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Anglo-Jewish foreign policy in crisis - Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18

Mark Levene

<plain_text><page sequence="1">Anglo-Jewish foreign policy in crisis? Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18* MARK LEVENE 'The lights are going out all over Europe. They will not be lit again in our lifetime.' Sir Edward Grey's lament on the collapse of European diplomacy as the Continent plunged into the Great War has become a hackneyed commonplace. But worse than that, as 1914 recedes into the almost distant past, we take increasingly for granted the enormity of the political, economic and psycho? logical effects of the war on the fabric of the old order. We know for instance that by 1916 the strain had led not simply to the collapse in Britain of the Asquith government and its replacement by that of Lloyd George, but also to an entirely different approach to the war, which in itself heralded the arrival of a different set of values and concepts of how society ought to be run in peacetime. War, it seemed, had knocked the stuffing out of the old patrician order, and with it a lot of its implicit trust in, and ideological subservience to, the rights of the individual, laissez-faire, the idea of lineal progress, and other elements assumed to comprise liberalism. It is tempting therefore to see the problem which beset Anglo-Jewry at this period as a microcosm of the wider British scene. One could, in the same way, construct a comparative model in which the two chief British spokesmen on the Jewish question, the liberal Lucien Wolf, and the Zionist, Chaim Weizmann, are to be seen as equivalents of Asquith and Lloyd George respectively. Such a construction is all the more tempting when we look at the principles for which the two Jews stood, and how these fared in the face of war. Lucien Wolf, 'the adviser for the millennium of assimilation',1 saw his world disintegrate around him. Listen to him for instance at the outbreak of war: 'The whole thing is so stupendous that it fairly staggers me. It is not only the carnage that will be frightful but the economic exhaustion and the starvation which will be infinitely worse, and then when peace comes, the desolation and certain revolution everywhere... there will be no choice between the military dictator and the socialist.'2 Moreover, Jewish history books3 tell us that Wolfs wartime quest for a liberal solution to the Jewish question collapsed with the demise in * Paper presented to the Society on 15 November 1984. 179</page><page sequence="2">Mark Levern the summer of 1917 of the Conjoint Foreign Committee of British Jews, the official foreign-policy body of Anglo-Jewry, of which he was director. By contrast, Chaim Weizmann does not seem to have had any illusions about, or indeed to have lost sleep over, the situation of European Jewry. Starting out from the essentially pessimistic core of Zionist philosophy which states that Jews were and would remain unassimilated within their host nations, Weizmann seems to have had his plans for British governmental sponsorship of a Jewish national home in Palestine mapped out almost from the outbreak of war. 'I am going to fight openly and sans treve\A he wrote in November 1914 of his chief anti-Zionist rivals, Wolf and the Conjoint. How 'openly' is perhaps uncertain, but 'fight' is certainly the operative word, and not just in relation to his co-religionist adversaries. In this way he seems not only to have been following in the path of Lloyd George, but actually to have been caught up and subsumed within the latter's wider war policy: Weizmann in pursuit of a Jewish national home, and Lloyd George of victory, both instinctively prepared to pursue an aggressive if emergency conduct of the war and of wartime diplomacy. Essentially pragmatic and reactive to the changing exigencies of this situation, Lloyd George got his victory, and Weizmann, as part and parcel of that victory, his British sponsorship. The Asquith/Wolf, Weizmann/Lloyd George model therefore has obvious attractions. It seems to contrast the dynamic with the static, the winners with the losers, the forward-looking makers of history with the traditionalists clinging to a useless past. Is this then the end of the story? The model could help us parcel up some complex historical personalities and events into a chapter of neat Whig history. The victors can justifiably be remembered as significant and worthy of our attention, the losers forgotten, consigned, in Simon Schama's words, by much of Jewish historiography, 'to that dismal oblivion reserved for losing sides'.5 It must, I think, be evident that I have suggested this model only in order to undermine it. Yet it is compelling, and contains important and relevant insights. But to what extent does it give us a clearer understanding of the fabric of Anglo-Jewish society under the stress of war? It is my contention that there has been far too little historical research or scrutiny?at least until quite recently?6 of the losers in this episode. We have of course been told a great deal by Zionist historians of how Wolf and his allies fought Weizmann and his party, but we know very little of how they responded to the general crisis of war, the degree to which they coped with it or changed their policies because of it. We assume that they succumbed, and that that was the end of it. My research suggests that this was very far from the case: that Wolfs wartime diplomacy at the Conjoint, in spite of very great difficulties, developed 180</page><page sequence="3">Luden Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 into something flexible, dynamic and at times highly sophisticated, and that both it and the structure in which it operated were a good deal more resilient than has to date been thought. Indeed, it was so resilient that in 1919, at the head of a new Joint Foreign Committee, Wolf became the prime and crucial Jewish player in the creation of the Minorities Treaties. There is not space here to develop this argument fully. What I instead propose is to discuss the nature of the wartime crisis?for crisis it certainly was?and then to give a few indications of the way it was partially if not totally overcome. In order to do that we need to look briefly at the background of the Conjoint Committee, and to find out how it functioned. The Conjoint Foreign Committee of British Jews was founded in 1878 on a particular premise about the relationship between Anglo-Jewry and the British nation-state: namely, that a special consonance and identity of interest existed between British and British-Jewish interests, and that this could be translated in terms of British foreign policy into not only sympathetic, but active and indeed decisive, intervention on behalf of persecuted Jewry abroad. With hindsight, this concept seems remarkable for its naivety. Yet in 1878 the idea of such a consensus represented not simply the culmination of a process of Jewish social and political integration into British public life, but the logical next step forward. The battle with the forces of conservatism and tradition, both within the community and in British society at large, had been won, and Anglo-Jewry, it seemed, could look forward to a future of prosperity, prestige and, above all, continued acculturation and acceptance. What better than, with the blessing and assistance of Her Majesty's