Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Kingdom of Jerusalem

June 7th 1099 the siege of Jerusalem began, by July 15th of the same year, the First Crusaders had captured the city and effectively given birth to "The Kingdom of Jerusalem" a Christian nation in the Holy Land. Reason I'm writing this is because this is the first I've ever heard of "The Kingdom of Jerusalem", I mean I know about The Crusades and all that but, man, a Christian nation in Palestine! Cool!! The Kingdom stretched North to Beirut, East of the Jordan river and down to the Gulf of Aquaba (see map below). It was only around for 200 years, but hey, Canada isn't even that old! The Kingdom was officially destroyed in 1291 with the fall of Acre.

The movie The Kingdom of Heaven with Orlando Bloom does a fantastic job of re-creating that time and the fall of Jerusalem, rent it.

Speaking as a Christian, I think the reason I am finding this so amazing is because the idea of having an exclusively Christian nation in Palestine is so ludicrous, kind of like having an exclusive Jewish nation in Palestine. The Holy land is precious to the 3 major religions of the world. It is sacred to Islam, Christianity and Judaism. I don't think any of them should have an exclusive hold on Palestine.

I believe the only solution to the current stand off is a FREE and United Palestine, secular and for all religions.

A final thought: wouldn't it be ironic if all this time the Christian right of the United States aim was to resurrect the Kingdom of Jerusalem but has let Israel take the brunt of the battle for them. Arriving only in the waning days of Israel to sweep up the land....? Just a thought...


shlemazl said...

Israel isn't EXCLUSIVELY Jewish. There are Muslims, Christians, Druze, ... you name it.

As opposed to Palestinian-run autonomy, which to the best of my knowledge is Juden-frei. As are most of Arab states.

The other day a Jewish American boy ventured into Judea and got kidnapped.

Abu Shaar said...

Murderers. Bloody murderers.

Abu-Issa said...

Ah yes, but the plan has always been (and in some cases continues to be) to ethnically cleanse the land of non-Jews, to "scatter them to the wind" as the Zionist line went.

If the 800,000 or so Muslims and Christians hadn't vacated their lands, their villages and houses in 1948...Jews would NOT have had demographic upper hand would they? And thus they wouldn't be able to sustain this current illusion of a democracy.

Could you imagine today if only 50% of Israel was actually Jewish? If 50% of the government actually had Palestinian representatives? Israel would likely legislate itself out of existance as a Jewish state!

At that point my vision of a secular, United Palestine would come to fruition...interesting huh?

The Holy Land should be the guiding light not only of spirituality to the world but an example of how people can come together politically, find commonality and build a nation that is truly for ALL.


a.k.a.bicuka said...

wouldn't americans like that??!!!!

Tsedek said...

"Ah yes, but the plan has always been (and in some cases continues to be) to ethnically cleanse the land of non-Jews, to "scatter them to the wind" as the Zionist line went."

It depends on which story teller you listen to telling Zionism "his way". Originally zionism was based on LIVING-TOGETHER. This is STILL so, considering that 20% of the population that didn't flee still lives here and others were given the option in 1948 to sign a document that they wouldn't engage in violence against the jews and could return to their houses, of which law 150.000 palestinian fugitives took advantage and live constructive lives as arab-israeli's now.

Judaism is the oldest religion of the 3 mentioned, so maybe first-born rights should apply as to whether under whose control the 3 religions can live in peace in this Holy Land. Since any other way seems to bring violence (all concurring for their own "religious power" to be in control) and since Christian faith have their epicenters elsewhere in the world and their followers loads of land "under their control" and ditto goes for Islam, I think this is only fair, since Judaism has nothing apart from this small piece of land.


Abu-Issa said...


Thanks for your post.

Zionism may mean different things to different people. However, within the context of the conflict in Palestine, Zionism refers to the ideological foundation of a political movement calling for the establishment of an exclusive Jewish State in Palestine.

"Originally zionism was based on LIVING-TOGETHER"

Yes, based on Ashkenazi, Sephardi and Mizrahi Jews living together but definitely NOT living together with the indiginous population of Palestine.

