There is one phrase that every media network in the world knows and uses—“occupied territory.” This phrase shapes the orientation and perspective of literally the entire world.
In its truest definition/meaning/understanding, occupied Palestinian territory means Israel is illegally occupying land belonging to someone else.
In other words Israel is flouting international law.
Israel has no legitimate right to the land which she is occupying. And even “Israel proper” is questionable.
There is no peace because Israel is building apartments and creating towns (derisively called “settlements”) in “occupied territory.”
If Israel would just give up her claims to the “occupied Palestinian territory” then Arabs would make peace and the earth would be relieved of most of the turmoil generated in the Middle East.
It is astounding to see how little journalists and politicians know about Israel’s roots. They often act as if Israel appeared one day, confiscated Arab land and seized the capital city of the Palestinian nation.
Every follower of Yeshua needs to know the facts of how the modern state of Israel came to be.
More than 3,500 years ago, a man from Ur of the Chaldees (today Iraq) and his family travelled to what was then called Canaan, where he was told by God that the land there would be an inheritance to him and his descendants forever.
Of course, what journalist in this modern world would accept such a fanciful “legal document” from God?
But fortunately for them, there are other legal treaties and documents that though conveniently ignored by pundits and leaders, do exist and give international legitimacy and justice to Israel’s existence—no matter what nations declare today.
It was just after World War I and the English and French had defeated Germany and the Turkish Ottoman Empire. Now there was nothing left to do but divide up the booty. That’s what victorious armies do, do they not?
So even before the war officially ended, Sir Mark Sykes representing Britain and Charles Picot of France negotiated the Sykes-Picot Agreement which carved up the Ottoman Empire between Britain and France (with a bit left for Russia).
Britain took the southern part of the Middle East including the so-called Palestine area (the name given to the land of Israel by the Romans) while France took Greater Syria. Britain also decided to give a bit of Palestine—the Golan Heights which belonged to the Jewish tribe of Manasseh and was part of Britain’s Mandate—to France and France later gave it to Syria—you could call it a sort of happenstance administrative model.
Occupied Palestine Territory?
- There has never been a Palestinian state.
- There has never been a Palestinian people until Yasser Arafat and other Arab nations created them in 1964.
- The “Palestinian people” have no holidays celebrating national events—only protest days against Israel.
- No nation has ever claimed Jerusalem as their capital in the centuries after the Jewish people were expelled by the Romans in 70 AD. That is, no one until Israel made the new Jerusalem her capital—and then recaptured the ancient city in 1967.
The Balfour Declaration
The two colonial powers, Britain and France, began divvying up the former Ottoman Empire according to the pressures and considerations at the moment. Fortunately for the Jewish people, during World War I a prominent scientist, Dr. Chaim Weizman, discovered a new process to produce acetone used in the manufacture of explosives—a discovery that greatly helped Britain’s war effort. This innovation encouraged Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour to issue the Balfour Declaration of 1917 – the modern foundational basis for Israel’s legitimate rights to Palestine as her Jewish homeland. (See second article.)
There followed a number of treaties and covenants that affirmed the Balfour Declaration—by the world body of the League of Nations, the San Remo conference, and finally the United Nations which voted to accept Israel as a member nation of the UN.
During the years after WWI through WWII when millions of Jews were dying in gas chambers, the Arab peoples of the Middle East fought with all their might to keep Jews out of their Jewish homeland. Britain, understanding that there were many more Arabs than Jews, and needing them to fight along side them against the Ottoman Turks, mostly caved in to Arab violence, riots and political demands.