by Tom Brennan
There has never been a nation called “Palestine”. While uninformed academics and mainstream media insist that Palestine has a right not only to seize land from Israel but to make Jerusalem its capital and expel or exterminate all Jews they neglect the conditions that led to Muslims who fled the new Nation during the War of Independence in 1948. These unfortunates were caught in a crossfire of defenders of the new State and the professional armies of several Arab nations which were determined to make that new nation disappear. Refugee camps were established but never did any attempts to resettle these persons appear from the attacking countries, many of which were rich in resources and finances. The refugees became pawns in a cruel political game that now has terrorist groups such as Hamas as governors. These distortions of history get press, publicity and social media posts, all the while preying on an ill-informed audience and governments with short attention spans and shorter memories. Just what are the facts behind the word “palestine”.The origins of the word palestine come from the term for “Philistine”. The Philistines were originally several groups that entered Canaan, one group came before Patriarchal times ca 2200 BC, and the” sea people” from the Mediterranean.Scholars conjecture that they may have been groups that escaped the disaster that struck the Mycenean empire when a monumental volcanic eruption destroyed land masses and a tsunami of unbelievable power struck the Mediterranean. Before that numerous peoples and city-states were the general governmental arrangement of what was then Canaan.
The Greek historian Herodotus formed the term “the Philistine Syria” to refer to the region in his writings. The usual terms used before to describe a land or region would be to the language, kings or peoples, such as Habiru for Hebrew” or House of David or a reference to the name of the king. In retribution for the revolt under Bar Kochbar Roman Emperor Hadrian decided to blot out the nuisance of the Jews once and for all and renamed the province of Judea as Provincia Syria Palestina. It was listed as a jurisdiction for government and not a nation or people. Over centuries Damascus was recognized as the principal governmental body as Jerusalem slipped into dusty obscurity. Palestine was revived as a geographic term by the British Mandate.
The British Mandate inherited an Ottoman Province that had seen all the neglect a failing empire could muster. When American author Mark Twain, no firm Christian himself, toured the Middle East he described the landscape of the Holy Land as a dusty and wasted place, a sheer disappointment to the expectations of any pilgrim. The Sykes-Picot Agreement dividing of the spoils of the victory of 1918 saw France and Britain setting up puppet kingdoms to assert their authority and the area that is now Israel was a centerpiece. Zionism had been developing in intellects and souls of many in Europe and the small but industrious and influential Jewish population of the region began to warm to the idea as well. The Jews had never totally diappeared from the Land and although banned from Jerusalem depending on who was in charge, Byzantine, Muslim, Crusader or Ottoman, they were here and their industry set them apart. By the end of the the Second World War a remnant of Jews that had escaped from annihilation in Europe saw a return to what would be a restored Israel was their destiny. In the 1940’s the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem was openly pro-Nazi and mustered a brigade of Muslim troops to serve in Germany. Violence against Jews in Jerusalem was increasing as Jews from Europe managed to sneak into the area. Eventually the British caught on to the Mufti’s activities and he went to Berlin to be close to his Fuhrer.
The British and other European empires were going through withdrawal as nations that had served with their colonial armies expected independence as a natural outcome. Even Churchill declared that he had no intention of presiding over the dissolution of the British Empire. France, Belgium and Spain all saw revolutionary resistance as newly energized former colonies saw the return of trained and battle hardened troops come home to be ready to cast off former masters. Israel had seen a Jewish Brigade form and fight brilliantly in the Royal Army. American volunteers came to assist training Jewish resistance fighters, former soldiers from many Allied armies signed on as volunteers of conscience to support the restoration of a nation that had been spread into a world that rarely received them well.
To say that Palestine has ever existed as a nation or people is a fallacy. To carve out a new country from a nation established by Divine promise and covenant is an obscenity. Christians who place full trust, belief and faith in the Bible will have to realize that support for Israel is Bible-declared and current geopolitical justifications do not hold up to that in any way, shape or form. We can sympathize with the plight of a people who have seen their own co-believers use them as pawns in power games, but to deny the covenant that gave Israel to the descendants of Abraham is not open to discussion.Share this page with your friends
Follow News from Jerusalem