A letter by Prince Charles to his mentor, Laurens van der Post, has come to light 30 years after it was written. The Prince’s views, expressed shortly after he absorbed Arab views on a visit to Saudi Arabia, may well have changed since, and it is indisputable that the Prince has been a staunch supporter of Jewish organisations and causes in the UK. See my comment below:
Here is the report in The Independent:
“Prince Charles has come under fire after it came to light that he blamed the “influx of foreign Jews” for causing unrest in the Middle East and called on the US to “take on the Jewish lobby” in a letter penned in 1986.
Writing to his friend Laurens van der Post, the Prince argued that
the exodus of European Jews in the middle of the last century “helped to
cause the great problems” in the Middle East.
“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,”
the Prince wrote in a letter published by the Daily Mail.
“I know there are so many complex issues, but how can there ever be
an end to terrorism unless the causes are eliminated?” he added.
“Surely some US president has to have the courage to stand up and
take on the Jewish lobby in the US? I must be naive, I suppose!”
The letter was found in a public archive and was written on 24
November 1986, following an official visit the then-38-year-old Prince
made to Saudia Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar with the late Princess Diana.
My Comment: The Prince’s comments betray an ignorance of Jews, both as indigenous to Palestine and to what is now the ‘Arab’ Middle East and North Africa. The assumption that Jews are foreign and European bolsters the canard that Israel is a colonial settler state. Yet Jews predated the Arab conquest and Islam by 1,000 years. Today they constitute over 50 percent of the Israeli Jewish population.
His comment that the US ought to stand up to the Jewish lobby, however, crosses a red line into outright antisemitism. The idea that Jews exercise disproportionate power and influence is a classic conspiracy theory popular among antisemites.
Under pressure from the Arabists of the Foreign Office, the British royal family has never paid an official visit to Israel. The best way that the prince might show that he no longer holds his controversial views, say his critics, is by paying such a visit.