I recently received a question from a gentleman whose father was a Private assigned to Company A, 8th Parachute Battalion of the British forces in Haifa (then Palestine) in 1947. He was on sentry duty in a blockhouse when a bullet came in and ricocheted around inside the blockhouse until embedding itself in the wall. The soldier dug out the bullet and brought it home with him.
The base of the bullet is about 7mm in diameter and appears to be solid bronze or copper.
My guess is that it is an 8mm Lebel Balle D bullet. I don’t know much about Lebel ammunition, but it looks like the bullet was made by ATS (Atelier de Construction de Tarbes). I had not heard of the French dating the base of their bullets.
After WWI the French occupied Syria and there is no doubt that a lot of Lebel rifles and ammunition found their way into Syria. The Vichy French government in Syria was actively hostile to the British and there was active combat between the Vichy French and British forces in mid-1941. In this environment, I would be surprised if significant French weapons didn’t find their way into the hands of Arabs hostile to the British, or even captured from Arabs and used by the Jewish forces.
Since I don’t know anything about Lebel ammunition, I hope some of the Forum members can amplify on my speculations. I have passed him the URL of this thread so he can follow the discussion himself.