Monday, May 23, 2011

A Brief History of Israel


The Biblical state of Israel only existed for about 300 years.

In around 1000 BC, King David conquered Jerusalem and carved the state of Israel out of a chunk of what had been, for the previous 1000 years or so, the land of Canaan.

The Israelites felt compelled to conquer Canaan because their God told them they could have Canaan. That and the force of arms was their only claim to the land.

Israel thrived, more or less, until about 722 BC when it was conquered by the Assyrians.

Then conquered again by the Babylonians in 586 BC.

Then conquered again by the Persians about 50 years later. The Persian remained in control of the area until Alexander the Great conquered it around 331 BC.

After the death of Alexander, the area bounced around in limbo until it came under Roman rule in about 164 BC. This is when the area became known as Palestine.

At no time during the previous 2000 years was the area populated by a Jewish majority. It was populated by a mix of indigenous people who had been inhabiting the area continuously for 10,000 years. The Jewish people were just part of the mix.

The Roman Empire ruled Palestine until about 300 AD. The Byzantine Empire ruled Palestine from about 300 AD until 638 AD when the Muslims took control and held it until it became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1517.

The Ottoman Empire remained in control of Palestine until the end of WWI when it was divided between the British and the French.

Although there was talk of establishing a Jewish homeland in the area, it wasn't until after WWII that the British finally punted, turned the issue over to the newly formed United Nations and let them decide what to do with Palestine.

The U.N. basically split Palestine into an Arab Palestine and a Jewish Israel in 1947. That was just 64 years ago. It was not a popular decision then and it has not aged well.

Imagine if the United Nations decided to split Texas in half and give half of it to the Mexicans. The displaced Texans and the neighbors in the surrounding states might take issue with the decision.

Imagine further that the Mexicans decided that half of Texas wasn't enough and went to war with Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana to annex even more territory. Ya know, for "security".

So, let's just take a step back here.

Over the course of the last 10,000 years, Israel existed for 300 years because their God said so and again for the last 64 years because the United Nations said so.

When you look at the big picture, telling Israel that they can't keep the land they took by force in 1967 and need to pull back to the land that was taken from the Palestinians and given to them in 1947 doesn't seem to be all that egregious.

The bottom line here is that the only reason the state of Israel exists again after
3000 years is because the United Nations took a chunk of land away from one group of people and gave it to another group of people. It's not as though it was brought into existence by God Himself and has remained inviolate for all of human history.

Israel is a consensual construct of modern international law. It's borders were negotiated into existence against the will of it's neighbors and they can only be maintained through continuing negotiations with those same, hostile neighbors.

If world history teaches us anything, it's that nothing lasts forever.

23 comments:

kcmeesha said...

sorry I skipped all historical bullshit you stole from wikipedia.the point is - most borders in the world were determined by war, many times over.no country is asked to return the territories it won. even the land where your house is located was stolen by great-great-grampa xonassis from the Indians who were subsequently placed into fenced-in areas somewhere in the desert.same is true with pretty much every country on every continent outside of the north and south poles.so as soon as you return the state of missouri to the indians (you know where to find them -next to casinos and tobacco shops),come back and explain what israel should or shouldn't do. also nice job skipping over the fact that palestinians don't and won't recognize israel in any borders.

Xavier Onassis said...

kcmeesha - If a judge ruled that I get to come live in half of your house because my God gave it to me, how likely is it that you would ever be OK with that?

kcmeesha said...

they really didn't do it because "god gave it to them".jews lived there all the time,not in the same numbers but they were present there more or less throughout the history.borders of every country in that region were drawn by the british or whoever else ran that whole clusterfuck,and no one complains.where were Syria,Jordan,Lebanon,Iraq,Iran before they were created by other people.so talking about some historic precedent is just silly.it was as good of a place as any for israel and since there were some historic and religious ties they picked it.notice that there wasn't a country there or a state or even palestinian people (who were invented and financed by the KGB, it's a historic fact).Like I said before,what's the reason for white people living in this country? they came here and killed the natives in part because "god told them" they were superior to the savages.same happened all over Australia,New Zealand,South America, North America, Africa and Europe. Where are the countries of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia?Who drew their borders? Why aren't territories being returned to the original "owners".How likely are the Indians to be OK with you living on their land? Either you are across the board consistent and go back to where the xonassis clan came from or you are full of shit (as always) thoughtless obama drone.

