Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Irgun death sentence letter found in Hampshire residence

    The Irgun letter
    The Irgun letter

    Mystery surrounds a copy of a death sentence letter issued by the Irgun in one of Mandate Palestine’s most controversial episodes. It was found in a house in Hampshire.

    The written statement, dated July 30 1947, is thought to be a contemporary copy of the judgment placed on the bodies of Sergeants Clifford Martin and Mervyn Paice. The British officers were hanged by Irgun in an attempt to free fellow Jewish fighters who were eventually executed by the British.

    The Irgun attack, known as the Sergeants Affair, was condemned as a “crime” by Anglo-Jewry at the time, but nevertheless sparked antisemitic riots against British Jews in Liverpool, London and Glasgow. Businesses were attacked with bricks, and a synagogue in Derby was burned down.

    Hampshire auction house George Kidner said the letter was uncovered in a house clearance of a nearby home, and plans to sell the letter on March 7.

    Kidner’s auctioneer Edward Cowell, an expert in militaria, said the letter may have been a British military copy or one made for propaganda purposes during the height of the controversy.

    “The link to its origins has been irrevocably lost so there is no way of tracing how the letter turned up in a private home. We know who owned it but we do not know any military connection.

    “Whether it is a singular, private copy or something that was produced for circulation is unclear, though I have not found word of any other examples.”

    The item is valued at just £10, but is expected to generate greater interest.

Israel

2017: A year of unfinished business

Anshel Pfeffer

Thursday, December 28, 2017

2017: A year of unfinished business
News Features

Why Israel is not an apartheid state

Luke Akehurst

Monday, November 27, 2017

Why Israel is not an apartheid state
UK News

Priti Patel criticised for ‘secret’ Israel meetings

Rosa Doherty

Friday, November 3, 2017

Priti Patel criticised for ‘secret’ Israel meetings
World

Woman in Jerusalem gives birth to 20th child

Rosa Doherty

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Woman in Jerusalem gives birth to 20th child
Comment

There are a number of tipping points for Israel

Emily Thornberry

Thursday, November 16, 2017

There are a number of tipping points for Israel
Analysis

Israel concern that centenary is being downplay...

Anshel Pfeffer

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Israel concern that centenary is being downplay...
World

Security Council to hold emergency meeting over Jerusalem

Simon Rocker

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Security Council to hold emergency meeting over Jerusalem
UK News

'Tell your friends' about Israel business opportunities Bibi urges

Daniel Sugarman

Friday, November 3, 2017

'Tell your friends' about Israel business opportunities Bibi urges
UK News

Hundreds of thousands view Holocaust denial talk

Rosa Doherty

Monday, May 22, 2017

Hundreds of thousands view Holocaust denial talk