Government, to export the values of liberalism which had brought them to this happy goal? The aim was a mirror image of what was happening elsewhere, notably in France with the Alliance founded in 18 71, and in Germany with the Hilfsverein in the 1890s. In all three countries the core membership of these organizations tended to come from the most acculturated and economically successful elements in Jewish life. In England, for instance, the Conjoint?presided over and peopled successively by Rothschilds, Cohens, Montefiores and Goldsmids? was a thoroughly patrician committee, and although liberalism was certainly close to its heart, its undemocratic and inegalitarian nature seems to have been of little concern, as will be discussed later.7 The important aspect to note here is that these nascent Jewish organizations confidently assumed that their respective governments could be persuaded to act, on their behalf, and would do so not simply out of pragmatism, but from what was considered the most altruistic of motives. Moreover, certain clauses of the 1878 Treaty of Berlin pertaining to Romania seemed to bear this out. Acting in consort, the European powers had at one strebe emancipated one of the most hard-pressed Jewish populations in Eastern Eurqpe. This represented 181</page><page sequence="4">Mark Levern for the western Jewish organizations a first signal victory. It could? superficially?hardly be counted as diplomacy at all: more the intervention of a political pressure group. Sir Francis Goldsmid had written a letter to the Foreign Secretary, Lord Derby, and his ministry and its Great Power counterparts had accepted the proposition. The truth of how the emancipation clauses had been won, including the strenuous behind-the-scenes manoeuvres of the German Jewish banker, Gerson Bleichr?der, were either not generally known or conveniently forgotten.8 Hardly had this victory been achieved, than the fabric of this special consensus started tearing apart at the seams. It is difficult to pinpoint what exactly went wrong, but I think one may, with hindsight, speculate that the failure to have the emancipation clauses of the Berlin Treaty genuinely implemented, and to stem the tide of Russian Jewish emigration to the West, increasing as Czarist anti-Jewish legislation intensified, were only symptoms of a much deeper and wider European crisis. We will not here go into the various economic, social or demographic factors, for from the point of view of the Conjoint it was political change which struck hardest. The erosion of the Concert of Europe, and its gradual replacement by two intensely rival power blocs, ensured that German- or French-Jewish pressure groups on either side of the divide, would be not only unable, but in fact latterly quite unwilling, to work together. Moreover, in the uneasy, untrusting atmosphere which characterized turn-of-the-century diplomacy, their common interest in a solution to the Jewish question in Russia, Romania or elsewhere would always, in Lucien Wolfs words, be sacrificed to 'some international calculation'.9 The situation, we may note, has some acute parallels in the present day. Britain was not at first included in this framework of alliances, and even after the understandings reached with France and Russia in the 1900s, continued to claim a freedom of policy which in turn ought to have given the Conjoint some scope for manoeuvre. In practice, however, this had become entirely illusory well before the 1907 entente with Russia. Repeated requests to the Foreign Office for assistance in intervening even in the case of threatened pogroms met with the stock rejoinder that such action 'would be calculated to cause irritation and be considered an unwarrantable act of interference on the part of a foreign power in the internal affairs of Russia'.10 If Anglo-Jewry had aspired to British patronage in the age of Palmerston and Disraeli, it clearly had to lower its sights in the era of the Anglo-Russian entente. Much more damaging and significant for the Conjoint, however, was the psychological blow delivered by the fact that great liberal Britain could ever have reached an understanding with reactionary, anti-Semitic Czarism. 'If we once compromised', wrote Wolf in 1911, 'on the question of the moral foundations of all politics, whether national or international, our case for our 182</page><page sequence="5">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 oppressed co-religionists, wherever they may be, will be gone.'11 The committee was, after all, the very embodiment of the traditional Anglo-Jewish value system and its aspirations. Yet here, in the entente, was a direct challenge to everything in which it believed, thrusting it back on the defensive, and indeed putting its very survival in the gravest doubt. Moreover, thirty years from its inception, it could claim a rate of success of almost zero. It had failed to gain Romanian-Jewish emancipation, hadfailed to persuade the Czarist regime to dismantle the Pale of Settlement, and had failed as a consequence to stem the vast influx of East European Jewry, which, again in Wolfs words, threatened to 'swamp and transform the high English character of the community'.12 It had failed through its parent organization the Anglo-Jewish Association, and its international link the Jewish Colonization Organization?ICA?to have them successfully settled en masse in far-away Canada or Argentina. As a further consequence, it had failed, or so it seemed, to prevent the development and spread of a native anti-Semitism, in the first instance directed at the new immigrants, but by various insinuations and vituperations in the national press?for instance at the time of the silver bullion and Marconi scandals in 1912-13?clearly intended for the Anglo-Jewish establishment itself.13 Perhaps not surprisingly, therefore, the Conjoint, from the early 1900s, began to come under increasing criticism from within the community, and indeed to become the target of all those who were discontented or disaffected with the establishment's response to the new challenges and problems. The critics noted that it was the product of a coup by the elitist Anglo-Jewish Association, to the detriment of the older, synagogally elected, Board of Deputies, and that its composition, formed and subject to annual renewal between the two parent organizations, was thoroughly weighted in favour of the Association. They challenged its ageing exclusivity: some of the original 1878 members, such as Benjamin Kisch and Isaac Seligman, were still there in 1914.14 They disliked its furtive secrecy and the fact that its important business was more and more being taken out of the hands of the committee at large, to be decided by a smaller 'inner camarilla', as Greenberg of the Jewish Chronicle disparagingly referred to its presidents, David Alexander and Claude Montefiore, and its vice-president, Leopold de Rothschild.15 They bemoaned, as did Joseph Co wen at an AJA meeting in 1913, its emphasis on prestige and tradition and its failure to act on the matter in hand.16 A few even went so far, as did the Haham, Dr Moses Gaster, to suggest that there might be a contradiction between what they did as Jews and what they did as Englishmen.17 Interestingly, however, the critics of the establishment did not for the most part doubt the point of having an Anglo-Jewish diplomacy, or share the immigrant community's inclination towards