The British naively believe that they can control economic and social forces in the land sphere. They want to please Arab landowners, Jewish buyers, and keep peasants from becoming landless, even when peasants receive ample compensation to quit their lands before a sale’s completion. The 1933 edition of the law is supposed to be the most sweeping of more than half a dozen attempts at guaranteeing alternative land to a tenant before a sale’s completion. Seeing a chance to put more money in their own pockets, tenants hold their landlords and land-brokers “hostage,” making inflated demands for more money to leave lands, thereby driving up land prices. Whenever Arab landowners seek out Jewish buyers, or vice versa, this legislation and others fail to contain the impetus for either Arab personal need or Jewish national objectives.
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