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100 Years After Balfour we should reflect, not celebrate

A new film by the Independent Jewish Voices argues that this year’s centenary of the Balfour deceleration is a time for reflection, not celebration

October 9, 2017 at 4:32 pm

A new film by the Independent Jewish Voices – a network of Jews in Britain with a shared commitment to human rights and a just and peaceful solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict – screened at MEMO’s Balfour conference highlights the legacy of the 1917 Balfour Declaration.

Starring Jon Snow, Avi Shlaim and Jacqueline Rose, “100 Years After Balfour” argues that this year’s centenary is a time for reflection, not celebration.

On 2 November 1917 Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour delivered a letter to the Zionist Federation promising British support for a home for the Jewish people in Palestine.

Read more: MEMO hosts ‘Palestine, Britain and the Balfour Declaration 100 years on’

This letter and the subsequent decisions made by the British government were linked to the 1948 establishment of the state of Israel and the years of occupation that followed.

Professor Shlaim said: ‘This autumn, many in the Jewish community as well as the UK government are celebrating this centenary.”

“This new film by Independent Jewish Voices shows that a significant minority of Jews in Britain take a different view, seeing this as a time to reflect on the profoundly negative consequences of the Balfour Declaration, especially for the Palestinians.’

Screenings will be taking place in November, including on Friday 17 November at the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image.