British life-style: Down with Lord Balfour!

10:02 10.03.2024 •

Pro-Palestine protesters have sprayed and slashed the University of Cambridge's historic painting of British statesman Lord Balfour (photo) who paved the way for a Jewish state in the Middle East.

Protest group Palestine Action shared a video of a demonstrator destroying the portrait and spraying it with red paint.

A woman is seen on the footage slashing the painting with a sharp object before spraying paint from a can over Balfour's face.

The Conservative politician gave his name to the Balfour Declaration – a public statement issued by the British government to create a 'national home for the Jewish people' in Palestine, paving the way for the founding of Israel in 1948, notes ‘The Daily Mail’.

The declaration, made in 1917, was contained within a letter from Balfour to Lord Rothschild, a British Jewish leader.

Among the declaration's lasting consequences was increased support for Zionism within the Jewish community, and it formed part of the founding of Mandatory Palestine.

Balfour succeeded his uncle Lord Salisbury as Prime Minister in 1902 and served until his resignation in 1905.

He later became foreign secretary under David Lloyd George, but was excluded from the small war cabinet and the inner workings of government.

The oil on canvas painting, currently housed at the University of Cambridge, was by artist Philip Alexius de Laszlo and was completed in 1914.

Since the start of the Israel-Hamas war, over 30,000 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza.

Palestine Action said it 'vowed to continue their direct campaign' which it said was in response to the presence of Elbit Systems, an Israeli arms supplier, in Britain, ‘The Daily Mail’ informs.

It wrote: “Arthur Balfour, then UK Foreign secretary, issued a declaration which promised to build 'a national home for the Jewish people' in Palestine, where the majority of the indigenous population were not Jewish. He gave away the Palestinians homeland — a land that wasn't his to give away.

'After the Declaration, until 1948, the British burnt down indigenous villages to prepare the way; with this came arbitrary killings, arrests, torture, sexual violence including rape against women and men, the use of human shields and the introduction of home demolitions as collective punishment to repress Palestinian resistance.

'The British were initiating the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, fulfilling the Zionist aim to build their 'home' over the top of what were Palestinian communities, towns, villages, farms and ancestral land, rich in heritage, culture and ancient archeological history.

'The Palestinians refer to this time as the Nakba — which translates into the great catastrophe.

'Elbit Systems, Israel's largest arms supplier, who use captive Palestinians in Gaza as a human laboratory to develop their weapons, use Britain as a manufacturing outpost.

'The Israeli weapons maker build weaponry in factories across the country and work closely with the British government.

'Palestine Action vows to continue their direct campaign until Elbit is shut down and British complicity with the colonisation of Palestine ends.”


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