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The Xenophile Historian

K. U. P.

(Kimball's Unauthorized Perversion)

Some Questions About the History of Palestine

The following was written by Yashiko Sagamori, in the November 18, 2002 edition of Jerusalem Insights. I can't answer the questions posted here; if I knew the answers, they'd be on my Middle Eastern history pages. Perhaps somebody reading this can do better?

"If you are so sure that 'Palestine', the country, 'goes back through most of recorded history,' I expect you to be able to answer a few basic questions about that country of Palestine:

a. When was it founded and by whom? How did it get started?

b. What were its borders?

c. What was its capital?

d. What were its major cities?

e. What constituted the basis of its economy?

f. What was its form of government?

g. Can you name at least one Palestinian leader before Arafat?

h. Was Palestine ever recognized by a country whose existence, at that time or now, leaves no room for interpretation?

i. What was the language of the country of Palestine?

j. What was the prevalent religion of the country of Palestine?

k. What was the name of its currency? Choose any date in history and tell what was the approximate exchange rate of the Palestinian monetary unit against the US dollar, German mark, British pound, Roman denarius, or Greek drachma on that date.

l. Have they left any artifacts behind?

m. Do you know of a library where one can find a work of Palestinian literature produced before 1967?

n. Since there is no such country today, what caused its demise and when did it occur? If it really was a 'once proud' nation, when exactly was that 'nation' proud and what was it so proud of?

o. And here is the least sarcastic question of all: If the people that are mistakenly called 'Palestinians' are anything but generic Arabs collected from all over -- or thrown out of -- the Arab world, if they really have a genuine ethnic identity that gives them the right for self-determination, why did they never try to become independent until the Arabs suffered their devastating defeat in the Six Day War?"

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