The Land Nobody Wanted
Vol: 167 Issue: 17 Monday, August 17, 2015
The land claimed by Israel is smaller than the state of Rhode Island. In comparison to the Arab Middle East, Israel is like a single piece of sod on a football field.
Carrying the analogy further, imagine that one team has to defend that single piece of sod from an opposing team that outnumbers them 650 to 1.
The other team, claiming unfair advantage, is demanding the single piece of sod be divided and half of it be awarded to them.
The referees agree, and penalize the defending team for refusing to concede half of its 1/6th of one percent of the field to the opposition [that outnumbers them 650 to one]. The crowd loudly boos the defenders.
That is roughly analogous to the rules of engagement under which the Middle East conflict is being played out.
The Arab side makes two concurrent claims; 1) Israel has no historical right to the land; and 2) Israel, by its existence, has dispossessed the indigenous Palestinian people, leaving them with nowhere to go.
Except for a few decades of Christian control during the Crusades era, the land claimed by Israel was under Islamic control for 1300 years. This is one of the principle arguments advanced in favor of the Palestinian claim that Israel has no historical right to the Land of Promise.
That argument is bolstered by the existence of an Arab mosque atop what the Jews claim as Temple Mount, a mosque that has graced Mount Moriah for some 1,350 years.
According to modern Islam, the mosque atop Mount Moriah is the third-holiest site in Islam. Recenty Islamic tradition says the al Aqsa Mosque marks the place where Mohammed ascended into heaven aboard a winged horse.
For that reason, it now ranks third in line behind Mecca and Medina as Islam’s holiest cities.
In ancient times, Israel sat atop the most strategic crossroads of the known world. One couldn’t get from Babylon to Egypt by chariot without passing through it.
Israel and Jerusalem have been fought over and conquered by the Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Egyptians, Romans, Arabs, Turks, and finally, the British in 1917.
In each of its conquests, Jerusalem was strategic because of its strategic value as Israel’s God-given capital. From Nebuchadnezzar to Titus, each successive conqueror acknowledged Jerusalem as the capital of the Jews.
When the region was conquered by Islam, taking Jerusalem was a strategic, rather than religious necessity. Whoever controlled the Jewish holy city controlled the remaining indigenous Jews.
The reconquest of Jerusalem became a holy religious duty only after the Crusaders claimed the city for Christianity. Since the city was holy to Judaism and holy to Christianity, it became holy to Islam, as well.
But ‘holy’ doesn’t mean the same thing to Islam as it does to Christians and Jews. To Christians or Jews, ‘holy’ means worthy of reverence, whereas to Islam, ‘holy’ means worthy of possession.
Under Islamic possession, Jerusalem was just another dusty city of the province of Southern Syria. In the four hundred years Jerusalem was under Ottoman rule until 1917, the city was never even a regional or provincial capital.
After the Ottoman Empire fell to the Allies in the First World War, British foreign secretary Lord Balfour put into writing Britain’s support for “the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”
When the League of Nations made Palestine a British mandate after the war, Lord Balfour’s declaration was assumed as part of the deal and the allied powers of the Great War all agreed. By 1935, there were more than 300,000 Jews in Palestine. Tel Aviv, founded in 1909, had 100,000 people.
In 1947 Britain, which had been handed the Palestine problem by the now-defunct League of Nations passed it on, with relief, to the newly born United Nations. The UN agreed to partition Palestine into a Jewish state, an Arab state, and a neutral UN zone containing Jerusalem, a city sacred to three religions.
The Jews were thrilled, the Arabs adamantly opposed.
In late 1947 the plan was ratified by the UN, and the State of Israel proclaimed on May 14, 1948. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled the country.
The the British pulled out completely, and most of the Arab world- Egypt, Transjordan (now Jordan), Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon, as well as Palestinians- immediately attacked in an attempt to destroy Israel.
By the time of armistice in 1949 Israel held three quarters of Palestine- twice as much land as the UN had proposed- Jordan had taken the land on the West Bank of the Jordan River, and Egypt had taken the Gaza Strip.
It is at this point in the story of the Middle East that history ends and the modern myth of the Middle East is born.
The modern myth is that at the end of the Israeli War of Independence, the indigenous ‘Palestinian’ people were dispossessed by Israel and left with nothing.
The historical fact is that, until the mid 1930’s, the term ‘Palestinian’ was a label applied to the Jews.
Until 1950, the name of the Jerusalem Post was THE PALESTINE POST; the journal of the Zionist Organization of America was NEW PALESTINE; Bank Leumi was the ANGLO-PALESTINE BANK; the Israel Electric Company was the PALESTINE ELECTRIC COMPANY; there was the PALESTINE FOUNDATION FUND and the PALESTINE PHILHARMONIC.