Xavier Onassis said...

So Palestine was created by the Roman Empire but the people living there didn't become Palestinians until the KGB payed them to be Palestinians?

Sounds like typical Russian conspiracy theory bullshit to me.

Actually, for what it's worth, I say we give this land back to the Native Americans and move back to Europe. They have better health care over there.

And how does President O'Bama get dragged into this?

kcmeesha said...

obama made 1967 borders speech the other day and then got schooled by the israeli prime-minister. don't tell me you just thought of this for no particular reason. Palestine is not a country it's a name for an area or a region,like Central America or Asia. and the people who live there are palestinians like people who live in asia are asians.palestinians live in Jordan and Syria and other countries.Until israel was created palestinian people haven't been heard from too much,but then the USSR got Arafat and trained PLO, sent them weapons and financing.Kinda like Americans did with Osama.
http://bit.ly/lmcyGe
also study this article as well http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_September_in_Jordan

Warrior/Poet said...

Exaulted XOnassis,
Your view of the historical timeline is a bit off.

While the united monarchy known as Israel did only last around 300 years under Kings Saul, David and Solomon and subsequent rulers... There was a period of Hebrew rule of that land well prior to those kings, the period that followed the Exodus from Egypt when the 12 Tribes had a loose confederation ruled by religious judges. And yes after the Hebrews (re)conquered it from Canaan.

Also, prior to Egyptian slavery period, the Hebrews held territory in the area that would several hundred years later be known as the Kingdom of Israel.
Now... After the Kings, Israel split in two - forming Israel and Judea.
Then Israel was conquered by the NeoAssyrians, and it's population migrated around Asia(10 Lost Tribes).
Judea remained and was eventually conquered by the Babylonians, Jerusalem destroyed, and a few, not all Judeans/Hebrews, were exiled to Babylon, and the 'capitol' of the Judeans moved to another town.
50 years later those exiled were allowed to return under the Persians and the 2nd temple built.

During all this time, from at least the Exodus all the way up to the exile(and during), and then after the return, Israel and Judea were populated predominantly and culturally by the Hebrews, lasting all the way up to the destruction of the 2nd Temple by the Romans when it was known as Palaestina.
And know, under Roman rule, the Hebrews were a relatively self-governing state, granted more leniency than other territories, until it all went wrong.

It didn't matter who was "ruling" the land, it was where the Hebrews/Jews lived, either under their own rule or by 'foreigners', for well more than 1,500 years. And even after the Diaspora by the Romans, Jews lived in Byzantine(Eastern Roman) or Ottoman 'Palestine' for another 1,800 years all the way up to May '48.

So the idea that the Hebrews/Jews only had 300 years of influence or rule in "Israel" is more than a bit off base.

Joe said...

What I've never understood is why we as a country give one flying fuck about Israel. Its all wrapped up in the "Holy Land" bullshit that our secular country shouldn't care about. There will never, ever be "peace" in the Middle East. Ever. There's just too much ethnic hatred amongst the players.

Nick said...

"Imagine if the United Nations decided to split Texas in half and give half of it to the Mexicans."

I'm down with that.

Keith Sader said...

@Warrior/Poet
The Israelites were never a slave population in Egypt, nor was there an exodus. The archeology doesn't support it.

The evidence seems to best dovetail with the fact that there was a population of Canaanite pagans that made a somewhat gradual transition to monotheism after being polytheistic and then monolatrists. These people were mostly non-incorporated until David united them.

emawkc said...

