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One on One: Britain, Palestine and a history of broken promises

The United Kingdom played a pivotal role in the dispossession of the Palestinian people and the Zionist takeover of historical Palestine, says Middle Eastern historian Peter Shambrook.

Speaking with Middle East Eye Columnist Peter Oborne, Shambrook says that British policymakers reneged on their pledge to make Palestine part of the Arab world in the Hussein–McMahon correspondence.

The Hussein–McMahon correspondence had promised an Arab state to Sharif Hussein of Mecca if he helped the British fight against the Ottoman Empire, Shambrook says.

Despite the promises, two years later British Prime Minister Lloyd George's government declared that historical Palestine would be for the global Jewish community.

"The British basically offered the Sharif an independent Arab state or states if, at the end of the war, he and the Hejazi people would revolt against the Ottomans," Shambrook said.

"He kept his side of the bargain and we [the United Kingdom] didn't."
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