Memorandum Prepared in the Department of State

Palestine: Immigration

(A Summary)

The opposition of Arabs to Jewish immigration and the demands of Jews in Palestine, Great Britain, and the United States for unlimited Jewish immigration and for the revocation of the immigration clauses of the White Paper of 193922 seem to indicate the necessity for the formulation of a policy with respect to Jewish immigration to Palestine.
It is recommended, that under the proposed post-war settlement for Palestine as an International Territory under Trusteeship, limited Jewish immigration be permitted in conformity with a statement of principles with respect to immigration incorporated in the Charter for Palestine. Immigration of Jews would be permitted under the general principle that the basic consideration governing immigration [Page 685]should be the general welfare of the people of Palestine judged on the basis of the economic requirements of agriculture, commerce, and industry for immigrants.
This recommendation is made:
because unlimited Jewish immigration would result in economic instability and political unrest leading to violence.
because there is now overcrowding on Arab land and provision must be made for the rapidly increasing Arab population before immigration is permitted except on a limited scale.
because of the shortage of housing, food, and other consumer goods.
because, after the war, Palestine will face a difficult period of industrial readjustment and the serious problem of employment for thousands of demobilized soldiers and other war workers.
because until large-scale land reclamation projects are carried out and until there is a large expansion of Palestine industry Palestine cannot support any large number of immigrants.
  1. British Cmd. 6019 (1939): Palestine, Statement of Policy.