@xonassis, @kcmeesha,

I wish you foreigners would get out and leave this land to us Native Americans.

Kanga said...

Whatever the ancient history (and I'm convinced that Kieth is right on the general outlines of it,) the region has been down this road before, during the Crusades. The Crusader kingdoms were a western imposition on the region, and they thrived only as long as they were supported by the kingdoms of Europe. Once the fervor for the Holy Land died down, and the cost of defending the kingdoms became onerous, support dwindled and the kingdoms were eventually absorbed back into Islam. At this point, there is still plenty of political support in the US for Israel, but it is lessening. Europe's support is tepid at best. As tough as the IDF is, the nation can only stand so long if it ever alienates the entire Western world, even if it does have nukes.

I Travel for JOOLS said...

Thanks for the history lesson. Seriously, you weren't there. Winners right the history books. You disclaim the Bible, yet rely on this.

Well, anyhow, it's here and now. What do you want ...to drive Israel into the sea or distinction? What have these people done to you? By the way, over a million Arabs and Palestinians live and work and get medical care in Israel. Think the Palestinians (Hamas) would treat the Jews that way if they had the lands?? Of course not, they want them all dead and gone.

I have to ask why the hatred. It sickens me.

And, yes,

I Travel for JOOLS said...

I meant extinction, not distinction...duh

I Travel for JOOLS said...

4 glasses of wine and fingertips overtook good sense. Sorry for making it personal. I know you're not a bad person...I just don't understand. The Jews have suffered unimaginable horror. It upsets me.

Anonymous said...

Xavier, fuck you you anti semitic shit.

Goldstein's Clone

Xavier Onassis said...

Warrior/Poet - See what Keith said.

Joe - Here is what I've never understood. If Judaism, Christianity and Islam can all trace their lineage back to the same man in the same part of the world, and if this One God is All Powerfull and full of Love, why isn't the Middle East an Oasis of Peace and Love where everything is all rainbows and unicorns?


Kanga - That's kinda my point. The Israelis have had 3000 years in the area and they couldn't make it a country. It took someone else to come in, take land away from someone else and give it to the Israelis before they could form a state. Why didn't they just do it themselves?

Jools - No hate at all! I'm just trying to take a step back and look at the situation objectively without the kneejerk Christian adoration of Israel and humanities shared guilt over the Holocost. Put those two things aside and it's easier to see the situation as most of the rest of the world sees it.

Anonymous said...

Xavier, you fucked up fool...

There is never going to be another Holocaust where the Jews don't fight back.

They have nuclear weapons.

If they face destruction again...its NUCLEAR WINTER time for the Goys.

And the Goys will join the Jews in the ovens this time.

Now, go take a day trip with that cunt who pretends to be a Lesbian so guys buy her shit but she doesn't have to put out.

Midtown Miscreant said...

And how does President O'Bama get dragged into this?

Come on XO, that is what this entire post was about. Your boy got checked by the Israeli PM and that chapped your ass, hence the history and morality diatribe. MV pretty much put you to bed with the give Mo back to the Indians line. So first the Israeli schools Obama, then the Ruskie schools you. That's 2 for the Jews. Zero for Barry and XO Obama.

Hyperblogal said...

Let's just give Israel to the Indians. Problem solved.

Steve Finnell said...

you are invited to follow my blog

Anonymous said...

Too bad you won't be able to tell us how hot and painful eternity will be in HELL.

Superdave said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

You people here fighting or arguing about this is a perfect example of why there is no peace in the Middle East.

No matter who says what about that land over there for as soon as you do 100 people will jump your shit and tell you you're wrong.

It's call history because it's in the past.

And in the past as a rule is a damn good place to keep it.

So play nice and lets move ahead on matters that really matter.

Masorti said...

I have to say I am suprised at you, XO. I never took you as the anti-israel type. Better stop using Google, homie. G-d forbid you continue to use anything the Israelis had anything to do with. :-)