The Ridiculousness of Palestinian Narrative Shines Through Jordan Times Op-Ed
In the Jordan Times, Prince EL Hassan Bin Talal has republished an article entitled “As the Arabs see the Jews”, in commemoration of his grandfather “King Abdullah bin Hussein’s martyrdom at the entrance of Al Aqsa Mosque.” And by martyrdom, he means shot dead by a palestinian Arab from the Husseini clan, in an assassination that was said to have influenced Hussein not to enter peace talks with Israel in the aftermath of the Six-Day War.
But don’t think this piece is anti-palestinian. The summary says it all.
In the article, King Abdullah disputes the mistaken view that Arab opposition to Zionism (and later the state of Israel) is because of longstanding religious or ethnic hatred. He notes that Jews and Muslims enjoyed a long history of peaceful coexistence in the Middle East, and that Jews have historically suffered far more at the hands of Christian Europe. Pointing to the tragedy of the holocaust that Jews suffered during World War II, the monarch asks why America and Europe are refusing to accept more than a token handful of Jewish immigrants and refugees. It is unfair, he argues, to make Palestine, which is innocent of anti-Semitism, pay for the crimes of Europe. King Abdullah also asks how Jews can claim a historic right to Palestine, when Arabs have been the overwhelming majority there for nearly 1300 uninterrupted years? The essay ends on an ominous note, warning of dire consequences if a peaceful solution cannot be found to protect the rights of the indigenous Arabs of Palestine.
Note the mention of “indigenous Arabs of Palestine” – because in the essay, old man Hussein admits the Arabs conquered the land after the Jews were living there. It is just that they lived there for a long time after doing so.
I was puzzled for a long time about the odd belief which apparently persists in America that Palestine has somehow “always been a Jewish land.” Recently an American I talked to cleared up this mystery. He pointed out that the only things most Americans know about Palestine are what they read in the Bible. It was a Jewish land in those days, they reason, and they assume it has always remained so.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. It is absurd to reach so far back into the mists of history to argue about who should have Palestine today, and I apologise for it. Yet the Jews do this, and I must reply to their “historic claim.” I wonder if the world has ever seen a stranger sight than a group of people seriously pretending to claim a land because their ancestors lived there some 2,000 years ago!
If you suggest that I am biased, I invite you to read any sound history of the period and verify the facts.
Such fragmentary records as we have indicate that the Jews were wandering nomads from Iraq who moved to southern Turkey, came south to Palestine, stayed there a short time, and then passed to Egypt, where they remained for about 400 years. About 1300 BC (according to your calendar) they left Egypt and gradually conquered most—but not all—of the inhabitants of Palestine.
It is significant that the Philistines—not the Jews—gave their name to the country: “Palestine” is merely the Greek form of “Philistia.”
Only once, during the empire of David and Solomon, did the Jews ever control nearly—but not all—the land which is today Palestine. This empire lasted only 70 years, ending in 926 BC. Only 250 years later the Kingdom of Judah had shrunk to a small province around Jerusalem, barely a quarter of modern Palestine.
In 63 BC the Jews were conquered by Roman Pompey, and never again had even the vestige of independence. The Roman Emperor Hadrian finally wiped them out about 135 AD. He utterly destroyed Jerusalem, rebuilt under another name, and for hundreds of years no Jew was permitted to enter it. A handful of Jews remained in Palestine but the vast majority were killed or scattered to other countries, in the Diaspora, or the Great Dispersion. From that time Palestine ceased to be a Jewish country, in any conceivable sense.
This was 1,815 years ago, and yet the Jews solemnly pretend they still own Palestine! If such fantasy were allowed, how the map of the world would dance about!
In any event, the great Moslem expansion about 650 AD finally settled things. It dominated Palestine completely. From that day on, Palestine was solidly Arabic in population, language, and religion. When British armies entered the country during the last war, they found 500,000 Arabs and only 65,000 Jews.
If solid, uninterrupted Arab occupation for nearly 1,300 years does not make a country “Arab”, what does?
The Jews say, and rightly, that Palestine is the home of their religion. It is likewise the birthplace of Christianity, but would any Christian nation claim it on that account? In passing, let me say that the Christian Arabs—and there are many hundreds of thousands of them in the Arab World—are in absolute agreement with all other Arabs in opposing the Zionist invasion of Palestine.
His “logic” is breathtaking – and not in a good way. If he wants to argue to the occupier go the spoils, then surely Israel is in control now (even though we liberated our lands, rather than “occupying” them). And if he wants to argue that we don’t have a right to the land because “Only once, during the empire of David and Solomon, did the Jews ever control nearly the land which is today Palestine”, then surely the palestinian Arabs – who never controlled the land – don’t have a right to it.
This piece is emblematic of the entire palestinian narrative – full of factual untruths, contradictions and logical holes.