November 2 marked the anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, a letter from British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour establishing a “national home for the Jewish people.”
This is generally seen as the beginning of the process that led to the independent nation of Israel 31 years later. At a time of steadily escalating violence, Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip commemorated the Balfour anniversary by burning American, U.K., and Israeli flags and brandishing weapons including guns, swords, axes, and knives.
… and of Palestinian militants waving the same sort of knives that have been employed in a wave of attacks against Israelis.
Photos also emerged on social media of the event:
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) November 3, 2015
The Daily Mail notes that four Israelis were stabbed on Monday, while a Palestinian teenager was shot. The stabbing victims included an 80-year-old woman, attacked while she was sitting on a bus, and a 71-year-old man. The Palestinian teenager was shot by Israeli troops when he tried to attack a soldier with a knife.
Hamas and the Palestinian Authority marked the occasion by demanding the British government apologize for the Balfour Declaration, while declaring it “null and void,” according to a report at Israel National News.
“The path of our people towards freedom, return and liberation goes like the path of other peoples who were under occupation – through struggle by all methods and means, first and foremost an armed struggle,” said the statement from Hamas, which predicted the “Palestinian people” are close to achieving their objectives.
The Palestinian Authority referred to the Balfour Declaration as a “big crime” for which the British government should not only apologize, but “compensate the Palestinian people for the years of British and Zionist occupation of Palestine,” and help the Palestinians establish their own state on “Palestinian land.”
Also noteworthy in the Balfour anniversary report from Israel National News: Hamas, through one of its newspapers, formally declared the Palestinian knife attacks to be an “Al-Quds intifada,” or uprising.