To quote Theodore Herzl directly from Der Judenstaat where he said that a Jewish state would "form a portion of the rampart of Europe against Asia, an outpost of civilization as opposed to barbarism." Yes, he said BARBARISM... kind of gives you an idea of how they perceived the people of Palestine before they even got there...and their intentions toward them.

In reference to the second part of your comment...the only time there was violence in Palestine was when somebody showed up, either Christians or Jews, claiming right's to the land.

I'm a Christian Palestinian and am appaled at the idea of any Christian movement claiming exclusive rights to I said in my post.

I am opposed to ANYONE claiming exclusivity over The Holy land and continue to campaign for a FREE and United Palestine!


Tsedek said...

Okay, Abu-Issa that's your opinion, and your entitled to that exactly as I'm entitled to my own opinion. I don't think "the only time there was violence in Palestine was when somebody showed up" - there was violence going on before this time "someone showed up" - with the most famous example the slaughter of jews in Hebron in 1929, but there were other incidents like that one.

No, zionism was NOT based on Ashkenazi, Sephardi and Mizrahi jews without the indiginous population of Palestine. Definitely not. The example you quote is over-rated and not representative for zionism, eventhough it's herzl (but then - herzl also had strange ideas for Uganda). Look:


"How can Jews, who demand emancipation in Russia, rob rights and act selfishly toward other workers upon coming to Eretz Israel? If it is possible for many a people to hide fairness and justice behind cannon smoke, how and behind what shall we hide fairness and justice? We should absolutely not deceive ourselves with terrible visions. We shall never possess cannons, even if the goyim shall bear arms against one another for ever. Therefore, we cannot but settle in our land fairly and justly, to live and let live. " (Meir Dizengoff (writing as "Dromi") "The Workers Question," Hatzvi, September 21, 22, 1909)

Palestine must be built up without violating the legitimate interests of the Arabs.. Palestine is not Rhodesia... 600,0000 Arabs live there, who before the sense of justice of the world have exactly the same rights to their homes as we have to our National Home. [Chaim Weizmann, addressing the Fourteenth Zionist Congress in Vienna, 1925, quoted in Tessler, Mark, A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 1994 p. 181]

I would put more, but I don't wanna mess up your comment section, your blog. Please read the above link. It is important to know that originally zionism was nothing as it pretends to be today.

Take care & be well,

Abu-Issa said...

Thanks again Tse for your comments, I believe it is this kind of dialogue that will eventually bring understanding and empathy to all the people on both side of this situation.

That said, the colonization of Palestine by European Jews began in the late 1800's and continued heavily through the time of the Hebron massacre in 1929. Now I wasn't there but I dare to say that that massacre was likely a reaction to all of the European Jews "showing up" to declare the land theirs. If the European Jews had NOT shown up I am quite certain the incident would not have happened. Mind you the sad fact is that the Jews of Hebron were not the colonizers but actually native Palestinians themselves!

I have read the quotes on the page you suggested and was happy to read more quotes from Jews who were against the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine or at least the wish to live among the Palestinians rather that conquer them. You can read others in one of my earlier posts A Passover Demonstration including a quote from Albert Einstein against the creation of the Jewish state.

While many Jews were against the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine the unfortunate fact remains that the imperialistic part of Zionism prevailed. It is this imperialism that continues to be the driving force behind everything Israel does today.


-canuck- said...

oh ya israel are the bad guys.


Tsedek said...

I don't know if it'll bring understanding, Abu-Issa (I'm kinda negative about this as of lately this also being the reason I'm reacting this late) but empathy I believe it'll bring. I could even feel empathy for some Hamas leaders when they appeared on tv some months ago in an all-day "be my guest" interview with an Israeli journalist (Itai Engel). They are determined to destroy "me", but it didn't look like they were enjoying that idea.... (confused-emoticon here). They spoke about their hardships and, those are numerous - they spoke about their difficult day-to-day life, they spoke about their losses (the brother of Rantissi was interviewed as well), they spoke about their pain. They went to the grave of Rantissi. They spoke like two people whom stood outside of the causes for the death of that man. His doings, Israel's doings. And were just people. Connecting feelings. They looked so hopeless, so tired and so not attached to their final "duty" (because they brought the Quran into it and how they interpretate it - HAVING to make an Islamic Waqf of Israel - and pay attention to: "Having"). They seemed reluctant though. Abu Tir said that he would so much like to live together with the Israeli's in peace........ but in the end, they'd have to dissappear. He was longing for peace. For quite. But couldn't let go of his ideal, his "duty". They definetely suffer. I'm sure and convinced of that. I hate to see people suffer, it breaks my heart (I literally feel pain around my heart if I see that).

