Bank?
4.    Is the Labor Party prepared to review its policy in view of the flawed advice given to it by DFAT?

The ECAJ, ZFA, AIJAC, the Opposition and the media should all be demanding those answers.

Senator Carr’s controversial Lakemba Mosque Declaration has clearly upset many voters – who find it abhorrent that the Labor Party should unapologetically espouse a policy that denies Jews have the legal right to live in their biblical, historic and legally sanctioned homeland.

Policy on the run is certainly a recipe for electoral disaster.

David Singer is a Sydney Lawyer and Foundation Member of the International Analysts Network


28 Responses to “Palestine – Carr’s Lakemba Mosque Declaration – Policy On The Run?…asks David Singer”
  1. Michael says:

    The reality is whilst we are being invaded by predominately Islamic born Boat people the Muslim population closer to 700,000 according to a Muslim based survey a few years back the Bob Carr’s of this world will be only taking the Palestinian narrative into account just like in UK.

  2. Ian says:

    I wrote to Dan Caddy, Labor Candidate for Stirling re Israel’s legal right to live in the West Bank.

    My email stated “I am concerned about the statements made by Senator Bob Carr.
    Please answer four questions well before voting day:
    1. On what date was the Lakemba Mosque Declaration adopted as Labor Party policy?
    2. Who were the persons present when such policy was adopted?
    3. What international law was relied on to enable the Labor Party to “say unequivocally” that Jews had no legal right to live in the West Bank?
    4. Is the Labor Party prepared to review its policy in view of the flawed advice given to it by DFAT?”

    Below is the response I received.

    —–Original Message—–
    From: []
    Sent: Monday, 19 August 2013 4:02 PM
    Cc: removed;;
    Subject: Federal Labor’s position on Palestine and the Middle East Peace Process

    Firstly let me thankyou for your email, I can see that this is an issue that is dear to you. I have received advice from our Minister’s office which I have included below. I appreciate that it does not specifically address the questions you have posed, but I hope it clearly articulates what the position is.


    The Rudd Labor Government strongly supports a negotiated two-state solution that allows a secure Israel to live side by side with an independent future Palestinian state. We welcome the fact that both sides have returned to direct negotiations.

    Leadership from the United States, particularly the Secretary of State John Kerry, has been crucial to bringing the two sides to the negotiating table.

    Prime Minister Netanyahu confirmed his government’s commitment to a peaceful two-state solution.

    President Abbas said the Palestinians were prepared to implement all their commitments and obligations.

    Federal Labor has consistently called on both sides to refrain from action that undermines prospects for negotiations
    Israeli settlement activity, which threatens the realisation of a two-state solution.
    Palestinian leaders also need to prevent rocket attacks from Gaza and to avoid provocative unilateral actions in international forums.

    Federal Labor considers a negotiated two-state solution is the only way to realise a Palestinian state.

    The Labor Government’s decision to abstain on the 2012 Palestinian statehood resolution balanced Australia’s support for a future Palestinian state and our view that the only way to achieve the reality of statehood for the Palestinians is direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

    The Federal Labor Government has repeatedly called on Israel to stop settlement activity, noting that its settlements are illegal under international law, including amounting to a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and that settlement activity undermines the prospects for peace.

    Australia’s aid program will provide $300 million in assistance to the Palestinian people over five years (2011-2016), including $120 million in direct budget support to the Palestinian Authority.

    Australia provides practical assistance to build stronger civil institutions and to prepare for eventual statehood.



    • David says:


      Congratulations on a great initiative by you to write to a Labor candidate posing the four questions Labor needs to answer.

      Even Mr Caddy acknowledges that the reply he sent you fails to deal with the four questions you asked.
      I feel sorry for him being let down by his Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister.

      One can only assume that this confirms that the policy announced at the Lakemba Mosque was made on the run.

      Perhaps a few other readers should be asking their local Labor candidates the same four questions to see what response they get.

      • Otto Waldmann says:

        Highly intellectually inspired, this Mr. Caddy just carries loyally his Party’s so called message, what else is a Caddy supposed to do.
        Trouble is that the “message” reads just like an outdated news bulletin, the “contribution” of the caddy/messenger being NOTHING.

        ….and these blokes reckon they can “lead” us with virtues of the mental type they reckon are above average !!!!!!

