An Honest Map Series of Changes In Political Control of Palestine

complete12
Behold, in place of a dishonest map series, an honest one! Be sure to spread it on the Twitters, Websites, and Facebooks, and make it viral!

Why did I pick the years 1946, 1965, 1975, and 2012?
Mid-1946 was a time in which Jordan had already been granted independence by the British, yet the British Mandate for Palestine had not yet expired, British troops in Egypt were still not solely confined to the Suez Canal zone, and the U.N. partition plan for Palestine had still not been created. The map for this year was created to underline the fact that in the years immediately prior to the creation of the State of Israel, Palestine was occupied by the British, not ruled by the natives.
1965 was after the All-Palestine Government had been dissolved by Egypt and after the dissolution of the United Arab Republic, but before the 1967 war.
1975 was chosen to completely avoid depicting the Lebanese Civil War and to accurately show the Israeli gains in the 1967 war and the 1973 ceasefire lines in the Golan Heights.
2012 was the most recent year that had fully gone by at the time this map series was created.

I full well understand my labels are made up of a confusing mix of proper adjectives and proper nouns. Deal with it.

“Occupied” indicates a military presence, but not formal annexation. As the West Bank was formally annexed by Jordan, even though its annexation had little international recognition, I am still marking the West Bank in the second map in Light Green, rather than Dark Green.

I had two difficult decisions to make regarding the coloring of this map: whether or not to color the Sinai Peninsula in red in the first map and whether or not to add a separate color for non-Israeli areas governed by Israeli law. If you consider my decisions incorrect, argue against them in the comments.

A Graph of the Level of the Dead Sea Over Time With Some Archaeological Periods Indicated

Graph taken from http://gvirtzman.es.huji.ac.il/1024×768/publications/pdf/QR-Enzel-et-al.pdf
See Chronology page for explanation.
Note that the Palestinian climate began worsening in the 23rd century BC and continued to worsen well into 15th century BC. Yet, this period of climatic degradation began with the Three Hundred Years’ Anarchy (as I like to call the Intermediate Bronze Age), continued into a revival of Canaanite civilization between the 19th and 16th centuries BC, and ended with another period of destruction, anarchy, and an end to the vast majority of fortified settlements (the Late Bronze IA).
deadsealevels
Also, I corrected the coordinates of the location of the Neolithic settlement of ‘Ain Ghazal, Jordan, on Wikipedia. You have only me to thank for this.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%27Ain_Ghazal
I have also added a Quotes page today.

Any Source Displaying this Map Series Gets an Immediate Downgrade in Credibility

I speak, of course, of this infernal map series:

Hint: The lie in this map series is that its concept of “Palestine” is incoherent. If only the area settled by Palestinian Arabs is to be counted as “Palestine” (as in the right-most map), then none of the region between Elat and Beersheba would be included in the first map and Israeli Arabs might be included. The population and settled area of West Bank Palestinian Arabs did not magically shrink between 1967 and 2010. If anything, it significantly grew.

A Short Non-Biblical History of Palestine from the 13th C BC to the 11th C BC

Or, the Chronology page of this blog in narrative form, Part 1.

As I have recently stumbled upon the idea (which I think false, for archaeological reasons), that the Pentateuch was composed almost entirely around 270 BC and the pre-Exilic material found in it was preserved at Mizpah (partially due to the seamless blending of Babylonian and Late Iron Age Judahite tradition in the Primary History), I have discovered the need to write a truly extrabiblical history of Iron Age Cisjordan (Israel, Judah, and Philistia). While I do think that it is impossible to write a good and comprehensive history of Iron Age Cisjordan without use of the Bible, a wholly extrabiblical history would certainly be useful to compare with the Biblical one.

Part 1: The Collapse of the Imperial Order and the Return of the Sovereign City-State

I shall start a little earlier, in the Bronze Age, specifically the LB IIB. The context was one of what seemed to be next-to guaranteed perpetual peace. The treaty ending further military conflict between the Egyptian and Hittite empires had been accepted by both parties only a few decades before. Needs for defense were next-to nonexistent. A few hundred Egyptian troops could crush any existent foe of the Empire. Maritime trade in what would later be the Eastern Roman Empire was experiencing its greatest period of prosperity ever seen in the Bronze Age. Ivory carving in Cisjordan was witnessing its greatest use in the whole Late Bronze Age. Canaanite scribes were beginning to use the Alphabet, an invention whose advantages had been unnoticed by Eastern Semitic and Egyptian scribes alike.

Yet, all was not well with this imperial order. The Late Bronze IIB was a golden age, indeed, but only for two major classes: those dependent on taxes and those transporting goods between those dependent on taxes. The Forgotten Man was benefited only by the security of this state of affairs, which, more often than not, was only security for his expropriators and those dependent on them. The Forgotten Man could accept this state of affairs, as he did in Egypt, or, as he did in Palestine, Syria, and the Balkans, become to the established authorities a nameless, faceless enemy of civilization and imperial progress. Thus, the Amarna letters reveal the hills of the West Bank (as well as any hilly area in the Egyptian empire as far as northwest Lebanon) were endemically plagued by wandering bands of ‘apiru. Indeed, these bands might have been responsible for the destruction of some Late Bronze Canaanite cities (such as Megiddo VIII) known to not have been destroyed by Egyptians or by Sea Peoples.** Though some (such as Anson Rainey) have taken pains to distinguish the ‘apiru and the shasu, the former subsisting on stolen property, the latter on herded sheep, it seems to me that both are two faces of the same coin. Much like in the modern West Bank, where unemployment is over 20% and looting is endemic, the ancient West Bank was a place where much surplus labor remained untranslated into surplus productivity.

Thus, when the name ‘Isrr’, very likely to be connected with the later-mentioned land of “Sir. ‘i. la. aa“/”Israel” by historians, Continue reading “A Short Non-Biblical History of Palestine from the 13th C BC to the 11th C BC”

Late Iron II Small Farm Discovered 700 m NNE. of Rogem Ganim

See here. The area around Rogem Ganim (31°45’19″N 35° 9’57″E) was apparently quite densely inhabited in the 7th-6th Cs BC (Khirbet er-Ras, Manahat, Qiryat Ha-Yovel, and Rogem Ganim were all less than a mile away from each other). Perhaps someone should make a “Survey of Western Palestine”-style map for Late Iron II Judah?