There is not a solitary village throughout its whole extent (valley of Jezreel, Galilee); not for thirty miles in either direction... One may ride ten miles hereabouts and not see ten human beings. For the sort of solitude to make one dreary, come to Galilee... Nazareth is forlorn...Jericho lies a mouldering ruin... Bethlehem and Bethany, in theirpoverty and humiliation... untenanted by any living creature... A desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly toweeds... a silent, mournful expanse... a desolation... We never saw a human being on the whole route... Hardly a tree or shrub anywhere. Even the olive tree and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil had almost deserted the country... Palestine sits in sackcloth andashes... desolate and unlovely... - Mark Twain, "The Innocents Abroad", 1867

Then we entered the hill district, and our path lay through the clattering bed of an ancient stream, whose brawling waters have rolled away into the past, along with the fierce and turbulent race who once inhabited these savage hills. There may have been cultivation here two thousand years ago. The mountains, or huge stony mounds environing this rough path, have level ridges all the way up to their summits; on these parallel ledges there is still some verdure and soil: when water flowed here, and the country was thronged with that extraordinary population, which, according to the Sacred Histories, was crowded into the region, these mountain steps may have been gardens and vineyards, such as we see now thriving along the hills of the Rhine. Now the district is quite deserted, and you ride among what seem to be so many petrified waterfalls. We saw no animals moving among the stony brakes; scarcely even a dozen little birds in the whole course of the ride. - William Thackeray in "From Jaffa To Jerusalem", 1844

The country is in a considerable degree empty of inhabitants and therefore its greatest need is of a body of population. - James Finn, British Consul, 1857

There are many proofs, such as ancient ruins, broken aqueducts, and remains of old roads, which show that it has not always been so desolate as it seems now. In the portion of the plain between Mount Carmel and Jaffa one sees but rarely a village or other sights of human life. There are some rude mills here which are turned by the stream. A ride of half an hour more brought us to the ruins of the ancient city of Cæsarea, once a city of two hundred thousand inhabitants, and the Roman capital of Palestine, but now entirely deserted. As the sun was setting we gazed upon the desolate harbor, once filled with ships, and looked over the sea in vain for a single sail. In this once crowded mart, filled with the din of traffic, there was the silence of the desert. After our dinner we gathered in our tent as usual to talk over the incidents of the day, or the history of the locality. Yet it was sad, as I laid upon my couch at night, to listen to the moaning of the waves and to think of the desolation around us. - B. W. Johnson, in "Young Folks in Bible Lands": Chapter IV, 1892

The area was underpopulated and remained economically stagnant until the arrival of the first Zionist pioneers in the 1880's, who came to rebuild the Jewish land. The country had remained "The Holy Land" in the religious and historic consciousness of mankind, which associated it with the Bible and the history of the Jewish people. Jewish development of the country also attracted large numbers of other immigrants - both Jewish and Arab. The road leading from Gaza to the north was only a summer track suitable for transport by camels and carts... Houses were all of mud. No windows were anywhere to be seen... The plows used were of wood... The yields were very poor... The sanitary conditions in the village [Yabna] were horrible... Schools did not exist... The rate of infant mortality was very high... The western part, toward the sea, was almost a desert... The villages in this area were few and thinly populated. Many ruins of villages were scattered over the area, as owing to the prevalence of malaria, many villages were deserted by their inhabitants. - The report of the British Royal Commission, 1913

The Zionists are necessary for the country: The money which they will bring, their knowledge and intelligence, and the industriousness which characterizes them will contribute without doubt to the regeneration of the country. - Dawood Barakat, an Arab, editor of the Egyptian paper Al-Ahram, 1913

They [the Jews] paid high prices for the land, and in addition they paid to certain of the occupants of those lands a considerable amount of money which they were not legally bound to pay. - Sir John Hope Simpson, British politician, after arriving in Palestine, commenting about the Jews there, May 1930

During the first century after the Arab conquest [670-740 c.e.], the caliph and governors of Syria and the [Holy] Land ruled entirely over Christian and Jewish subjects. Apart from the Bedouin in the earliest days, the only Arabs west of the Jordan were the garrisons.- Historian James Parker

Along with the rise of Arab nationalism and Arab independence, life for Jews in Egypt and other Arab countries became intolerable. All this started happening years before Israel was established. Within a 20-year period starting in 1945, nearly a million Jews were forced out of Arab countries. Being Jewish was criminalized in Egypt in the late 1940s. Other Arab states such as Iraq, Libya, and Syria, passed similar laws. Jews began facing iron walls of discrimination and harassment by the authorities. Most of us were dispossessed. Our schools, homes, synagogues, businesses, farms, and hospitals, were all confiscated by Arab governments. Our rich, 3,000-year-old culture and heritage was decimated. No trial, no jury, no justice. - Joseph Wahed

Our fundamental condition for cooperating with Germany was a free hand to eradicate every last Jew from Palestine and the Arab world. I asked Hitler for an explicit undertaking to allow us to solve the Jewish problem in a manner befitting our national and racial aspirations and according to the scientific methods innovated byGermany in the handling of its Jews. The answer I got was: The Jews are yours. - Former Mufti of Jerusalem ("Palestinian" leader) Haj Amin al-Husseini in his post-World War II memoirs

The Mufti was one of the initiators of the systematic extermination of European Jewry and had been a collaborator and adviser of Eichmann and Himmler in the execution of this plan… He was one of Eichmann’s best friends and had constantly incited him to accelerate the extermination measures. - Adolf Eichmann’s deputy Dieter Wisliceny in his Nuremberg Trials testimony

The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle [Jihad] against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct Palestinian people to oppose Zionism. For tactical reasons, Jordan, which is a sovereign state with defined borders, cannot raise claims to Haifa and Jaffa, while as a Palestinian, I can undoubtedly demand Haifa, Jaffa, Beer-Sheva and Jerusalem.