All these were Jewish organizations. In America, Zionist youngsters sang “PALESTINE, MY PALESTINE”, “PALESTINE SCOUT SONG” and “PALESTINE SPRING SONG”
In general, the terms ‘Palestine’ and ‘Palestinian’ referred to the region of Palestine as it was prior to 1948.
Thus “Palestinian Jew” and “Palestinian Arab” are straightforward expressions. “Palestine Post” and “Palestine Philharmonic” refer to these bodies as they existed in a place then known as Palestine.
The adoption of a Palestinian identity by the Arabs of Palestine is a recent phenomenon. Until the establishment of the State of Israel, and for another decade or so, the term ‘Palestinian’ applied exclusively to the Jews.
The claims of the Arab ‘Palestinians’ to be a separate people is an utter fiction. There is no language known as Palestinian. There is no distinct Palestinian culture. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Arab Palestinians.
Arab Palestinians are indistinguishable from Jordanians (recent British inventions all), Syrians, Lebanese, Iraqis, etc.
Syria was created by the British and subsequently given to France as the French Mandate. The Syrians declared independence after the British left in 1946, two years before Israel did the same thing. Jordan was created by the British in 1921.
The same British government that created the modern Arab world in 1920 at the San Remo Conference in Italy — by decree — also created a Jewish homeland the same way at the same conference.
And the Jewish Palestine of the Balfour Declaration as confirmed at San Remo encompassed a much bigger chunk of ground than Israel claims today.
Until the Jews renewed their claim to the land of Palestine, nobody else wanted it. The Jews petitioned for statehood on the principle that Palestine was “a land without a people” and that the Jews were “a people without a land.”
Arab revisionist historians say that claim was ‘a myth.’ History and mathematics tell a different story — if anybody were interested in the facts, that is.
In 1948, there were about 735,000 Muslim and Christian Arabs in Palestine. There were about 716,000 Jews. Since the same land now supports a population of more than 12 million combined Arabs and Jews, the argument that the Arabs were ‘crowded out’ by the Jews makes no sense.
The ‘Palestinian refugees’ languishing in ‘refugee camps’ in Jordan, Lebanon and elsewhere, were not interned by Israel. They were interned by their own governments after those governments lost the war with Israel.
Those Jordanian citizens that lived in Jordan’s West Bank and the citizens of Egypt’s Gaza Strip (who, on May 30, 1967 were still Egyptians), became instant ‘Palestinians’ on June 7, 1967.
From the moment of its declaration of statehood, the Jews of Israel have lived under the constant threat of annihilation by the surrounding Arab states.
As Golda Meir observed during the Yom Kippur War, “the Arabs can fight, and lose, and come back to fight another day. Israel can only lose once.”
What makes this significant is that NONE of this is a secret. Knowing this, the entire world prefers the fictional account advanced by the Islamic world; that the Palestinians pre-existed the Jews, that the Jews stole ‘Palestinian land’ dispossessed its inhabitants and locked them away in refugee camps.
Remember the football field and the single square of sod analogy. To the world, dividing that single square of sod defended by a team outnumbered 650 to one that holds the rest of the football field is an example of ‘leveling the playing field’.
It is nothing short of madness. But it is a madness that seems to have infected the world at large. The Islamic version of the Arab-Israeli conflict is a monstrous lie being advanced in favor of a claim to land that nobody wanted until the Jews did.
In the midst of a global war on terror, the world is prepared to countenance an openly terrorist government ruling over a ‘people’ that do not exist, (a people whose only goal is the ANNIHILATION of another people whose history is THE most documented record of ancient times) based on the argument that the Jewish claim to Jerusalem is historically invalid.
That lie is so delusional that it boggles the mind. Yet it is the basic reason for a global war on terror that now threatens to spill over into an all-out war of civilizations.
Israel, by its very existence, is a stench in the nostrils of the secular world. It is a constant reminder of the existence and reality of God, and therefore, man’s accountability before Him. Paul explains it this way:
“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind. . .” (Romans 1:28)
The secular world’s war, blind anti-semitism so ingrained in its psyche it is blissfully unaware it even exists.
Any critically-thinking person can see the truth, yet the UN consistently finds the ‘anti-truth’ when it involves Israel. It is almost supernatural in its scope and breadth. In fact, scratch ‘almost’ from that last sentence.
It IS supernatural.
Originally Published: April 11, 2006
Featured Commentary: Worthy is the Lamb ~ Pete Garcia