        Yeah, they are being polite. So is the doorman at any RSL Club.

  3. Gil Solomon says:

    I disagree.

    Carr and Rudd don’t need to answer anything before election day.
    Additionally, communal organisations have no need to ask any questions.
    All the to-ing and fro-ing and endless rationalising that is going on means squat.

    The facts of life are that the Left will always be hostile to Israel, it’s in their DNA.

    The prime example is the left wing Democratic Party in the USA.
    It is no friend of Israel.
    It might have been once, a long long time ago.

    Haven’t Jews learnt anything yet?
    If anyone votes for Labour, Greens or for any other rag tag socialist bunch, be assured that if elected their policies will not be pro Israel.

  4. Liat Nagar says:

    Great four questions to ask, David, and yes they need answering. Bob Carr is always too quick to shoot his mouth off in such authoritative manner. He’s not up to his job at all and it will be a great relief if and when he no longer has it.

  5. danny kidron says:

    Typical of Labor: big on tactics; devoid of stratagy.

  6. George says:

    I have discussed at length common misconceptions and fabrications regarding the inapplicability of the 4th Geneva Convention,along with the kernel concepts of “Occupied Territory” and “Illegal Settlements” under customary and prevailing International Law on this site.
    I think one needs to start at the beginning, with the Primary Sources, to come to the logical conclusions.

    One can’t start at 4th Geneva Convention ex nihilo. One must start with the complex concept of “Occupied Territory” under the Laws and Customs of War (Hague II, 1899), from which “Illegal Settlements” might (or might NOT) be derived, and only then move to the Convention. Then the conclusion fit quite nicely into place.

    I am happy to argue this case with any reader. But please get the history, and the prevailing International Law right, at the outset.

    Please read the Article, which can be found here:

  7. Ben David says:

    Here you go again David

    Carr probably didn’t need the advice of the DAFT at all. He merely needs to know that the Art80/Mandate point (a writ large for the right wing settler movement) has been discredited more times than it gets regurgitated.

    For an easy to understand set of reasons on why the argument fails, folkes can google an article by a Prof Nathaniel Berman titled: “San Remo in Shilo: The settlements and legal history” published on line in the Times of Israel.

    The letter from 1000 so called (unnamed) experts Singer refers is merely a set of conclusions with no reasoning and carries little weight against a 100 page ICJ opinion plus opinions from plenty world renouned legal experts (including some from Israel and Australia) who disagree.

    Not a word of the letter is original and anyone with knowledge of this subject will know that it just repeats discredited arguments that have been deployed by the hard right in Israel for decades.

    • David says:

      Ben David

      Here you go again Ben David

      Stigmatizing the Mandate and article 80 argument as “a writ large for the right wing settler movement”and saying the letter signed by 1000 signatories” carries little weight against a 100 page ICJ opinion” is a poor attempt by you to mislead readers.

      For the record:

      1 The 100 page ICJ judgement never considered the Mandate and article 80 argument for one simple reason – the ICJ was not even provided with copies of the Mandate and article 80 in the dossier of documents submitted to the ICJ by then UN Secretary General Kofi Annan.

      Like the DFAT advice – the ICJ provided its opinion on only half the law.

      2. The Mandate and article 80 argument was considered by the ICJ in another case in 1971 which concluded:

      “As indicated earlier, with the entry into force of the Charter of the United Nations a relationship was established between all Members of the United Nations on the one side, and each mandatory Power on the other. The mandatory Powers while retaining their mandates assumed, under Article 80 of the Charter, vis-à-vis all United Nations Members, the obligation to keep intact and preserve, until trusteeship agreements were executed, the rights of other States and of the peoples of mandated territories, which resulted from the existing mandate agreements and related instruments …”

      I hope you don’t characterise the ICJ as part of the right wing settler movement.

      Your attempt to denigrate the 1000 signatories to the Ashton letter as carrying little weight because the letter has relied on the 1971 Advisory Opinion of the ICJ shows again highlights the shallowness of your claims.

      I have previously trashed your argument regarding Berman’s article and don’t intend to do that again.

      The ICJ has spoken clearly on the Mandate and article 80 in its 1971 decision – and Jewish settlement in the West Bank finds continuing support for Jews to legally live there pursuant to such provisions.

