Lloyd George, Herbert Samuel and Palestine: background and legacy

What role did Liberals play in the Middle East settlement after the First World War? In 1917, the Lloyd George Coalition Government announced its support for the establishment of a ‘national home for the Jewish people’ in Palestine, then an Ottoman region with a small minority Jewish population. This was the ‘Balfour Declaration’, named after Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour.

After the defeat and dismemberment of the Ottoman Empire, the new League of Nations established a mandate for British administration of the territories of Palestine and Transjordan, and Britain governed the region until 1948. The first High Commissioner was Herbert Samuel, a former Liberal MP and minister, and later (1929–35) leader of the Liberal Party. He held the High Commissioner post from 1920 to 1925.

Discuss these topics with Dr Peter Shambrook, an independent scholar and historical consultant to the Balfour Project, which works to advance equal rights for all in Palestine/Israel. He is the author of Policy of Deceit: Britain and Palestine, 1914–1939 (2023).

Those unable to attend in person will be able to view the meeting via Zoom; a registration link will be posted here nearer the time. For those attending in person, there is no need to register.