mass action and demonstration as the most appropriate way of protesting their concern for their Jewish 183</page><page sequence="6">Mark Levern co-religionists abroad. The debate about diplomacy, as characterized in Greenberg's Jewish Chronicle, tended, at least until 1914, to be conducted within the ranks of the old community, and to be more about 'how' and 'by whom' than 'why'. It was partly in order to salvage some of the Conjoint's reputation that Lucien Wolf began, from about 1903 onwards, to be drawn into its workings. Wolfs national and international reputation as a diplomatic expert, founded on many years of work as foreign editor of a number of leading newspapers and journals, made him not simply the outstanding but possibly the only choice for the task.18 Indeed, Wolf had the ability, through his knowledge of FO procedure and protocol, and more importantly through his access to its higher echelons, to transform an otherwise amateur and motley pressure-group into an authentic shadow Foreign Office. The career of Lucien Wolf thus marks a major watershed in the history of Anglo-Jewish foreign policy. But his arrival was not without its problems, and was, in many ways, a reflection in miniature of the wider communal crisis. Wolf was already a well-known and controversial figure within Anglo Jewish life, and had in the first decade of the century been at the centre of a series of disputes on, among other things, Zionism, Itoism and Jewish involvement in the Russian revolution of 1905. His growing, albeit honorary, role?Wolf was never elected to the Conjoint Committee?was greeted with alarm and mistrust by many of the communal dissenters, including the influential Leopold Greenberg. Much more fundamentally, his elevation to the Conjoint was flawed by a potentially fatal paradox. .Wolfs journalistic reputation had been built up in the era of Lord Salisbury, the last great flash of 'Splendid Isolation', when Britain had eschewed all but imperial commitments abroad. Wolf had been at one with this policy, had had excellent relations with the FO, and indeed, had even on one occasion been referred to by one French diplomat as Lord Salisbury's mouthpiece.19 But his increasing commitment to the Conjoint came at a time when Britain was rushing to cement the relationship with Russia, something Wolf not only objected to, but in his column in the Graphic and Daily Graphic virulently opposed. He was hardly alone in this. All the great liberal commentators of the era deplored the entente. But Wolfs position was made quite distinct by a twofold contradiction. Firstly, Wolf was by day attacking Sir Edward Grey's ministry, while by night, as it were, supplicating it to act on his committee's behalf. Perhaps he believed that his polemic journalism and his Conjoint work could be kept in separate compartments. We know, however, from the minutes of FO officials of this period that they viewed it otherwise, and were increasingly at pains to keep him at arm's length in whatever capacity he approached them.20 Secondly, if he was so public in his attacks on the Anglo-Russian entente?he was, after all, 184</page><page sequence="7">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 responsible for Darkest Russia, a monthly bulletin discreetly backed by AJA sources,21 and which might today be akin to an anti-apartheid news sheet?how could the special consensus between Anglo-Jewry and British foreign policy be sustained? This contradiction for Wolf, the Conjoint and the community was brought to a head in August 1914, in a thoroughly explosive manner. We have seen that the Conjoint and the community for which it spoke were, in their relationship with the Gentile world, already in a state of acute crisis. The Great War did not simply add a new dimension to this state of affairs, but took on a shape and character of its own. More correctly, though, we should perhaps be speaking of two related crises, one of the war itself, and a further one, of its prolongation and the consequences of that prolongation. The first of these crises was, in its simplest, perhaps most crude, terms, the result of the war's being fought on the wrong side. By any reckoning the fact that the war was being fought at all was a disaster: from the specific point of view of Anglo-Jewish politics however, the constellation of forces could not have been worse. Britain in August 1914 was going to war not only on behalf of Czarist Russia?where Jews remained persecuted and unemancipated, restricted in their movement and for the most part denied the right to economic self-improvement?but against Germany, a country where the assimilation and acculturation of Jews was proceeding almost unchecked and with whom Jews in Britain had a range of friendly economic, social and intellectual contacts. 'We protest with all of our might', ran the Jewish Chronicle leader on 31 July, 'against the mere thought of spilling blood or the squandering of resources in order that the Slavs may maintain their position against the Teutons and an effete and barbarous autocracy be sustained on a tottering throne. We have no interest in the upholding of Russia and far less the debasing of Germany... with whom [Britain] has no quarrel whatsoever.'22 On top of the actual crisis of war, therefore, and the fact that the great mass of Jews in Central and Eastern Europe would be caught in a des? tructive pincer-grip between the two sides, and that this would cause immense practical problems for Anglo-Jewish diplomacy, there was, in a sense, a much more serious psychological test, one which threatened to destroy the whole structure upon which Anglo-Jewry's mental if not physical well being had been built. It is easy to forget, until such events as the Falklands war of the 1980s remind us, how otherwise quite calm and rational people can be swept up into a state of xenophobic, jingoist near-hysteria. Those outside this essentially tribal mechanism?in our case, East End and immigrant Jewry, with their foreign, rather German-sounding names?became obvious targets. But the fact that establishment Jews, who would earnestly identify themselves with the majority culture, had been prominent in the efforts to heal the prewar breach with 185</page><page sequence="8">Mark Levern Germany,23 meant that they too found themselves open to chauvinist attack and anti-Semitic insinuation. Wolf was a classic example. His long-standing journalistic sympathy for the Kaiser's Germany, and his last-minute denunciation of a war against her and Austria-Hungary, led to a torrent of abuse from the patriotic press. Despite twenty-five years of service to the Graphic and Daily Graphic, he found himself within a few weeks out of work, the target of an anonymous denunciation as an unregistered alien and German spy, and on one occasion, the late-evening host to two special-branch men ordered to investigate him.24 Wolfs case is not unusual, and his response is typical of that adopted by established Anglo-Jewry. We know that non-Jewish radical journalists and dissenters kept up their opposition to the war, mostly in the forum of the Union for Democratic Control. And we know further that Wolf secretly supported them.25 In public, however, he did entirely the opposite, almost immediately getting to work on a propaganda pamphlet which laid all the sins of anti-Semitism not at Czarist Russia's but at Wilhelmine Germany's door.26 Almost overnight Wolf had turned from