      DFAT has chosen to ignore the 1971 Advisory opinion.

      I wonder why.

      It would have made more sense for them to consider it and dismiss it as irrelevant and give reasons for coming to that conclusion.

      The suspicion is they never considered it because they were simply unaware of its existence.

      The lightweight appears to be DFAT – not the 1000 signatories to the Ashton letter.

  8. Alan says:

    Anyone (such as Bob Carr) who can see merit is awarding an international peace prize to Hanan Ashrawi never has been, and never will be, a friend of Israel.

    And the same applies to Kevin Rudd if he remains silent on this issue and fails to censure his Foreign Minister.

  9. Bernhard says:

    It is so very sad that a political party that was founded on high ideals has become so corrupted by opportunistic leaders, who will say and do almost anything to gain power. The best hope for the Labour party is that so many of its current leaders are sent packing in the election, and fresh new leaders with principles and brains emerge.
    This is another example of the chaotic state of the labour party, and the arrogance of its ministers.

  10. Sam says:

    David Singer asks who in DFAT provided the legal advice concerning the illegality of the westbank settlements . The ultimate culprit I am afraid is an American by the name of Herbert J. Hansel the then legal advisor to the US State department during the Carter administration who in 1978 in response to a US Congress inquiry issued an opinion that …” The establishment of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territories is inconsistent with international law .” That opinion of course used as its basis Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva convention . Refer to

    To my knowledge that opinion has never been revoked or revised by successive US administrations though curiously President Ronald Reagan said he disagreed with its tenets when he said that the settlements were “not illegal”.

    Sam Salcman

    • David says:


      Two matters:

      1. Hansel’s opinion based on the 4th Geneva Convention was that the settlements were “inconsistent with international law” – not “illegal in international law” as the Labor Party policy declares. Hansel had no binding legal decision to rely on to support his view The Labor party has no binding legal decision to rely on to support its policy.

      1100 signatories to the Ashton letter do not agree with the Hansel opinion or the Labor Party policy – but are unanimous that Jews do have the right to live in the West Bank as prescribed by article 6 and article 80.

      2. Hansel never considered article 6 of the Mandate for Palestine and article 80 of the UN Charter in tendering his opinion. This failure to consider also happened with DFAT and also the International Court of Justice. Burying article 6 and article 80 appears to be inconsistent with undertaking a proper consideration of the legal right of the Jewish people to live in the West Bank.

      The Levy Report is the only legal opinion to my knowledge that has considered the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention, article 6 and article 80 in depth.

      The Report concluded:

      “We do not believe that one can draw an analogy between this legal provision ( 4th Gemeva Convention) and those who sought to settle in Judea and Samaria not as a result of them being “deported” or “transferred” but because of their world view – to settle the Land of Israel.”

      If there are any other opinions – I would be pleased to be informed of them.

      The fact that no proceedings have been instituted in any court during the last 46 years to declare that Jews do not have the legal right to live in the West Bank speaks volumes about the chances of success by those making the claim.

      As they say in the classics – let them put up or shut up.

    • George says:

      The US does not make International Law, and WIKIPEDIA is a tertiary source, not Primary, not Secondary. You cannot seriously use this as a reference . In addition, despite it (WIKI) being a fantastic achievement, it is well known that the ME Region articles have been hijacked by Anti-Israel editors. Not surprised they end up with an obscure figure of the Carter era against “Settlements”. This is not helpful…It is counter-productive.
      I have discussed all this in an article on International Law, precisely with the intent to provide ammunition to pro-Israel Advocates against these common charges and falsehoods, first on ICJS website and on JWire, right here:

      A more current revision can be found here:

      Let me simply say that after reading all the pertinent International Law, the Hague Regulations of 1899 and 1907 on the Laws and Customs of War, The League Mandate, the UN Charter (especially Article 80), the 4th Geneva Convention, The Jordanian-Israeli General Armistice Agreement, and more, all referenced as Primary Sources, plus general Secondary sources (aka “History”), I have come to the following conclusions, which I give as a teaser, to get people to read the full article for themselves.

      ” In conclusion, we must forever abandon the following popular myths, misconceptions and fabrications:

      1. The UN never “created” the State of Israel.

      2. The so-called Occupied Territories were illegally seized and annexed by Transjordan, and then captured by Israel, after two (2) illegal wars of aggression. They have been returned to their rightful owner as per the League Mandate for Palestine. Under customary International Law, they do not fit the criteria of Occupied Territory.

