Friday, January 26, 2018


The Kingdoms of Israel & Judah emerged in the Iron Age before being destroyed by a 300 year Mesopotamian, Neo-Assyrian Empire (911BC - 609BC). Three more Empires took turns (Babylonian, Persian & Hellenistic) before the next taste of independence from 110BC- 63BC. That taste was inspired by the Maccabean Revolt against Hellenistic control requiring the worship of Greek Gods. It ended as a client state of Rome. Later widespread Jewish revolts (66-136CE) led to destruction, expulsion and renaming the area. These Roman-Jewish wars turned the Jewish population from a significant local group to a scattered and persecuted minority. The Byzantine Empire lost the Levant to Muslim control in 634. Then, about 450 years later, came the Crusades. A series of wars sanctioned by the Catholic Church to claim the Holy Land from Muslim rule. Arguably the birth of European attempts to rule lands far from their centre of control. The East & Western Church had split in 1054, and the two centuries of Crusades which followed was part a Civil War Own Goal, weakening the East sufficiently to fall. The Crusades were a failure and the Ottoman Empire took Constantinople in 1453. The Ottoman Empire was divided after World War I as a British controlled mandate from 1920-1948. The Israeli declaration of Independence came following World War II in 1948. The country is now at the very centre of discussions around democracy, self-determination, racism, apartheid, land rights and nationalism.

Israel & Judah


Roman Empire

Ottoman Empire 1683

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