peace-lover and critic to war-monger and patriot. What then had happened? Simply this. Under the stress of war, the famous consensus between Anglo-Jewry and its host nation had been shown not only to have been fragile but to have completely collapsed. The psychological weight of this, however, was too difficult to bear, and rather than acknowledge it, English Jews did what might be expected of very frightened people: they covered their tracks and attempted to compensate for their loss of credibility by being more British than the British, more patriotic than the patriots. Every organ of Anglo-Jewry participated in this shifting of the ground?the Jewish Chronicle and the various communal institutions?and where the behavioural shift did not take place, namely in the immigrant community, the establishment went to enormous lengths to dragoon or coerce them. The ensuing efforts to recruit un-naturalized Russian-born Jews for the war effort are a saga by themselves. Where did all this leave Wolf and his Conjoint Committee? By a paradox, Wolfs abrupt removal from his journalistic work left him free to be employed as a fulltime paid director of the Committee's wartime office, another major step in its professionalization. But if it was a loyal agent of Britain at war, it would presumably have to keep silent on any matter of importance. 'We trusted', proffered Wolf in his only interview with the new foreign secretary, Arthur Balfour, in January 1917, 'that there would be no dissonance between the interests of the Allies in the war and the interests of the Jews, but we realized that if such a dissonance arose it was our duty to subordinate Jewish interests to the interests of our native country and of its allies.'27 The real contradiction, which Wolf could not publicly confess to, was certainly eased a 186</page><page sequence="9">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 few months later, first by the overthrow of Czarism and its replacement by a liberal regime committed both to Jewish emancipation and to the vigorous pursuit of the war, and secondly, by democratic America's entry into it on the side of the Allies. Unfortunately these changes had come too late to scotch the now persistent and prevalent idee fixe of the British political establishment that Jewry in England, America, Russia and elsewhere, was either passively supporting or actively working for a German victory. The wartime diaries and memoranda of Buchanan, Bertie and Spring-Rice, the British ambassadors in Petrograd, Paris and Washington respectively, all bear this out.28 And when Russia began disintegrating under the strain of war in mid-1917, the pro-German Jewish bogeyman simply re-emerged in their minds, this time in the shape of the revolutionary Russian Jew, intent on taking Russia out of the war and making a separate peace with the Central Powers. Which takes us to our second major, though related, crisis for Anglo-Jewish foreign policy: the prolongation of the war. When Wolf prophesied its consequences back in 1914, he had foreseen the emergence of socialism and military dictatorship. Whether he had seen either of these in the guise of the new ultra-nationalist frameworks, we cannot know. What we do know is that by mid-1917, the stress of war, particularly on the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires, was making their disintegration a major probability, and that this was already leading the Western Allies to consider filling the political vacuum with clients of their own choice. The recasting of Central and Eastern Europe in a jigsaw of new territorial units, with political endorsement in President Wilson's enunciation of national self-determination, was, with hindsight, an absolute nonsense, given the multiplicity of nationalities inhabiting this vast region. They could not all be given national states, and this would inevitably mean that some would remain as permanently frozen minorities in potentially ultra-nationalist entities, while others, finding themselves on the wrong side of the border, would continue to fan irredentist desires from their brethren over the frontier. For the Jews, who remained a substantial minority throughout the region, the long-term consequences would go far beyond anything wrought by the dislocation and desolation of the war itself. They would, for instance, as one Russian-Jewish commentator put it, 'no longer be a considerable minority of six million in a big empire, but a series of small minorities in many little countries'.29 Their economic, social and cultural unity would be entirely disrupted. And the main beneficiaries in the recasting were likely to be a new state of Poland and an enlarged Romania, the latter having entered the war in 1916 on the side of the Allies, on the undertaking that she would receive vast chunks of Habsburg and Bulgarian territory. In this likelihood lay further damage for the whole concept on which the 187</page><page sequence="10">Mark Levern Conjoint Committee had been founded. Traditionally their view of the Jewish impasse in Eastern Europe had been that it was simply a question of civil and political emancipation, preferably guaranteed by international protocol. Yet here, at the end of 1917, such emancipatory clauses would clearly be insufficient, doubly so when we remember the sort of client cliques to which the Allies were on the brink of giving legitimacy. Thus, for instance, in relation to Poland the Allies had declined contact with the more liberal, Pilsudski faction, represented in London by August Zaleski, which they deemed too pro-German, in favour of the right-wing and virulently anti-Semitic Polish National Committee. Their link-man with London was Roman Dmowski, who had been responsible for the anti-Jewish economic boycott in Poland in 1912 and who was notorious for his public utterances calling for a repolonized and recatholicized Poland purged of alien elements.30 Wolf knew full well that even an international protocol which gave Jews equality before the law would be so framed and interpreted in a Dmowski sense as to disallow their political participation, the free use of their language in a social context or in the market place, or indeed any form of social or economic movement, except as emigrants. Romania was no better. The emancipatory clauses of 1878 remained a dead letter, and the refusal to guarantee the civil and political rights of Jews and other minorities in territories gained in the Balkan wars of 1912-13 provided a gloomy idea of what was likely to be in store for Jews in Habsburg territory earmarked for Romanian takeover.31 Here again, the pro-Allied party as led by Ion Bratianu was the most virulently anti-Semitic. So, paradoxically again, given the collapse of the Russian liberal regime in the late autumn of 1917, and short of a Zionist miracle in which they would all be transported to the Promised Land?a dream well beyond the realms of practical politics?the best, possibly the only, hope for East European Jewry lay in a German victory and an ensuing Pax Germanica. Certainly a German empire with a lot of weak satellites on its eastern borderlands would be preferable to strong nation states, for the Jews. Certainly, too, the Germans had been showing some signs of favour towards them, with, in 1916, the official recognition in German-occupied Poland of the Yiddish language and a law providing the framework of Jewish cultural autonomy.32 By 