      Israel is in possession of no Occupied Territory.

      3. As a logical corollary of the above, there being no Occupied Territories, then can be no such thing as “Illegal Settlements”.

      4. Israel has never violated the 4th Geneva Convention (in any case, an inapplicable Convention).

      Finally, as a result of reviewing these Primary sources – in addition to Secondary historical sources:

      4) There is no basis whatsoever for a second Arab State in former British Mandatory Palestine (Jordan being the first). ”

      George Peters
      Aug 19, 2013

  11. Phillip says:

    Policy on the run seems to be par for the course with the Rudd Labor Government. That is why so many of their policies fall with even cursory examination.

  12. Maurice says:

    Who were the signatories of the League of Nations in 1922. and was it recognised since by the UN.

    • David says:


      The Mandate for Palestine was unanimously endorsed by all 51 Members of the League of Ntions.

      Those countries were:

      Albania, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, British India, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Italy, Japan, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, Latvia, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Persia, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Republic of China, Romania, Siam, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Union of South Africa, United Kingdom, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

      The provisions of the Mandate were preserved by article 80 of the United Nations Charter and are still as relevant in 2013 as they were in 1922.

      • George says:

        There are only two binding instruments of Internal Law pertaining to Palestine as a Jewish National Home, the San Remo Declaration of April 25, 1920:

        ” The Mandate for Palestine was based on this resolution; it incorporated the 1917 Balfour Declaration and implemented Covenant of the League of Nation’s Article 22. Britain was charged with establishing a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. Terroritorial boundaries were not decided until four years after.” (CFR);

        GP: not so sure about four years after…the League Mandate was enacted July 24, 1922…but it is true the boundaries were certainly not defined at San Remo and remain to this day a subject of dispute, specifically the piece of the Mandate assigned to the Hashemite Emir Abdullah i.e was this ever really a part of what was envisaged as a reconstituted Jewish National Home ? The Zionist received wisdom says yes (and I too, always thought that, but I am reviewing this now. On this see League Mandate Article 25) and ;
        The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine adopted July 24, 1922, endorsing Article 22 of the Covenant the League itself (part of which reads:
        “Certain communities formerly belonging to the Turkish Empire have reached a stage of development where their existence as independent nations can be provisionally recognized subject to the rendering of administrative advice and assistance by a Mandatory until such time as they are able to stand alone. The wishes of these communities must be a principal consideration in the selection of the Mandatory. “).

        Also highly relevant are the Treaties of Sevres and Lausanne, with Turkey, and the 1924 Anglo-American Agreement, in which America – not a Member of the League – formally endorsed the League Mandate for Palestine, an explicit statement of intent of Agreement with the League Mandate. Such Treaty becomes the “supreme law of the land” , per Article 6 of the US Constitution.

        All these instruments continue to remain binding today, like it or not, and as David has said, remain enshrined in Article 80 of the UN Charter, to wit:
        Article 80

        1. Except as may be agreed upon in individual trusteeship agreements, made under Articles 77, 79, and 81, placing each territory under the trusteeship system, and until such agreements have been concluded, nothing in this Chapter shall be construed in or of itself to alter in any manner the rights whatsoever of any states or any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments to which Members of the United Nations may respectively be parties.

        2. Paragraph 1 of this Article shall not be interpreted as giving grounds for delay or postponement of the negotiation and conclusion of agreements for placing mandated and other territories under the trusteeship system as provided for in Article 77.

        • David says:


          The Mandate for Palestine included the territory of Transjordan until it was granted independence by Great Britain in 1946.

          By virtue of article 25 the provisions of the Mandate relating to the reconstitution of the Jewish National Home in Transjordan were postponed or withheld – just three months after the Mandate was adopted by the unanimous vote of every member of the League of Nations.

          That is how 78% of Palestine originally to form part of the area in which the Jews were to establish their National Home was denied to the Jews. The other 22% – today called Israel, the West Bank and Gaza remained designated as the area in which the Jewish National Home would be reconstituted.

