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When you lack any history, just invent one

Maurice Hirsch, Adv.  |

According to the Palestinian Authority, Jews have no historical connection to the Land of Israel. To support the assertion, the PA argues that archaeological artifacts that unequivocally prove this connection are fake. The Palestinians on the other hand, so claims the PA, are actually a 4,500 year-old people who are descendants of the Canaanites. 

There is no honest way to deny the Jewish connection to the Land of Israel. Tens of thousands (if not more) of archaeological artifacts prove that connection. When the international community allocated the whole of Israel, in 1922, for the reconstitution of the Jewish homeland, they recognized that historical connection. When the Supreme Muslim Council wanted to describe the Temple Mount, it noted that “This site is one of the oldest in the world. Its sanctity dates from the earliest (perhaps from pre-historic) times. Its identity with the site of Solomon’s Temple is beyond dispute.” 

In order to explain away and negate the historical Jewish connection to Israel, the PA has invented an entire alternative reality. In the PA reality, Jews/Israelis have no history, and therefore they try to “steal” the Palestinian identity. The Jews, according to the PA, try to steal Palestinian foods and clothes, and even plant historical Jewish coins at excavation sites in order to invent a false history:  

Writer and poet Faiqa Al-Sous: “[The Israelis] wanted to market the falafel to the world as if it was theirs… They have no heritage, no history or heritage. They attempt to steal our heritage…” 

Official PA TV host: “They are attempting to market the Palestinian people’s heritage and the Palestinian garb as if it were part of the Israeli heritage and that they have a place here in this land. Even in the excavations under the Al-Aqsa Mosque and everywhere, they try to place some coins, as if [to say]: ‘Here, we found coins, and this land is ours.’ These are ongoing attempts at falsification.” 

Faiqa Al-Sous: “They lie. They know they’re lying and the world knows they’re lying… Look at the evil world, we whose narrative is reliable must not publish it, while they spread the false narrative, the false narrative of the occupation.” 

[Official PA TV, Returning, July 16, 2022]         

The goal behind the false PA narrative is to convince the Palestinians that Jews are merely colonizers who came to inhabit a land to which they have no historical connection. This claim enables the PA to persuade the Palestinians that the Jews are simply thieves who stole “Palestinian land”.  

However, for the PA narrative to be effective, it not only needs to negate the Jewish connection to Israel, but it also needs to invent the “Palestinian” historical connection that dates back thousands of years and provides the Palestinians with a history older than that of the Jews. To do so, the PA has even established the “Palestinian Clothing Day” to celebrate the Palestinian national dress, which it claims proves the Palestinian presence in the area going “back to the Canaanite period”: 

“The Palestinians mark Palestinian Clothing Day every year on July 25, in accordance with [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ decision on Aug. 1, 2018… 

Clothing Day was established to preserve the ancestors’ history and protect it from theft and the Judaization that the Israeli occupation is carrying out… 

Palestinian clothing is one of the main supporting pillars that shape the Palestinian cultural identity, and it is witness to the Palestinian presence whose roots on this land go back to the Canaanite period. 

According to the historians, some of the shapes and images that were woven into the Canaanite royal garments (the queen’s garb) [parentheses in source] are the same ones that exist today [in the Palestinian women’s clothing]. Something that draws attention in most of the Palestinian women’s clothing is the octagonal star. This is a Canaanite star whose roots go back to 4500 BCE. This star represented ‘the goddess of fertility’ among our Canaanite ancestors.” 

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 26, 2022]

When the PA refers to the “historians,” it is clearly not referring to Palestinian Historian Abd Al-Ghani Salameh, who explained that even as late as 1917 there was no Palestinian people

Abd Al-Ghani Salameh: "Before the Balfour Promise (i.e., Declaration) when the Ottoman rule ended (1517-1917), Palestine's political borders as we know them today did not exist, and there was nothing called a Palestinian people with a political identity as we know today, since Palestine's lines of administrative division stretched from east to west and included Jordan and southern Lebanon, and like all peoples of the region [the Palestinians] were liberated from the Turkish rule and immediately moved to colonial rule, without forming a Palestinian people's political identity." 

 [Official PA TV, Nov. 1, 2017] 

The fact of the matter is that the Palestinians have no history prior to the modern period and no connection to the Canaanites. Had this ancient Palestinian-Canaanite people actually existed, it would certainly have been able to show centuries of history and culture. It would certainly have been mentioned in historical documents and would have certainly appeared in contemporary documents such as the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine, the 1947 UN Partition Plan and even UN Security Council Resolution 242 which the Palestinians often refer to as the basis for their false claim that Israel is occupying “Palestinian territory.”  

The fact that none of the above mentioned documents make any reference to a “Palestinian people”, let alone a 4,500 year-old Palestinian people, does not bother the PA. For the PA, in the absence of any real history, all you have to do is make it up.