1918, with Russia out of the war and the Central Powers fully in control in the east, this tendency seemed to be becoming well-established, with official governmental support for a new German-Jewish body known by its initials, VJOD.33 Indeed, in the summer of 1918, its demands for a favourable solution to the Jewish Eastern problem seemed to be in part realized in the peace treaty between Germany and a German-vanquished Romania. Here for once the dilemma for Wolf and his committee is eloquently revealed in the written record. On hearing of the treaty and of the German-imposed 188</page><page sequence="11">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 emancipatory decree-law in favour of the Jews, Wolf immediately wrote to the FO denouncing it?not on technical grounds, for he could find little fault with its provisions or safeguards?but because neither British Jews, nor patriotic Romanian ones, could have any truck with a peace treaty which would single them out as German or Austrian proteges.34" His Romanian Jewish adviser, David Mitrany, however, roundly responded: 'While you are constantly holding forth that you cannot offer anything less than first class carriages ?f which unfortunately you have none to spare at the moment, the Germans are supplying third class carriages which will take the Jews to their destination... I should like to suggest that you have submitted too readily to their [the FO's] decision. As the German government has a free hand in Rumania, everybody is becoming anti-German, but if you leave it to the FO to deal with Rumania they will as surely turn everybody into pro-Germans.'35 One final point here. The ultimate guarantee of East European Jewish safety in 1918 was the German army of occupation in the east. Once it had been withdrawn and the new national forces of liberation were able to emerge and fight it out among themselves for control of these territories, the Jews across much of the region, most especially in the Ukraine and Galicia, found themselves catapulted into a nightmare world of fear and progrom, of whose casualty figures we still have only the roughest of estimates.36 To return to Wolf and the Conjoint therefore, we seem to have here a picture of Anglo-Jewish wartime foreign policy, which, if it was to survive at all, had to be pursued in negation. This would clearly account for the stagnant, sterile image we have inherited from the history books. It would validate the complaints of the contemporary critics and explain both the demise of the committee in 1917 and its replacement by a more forceful group led by Weizmann, the raison d'etre of which did not rest on some special consensual relationship with the British Foreign Office. But as I have already suggested, this is an inadequate conclusion. It may be both illuminating and useful at this point to note that the Chinese term for crisis merges two characters, one meaning 'danger', the other meaning 'opportunity'. Here we have a clue to the robustness of Wolfs shadow foreign policy, for out of the contradiction of the wartime situation Wolf was able to wrest opportunity. The contradiction lay in the FO's view of the Jews not only as pro-German, but as something besides?powerful. Nor was the FO alone in this assumption, for it was a misconception shared across the British political and official spectrum, and indeed by politicians and civil servants throughout the Continent. At its most fundamental the power of the Jews was, according to this view, financial. 'It might be pointed out to the Russian Minister of Finance', wrote Cecil of the FO in 1916, 'that anti-Semitism makes Jewish financial assistance to the Allies very difficult to obtain and this war may well turn on finance';37 'openly pro-German Jewish bankers', wrote Spring-Rice from New 189</page><page sequence="12">Mark Levern York, 'are toiling in a solid phalanx to compass our destruction';38 'the knife is at the throat, there is nothing to be done', lamented the Czarist agriculture minister, Krishovein; while his colleague, the finance minister, Bark, explained: 'it is being openly hinted to me that we will not be able to extricate ourselves from our financial difficulties until some demonstrative steps are taken on the Jewish question... either we make concessions to the Jews and re-establish our credit so that we can obtain the means to continue the war or.. ,'39 Bark trailed off; he had no alternative solution. These last revealing minutes, from a secret Czarist Council of Ministers meeting in August 1915, show just how exaggerated the misconception was. But incredibly it did not stop there. Here is Sir Mark Sykes, the man we credit with having brought Weizmann into a close wartime relationship with the government, writing from Petrograd to the Under Secretary of State, Sir Arthur Nicolson, in March 1916: 'to my mind the Zionists are the key to the situation: with great Jewry against us there is no possible chance of the getting the thing [the War] through, it means optimism in Berlin, dumps in London, unease in Paris... if the Zionists think the proposal is good enough_' Speaking of Wolfs proposals for a British declaration on Palestine: 'they will want us to win, they will a) calm their activities in Russia b) pessimism in Germany c) stimulate in France, England and Italy d) enthuse in USA. This will be subconscious, unwritten and wholly atmospheric.'40 Now it may be that Sykes represented a rather extreme example of this belief in a Jewish ability to control and manipulate, but before we dismiss it out of hand as untypical, it is worth relating it to an extract from a fairly recent and highly respected study of early twentieth-century diplomacy, The Mirage of Power, by Lowe and Dockerill. 'Until 1916', they write, 'the Zionists worked for a German victory. The reasons were obvious. The traditional pogroms in Russia before the war and the wholesale expulsion of the Jews in Galicia by the Russian military in 1914-15, on the standard assumption that the Jews were German spies, was enough to convince any Jew in Russia, Germany or America that the only salvation lay in the victory of the Central Powers.'41 These two extracts contain a clear though unconscious interchangeability of the terms Zionist and Jew. Like Sykes, and indeed all his political contem? poraries, Lowe and Dockerill have fallen into a common trap of assuming a collective Jewish identity and solidarity, which crosses national boundaries and transcends political distinctions. Thus, practically by default, Anglo-Jewish foreign policy found itself provided with a very powerful weapon indeed. The Jews in 1914 had no territorial unit, no national resources, no army; in other words they did not possess any of the bargaining counters which a diplomat would normally take to the negotiating table: indeed, this is the reason why historians previously have disputed the very existence of pre-state Jewish diplomacy. Instead, the bargaining counters 190</page><page sequence="13">Luden Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 were provided by the establishment's mental image of a collective Jewry?a mental image shared by all the belligerents?and by a miscalculation, which Wolf was careful to put on paper only after the war had finished42?in deeming important the securing of its support. The key question for Wolf then was how to harness this misconception advantageously. To have overemphasized Jewish financial