How the Israel-Palestine Problem Came to Pass

History doesn't solve problems, but it explains them, including the evolution of the intractable Israel—Palestine problem. The idea of revived sovereignty in their ancient homeland has excited Jews for millennia. Until the nineteenth century that excitement was expressed only in religious and poetic terms. Thus the 137th Psalm recalls the mourning of the Babylonian Jews as follows: 'By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat and there we wept, as we remembered Zion. If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its cunning. If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I do not prefer Jerusalem above my chief joy.' Even after the Babylonians and later the Romans expelled the Jews from the Holy Land, Jews lived there. Often, there were more Jews there than other inhabitants, particularly in Jerusalem. However, in the 1880s the combination of European nationalism and European anti—Semitism, especially in Czarist Russia, gave birth to...(Read Full Article)

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