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Heir to throne deplores US ‘Jewish lobby’

Articles from Jewish Chronicle and Mail on Sunday


Qatar’s Sheikh Abdul Rahman Bin Saud Al Thani escorts Prince Charles and his wife Camilla in Doha on Wednesday, March 13th, 2013.

Prince Charles’s controversial view on Jews ‘not his own’

By Ben Weich, Jewish Chronicle
November 16, 2017

Prince Charles blamed an “influx of foreign Jews” to the Middle East as a cause of unrest in the region and called for the “Jewish lobby” to be challenged, it has been revealed.

The Prince of Wales made the comments in a letter to his close friend, the author Laurens van der Post in 1986.

The letter, published in the Mail on Sunday last weekend, was written as the prince was returning from a tour of Arab countries, during which he had “learnt a lot about the Middle East and Arab outlook” and had begun “to understand their point about Israel”.

The prince wrote: “I now appreciate that Arabs and Jews were all a Semitic people originally [and] it is the influx of foreign, European Jews (especially from Poland, they say) which has helped to cause the great problems.”

“Surely some US president has to have the courage to stand up and take on the Jewish lobby in the US?”
Prince Charles

He appeared to suggest that Jewish influence in the United States had helped created conditions in which Arabs were driven to commit terrorist acts. He wrote: “I know there are so many complex issues, but how can there ever be an end to terrorism unless the causes are eliminated.

“Surely some US president has to have the courage to stand up and take on the Jewish lobby in the US?”

The letter was uncovered from a public archive, and was written following an official visit the then-38-year-old royal made to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar with Princess Diana.

A statement from Clarence House said the opinions expressed in the letter were “not the Prince’s own views” but instead the reflected opinions of those he met on his trip.

Prince Charles met with the new King, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on Feb 10 2015. Photo by Rex

It said: “The letter clearly states that these were not the Prince’s own views about Arab-Israeli issues but represented the opinions of some of those he met during his visit which he was keen to interrogate.

“He was sharing the arguments in private correspondence with a long-standing friend in an attempt to improve his understanding of what he has always recognised is a deeply complex issue to which he was coming early on his own analysis in 1986.”

It added that he has a “proven track record” of support for both Jewish and Arab communities.

Sources close to Prince Charles said friendships with Jewish figures, including the writer Simon Sebag Montefiore, meant he now held very different views on Israel and the Jewish community.


Prince Charles suggested ‘influx of foreign Jews’ was partly to blame for Middle East unrest and asked who will take on ‘Jewish lobby’ in America in letter to close friend

  • A letter penned by Prince Charles in 1986 reveals his views on the Middle East 
  • The letter was written to his mentor, the Afrikaner explorer Laurens van der Post
  • He argues that the exodus of European Jews helped cause unrest in the region
  • He also writes his hopes that the ‘American Jewish lobby’will be stood up to
  • ‘Jewish lobby’ is considered by some to be an anti-Semitic term, often criticised 
  • But Charles has always had a good relationship with the UK Jewish community

By Ian Gallagher Chief Reporter, the Mail On Sunday
11/ 13 November 2017

A letter penned by Prince Charles in 1986 reveals his views on the Middle East
The letter was written to his mentor, the Afrikaner explorer Laurens van der Post
He argues that the exodus of European Jews helped cause unrest in the region
He also writes his hopes that the ‘American Jewish lobby’ will be stood up to
‘Jewish lobby’ is considered by some to be an antisemitic term, often criticised
But Charles has always had a good relationship with the UK Jewish community
Prince Charles was fiercely criticised last night after it emerged he once urged the US to ‘take on the Jewish lobby’ – and blamed ‘the influx of foreign Jews’ for causing unrest in the Middle East.

The Mail on Sunday can reveal the incendiary comments are contained in a letter in which the Prince lays bare his thoughts on one of the world’s most bloody disputes.

Writing to his close friend Laurens van der Post in 1986, the Prince makes a startling assessment of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

He argues it was the exodus of European Jews in the middle of the last century that ‘helped to cause the great problems’.


Desert Storm: Charles and Diana visit Saudi Arabia in 1986, pictured, the year he wrote his controversial letter

He goes on to say terrorism in the region will only end when its causes are eliminated.

He then expresses the hope a US President will find the courage to stand up to the American ‘Jewish lobby’.

The term ‘Jewish lobby’ is considered by many to be antisemitic – suggesting wealthy Jews in the US operate behind the scenes to exercise undue influence over government policy.

Other high-profile figures have been heavily criticised for using the term.

Last night, Stephen Pollard, influential editor of The Jewish Chronicle, said: ‘To me this is the most astonishing element of the Prince’s letter. The “Jewish lobby” is one of the antisemitic themes that have endured for centuries. It is this myth there are these very powerful Jews who control foreign policy or the media or banks or whatever.’

Mr Pollard described the letter as ‘jaw-droppingly shocking’, adding: ‘That they [the Prince’s comments] come from the heir to the throne is unsettling, to put it mildly.’

While the letter is inflammatory, there is no suggestion Charles holds antisemitic views.

He has many prominent Jewish friends and in 2013 became the first Royal to attend a chief rabbi’s inauguration ceremony. In a speech that year, he expressed concern at the apparent rise of antisemitism in Britain.

In the past it has been reported that the Prince is privately critical of US policy in the Middle East, with one diplomatic source accusing him of having ‘fairly dodgy views on Israel’.

Charles has always enjoyed a close and supportive relationship with the Jewish community in Britain.


New Start: Israel promised a home to tens of thousands of refugees

At the same time, he is seen as a defender of Islam, with one historian noting that no other major Western figure has as high a standing in the Muslim world.

It has also been suggested he has pro-Palestinian leanings, a perception the letter appears to support.

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