          Considering Jews were only going to get self determination in 0.01% of all the captured Ottoman territories whilst the Arabs were getting 99.99% – a further reduction of 78% of .01% promised to the Jews indicates the raw deal the Jews received.

          The Arabs never agreed that this deal in relation to the Mandates for Palestine, Syria and Mesopotamia made at the San Remo Conference as embodied in the Treaty of Sevres was fair – and still don’t until today.

          They want 100% – not 99.999%. That is their prerogative – but where has it got them after 90 years of intransigence and rejectionism?

          Bet DFAT apparently have no idea of these facts and aspects of binding international law when they tendered the flawed advice to Bob Carr that made him run off to the Lakemba mosque to announce Labor’s policy on the run.

          Labor can adopt whatever policy it likes – on the run or after a proper and considered review. It must however answer to the electorate for its decision.

          When policy is made on the run -‘the result as in this case is clear for the voters to see.

          • George says:

            David – thanks, I think we are in general agreement.
            Having written a long Article on this subject (below), and once again reviewed the Primary and Secondary sources, one thing can be stated with absolute certainty, insofar as International Law is concerned (and while a boring subject, it is the basis of much of the delegitimization of Israel). This is quite extraordinary actually, as there is very little that can be stated with such certainty when it comes to International Law, typically a filed clouded in uncertainty and grey zones.

            The various post WW1 Treaties, Mandates, Conventions and Agreements quoted in my article irrevocably grant all of Former British Mandatory Palestine (excluding the severed Emirate of Transjordan) as the reconstituted Jewish National Home. This includes Gaza, Judea and Samaria, in addition to the current truncated State of Israel. They have never been negated by any subsequent supercessionary binding legal instrument, au contraire, they are enshrined in UN Charter Article 80.

            This in itself puts the lie to the myths of “Occupied Territory”, or “Illegal Settlements”, and by implication, the inapplicability of 4th Geneva Convention of 1949. (How can you transfer population to your own land?)

            I have also gone into the Laws and Customs of War (Hague II), Peace Treaties (Jordan), League Mandates and other matters to prove this case, and will not repeat them here (can read the article).

            Certainly Israel has shot itself in the foot more than once, providing abundant ammunition to our opponents (both within and outside Israel), not least being the failure to annex the illegally taken lands after their re-capture in 1967, based on flawed advice from “Military Advocate-General, Meir Shamgar, later the President of the Supreme Court of Israel, in particular, Articles 42 and 43 of the Hague Regulations.” (Howard Grief, 2010), Begin’s proposal of granting limited autonomy to residents of Gaza, Judea and Samaria, followed by the most catastrophic policy failure in Israel’s history, the delusions of Oslo.

            On this greatest of fiascoes, from a psychiatrist’s perspective, please see:


            The article I wrote can be found on this website, URL below, and I strongly recommend that people take the trouble to read Howard Grief on this matter, probably the leading expert on this far too tortured subject.


            Thank you.

          • David says:


            A few words of caution.

            The Churchill White Paper June 1922 should be read by you.

            The following quote is particularly appurtenant to your comment:

            “Unauthorized statements have been made to the effect that the purpose in view is to create a wholly Jewish Palestine. Phrases have been used such as that Palestine is to become “as Jewish as England is English.” His Majesty’s Government regard any such expectation as impracticable and have no such aim in view. Nor have they at any time contemplated, as appears to be feared by the Arab delegation, the disappearance or the subordination of the Arabic population, language, or culture in Palestine. They would draw attention to the fact that the terms of the Declaration referred to do not contemplate that Palestine as a whole should be converted into a Jewish National Home, but that such a Home should be founded `in Palestine.'”

            This was to be the justification for denying the Jewish National Home to be reconstituted in 78% of the Mandate for Palestine by the inclusion of article 25 in the Mandate document.

            It was a political decision made by Britain to accommodate the French request to stop Abdullah – and an armed band accompanying him – in Transjordan on the way to Damascus to help his brother Feisal in his struggle with the French.

            One can certainly construe that having set aside 78% of Mandatory Palestine for an exclusively Arab state – the remaining 22% – today’s Israel, the West Bank and Gaza – was slated to become the Jewish National Home – as you claim.

            One can also look at the West Bank and Gaza as the last two remaining areas of the Mandate remaining unallocated between Jews and Arabs whose sovereignty is to be determined.

