February 24, 1921

Winston Churchill Thanks Pro-Zionist Ormsby-Gore for Accepting Post to the Permanent Mandates Commission Responsible for Palestine

Autograph Letter Signed
1 page
SMC 294
Here the new Colonial Secretary, Winston S. Churchill, appointed 11 days before, offers thanks on behalf of Prime Minister David Lloyd George, to William George Ormsby-Gore, Lord Harlech, for accepting the post of British Representative to the Permanent Mandates Commission. He has duly informed the Secretary to the Cabinet, Sir Maurice Hankey, who will notify Arthur Balfour, Lord President of the Cabinet.
The Permanent Mandates Commission was the result of the defeat of Germany and the Ottoman Empire in World War I. It divvied up, and oversaw the administration, of the former German and Ottoman possessions. Four of the mandated territories were in the Middle East; two were given to Britain to run, more or less autonomously, like colonies; one was Palestine - and it is here that Ormsby-Gore’s appointment was significant. He was Pro-Zionist. Orsmby-Gore had helped write the Balfour Declaration in 1917; served as Whitehall's liaison officer to the 1918 Zionist mission; and had been a member of the British delegation to the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. His appointment to the sensitive Mandates Commission post, from which he would oversee the Palestine mandate, must be viewed, then, as constituting a pro-Zionist policy decision by His Majesty’s Government in 1921. Things, then, began well: but it wouldn’t last.
Autograph Letter Signed, as Colonial Secretary, 1 page, octavo, on the embossed letterhead of the Colonial Office, Downing Street, S.W. [London, England], February 24, 1921. To William George Ormsby-Gore, Lord Harlech.
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