Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Who Has Ruled Palestine Since 70CE? How Did People Fare?

Nadene Goldfoot
Our "birth certificate" was validated by the promise of the Bible.  Eretz Yisrael was not called Palestine until 135 CE when Bar Kochba lost a 3 year battle with the Romans to regain Jerusalem.  There have been many foreign rulers in what was called Palestine, but Palestine was ruled, and not even occupied.  Transient people just came and went. No country owned it after the Jews were dispersed in 70 CE.  Large communities were re-established in Jerusalem and Tiberias by the Jews in the 9th century.  In the 11th century, Jewish communities grew in Rafah, Gaza, Ashkelon, Jaffa and Caesarea.  The land remained a crossroads of trade and empire-making. It remained trampled, unloved and untended  until the Jews' return, a wasteland for 2,000 years.    

70 CE -395 Destruction of Jerusalem by Romans, Romans and Byzantine Empire Ruled (Constantinople) :
135 CE:  Romans changed name to Palaestina (thought to be after long-vanished Philistines, Aegean people, enemies of Judah) Jerusalem changed to Aelia Capitolina. Jews became minority population,  Christians majority, languages used were Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic.   Constantinope had Emperor Justinian

395-636  The Period of Ignorance(of Islam) : Population lived in a few towns on trade routes, most were nomadic tribes, land barren, uninviting, superpowers did not come into land, had garrisons for defense against nomadic tribes.
570 CE Muhammad born in Saudi Arabia
 622-Mohammad created 1st Islamic government, died 632.  Campaigning, attacking for 11 years clear to Egypt.

1037-1194-Seljuks, Turkish-Persian Empire, ruled 1,505,798 sq miles, Sultans,
Seljuk,  founded the first major Muslim Turk dynasty...which extended in various forms -- right from Ghazni in Afghanistan to Anatolia (modern Turkey), for 500 years, hero of Seljuk Turks,  was thought to have been an officer in Khazaria army (Jewish royal family) , active from 985 to 1038 when died, descendants carried on, conquered to Baghdad, guardians of the declining  Abbasid caliphate..
636-1072 Arabs :   Arabs were on both sides of Jordan River; filastin (Palestine), Urdun (Jordan).  Built Ramla for an administrative centre.  Genealogy became important to determine money Muslim Arab received. Slowly Islamizations happened, Arabic used, immigration of Arab tribes from Arabia and Egypt, con't through 7th to 20th centuries.  Sabaeans and Nabataeans traders from Arabia.    Jewish communities grew.  

1072-1099 Seljuks, Confederacy of 9 Clans carried on the dynasty, Overlapping with Arabs

1099-1291 Crusaders' Rule massacred Muslim, Jews -Christians from Europe,  Land named Kingdom of Jerusalem 30,000 Crusaders entered Godfrey named king of Jerusalem,

1291-1516 Mamluk Rule; Cairo Slave successors, Egyptian rulers, 3 districts or Mamlaka:  :  Safad, Gaza and Damascus.  Used no name for land.  Destroyed most cities and villages along coastal plain to deter foreign invaders, remained empty.

1516-1917 Ottoman Rule; Turks,  land divided into administered districts, no name for land. 17ith, 18th centuries very bad oppression, marauding Beduin tribes, rival local alliances, villages reduced, population dwindled-19th century had no more than 250,000.  Middle of 19th century Jews and Arabs started to grow. 1914 population west of Jordan 680,000 (85,000 Jewish). Sultan Suleiman.

1918-1948 British Mandate through League of Nations at end of WWI.  name used-Palestine, mandate on both sides of Jordan till Eastern side given to Arabs for Transjordan.  May 14, 1948-birth of Israel.

Resource:   facts about Israel division of Information, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Jerusalem
Middle East, Past and Present by Yahya Armajani, Thomas M. Ricks

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