Canadian/Israeli Lawyer to PM Harper
From Howard Grief
As a devoted friend of the State of Israel who has earned the everlasting gratitude of the Jewish People for your outspoken and unstinting support of the Jewish State of Israel in the face of its many detractors, I wish to bring to your kind attention the most important document of international law that paved the way for the establishment of an independent Jewish State in what was known in the past as Palestine. This document is the San Remo Resolution that was adopted at the San Remo Peace Conference on April 25, 1920 by the Prime Ministers of Great Britain (David Lloyd George), France (Alexandre Millerand) and Italy (Francesco Nitti), as well as Japan, represented by its Ambassador, K. Matsui.
This peace conference was convoked for the express purpose of carving up the defeated Ottoman Empire and distributing mandates for the new states that were then being created. Among those states was Palestine, which the Supreme Council of the Principal Allied Powers had decided would become the Jewish National Home and future independent Jewish State, as evidenced by the recorded minutes of the Conference. That, it must be emphasized, was the sole reason Palestine was created as a mandated state, and not for any other reason. The same San Remo Resolution adequately met Arab national aspirations by also creating the new states of Syria and Mesopotamia, later re-named Iraq, in addition to those already being established in the Arabian Peninsula, Egypt and North Africa, numbering 21 in all.
By virtue of the San Remo Resolution, the Arab peoples received more than 95 percent of the territories comprisng the Middle East, while Palestine was allotted exclusively for Jewish self-determination, as can easily be verified by the statements made by those British and other Allied leaders who at the time were instrumental in crafting the global political and legal settlement for the Middle East, that resulted from the adoption of the San Remo Resolution.
How important was the San Remo Resolution? It was, as just indicated, the document that shaped the modern Middle East and as regards Palestine, it was described as “the Magna Carta of the Zionists” or the national charter of freedom of the Jewish People by the British Foreign Secretary, Lord George Nathaniel Curzon, in a letter to Prime Minister David Lloyd George shortly after the San Remo Peace Conference. As a result the legal existence of the State of Israel is directly traceable to the San Remo Resolution and not, as commonly believed, to the UN General Assembly Partition Resolution of November 29, 1947.
It is also very important to understand that there was never any intention to create an Arab state in Palestine. The Mandate for Palestine incorporated the San Remo Resolution in the first three recitals of its Preamble and was, in fact, a detailed elaboration of it. As just noted, Arab self-determination was fully satisfied in the adjoining territories of Syria, Iraq and Arabia, but Palestine was reserved exclusively for the Jewish People to reconstitute the ancient Jewish State of Judea destroyed by Rome, as stated by Lord Arthur James Balfour himself.
As the foundation document of the State of Israel under international law, the San Remo Resolution continues in force till the present day mutatis mutandi, with the State of Israel taking the place of the Mandatory Power, Great Britain, for putting into effect the Balfour Declaration in all parts of Palestine, especially in Judea and Samaria, the ancient cradle of the Jewish People.
All Jewish legal rights to Palestine set down in the San Remo Resolution and the Mandate Charter and related documents were preserved intact by Article 80 of the UN Charter, as well as under the doctrine of estoppel and Article 70(1)(b) of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. That means it is illegal to create a 22nd Arab state in Judea and Samaria that was part and parcel of the Jewish National Home, as explicitly determined by the Franco-British Boundary Convention of December 23, 1920.
Mr. Prime Minister, your support of Israel will be even more pronounced upon your acquainting yourself with the provisions and principles of the basic documents of international law that led to the creation of the State of Israel, that are either ignored today or willfully dismissed by most Western Governments. You can gain additional information about these documents by consulting my book, The Legal Foundation and Borders of Israel under International Law (2008). While Jewish legal rights are firmly implanted in international law, there is, on the other hand, no binding document of international law that provides for the creation of a new Arab state in former Mandated Palestine. In this respect, UN resolutions do not constitute international law, nor does the Road Map Peace Plan or other similar initiatives.
In these days of incessant attacks upon the legitimacy of the State of Israel, and repeated calls for Israel to withdraw to what are clearly indefensible “Auschwitz-like” borders that existed prior to the outbreak of the Six-Day War on June 5, 1967, the lies and fabrications concerning Israel can be effectively refuted by citing the true meaning of the San Remo Resolution and the Mandate for Palestine, which designated Palestine as the Jewish National Home. Israel’s rights to the land cannot be legally taken away by the UN or by any other body, just as Canada’s rights to its own land cannot be legally taken away by the UN. If reality were otherwise, the rights of all states would be in jeopardy.
I urge you, therefore, Mr. Prime Minister, to mention the San Remo Resolution whenever you relate to the question of who has the right to Palestine and the Land of Israel. That right belongs exclusively to the Jewish People and its devolee, the State of Israel. No new Arab state can thus be legally created in Judea and Samaria, where it would imperil Israel’s very future and serve as a means to destroy it, as is evident to any impartial observer.
Howard Grief, Attorney
Resident of Jerusalem, Citizen of Canada and Israel