Dear Helen

My good friend Brigitte Gabriel, author of Because They Hate, writes to Helen Thomas.

Dear Helen: From One American Lebanese Journalist To another…

With a great deal of disappointment I watched your interview, replayed over and over on television, in which you said that Jews should “go back home to Poland and Germany.” I find it both appalling and unsettling that someone with your level of journalistic accomplishment would lack a basic knowledge of Middle Eastern history.

So please allow me to make the case as to why Israel has a historical, legal and moral right to exist as a Jewish state in the Middle East.

According to the Arab-Palestinian-Muslim narrative, Israel is an alien colony recently planted in the Arab world by American and European imperialism. This narrative recognizes no history prior to the arrival of the first Zionist pioneers in the 1880’s, and emphatically denies any ancient historical connection of the Jewish people to the land of Israel. This is the central lie, offered to justify uncompromising opposition to Jewish national rights. It’s almost as if they actually expect people to think the word “Israel” was invented in modern times. What is alarming is that their increasingly successful rewrite of history has taken hold in minds supposedly as informed as yours.

The historical truth is carved in Egyptian stone. According to a well-known hieroglyphic inscription, the tribes of Israel were a significant, established presence in Canaan no later than 1212 BCE. There is a vast body of archaeological evidence that demonstrates the ancient Israelite/Jewish presence in Israel/Judea as far back as 925 BCE. This historical presence is verified in the ancient records of the Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Moslem Empires. The Arab conquest did not occur until 638 CE (AD). An exercise in elementary arithmetic reveals that the Jewish people were there eighteen and one-half centuries before the arrival of the Muslim Arabs.

Despite being conquered many times, the Jewish people have had a constant, uninterrupted presence in the Land of Israel for over thirty centuries. The Arabs and Islam have been there less than fourteen centuries. It has conveniently been forgotten that the Jews and Christians were there first.

Furthermore, in the thirty centuries preceding the re-establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, there have been only two periods when there was an independent, internationally recognized state in the area that now comprises Israel. Both of them were Jewish states. Even when this land was part of the Arab empire (638 CE/AD through 1099 CE/AD), there was never an independent Arab state in “Palestine,” by that name or any other.

No wonder Arabs are donating millions of dollars to U.S. colleges for Middle Eastern schools of study. They have a lot of hard historical evidence to rewrite in the young minds of students, most of whom enter college with little or no knowledge of ancient Middle Eastern history.

The Jewish people have a distinct national identity. Religion is only one of the unique characteristics that defines this national identity. In addition, the Jewish people have a separate and distinct language, culture and customs, with a documented history of development over the past three thousand years. The Jewish people have created a vast body of art and literature, both secular and religious, which reflects the connection of the Jewish people to the land of Israel.

The Dead Sea Scrolls, written when the descendents of the Maccabees ruled an independent Judea, demonstrate that the Jewish people, both in the Holy Land and in exile all over the world, have been reading and writing secular and sectarian literature in the same distinct language for over two thousand years.

In contrast, the Arabic language and culture and the Muslim religion of the Palestinians are essentially indistinguishable from the wider Arab world. Prior to the mid 1800’s there is no trace whatsoever of uniquely “Palestinian” art, literature, music, or any other manifestation of a distinct culture. If you find this hard to believe, try to think of one “Palestinian” book, or author, or artist, from the year 1300 through the year 1800. That’s a period of 500 years.

There must be one book written by a “Palestinian” Arab author. There must be one painting by a “Palestinian” Arab artist. Guess what? There are none.

If you still don’t believe it, ask a Palestinian nationalist or a Columbia University professor of Middle Eastern history to name one. The most honest response you will get is silence. The most likely response you will get is a lie.

People can propagate lies but they cannot erase historical facts. For more historical facts about the Palestinians and how they destroyed your own country of heritage, Lebanon, and how the Israelis helped and protected the Christians during the war, I invite you to pick up a copy of my New York Times bestseller Because They Hate. It’s never too late to learn and catch up on history, even at 90.

July 11, 2010 | 9 Comments »

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9 Comments / 9 Comments

  1. Will someone please tell me why Dustin Hoffman is boycotting Israel?

    Hell if this fool doesn’t want to go, I’ll take his place.

  2. Dustin Hoffman is boycotting Israel, so Shebrew is boycotting Dustin Hoffman, the self-hating little schmuck. Meg Ryan, too. I don’t know who Missy Elliott is, but she’s going to perform in Israel in spite of being pressured to boycott. I’ll buy a Missy Elliott CD, probably only listen to it once, but good for her. Hoffman is worthless for giving aid and comfort to the enemy and I hope horrible things happen to him. Ryan cheated on her husband in front of their son, so we already knew she is a sleazoid.

    The good news is Missy Elliott and a few others have the balls to do the right thing. More good news is that Joy just found a DVD of The Graduate and we are going outside to do the flamenco on it.

  3. Iran’s High Court sentenced an Iranian woman Tuesday to be stoned to death for adultery.

    That’s why half of Iran has moved to Beverly Hills.

    In Iran people commit adultery and get stoned while in Beverly Hills people get stoned and commit adultery.

  4. Way to go Brigette! Wonderful letter and way to put things in perspective for Helen. It is people like you that we need in our Universities. People that actually teach history instead of fabricating history.