            I take the latter view as the most appropriate way to try and end the Jewish-Arab conflict..

            The Arabs have rejected compromises offered to this effect in 1937, 1947, 2000 and 2008. They could have had such a territorial allocation of the whole lot between 1948-1967 when not one Jew lived in the West Bank and Gaza.

            How many more chances are they to be offered to continue to reject before the world says “enough”?

            Bob Carr may be an avid student of American history.

            His performance at the Lakemba Mosque indicates he has no real knowledge of the history of Palestine but has become captive to Arab propaganda that has sought to rewrite history as though it never happened.

            Bob Carr with his Lakemba Mosque Declaration seems to indicate that our Foreign Minister is prepared to go to extraordinary lengths to involve the Prime Minister and the Labor Party in tying itself to a policy that Jews have no legal right to live in the West Bank – when the Churchill White Paper made it very clear they did.

        • ben eleijah says:

          Strangely Israel does not present the documents in the UN or before the ICJ to claim the right to dispossess Palestinians.

  13. steve says:

    As I have said before.
    when labor are thrown out, carr can spend alll day every day with his mates in lakemba

    • George says:

      David – We are not in disagreement. I am familiar with the Cairo Conference of 1921, and the subsequent (Churchill) White Paper of 1922. I have written extensively of the many offers made to the Arabs from 3 separate juridical entities (UK – Peel), UN (partition) and Israel many times, most recently under Olmert in 2008, a total of 6 such offers, by 3 separate entities, over 3 generations of Arab Leadership. It is clear they don’t want a state, certainly not one that is a subset of former British Mandatory Palestine. I have spread this all over Facebook Advocacy Groups and in two articles published here (URL’s below) and other website (ICJS). I have even used the same words you have, with which I agree wholeheartedly, and repeat:

      “The Arabs have rejected compromises offered to this effect in 1937, 1947, 2000 and 2008 (GP: you missed 1967 NO, NO, NO and Taba 2001). They could have had such a territorial allocation of the whole lot between 1948-1967 when not one Jew lived in the West Bank and Gaza.

      How many more chances are they to be offered to continue to reject before the world says “enough” “.

      As I have said elsewhere, we judge them by their deeds, not by their words. In my first and second articles I also used almost similar language to you, very early (did you read them )?

      My second Article (URL below) :
      “We note in passing that this UN Resolution was the second of six (6) offers (to date) of Palestinian Arab statehood, the first in 1937, the most recent in 2008. Some might want to ask our opponents why such a State has been rejected so many times, over so many generations of Arab Leadership. The answer might prove interesting. Since deeds speak louder than words, it appears that they do no want one, not one that is a subset of former British Mandatory Palestine. And indeed they say it themselves when they spruik “Palestine from the River to the Sea”.

      I am also familiar with the “alleged” reasons for Transjordan, to wit:
      1)Alleged fulfillment of McMahon’s promises to Hashemite Sherif Hussein as payback for the so-called Arab Revolt against the Turks (the Lawrence of Arabia theatrics),
      2) Not wanting France to have the total land mass from Syria to Saudi Arabia (and so, to the Red sea)
      3) The untimely ouster of Feisal from Syria, and
      4) subsequent threat by Abdullah to march on Syria subsequent to the above, a war the British neither needed not wanted.
      A plethora of reasons. I will say that this is a complex and muddy area, worthy of an entirely separate discussion.

      For the record , here is Grief, 2004:
      “The 1920 (Franco-British Boundary) Convention also included Transjordan in the area of the Jewish National Home, but a surprise last-minute intervention by the US government unnecessarily delayed the confirmation of the pending Mandate. This gave an unexpected opportunity to Winston Churchill, the new Colonial Secretary placed in charge of the affairs of Palestine, to change the character of the Mandate: first, by having a new article inserted (Article 25) which allowed for the provisional administrative separation of Transjordan from Cisjordan; second, by redefining the Jewish National Home to mean not an eventual independent Jewish state but limited to a cultural or spiritual center for the Jewish people. These radical changes were officially introduced in the Churchill White Paper of June 3, 1922 and led directly to the sabotage of the Mandate. Thereafter, the British never departed from the false interpretation they gave to the Jewish National Home which ended all hope of achieving the envisaged Jewish state under their auspices.”

