Out of Thin Air
I felt that in these deceptive times, especially when the news reports students being suspended from school in England for not performing Islamic prayers, it was important to help spread truth about the history of the Middle East. Here are some good articles, with excerpts.
The truth is that Palestine is no more real than Never-Never Land. The first time the name was used was in 70 A.D. when the Romans committed genocide against the Jews, smashed the Temple and declared the land of Israel would be no more. From then on, the Romans promised, it would be known as Palestine. The name was derived from the Philistines, a Goliathian people conquered by the Jews centuries earlier. It was a way for the Romans to add insult to injury. They also tried to change the name of Jerusalem to Aelia Capitolina, but that had even less staying power.
Palestine has never existed -- before or since -- as an autonomous entity. It was ruled alternately by Rome, by Islamic and Christian crusaders, by the Ottoman Empire and, briefly, by the British after World War I. The British agreed to restore at least part of the land to the Jewish people as their homeland.
There is no language known as Palestinian. There is no distinct Palestinian culture. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Palestinians. Palestinians are Arabs, indistinguishable from Jordanians (another recent invention), Syrians, Lebanese, Iraqis, etc. Keep in mind that the Arabs control 99.9 percent of the Middle East lands. Israel represents one-tenth of 1 percent of the landmass.
But that’s too much for the Arabs. They want it all. And that is ultimately what the fighting in Israel is about today. Greed. Pride. Envy. Covetousness. No matter how many land concessions the Israelis make, it will never be enough.
My recent commentaries on the Middle East have touched off a virtual international firestorm on the Internet.
Since writing “Myths of the Middle East” less than two weeks ago, I have been inundated with e-mail from all over the world -- at least 5,000 letters from Israel alone! The article has been translated into a dozen languages. It has been the subject of network television debates. It has been read on Israeli national radio. And, while most of the reaction has been passionately favorable, there have been threats on my life and the lives of my family members. There have been vicious, obscene, vulgar and profane denunciations.
The reaction illustrates just how far apart the Arabs and Israelis are in the so-called “peace process.”
There has clearly been no progress since 1947.
In fact, there is ample evidence that some Arab leaders are right now attempting to revise history in new ways that strongly suggest there is nothing Israel can ever do to appease the violence in their hearts.
Jerusalem’s role as “The Third Holiest Site in Islam” in mainstream Islamic writings does not precede the 1930s. It was created by the Grand Mufti Haj Amin al Husseini
Most of the problems surrounding Jerusalem can be traced to two areas of dispute. One is the political area that asks Jerusalem to be the capital of both Israel and the nascent Palestine. The other and most contentious problem is the holiness of Temple Mount to both Judaism and Islam.
The role Jerusalem has in the Hebrew holy works is well known and not open to debate; however, there are varying opinions on the holiness of Jerusalem, specifically Temple Mount to Islam.
Many if not most opinions that counter Islam’s claim point out the Jerusalem is not mentioned in the Quran and did not occupy any special role in Islam until recent political exigencies transformed Jerusalem into Islam’s third holy site.
Jerusalem’s role as “The Third Holiest Site in Islam” in mainstream Islamic writings does not precede the 1930s.
The Islamic claim to the Temple is very recent, since 1930