800.00 Summaries/5–1348: Circular telegram
The Secretary of State to Certain Diplomatic Offices 1
Daily Report Palestine (infotel):
Arab Situations—Internal weaknesses in various Arab countries make it difficult for them to act in Pal. Whole govt structure Iraq is endangered by political and economic disorders and Iraq Govt can not at this moment afford to send more than handful of troops it has already dispatched. Egypt has suffered recently from strikes and disorders. Its army has insufficient equipment because of its refusal of Brit aid, and what it has is needed for police duty at home. Syria has neither arms nor army worthy of name and has not been able to organize one since French left three years ago. Lebanon has no real army while Saudi Arabia has small army which is barely sufficient to keep tribes in order. Jealousies between Saudi Arabs and Syrians on one hand and Hashemite govts of Transjordan and Iraq, prevent Arabs from making even best use of existing forces. Without Brit officers, Transjordan army will not make as good a showing as it would otherwise since organization of army depends on Brit officers in key [Page 984] positions. This does not mean however that over long period Jewish State can survive as self-sufficient entity in face of hostility of Arab world. If Jews follow counsel of their extremists who favor contemptuous policy toward Arabs, any Jewish State to be set up will be able survive only with continuous assistance from abroad.
Your comment on above estimate would be appreciated.
- At London, Arab capitals, and Jerusalem.↩