      In any case its not pertinent to the issues of “Occupied Territory”, “Illegal Settlements” and 4 Geneva Convention, which started this thread, and were also the exclusive subject of my second article. I really do know all of this, but I can’t repeat it all in every Forum – you’ll just have to take my word for it.

      I am not 100% sure that the 1922 Memorandum was to justify the severance of Transjordan. There was always controversy from the time of Balfour 1917 of the phrase “in Palestine”. Once again, it belongs in another discussion – this thread, as I see it, is about the borders of Palestine ex-Transjordan. As I see it, no Jews is claiming that land today. I continue to maintain, as above, there is no question however, that all of current Israel, Gaza, Judea and Samaria were irrevocably granted to the Jews, and never overturned by any binding instrument. No Occupied Territory, No Illegal Settlements, No Violation of Geneva Convention, and finally, and most important, no need or basis in Law, for a second Arab State in Palestine.

      Regardless, the severance of Transjordan was but the first in a long line of efforts to undermine and sabotage the spirit of the Mandate, followed by Peel partition proposal, the infamous White Paper of 1939, the refusal to accept refugees in post WW2, and much more. In passing the the UN GA Res 181 (a “recommendation”, only) is a total outrage, offering a subset of the Jews full entitlement under the Mandate. To this day, I wonder why people get so excited about it, yet another undermining of the League Mandate.

      Re “One can also look at the West Bank and Gaza as the last two remaining areas of the Mandate remaining unallocated between Jews and Arabs whose sovereignty is to be determined.”

      Not sure if I grasp this. I don’t see anything to be determined based on International Law. Israel might – in an act of collective national suicide – choose to to give them away as it did in 2000 and 2008 (luckily rejected, else there’d be no State of Israel today), but it is under no binding legal obligation to do so, there is absolutely no question of sovereignty (as there was in Sinai, by way of contrast). I and many other scholars have tried make this point, irrefutably.

      As you can see, I am totally opposed to the so-called Two State Solution (TSS) – there already is a second State, and and Arab State – in Arab-Palestine as of 1921. That this is not a “Palestinian State” is hardly a problem of the Jews making. It may well even be the solution. (but again, another issue).

      Also, I prefer the terms Judea and Samaria for the reasons I have given here (even UN GA Res 181 does!). If Jews can’t do this, they are accepting the Palestinian propaganda (aka narrative, aka discourse). Next, we’ll be calling Jerusalem Al Quds.

      Calling things by their right names – Judea and Samaria

      I recommend the articles I have written, and have added a paper by Howard Grief, and a book, Palestine Betrayed (i.e betrayed by its own successive generations of leadership), which covers the true story of 1947/48 and beyond. Karsh is a hero of the Jewish People. They both are. We have extensive discussion on these matter Facebook ICJS page, ICJS website and elsewhere.

      First here is Part 1 of a series I wrote (2011) (easy to read, only 2 pages, more Op Ed style):

      And Part 2, much longer and technical on post WW2 matters pertaining to International Law (by necessity, technical):

      Howard Grief:

      Legal Rights and Title of Sovereignty of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel and Palestine under International Law

      and the superb Efraim Karsh:

      Palestine Betrayed

      Finally, as an American citizen (dual) and also an avid student of American History, I am also prepared to take Carr on that matter (for the record however, my own personal specialty happens to be the Holocaust. Mid East somewhere behind that).

      Thank You.

      • david says:


        You state:

        Re “One can also look at the West Bank and Gaza as the last two remaining areas of the Mandate remaining unallocated between Jews and Arabs whose sovereignty is to be determined.”

        Not sure if I grasp this. I don’t see anything to be determined based on International Law.”

        Recognition of the West Bank and Gaza as unallocated territory of the Mandate whose sovereignty is to be finally resolved in accordance with the provisions of the objectives of the Mandate – as preserved by article 80 – is the legal view of Rostow and Riebenfeld.

        I agree with that view.

        Israel and Jordan as the two successor states in 95% of the Mandate territory are the appropriate parties to resolve sovereignty in the remaining 5% – the West Bank and Gaza.

        Two peoples – the Jews and the Arabs need two states – not three – in the area of Mandatory Palestine.

  14. Rita says:

    A vote for Labor = a vote for Bob Carr = a vote for the Greens = a vote for Judenhass.

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