power would have led straight back to the bogeyman image of the Jew which it was hardly in Anglo-Jewish interests to promote. Nevertheless, the Czarist ministers' fear that American-Jewish credit would not be opened up to the Russian war effort seems certainly to have been the main motivating factor behind their relaxation of Jewish disabilities in the autumn of 1915, and there is clear evidence that Wolf and his committee, through both official and semi-official channels, were largely responsible for emphasizing this particular signal to them.43 If finance had its problems, however, the propaganda battle between Britain and Germany, particularly in order to bring the United States into the war, lent itself as a much more appropriate tool to Wolfs purpose. The FO's literal obsession with German propaganda in the US, particularly that directed, in the form of Czarist atrocity stories, at the Jewish population, was interpreted as a major factor in America's disfavour towards the Allied war effort. In fact we know that Wolf discounted the seriousness of this American-Jewish animus towards the Allies. But this did not stop him reminding the FO at every opportunity of how the Germans would continue to exploit their successes unless the Allies did something in propaganda, or more tangible terms, to counteract them.44 The propaganda issue not only gave Wolf breathing space in which to rebuild a shattered and confused Conjoint Committee. It also gave him an opportunity to regain the initiative and reopen his lines to the FO and British foreign policy. If you bring my committee into confidential relations with yourselves, I will find solutions to your problem, was the unequivocal message he repeated to them throughout the autumn and winter of 1915-16.45 And like any sound diplomat, Wolf avoided a frontal assault on the point of least opportunity, namely a call for full Russian-Jewish emancipation, in order to promote a joint Anglo-Jewish/British project which would be least resistible, and indeed to which the FO would be most susceptible. Thus we find, a year before Weizmann had even reached the doors of the ministry, Wolf telling them: 'What the Zionists would especially like to know is that Great Britain will become mistress of Palestine'.46 Wolf was no Zionist, and his proposal that Britain should make a declaration in favour of Jewish immigration to, and colonization of, Palestine, was interpreted, when Weiz? mann and his friends found out about it, as a rather unsubtle attempt to cut the ground from beneath their feet. Now it is certainly true that part of Wolfs efforts to gain a governmental 191</page><page sequence="14">Mark Levern declaration with himself as mouthpiece was planned as a communal coup which would pre-empt the various Zionist contenders and silence the critics of Conjoint policy. But the resulting communal discord which led to the famous Board of Deputies' censure of the Conjoint in June 1917, and later to the historical controversy which surrounds it, has obscured the objectives of the plan that were uppermost in Wolfs mind. The suggestions about Palestine were in fact a demonstration of loyalty by a shadow Anglo-Jewish foreign office which had fallen out of favour with its erstwhile patron. By providing Britain with an opportunity to strike back at the German propagandists in the States, and Count Bernstorff in particular, with whom he had had close relations in prewar years,47 Wolf hoped to recover the lost ground for his committee, and in so doing, to clear himself of all taint of pro-Germanism. Moreover, the clear insinuation that a British imperial takeover in Palestine on behalf of the Jews would be a way of forestalling potential postwar French designs on the area would not only have flattered the ministry, but also provided it with a tool for that purpose: the Zionists. That the Zionists themselves had not been consulted in the plan must remain a black mark for Wolf. But the Palestine suggestions were hardly intended as a new departure in Conjoint policy, but rather as a prop which could be more or less jettisoned once the relationship with the government had been officially sealed. Wolfs aim was then, quite literally, to lead the British bull by the nose, in the direction of declared support for Russian-Jewish emancipation, as part and parcel of its programme of wider war aims. By this roundabout route, therefore, Wolf sought to square the circle, to reassert and reinvigorate the traditional consensual link between British and British-Jewish foreign interests. It was ambitious, it was brilliant, it was a subterfuge and it failed. Wolf had provided and crystallized for the FO an apparent way of winning Jewish support for the war which seemed to square with British interests. But it was linked to a proposal which, in 1916 terms, if Russia heard of it, could well precipitate its separate peace with Germany. The upshot was that Wolfs Palestine formula was enthusiastically pursued while Wolf himself was dropped. And his declaration of British loyalty was gazumped by those who had no qualms about presenting themselves purely and simply as Jews. Or, put another way, for all the brilliance of Wolfs move and counter-move, the very value system on which the Conjoint had been founded had prevented him from going all the way, and telling the FO exactly what they wanted to hear. Weizmann had no conceptual problem of this kind, nor the added incumbrance of complicated East European strings attached to his package. Yes, he told the FO, the Jews in Russia are responsible for the revolutionary, pro-Bolshevik ferment: if you want to prevent a separate peace and win them back to the Allied cause, declare now for Zionism.48 The exploitation of the FO's 192</page><page sequence="15">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 misconception about the nature of the Jews was thus the critical and decisive factor in the inception of the Balfour Declaration. It was a master-stroke by Weizmann which brought him into a close understanding with the British Government, and which Wolf and his committee would certainly have bitterly envied. But while the ideology and rationale which joined the Zionists to the FO were quite distinct from those governing the traditional Conjoint/Ministry relationship, we can exaggerate the degree to which they marked a sharp break with the past. Weizmann's diplomacy, pursued out of the gaze of the Jewish or more general public, and without reference to more than a handful of his closest Zionist colleagues, was in method and character very similar to that pursued by Wolf. It was neither more nor less consultative, neither more nor less pragmatic. What was different was the boundaries within which the two meri worked. The constraints of tradition and ideology were greater for Wolf, and in the context of the wartime crisis represented a handicap which Weizmann, as contender, would have been foolish not to exploit. Even then, to speak of the replacement of the British/Conjoint alliance by a British/Zionist one is incorrect. What the 1917 defeat and dismemberment of the Conjoint Committee in fact did for Wolf was to give him further pause in which to re-form its ranks and reshape the foundations on which it had been built. The aim was still to find a basis for a British/British Jewish consensus, but the actual policies which emerged in late 1917 and early 1918 were markedly distinct from those with which