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Who lived in Palestine when the land was waste?
  Oops - there have always been Jews living in what the Romans called Palestine. I donot know how the Turks called it from 1517-1917, but I just learned that e.g. at the end of the 16th century, there were 20,000 or 30,000 Jews in Safed.

It is important, because people who oppose the Jewish state often claim there were no Jews, only Arabs living there. Of course, they also conveniently forget that in 1948, the UN defined any Arab who had fled from "Palestine" but could prove he came to live there no later than 1946 (sic!) got the status of Palestinian refugee. Imagine, some of them were indeed very "new kids on the block"! Not less so then the Jews who had come and built the kibutzim, I'd say.
 
  Author: LN_Cello
Eintrag from 23.01.2009
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