The Palestinians want to be taken seriously as a political entity–or potential entity, anyway. And yet they are governed, apparently by choice, by lunatics–Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. Thus we have this, coming from the supposedly saner part of the Palestinian polity: “Palestinian academics deny archaeological evidence of Jews in Israel.”
Palestinian Media Watch has recorded three examples of Palestinian academics appearing on official PA TV in October and November to discuss the archaeological evidence linking Jews to the region. In all three cases, the academics outright denied that there was any evidence at all of Jewish life in Israel before 1948, painting the current Jewish population as occupiers and usurpers.
“The Jews claim that they were in Palestine 2,000 years ago,” Riyad al-Aileh, a Palestinian political science lecturer from Al-Azhar University stated on a program called The Supreme Authority on November 6.
He continued: “If we look at the history, we will see that they were not in Palestine in the past, but rather only as invaders less than 70 years ago. For these 70 years they have been invaders, like the Hyksos, the Byzantines, the Persians and [British] colonialism. The Canaanite Palestinian people have since succeeded in defeating those invaders and continue [to live] in this land.”
The idea that Palestinian Arabs are descended from the Biblical Canaanites is pure fantasy. More instances of this madness at the link, including this:
[O]n November 15, Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Riyad al-Malki claimed during a UNESCO session that Palestinian culture was 10,000 years old.
“Palestine is the cradle of culture and religions, and part of our Palestinian people’s past, heritage and history is engraved on the walls of its capital Jerusalem – this heritage that Israel, the occupying power, is working to destroy and control, and [it is working] to falsify the history that is witness to our people’s rootedness in its land for more than 10,000 years, which refutes the Israeli occupation’s settlement colonialism narrative,” he said.
Actually, the Arabs invaded the Levant in the 7th Century. By that time, Jews had been living there for millennia, as the Bible, Roman historians, archaeology and large quantities of other historical evidence confirm.
It is hard to know what to make of such childish mendacity. Do the Palestinians seriously think they can convince anyone that Jews arrived in Israel for the first time circa 1948? How dumb do they think we are? Or is the only intended audience for such fantasies their own children, whom they are determined to rear in a state of ignorance and prejudice?
Either way, it is hard to take Palestinian leaders seriously as actors on the world stage, or as people with whom Israelis (or anyone else) should deal as competent, adult negotiators.