Wolf had gone into the war. Russification of the Jews in the Pale as a prerequisite for their absorption into Russian life was, for instance, quietly dropped, despite the protests of Russian assimilators led by Baron Gunzburg.49 With a fragmented Eastern Europe it was hardly either applicable or relevant, and under the guidance of Wolfs new adviser on Eastern European affairs, David Mowschowitch, and in spite of the mistrust or disinclination of many of his colleagues, Wolf refurbished this aspect of Anglo-Jewish foreign policy, adding to the old cornerstone of civil and political emancipation a new one, entitled minority rights.50 The new emphasis on national, cultural and ethnic autonomy, and the rights of Jews as Jews, rather than simply as prospective citizens of their respective states, did not simply represent a realignment of Anglo-Jewish foreign policy to centre-left forces in East European political life. It also laid the basis for a new accord with the FO. For three bleak years of war, FO misconceptions about the importance of world Jewry had ensured the survival of Wolfs diplomacy and the grudging toleration of his various petitions and plans. Now, as the war drew to a close and as the realization dawned that internal and external enmities in the 'New Europe' could be more volatile and threatening to international order than they had been in the old, the FO sorely needed partners who could shore up the foundations of the coming peace.51 193</page><page sequence="16">Mark Levern The policy of Weizmann and the Zionists on this score worked entirely the other way, the Zionist-oriented Comite des Delegations Juives,52 which emerged at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, desiring not peace, but the maximization of the rift between Jew and non-Jew within the new states, most probably in order to accelerate the movement towards, and realization of the urgent need for, a Jewish state in Palestine. Whereas the Zionists thus found their relationship with the British Government rapidly cooling on both the Eastern European and the Palestinian fronts, Anglo-Jewish foreign policy, in the form of a resuscitated Joint Foreign Committee, found itself given a new lease of life. The last year of the war found Wolf not on the periphery, a lost and discredited yesterday's man, but at his most dynamic and resourceful; preparing draft clauses for the coming peace-conference treaties, negotiating directly with liberal politicians in Eastern Europe, and forcefully expounding to the FO itself the merits of relationships with them rather than with the reactionary client groups to whom they had already proffered assistance. Wolfs pursuit of a formula53 which would ensure the security and viability of the Jewish communities in Eastern Europe, while healing the breach with their neighbours, was at long last finding an echo in the FO's own desiderata. Out of the crisis of war and the paradox which had ensured its survival, the Joint Foreign Committee emerged not only for the first time as an authentic shadow foreign office, but in a brief swan-song at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, refound its Victorian liberal consensus with British foreign policy. NOTES 1 As dubbed by S.B. Rubenstein in a letter to the Jewish Chronicle, I January 1909. 2 Mowschowitch Collection (YIVO ar? chives New York) MWS 3440 Wolf to Sir Henry Primrose, 7 August 1914. 3 The obvious example is Isaiah Friedman, The Question of Palestine 1914-1918 (London 1973)? especially the chapter 'The Conjoint Foreign Committee and the Zionists', 227-43, but see also Leonard Stein, The Balfour Declara? tion (London 1961) on the dissolution of the committee, 442-6. 4 The Letters and Papers of Chaim Weizmann VII, ed. M.W. Weisgal (Oxford 1975) 57-60. Weizmann to L. Simon and H. Sacher. 5 Simon Schama, Two Rothschilds and the State of Israel (London 1978) 200. 6 Stuart Cohen's 'The Conquest of a Community? The Zionists and .the Board of Deputies 1917', Jewish Journal of Sociology xix, No.2 (December 1977) 154-87, is the essential corrective on the Board of Deputies' vote on the Conjoint. A useful general view, which includes some discussion of the Conjoint, is S.G. Bayme, Jewish Leadership and Anti-semitism in Britain 1898-1918 (Columbia PhD, 1977, unpub? lished). The development of the Conjoint, with its central focus on Lucien Wolf, can be found in my Anglo-Jewish Diplomacy at War and Peace. A Study of Lucien Wolf 1914-1919 (Oxford D Phil, 19 81, unpublished). 7 Between its inception, in 1878, and 1914 two Montefiores, a Cohen and a Goldsmid served as joint presidents of the committee, the other two presidents being distinctly patrician themselves, Baron de Worms and David Alex? ander. Leopold de Rothschild was a vice president practically throughout the period, see Conjoint Minutes, 18 78-1916 (Board of Depu? ties archives, Woburn House, London); see also Israel Finestein, 'Arthur Cohen QC in Remember the Days, ed. John M. Shaftesley (London 1966) 194</page><page sequence="17">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 279-302. On the wider social composition of 'great' Anglo-Jewry see Chaim Bermant, The Cousinhood (London 19 71). 8 See Lucien Wolf, Notes on the Diplomatic History of the Jewish Question (London 1919) 23-34. ?n Bleichr?der's efforts, Fritz Stern, Gold and Iron, Bismarck, Bleichr?der and the Building of the German Empire (London 1977), chapter 'The Triumph of Expediency', 351-93. 9 MWS 2894, Wolf to Claude Montefiore, 2 October 1909. 10 For an example see MWS 449-50, Langley to Wolf, 31 October 1910. 11 MWS 2903, Wolf to Montefiore, 16 October 1911. 12 Wolf, 'The Queen's Jews', in Cecil Roth (ed.) Essays in Jewish History (London 1934) 359 13 See Colin Holmes, Anti-semitism in British society 1876-1939 (London 1979), especially the chapter 'Our New Masters?' 63-8. 'Mentor' in the Jewish Chronicle, 14 May 1913, in the aftermath of the Marconi scandal, had this to say: 'The May days of happy conditions for the Jews in this country are waning. The signs of anti-Jewish feeling are too marked and too frequent to be ignored.' 14 See Conjoint Minutes 1878-1916 for the service record of its members. 15 'Mentor' (alias Greenberg), Jewish Chron? icle, 14 March 1913. 16 Jewish Chronicle, 12 December 1913, reporting the Anglo Jewish Association AGM. 17 Jewish Chronicle, 7 April 1916. 18 For an outline of Wolfs journalistic career, most particularly as a foreign-affairs specialist, see Roth (ed.) Essays (see n. 12) 'Memoir, The Man', 4-5. His own CV notes to the FO. FO371/3085/175951 encl. in Wolf to Drummond, 8 September 1917, are inevitably fuller and more revealing. i'9 See Documents Diplomatiques Francais, Series 3, vol. iii, No.56, Fleurian (Charge d'affaires, London) to Poincare, 30 May 1912. 20 The exchange between senior FO offi? cials, Sir Louis Mallet and Sir Eyre Crowe, following an approach by Wolf to the ministry on behalf of the Conjoint, makes very interes? ting reading on this score: Crowe: 'We must be very careful what we say to Mr Lucien Wolf. He is not to be trusted and for all we know may wish to use this information for the purposes of continuing his vio? lent attacks on Sir Edward Grey.' Mallet: 'As regard to Sir Eyre Crowe's observation, I do not think that Mr Wolf is preparing an attack just now. His intention is all the other way as he wants to get help to get the restriction on the entrance of Jews into Russia removed. It is of no use to him to assail the Secretary of State until the latter has succeeded or failed to do this.' FO372/381/8978 Crowe, 11 March 1912, Mallet end., minutes. The specific issue was the discrimination by Russia against British pass? port holders who were Jewish. 