So: empathy I've got. But where does that get me? Or them, for that matter?

I don't know about the jews of europe immigrating being the cause of this conflict. I've read the newspapers from that time, I've read articles that sorta welcomed the idea that people were coming to bring life into agriculture and modernization (well, for that time at least) What about the influx of arabs into Palestine? They for sure didn't come just like that?

My thoughts about the cause of this conflict are far more sinister. Suspicions confirmed with a "revelation" here and there of some sorta weird story, weird conduct, weird happening - but no context. I'm becoming more and more convinced though (certainly after reading "the Rape of Palestine" of William Ziff written in 1938, seeing the "emperor without clothes" website etc.) that we're both (Palestinians & Israeli's alike) made pawns in a game between the east and the west and the struggle to hold on to power. And, most sadly: we (as regular non-elite people) are following the design of hate that's set-out for us happily it seems....

Sorry for this long, long, long rant *blush* - But I'm really very down - also since things seem to heat up even more instead of getting better... right now. If this rant bothers you, please delete it from this comments section, I'll understand :)

Be well and take care,

Anonymous said...

I totally agree w/Tse. Both Israelis and Palestinians are pawns in an international game that I do not understand.
So, how do you make peace? How do you avoid being used adn abused? How do you raise your children so they live "normal" lives? How do you avoid the violence that brings so much destruction and desolation?.........................

Palestinian Princess said...

If we all converted to Judiasm, would that solve all the worlds problems?

Hmmm... A thought.


Osaid Rasheed said...


Abu Issa : Is it true that arabs in palestine and christians were living peacefully in the past ? i mean starting from the date when Muslims took control over jerusalem untill the zionist movement began implementing its plans in Palestine ?

As a muslim, I do believe that the relation with christians has been very peaceful. Although some muslims were always viewing things in a more extreme way, but that have not affected the relation in general.

I do enjoy readung through your posts and comments. It is people like tsedek, I believe, who can really affct any change in israel's policy towards palestinians.

good day all

Abu-Issa said...


Thanks for your comments and your participation in this blog!

Yes, my understanding is that Muslims and Christians got along very well in Palestine before the Zionist movement began it's colonization of Palestine. Not ONLY that but relations were also good with the Palestinian Jews.

What happend I believe is very sad, in that the three major world religions were getting along until the Zionist Jews came from Europe (with all of their 'baggage') at a time when "The Orient" and the "Orientals" were seen as sub-human, that were looking for and needed guidance from the Europeans. (See Edward Saids Orientalism).

The majority of Jews are good people.

The majority of Muslims are good people.

The majority of Christians are good people.

It's the minority however, who seem to have taken the reigns of our religions...we need to stop them and remind them of the true meaning of Christianity, Judaism, Islam.

We are all ALL spiritual Brothers and Sisters after all.


Anonymous said...

All of this is rather irrelevant since Palestine whatever physical shape it ultimately has, has to be run and governed like any other semi normal state which, unless you've been asleed is fundamentally not possible. They could have all the land from Gibraltar to Kuala Lampur and it wouldn't make a damn spot of difference in terms of their willingness nor their ability to operate a nominally functional state that picks up the trash, paves the streets, issue credit, write laws, respect contracts and all those mundane things that don't involve carbombings and revolutionary blogs. They've have 50 years to demonstrate even the inclination to move in that direction and they've achieved essentially nothing since then. That's a piss poor record even by sub saharan African standards of political advancement. So let's not imagine that a free Palestine will ever be a functioning country. Not that that will matter, they'll still be world's darling basketcase making condemnations and speeches and holding their hands out for aid.