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Sunni Muslim Arabs have occupied the territory previously known as Palestine, as the majority of the region’s inhabitants, since the seventh-century, together with a sizeable Christian minority. Indeed, at the start of the 19th century the Jewish population was only about 3%. To imply otherwise would be a distortion of historical fact. Jews were only a minority in the land of Palestine ever since about 700 BC until 1948 – with the forcible establishment of the state of Israel – i.e. for approximately 1200 years. That is documented and verifiable history.
For hundreds of years prior to the British Mandate, Palestine was part of the Ottoman Empire and was divided into provinces in which there were only very few recorded Jewish inhabitants.
However, that there was a Hebrew sect, with its own temple, in and around Jerusalem in ancient times i.e. during and before the life of Christ, is not in dispute. But the only people to have a valid claim on the region that runs between the Mediterranean Sea and the River Jordan, as the continuous indigenous people of the region were, and are, the Muslim Arab.
Nevertheless, during the 1880s, a Jewish nationalist movement by the name of ‘Zionism’ evolved among persecuted Jews fleeing from anti-Semitic pogroms in Europe, using the slogan: “a land without a people for a people without a land”. This was, of course, demonstrably false as the land of Palestine was already occupied by predominantly Muslim communities and had been for over a thousand years!
The British government, however, was ‘playing with politics’ when, in 1917, its then foreign secretary, A J Balfour, sent a deliberately ambiguous statement of British intent to pro-Zionist, Lord Rothschild, on 2 November which was subsequently published in The Times. It did not promise a Jewish state in Palestine but vaguely expressed the sentiment that HM Government viewed with favour the establishment of a Jewish national home in Palestine whilst recognising that there was an existing Muslim population long settled in the region.
The Balfour Declaration far from being written to help Jews fleeing from persecution, was in fact designed to help boost American support for Britain’s then war effort from an America with a significantly influential Jewish population, even then. This is substantiated, historical narrative.
Fortunately, Mr Netanyahu cannot erase history no matter how influential, powerful or flush-with-casino-gambling-profits is the AIPAC Israel lobby in Washington or its associated paid political persuaders in Westminster, Strasbourg, the Bundestag or the Élysée Palace.
In the final analysis, truth will eventually always win over propaganda, and those who disseminate it.
Hans Stehling (pen name) is an analyst based in the UK. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research.