Reprisals And Revolt
The Duce Is " Shocked," But Not The Vatican
From Our Diplomatic Correspondent
Terrorism has broken out again in Palestine. The Mufti of Jerusalem has fled to Beirut disguised as a Bedouin, and the neighbouring Arab States are in sympathy with their fellow-Arabs in Palestine. The Cairo students have organised demonstrations against the British Tripartite Plan.
The Italian and German Press are making the most of the British repressive measures and there are rumours that the Mufti will appeal for help to Mussolini.
In Palestine it may be said that the British lion's tail is being tweaked with a vengeance—and Signor Mussolini, it seems, cannot refrain from taking the opportunity of pulling her leg. In the Popolo d'Italia of October 18 appears what The Times calls a highly coloured report of the latest developments in Palestine. The Popolo d'Italia comments on the report as follows: The news which comes from Palestine cannot but arouse a profound sense of horror throughout the civilised world. The measures which for thousands of years have assured justice to civilised humanity are openly violated by these proceedings by which innocent citizens are summarily punished for a responsibility which is not theirs, and whole streets are razed to the ground. . . ." If " Abyssinia " or " G uernica " were written in place of " Palestine," the quotation ivould have a familiar ring—as the Popolo intended, no doubt. The comment concludes with the words: " If, because of an attempt committed at a European airport, a road or a quarter in one of the cities of Europe were destroyed, a wave of indignation would rise against those responsible. What constitutes an offence against civilisation in Europe is an offence against civilisation also in Palestine. Nobody has entrusted to anyone the mandate to spread destruction and carnage in the Holy Land. We wait to see if the Anglican prelates in the name of the Holy Gospels, and the democratic Press in the name of the immortal principles, approve the neo-Ilerodian horrors in the Holy Land."
RESISTANCE WILL CONTINUE --SAYS GERMANY The German Press also is proving that the English have no monopoly in preaching. The Volkischer Beobachter writes that the Mufti is today the most talked-of man of the Islam world. The British hate and fear him, the Arabs praise and respect him. It is not true, as the European papers say that the Mufti was "created" by Sir Herbert Samuel, High Commissioner in Palestine.
Although he could have become a respected and pampered protege of the British, he never gave up his endeavours to rid Palestine of foreign domination. The resistance against partition will continue unabated. The Mufti's power is based not on his offices, but on his personal position.
The Osservatore Romano, however, makes the following balanced comment on the Palestine situation: " What will be the outcome of the present policy of force? In the past, a policy of force has not had encouraging results. This time, however, it is in a large measure justified by the necessity of checking the renascent terrorism."
The main danger of the present situation lies in the fact that the neighbouring Arab States are for the most part in sympathy with the Arabs in Palestine. The Mufti may try to resume his political activity from Beirut, though the British are relying on the French authorities there to keep a check on him. The Arab centre of antiBritish action at Damascus will have to be carefully watched,
It is also to be remembered that Italy has interests in Palestine and may be disposed to use the British troubles there as a weapon against England in other diplo
matic questions. Italy may also have reason to support King Ibn Saud, who is claiming Akaba, the British Naval base on the Rut Sea.