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History of Palestine





Palestine history is a battle scarred history of a parcel of land in West Asia. The land is coveted not only for its historical significance, but also for its strategic location.

The earliest settlers in Palestine history is the Mousterian Neanderthals around 200,000 BC. The Canaanites occupied the region around 1200 BC. They lived during the Bronze Age. The late Canaanite period saw the Palestinian region entering historical texts for the first time. The twelve tribes of Israel finds mention during this time period in history. The first cities began to appear in the history of Palestine around 1000 BC. King Solomon administered the area around 925 BC.

The Greek emperor Alexander the Great conquered the Palestine region around 330 BC. The Greek reign continued for 200 years. The Arab Caliphate came into existence from the Umayyad Period in 630 AD. The Crusaders conquered the Palestinian region on 1099 AD. The Muslim settlement in Palestinian history started during the Mamluk period. The Ottoman period saw the region becoming a part of the Turkish Empire. The Ottoman period lasted until 1917. British rule over Palestine started from 1917. General Allenby conquered the area from the Turks during the Second World War. Palestine is currently an autonomous region.

About Palestine Liberation Army
The Palestine Liberation Army was set up in the year 1964 as a military wing of Palestine Liberalization Organization. The army was set up with the sole mission of fighting the Israels. Since its formation the Palestine Liberation Army was controlled by several ruling governments. This special military wing was established in accordance with the resolution of the first Palestinian Conference. The three brigades that were established were Ein Jalut in Gaza and Egypt, Kadissiyah in Iraq and Hiteen in Syria.

History and Structure of Palestine Liberation Army
Intially the Palestine Liberation Army was headed by Ahmad Shukein and was under the control of the Arab states. The Palestinian refugees served in these units instead or rendering their service to the regualr armed forces. The PLA were equipped with all modern arms and ammunitions like small arms, mortars, rocket launchers, T-34 tanks and wheeled armored personnel carriers. In the year 1968, the Popular Liberation Forces were established as a separate commando wing for encountering the Israeli forces in the Gaza strip.

The modern Palestine Liberation Army soldiers have become the members of Palestinian Authority's National Guard. The Syrian PLA is still in operation, as one of the factions but the importance has diminished. It has loosened from PLO's control and has integrated into the Syrian Army.

The Palestine Liberation Army followed the guerilla tactics in its warfare. Most of their forces were deployed in Syria and Lebanon with the headquarters in Damscus.

Palestine British Mandate
The Palestine British Mandate was created with the objective of administering a few predetermined parts of the crumbling Ottoman Empire. The Palestine British Mandate was affected from 1923. The Mandate was liquidated in 1946.

The official name of the Palestine British Mandate was the British Mandate of Palestine. It was a League of Nations Mandate. The Mandate came into existence after the Second World War. The Great War saw the Ottoman Empire being carved up by the Treaty of Sevres. The Palestine British Mandate included the modern territories of Israel, Jordan, Gaza Strip and the West Bank. The British Mandate of Palestine was officially put into oblivion by the creation of the Jewish State of Israel in 1948.

Crusader Rule in Palestine (1099-1187 CE)
The Crusader rule in Palestine (1099-1187 CE) was administered by rulers imported from Europe. The period marked the construction of defensive structures in the Palestinian region.

The Crusader Rule in Palestine (1099-1187 CE) was a Christian kingdom. The rule was modeled on the contemporary peer kingdoms in Europe. The initial years saw the crusader rule no more than a aggregation of towns and cities captured from the Muslims by different crusaders. Godfrey of Bouillon first consolidated the combined power of the crusaders. A feudal administration was imposed upon the area. The economy was based on trade and an urban culture was established. The rule of the crusaders extended over the modern states of Lebanon, Israel, Jordan and Syria. The Gaza Strip was under Crusader control. The Christian kingdom was ultimately destroyed by the Mamluks.

Ottomans in Palestine
Palestine was conquered by the Ottomans in AD 1516. The Ottomans in Palestine was known for their relatively liberal rule over the West Asian region.

The Ottomans in Palestine quickly established a well entrenched system of political power control. The Palestinian region was brought under the Ottoman Empire fold. Local government functionaries were appointed from the Ottoman capital city of Constantinople. The Turkish government rebuilt the war scarred region. The walls of Jerusalem was repaired by the Ottoman emperor Suleiman the Magnificent in 1537. The Ottomans demarcated Palestine into two administrative divisions for ease of rule. The two areas were the independent Sanjak district and Willayat province. The Ottoman Empire ceased control over Palestine after the First World War. The British took over the reigns.

Philistines and Israelites
The Philistines and Israelites were ancient West Asian powers. The two empires fought each other for control of the region comprising modern day Palestine, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan.

The Philistines and Israelites existed in the time period from 1100 to 732 BC. The Philistines were also known as the Canaanites. They were known as the "Sea Peoples" in common parlance at that time. The epithet was earned by their considerable marine skills. They were also experienced in the art of iron smithing. The biblical character of Goliath was supposedly a Philistine. King David of the Israelites defeated the Philistines in 1000 BC. The Philistine civilization was ultimately obliterated by King Nebuchadrezzar II of Babylon around the time period of 700 BC.

Roman Influences on Palestine
The Roman Influences on Palestine are evident through the architectural style of existing ancient cities like Bethlehem. The Romans also built many of the notable religious structures that dot the Palestinian state of today.

The Roman influences on Palestine started when Rome consolidated its rule over the region around 63 BC. Palestine came under Roman rule when Rome included the ancient kingdom of Judah into the empire as a province. The effective control over present day Palestinian territories was left under the administration of local Jewish kings. The most famous of the Jewish kings was King Herod. King Herod ruled the areas comprising the present Palestine region from 37 to 4 BC. Jesus Christ was born under his reign.

King Herod was an able ruler. He rebuilt Jerusalem and other cities in the region. The Roman influence on Palestine was particularly exhibited during his reign. The cities were reconstructed according to Roman plan and architecture. Emperor Hadrian took control over the region in 135 AD. Emperor Constantine assumed the Roman throne on 313 AD. He actively promoted the Christian religion and built a number of notable Christian religious structures like the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Church of the Resurrection.

The Gulf War
The Gulf War was fought between Iraq and a coalition of 35 nations for the liberation of Kuwait from the Iraqi occupation army. The Palestinian leadership supported the Iraqi invasion and occupation of Kuwait.

The Gulf War was started from 2nd August 1990. The conflict continued for a year and ended on 28 February 1991. Economic sanctions were imposed on Iraq for the duration of the war. The Palestinian Liberation Organization or PLO supported the Iraqi action. The Iraqi standpoint was also supported by the general Palestinian populace. The PLO leader Yasser Arafat publicly supported the Iraqi President Saddam Hussein for his actions. The PLO continued their support even after Iraq was defeated in the war.

Zionism in Palestine
Zionism in Palestine came into perception after the Second World War. The Zionist concept envisages a separate political state for Jews in West Asia. The aims of a Zionist state come into direct conflict with the prevailing ground realities.

The Zionism in Palestine is a largely secular affair. The plan is to integrate the Muslim Arabs with the migrant Jews. The Arabs were to willingly vacate their lands for substantial economic benefits. The Zionists believe that Palestine is not an empty land and adjustments would be made accordingly. The Zionists have charted a set of five guiding principles. The set is known as the "Jerusalem Program".


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