10 FACTS

 

1

 

 

 

 

Jews are called Jews because we come from Judea. We are indigenous to the Middle East and there has been a continuous Jewish presence in the land of Israel for thousands of years.

 

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Palestine was the name given by the Romans following the capture, destruction and expulsion of Judea. Jews ended up in Europe the same way African Americans ended up in the United States - white people invaded our land and uprooted us.

 

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There has never been an independent Palestinian state. A self-identifiable, self-ruling and recognized Palestinian entity never existed until the Arab Palestinian national movement in the 20th century.

 

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The borders of modern-day Arab countries were created by Europeans. Before Britain and France carved up the Middle East following World War I, the region was part of the Ottoman Empire and the territory divided into urban-centered municipalities called sanjaks. The sanjaks of Jerusalem, Nablus, Acre and Beirut are part of present-day Israel.

 

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Zionism was a movement launched in the 19th century for the re-establishment, development and protection of a Jewish state in the land of Israel. Returning to Israel has been a central, driving force of the Jewish people for millennia. As is said during every Passover Seder: "Next year in Jerusalem."

 

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Jews did not steal land from Arabs when they returned enmasse to Israel in the late 19th and early 20th century. They legally purchased land from absentee landowners living in Arab capitals to build kibbutzim and communities. Local Arab tenants were often displaced following the purchase so Jews could be hired to work the land.

 

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The Arabs of Palestine were offered their own state, side-by-side with Israel in 1947, when Britain relinquished their Mandate to the United Nations. They, along with the surrounding Arab countries, rejected the partition recommendation (UN Resolution 181), which resulted in civil war and an invasion of five Arab armies to destroy the Jewish community of Israel.

 

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Nearly 80% of what was meant to be an Arab Palestinian state was stolen by Jordan (Judea & Samaria/West Bank) and Egypt (Gaza) during the 1948 War of Independence. During the next two decades under their control, they never gave the Palestinians independence. During the Six Day War of 1967, Israel gained that territory in a defensive war when Arab armies massed troops along her borders and once again threatened destruction.

 

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Israel offered the Palestinians 97% of the land they claimed to be fighting for in 2000, making Israel the first and only country ever to offer them a state. This offer was rejected with no counter-offer. A similar offer was made in 2008 with the same result.

 

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Israel voluntarily withdrew from Gaza in 2005, removing all soldiers and civilians, giving full control to the Palestinians in hopes of peace. The terrorist organization Hamas now controls Gaza and has launched over tens of thousands of missiles indiscriminately into Israel, resulting in multiple wars in the 21st century.

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