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Jacobson Appeals to Truman on Partition,
President Responds Negatively

(October 3, 8, 1947)

President Truman was under a great deal of pressure from American Zionists outside the government who were lobbying for him to support the creation of a Jewish state and Arabists within the administration who were opposed. While Truman expressed frustration with the outside pressure, one of the few people who was able to reach him was his old business partner Eddie Jacobson. Without saying so specifically, the gist of this letter is that he wants Truman to publicly come out in favor of creating a Jewish state and eliminate the suffering of Jews in displaced persons camps, which he exaggeratingly calls concentration camps. Jacobson was judicious in approaching Truman knowing, as he says in the letter, that the president was chafing under the heavy burden he was carrying. Truman’s response is disappointing, saying that he preferred to let the matter play out at the UN and intimating there are reasons why he does not want to speak out. While he said it was improper to interfere, Truman ultimately threw his weight behind partition, which was critical in securing approval by the UN.