Biltmore Program

Biltmore Program
   After World War I, when the British mandate replaced Ottoman rule in Palestine, the focus of Zionist political and diplomatic endeavor was Great Britain. However, during and after World War II, political necessity and reality resulted in a shift in focus to the United States. The Biltmore Program was adopted by the Extraordinary Zionist Conference in New York on 11 May 1942 in response to Great Britain's policy toward the Jewish national home, particularly the restrictions on land sales and immigration (see ALIYA) imposed on Jews in the White Paper of 1939. The program became the basis for Zionist effort until Israel's independence and was a harbinger of change. It rejected efforts to restrict Jewish immigration and settlement in Palestine and called for the fulfillment of the Balfour Declaration and the mandate, urging that "Palestine be established as a Jewish Commonwealth." The Biltmore Program reflected the urgency of the situation in which the Jewish leadership found itself as a consequence of the Holocaust and the need to provide for the displaced Jews of Europe.

Historical Dictionary of Israel. .

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