21 See MWS 10852-3, Lemarduchen to Wolf, 9 July 1914, for the AJA and ICA sponsorship of 'Darkest Russia, a Weekly Record of the Struggle for Freedom'. The bulle? tin, under Wolfs editorship, ran from January 1912 to August 1914. 22 Jewish Chronicle, leader 'Neutrality and the War', 31 July 1914. 23 See Alfred Vagts, 'Die Juden im englisch? deutschen imperialistischen Konflikt vor 1914', in Imperialismus im 20. Jahrhundert. Gedenk schrift f?r George W.F. Hallgarten (Munich 1976); see also C.C. Aronsfeld, 'Jewish Enemy Aliens in England during the First World War', Jewish Social Studies XVIII (1956)27 5-8 3. 24 For Wolfs pro-German and -Austrian articles, see e.g. 'The Real Kaiser', Daily Graphic, 27 January 1912, and 'The Chancelleries and the Crisis', Daily Graphic, 27 July-i August 1914. For the termination of his work at the Graphic, papers MWS 2805-6 H.G. Charvel (editor, Daily Graphic) to Wolf, 28 October, and Wolf to Charvel, 31 October 1914; and MWS 4626-7 Wolf to Metropolitan Commissioner of Police, 31 August and 7 September 1914 re: the Special Branch incident. 25 MWS 2676 Wolf to Ramsay MacDonald, 18 September 1914. On the UDC see A.J.P. Taylor, The Troublemakers, Dissent over Foreign Policy (London 1957) 132-45. See also Michael Howard, War and the Liberal Conscience (London 1978) 74-9. 26 Lucien Wolf, Jewish Ideals and the War (London 1915). 27 FO800/210 Wolf memorandum, 30 Jan? uary 1917, Balfour papers. 28 The Letters and Friendships of Sir Cecil Spring-Rice, ed. Stephen Gwynne (London 195</page><page sequence="18">Mark Levern 1929) ?, 242-6, letters to Chirol and Grey, 13 November 1914. The Diary of Lord Bertie of Thame 1914-1918 (London 1924) ii, 104-5, 228-9. FO800/74 Buchanan to Grey, 10 March 1915, Grey papers. 29 MWS 7970-5 S. Poliakov, Russian Jewry n.d. c.1917. 30 The British pro-PNC stance is documen? ted and well analysed in Norman Davies, 'The Poles in Great Britain 1914-1919', Slavonic and Eastern European Review L (January 1972) 63 89, and in Kenneth J. Calder, Britain and the Origins of the New Europe 1914-1918 (Cam? bridge 1976) esp. 159-64. On Dmowski see also Cecil's note of his interview with him in FO800/205 (Balfour papers), 3 September 1917. 31 See Wolf, Notes 45-54. 32 See MWS 161010 for Mowschowitch's article in the American Hebrew 24 November 1916, on the implications of the Verordnung. 33 Vereinigung J?discher Organisation? en Deutschlands zur W?hrung der Rechte den Juden des Ostens. For its formation and structure see Isaiah Friedman, Germany, Turkey andZionism 1897-1918 (London 1977) 394-5. 34 FO371/3155/54323 Wolf to Cecil, 3 June 1918. 35 Conjoint Papers (Board of Deputies, Woburn House) Ci 1/4/1(6) Mitrany to Wolf n.d. c. July 1918. 36 For a cautionary view of the degree of pogroms in Poland and Galicia see Norman Davies, 'Great Britain and the Polish Jews 1918-1920', Journal of Contemporary History Vol.8 no.2 (1977) 119-42. 37 FO3 71/2 744/4039 Cecil minute, 6 Jan? uary 1916. 38 Spring-Rice (see n. 28) ii, 242-6. 39 Prologue to Revolution, Notes of A.N. lakhantov on the Secret Minutes of the Council of Ministers, ed. Michael Cherniavsky (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.) 56-72, 4 and 6 August 1915. 40 FO800/381 (Nicolson papers) Sykes to Nicolson, 18 March 1916. 41 C.J. Lowe and M.L. Dockerill, The Mirage of Power (London 1972) ii, 228. 42 'It is a curious circumstance which is not generally known that all the belligerents mis? calculated the importance of securing Jewish support', in 'The Jew in Diplomacy', ed. C. Roth, Essays 407. 43 At the 6 August 1915 meeting (see ed. Cherniavsky [see n.39] 71-2) of the Russian Council of Ministers, the Finance Minister Bark, besides making much of the 'all-powerful Leo? pold de Rothschild', observed that 'it is charac? teristic that Kitchener [the British war minister] has repeated constantly that one of the most important conditions for the success of the war is the amelioration of the lot of the Jews in Russia'. Bark's references can be traced back to the Conjoint's 'viva-voce representations' made through Leopold de Rothschild to Kitchener and other ministers before Bark's visits to the west in spring and summer 1915. C11/2/6 Wolf to Alexander, 3 June 1915; Ci 1/2/7 Wolf to Montefiore, 7 September and to Meyerson (Alli? ance), 16 September 1915, for Wolfs convic? tion that these representations were directly responsible for the disability relaxations. See also MWS 4643-5 Conjoint Report No.i 1915. 44 Wolfs warnings on this score are succinctly stated in his memorandum to the FO of 1 June 1916, FO371/2817/42608. The memorandum is republished in James Parkes, The Emergence of the Jewish Problem 1878-1939 (London 1946), Parkes describing it as 'ad? mirably subtle and brilliant'. For Wolfs scep? ticism about the American-Jewish animus against the Allies see Ci 1/2/9 Wolf to Leopold de Rothschild, 21 June 1916. 45 See especially FO371/2579/187779 Wolf to Cecil, 16 December 1915, encl. his 'Suggestions for pro-allied propaganda in the USA.' 46 Ibid. 47 On Wolfs prewar relationship with Bernstorff see The Memoirs of Count Bernstorjf (London 1936) 60-3, and Lucien Wolf, 'Count Bernstorffs Failures', Daily Chronicle, 10 July I9I5 48 Much of the Weizmann material on this score is implicit rather than explicit, but see especially FO371/2996/811^0 interview with Weizmann, 11 May 1915; FO3 71/3058/ 123458, Graham to Hardinge, 12 October 1917; and Weizmann, Letters (see n. 4) vii, N0.432, Weizmann to Graham, 13 July 1917. There is one revealing statement, however, in which Lord Milner reports to Cecil that accor? ding to Weizmann all the Russian Jews are 'very revolutionary, anti-monarchical and anti British' FO800/198 (Cecil papers) Milner to Cecil, 17 May 1917. 49 This followed a long correspondence between Wolf and his associate, Mowschowitch, see MWS 6103-13 'Some remarks on Baron Gunzburg's Letter on Jewish Affairs', n.d. June or July 1917. 196</page><page sequence="19">Lucien Wolf, the Conjoint Committee and the War, 1914-18 50 These were enshrined in Wolfs end of-war 'desiderata', which in their turn became the basis for his peace conference 'formula': 'All religious and cultural minorities should be secured in the autonomous management of their religious, educational, charitable and other cultural institutions.' See FO3 71/3419/ 199696, Wolf to Balfour, 2 December 1918. On the committee's disinclination to support minor? ity rights, and Mowschowitch's awareness of this, see e.g. MWS 10471-5 Mowschowitch to Wolf, 21 March 1918. 51 Alan Sharp, 'Britain and the Protection of Minorities at the Paris Peace Conference', in Minorities in History, ed. A.C. Hepburn (London 1978) 171-88. 52 On the Comite des Delegations Juives and its conflict with Wolf, see O.I. Jahowsky, The Jews and Minority Rights 1898 1918 (Columbia 1933) 283-308; and M. Levene, Anglo-Jewish Diplomacy (see n. 6), chap? ter on French, American and other Jewish delegations, 345-72. 53 Full details of Wolfs proposals can be found in 'The Paris Peace Conference, Report of the Delegation of Jews of the British Empire' (London 1920), Memorial dated 21 February 1919, 79-80. 197</page></plain_text>