It was during the 5th Century BC that the Greek historian Herodotus used the term Palaistinē to refer to the lands northeast of Egypt. This was derived from a Hebrew and Egyptian word, "peleshet" to describe the area occupied by the Philistines.
Under the Second Triumvirate of the Roman Republic, the joint rule of the Empire by Marcus Antoninus (Marc Anthony), Octavian Caesar (later Caesar Augustus) and Lepidus, King Herod the Great was named, by Marc Anthony (eventually approved by Octavian and Lepidus) King of the Jews, with his territory being Judea, Samaria and the Galilee (modern Israel's territory). King Herod pledged allegiance to Octavian when it became apparent Marc Anthony and Cleopatra were doomed. Uprisings in 70 AD, led to the destruction of the Second Temple of Jerusalem, built by Herod the Great. The uprising culminated with the siege of Masada, by General Flavius Silva. Empires Hadrian in 118 AD promised a right of return of Jews who had been deported after the previous revolt and a rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. Hadrian went back on his promise. This resulted in the Bar-Kokhba Revolt of 132-135 AD. After this, Hadrian essentially outlawed Judaism. Empire Hadrian had maps changed to say PALÆSTINA, to reduce Jewish association with the land. Like with the Roman persecution and outlaw of Christianity, the religion survived. Some Jews remained in Israel, but many hundreds of thousands (estimated) were en-slaved and deported across the Roman Empire. In 330 AD the Roman Empire split into the Western and Eastern Roman Empires, with the eastern eventually being named the Byzantine Empire. The Byzantine-Sasanian War of 602-628 resulted in the loss of all territory from Egypt to Syria to the Sasanian Empire of Persia. It should be noted that Jews of Judea, Samaria and Galilee fought against the Byzantine Empire. The Sasanian Empire came under Muslim rule as this was also the time of the ascendency of the Islamic faith.
World War I, is the heart of the current controversy. The defeat of the Ottoman-Turk Empire was of great importance to the Allies, as was the defeat of Germany and Austria-Hungary. To aid in the defeat, the British entered into two separate and in some ways conflicting agreements- the Balfour Declaration and the McMahon-Hussein Correspondence.
"His Majesty's government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country"
|Map from Sharif of Mecca to Sir McMahon|
However, prior to both the Balfour Declaration and the McMahon Correspondence, a separate agreement, the Sykes-Picot Agreement. The agreement was made between France and the British Empire, Russia (pre-Bolshevik Revolution, with notification to Japan, who was a member of the Allied Powers and who had sent hundreds of ships to assist the Allied Powers against the Central Powers and actively engaged the German Imperial Navy in the Pacific and Indian Oceans maintaining Great Britain's sea lines of communication to its Empire, and allowing the British Royal
|Sykes-Picot France (A) and Great Britain (B) dividing the MidEast|
The summary of the Sykes-Picot agreement was that it divided the Middle-East between Great Britain, France and Russia. This agreement was made with Tsar Nicholas' government, and was not disclosed to the Sharif of Mecca in the McMahon Letters. Lawrence of Arabia denied knowledge of Sykes-Picot to Prince Faisal, although it is possible that Col. Lawrence suspected some agreement as to the division of the Middle-East had been made despite assurances to him, and his assurance to the Arab Tribes. Sykes-Picot was exposed in 1917 by the Bolsheviks and then western press, after the agreement was found within the papers of the deposed Tsar of Russia. Prince Faisal was aware of Sykes-Picot when the Arabs under Lawrence took Damascus, and questioned General Allenby about it. Again, Col. Lawrence stated he had known nothing of Sykes-Picot.
|1919 Proposed Eretz-Israel|
The years between 1919 and 1923 saw the Third Aliyah. Jewish population was over 90,000. Land was purchased. Swamps were drained and roads built. Agriculture increased. An elected assembly and the Haganah were also established. Anti-Jewish policies in Poland saw the Fourth Aliyah between 1924 and 1929 with an additional 60,000 Jews permanently settling. This also saw the expansion of industry and the growth of Tel Aviv.
The rise of the Nazi Party in Germany led to the Fifth Aliyah. Approximately 230,000 Jews emigrated bringing the total Jewish population to approximately 450,000. The port of Haifa was constructed. It was during this time that the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem called for violent attacks upon the Jewish population, which until that time had lived generally in peace with local Arabs. The British referred to these attacks and murders as "disturbances." This also led to British restrictions on Jewish immigration, which resulted in the Haganah beginning the Aliyah Bet - clandestine immigration.
The main purpose of Aliyah Bet during WWII was the rescue of Jews from European extermination. During the war years, the Jews again volunteered to fight with the British and the Jewish Brigade was officially organized. Made up of Zionist and Jews from "Eretz-Israel," the brigade served until it was disbanded in 1946. After the war, the British limited Jewish immigration to 18,000 per year. The British also imposed a naval blockade of the coast and forced ships, such as the Exodus with her 4500 passengers, to return to camps in Europe.
The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem took a radically different course during WWII. After being expelled by the British in 1937 following the 1936 Riots. He met with Hitler in 1941, and recruited Muslim men (primarily European Muslims) to join Waffen-SS auxiliary units. Although he was captured by the French on a War Crimes warrant, he escaped to Egypt and continued working to destroy Israel until his death in 1974.
|UN Partition Plan of 1947.|
As the Israeli Constitution guaranteed the free practice of religion, Arab residents of the lands partitioned to Israel were encouraged to stay. Citizenship would be granted with all rights of any other citizen. However, this was discouraged by Muslim leadership. Israel declared independence and the formation of the Nation of Israel on May 14, 1948.
The War of Independence ended in 1949. Additional wars would follow. In the Six Day War of 1967, Israel captured the Golan Heights- the source of repeated shelling of Israeli settlements in the Galilee- East Jerusalem- site of the Wailing Wall and the Dome of the Rock, as well as the West Bank, which had been occupied by Jordan.
The Treaty of Versaille, the Treaty of Sèvres and the Sykes-Picot Agreement are, without question, the catalyst of many problems in the Middle East, as well as contributing to causing WWII. In May 2016, on the 100th Anniversary of Sykes-Picot, ISIS released a statement staying, in part "By Allah’s permission, the coming days will witness more events that result in removing borders of Sykes-Picot..." Sykes-Picot can also partially account for the number of ISIS attacks against France.
It cannot be denied that the British and French actions during WWI and after were deceitful to all
|Six Day War Cease Fire Lines|
Historically, there has never been a nation known as Palestine. Palestine and Palestinians are a modern name applied to those Arabs who left their homes in the 1948 War-- a war begun by Arab Nations with standing militaries against a people who had to smuggle, build or use any firearm they could find- including Winchester rifles used by the US Cavalry in the 1800's. Despite beginning the war, and encouraging the displacement of Arab inhabitants, the Arab nations have also done little to assist the dislocation of those peoples.
Should there be a nation of Palestine? Although one has never existed previously, there probably should. Israel has previously given up land for peace to facilitate this- including the Sinai, which was captured from Egypt in the Six Day War.
Should Israel give up Jerusalem? I cannot say no loudly enough.
Should the Obama Administration pull an 11th Hour Stunt in the Security Council and demand Israel give up Jerusalem or create a Nation of Palestine within the borders of Israel? ABSOLUTELY NO.
History shows that having the "West" redraw the maps of the Middle East, only leads to death, destruction and war. Let the people of the region come to their own solution, rather than imposing one.