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Magazine Scanning: The British Palestine Police Association (BPPA)

A very interesting historical order that we are preparing, is a vast collection of The British Palestine Police Association (BPPA) newsletters and magazines, which are being converted to PDF with Optical Character Recognition, to support their valuable and historical archives.

If we can support you with your archives, please do contact

The British Palestine Police Association (BPPA) came into being on February lst 2014, the day after the Palestine Police Old Comrades Association (PPOCA) disbanded.

The BPPA was established with funds provided by PPOCA, to continue those services that had previously been provided by PPOCA, except for those already entrusted to SSAFA and St Antony's College, Oxford.

Those services are:

  1. To enable surviving Palestine Police Old Comrades members and their families to keep in touch.
  2. To ensure, through collaboration with the CWGC, and if necessary other agencies, that the graves of ex-patriate Palestine Police and British Gendarmerie, who had died in service and were buried in the former territory of British administered Palestine, are well cared for.
  3. To keep alive the memory of the Palestine Police who served during the period, 1920 to 1948, even after the demise of the last veteran.

This to be achieved by:

  1. Providing funds for the refurbishment of lost or damaged graves of those Palestine Policemen and British Gendarmerie who had died in 'peace time' service and so are technically not the responsibility of the CWGC and ensuring that financial arrangements are made for their maintenance in perpetuity.
  2. Subsidising a BPPA newsletter initially in the style of previous PPOCA newsletters.

Side-affects and Paradoxes - the major factors shaping the histories of both British-administered Palestine and its police force.

The initial phase of British control between 1917 and 1920, known as the Occupied Enemy Territory Administration(OETA), was a side affect of the Allies' middle-eastern military campaigns during WW1.

Paradox 1

The mandate system was created to curb the expansion of British and French colonialism; Britain administered Palestine from its Colonial Office. From 1923-1948 Palestine's official flag. was the Union Jack.

Paradox 2

The Palestine Police Force was created in 1920 when civil administration replaced military administration but, for much of its history, the British section of the Palestine police received army training and, when things got out of hand, had the backing of the British military forces.

Paradox 3

Britain's stated policy was to integrate the Muslim and Christian Arabs, the Druze, the Jews, the Armenians, the Egyptian Copts of the population of Palestine, the urbanites and the fellaheen into a single independent Palestinian nation. Over the years, however, this overt policy of a unified Palestine morphed into a covert policy of 'divide and rule'. This started as an accidental side effect of the creation of Jewish settlement police in rural areas but, towards the end of the mandate, developed into the deliberate zoning of urban areas in the mixed cities.

For an article explaining more fully the relations between Arabs and Jews in Palestine during the Mandate period this author would recommend the online article:
Gaza: How We Got Here ... The Deep Cause of War' by Professor William R. Polk

Since some knowledge of Palestine history between 1914 and 1920 is needed to understand the problems the Palestine Police Force faced from 1920 onwards, the first section of this history starts just before WW 1 breaks out. The other sections focus on the the Mandate Era.


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