However, the moment we reclaim our right to all of Palestine, we will not wait even a minute to unite Palestine and Jordan. - Zahir Muhsein, an executive member in the PLO, in an interview with the Dutch newspaper Trouw, March 31, 1977

At Al-Aqsa and on the land of Palestine, the Battle of Hattin was waged. The [West] does not want this noble history to repeat itself,because the Jews and their allies would be annihilated - the Zionists, the Americans, and the imperialists... Al-Aqsa and the land of Palestine represent the spearhead for Islam and for the Muslims. Therefore, when we seek the help of our Arab brothers, we are not seeking their help in order to eat, to live, to drink, to dress, or to live a life of luxury. No. When we seek their help, it is in order to continue to wage Jihad...Allah be praised, we all have Arab roots, and every Palestinian, in Gaza and throughout Palestine, can prove his Arab roots - whether from Saudi Arabia, from Yemen, or anywhere. We have blood ties... Personally,half my family is Egyptian. We are all like that. More than 30 families in the Gaza Strip are called Al-Masri ["Egyptian"]. Brothers, half of the Palestinians are Egyptians and the other half are Saudis... Who are the Palestinians? We have many families called Al-Masri, whose roots are Egyptian. Egyptian! They may be from Alexandria, from Cairo, fromDumietta, from the North, from Aswan, from Upper Egypt. We are Egyptians. We are Arabs. We are Muslims. We are a part of you.- Fathi Hammad, Hamas Minister of Interior and National Security, Al-Hekma TV (Egypt), March 23, 2012

There is no such country as Palestine. 'Palestine' is a term the Zionists invented. There is no Palestine in the Bible. Our country was for centuries part of Syria. 'Palestine' is alien to us. It is the Zionists who introduced it. - Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi, Syrian Arab leader to British Peel Commission, 1937

There is no such thing as Palestine in history, absolutely not. - Professor Philip Hitti, Arab historian, 1946

It is common knowledge that Palestine is nothing but Southern Syria. - Representative of Saudi Arabia at the United Nations, 1956

You do not represent Palestine as much as we do. Never forget this one point: There is no such thing as a Palestinian people, there is no Palestinian entity, there is only Syria. You are an integral part of the Syrian people, Palestine is an integral part of Syria. Therefore it is we, the Syrian authorities, who are the true representatives of the Palestinian people. - Syrian dictator Hafez Assad to PLO leader Yassir Arafat

Alex Bensky The UN Partition resolution of 1947--which, had the Arabs accepted it, would have led to an immediate Arab state--refers only to "Jewish Palestinians" and "Arab Palestinians," and in fact at that point, the only people who called themselves Palestinians were Jews.

For that matter, the PLO's original covenant of 1964 also refers to "Palestinian Arabs" and does not ask for a state in Gaza and Judea and Samaria.

The claim that Israelis are trying to erase Arab history is risible, given that it is official Palestinian doctrine that there never was a Temple in Jerusalem and that today's Jews have no historical connection to the land.

As to whether the land was thickly populated before Jews began to return in large numbers, you can check the 1905 Ottoman census, a source which is unlikely to be pro-Zionist. As I lived in Palestine, everyone I knew could trace their heritage back to the original country their great grandparents came from. Everyone knew their origin was not from the Canaanites, but ironically, this is the kind of stuff our education in the Middle East included. The fact is that today's Palestinians are immigrants from the surrounding nations! I grew up well knowing the history and origins of today's Palestinians as being from Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Christians from Greece, muslim Sherkas from Russia, muslims from Bosnia, and the Jordanians next door. My grandfather, who was a dignitary in Bethlehem, almost lost his life by Abdul Qader Al-Husseni (the leader of the Palestinian revolution) after being accused of selling land to Jews. He used to tell us that his village Beit Sahur (The Shepherds Fields) in Bethlehem County was empty before his father settled in the area with six other families. The town has now grown to 30,000 inhabitants. - Walid Shoebat, former "Palestinian" terrorist and ex-"Palestinian" Arab

And thereafter We [Allah] said to the Children of Israel: 'Dwell securely in the Promised Land. And when the last warning will come to pass, we will gather you together in a mingled crowd'. - Qur'an 17:104

Remember when Moses said to his people, "My people! Remember G-d’s blessing to you when He appointed prophets among you and appointed kings for you, and gave you what He had not given to anyone else in all the worlds! My people! Enter the Holy Land which G-d has ordained for you. Do not turn back in your tracks and so become transformed into losers." - Qur’an, Surat al-Ma’ida 5:20-21

The mosque is empty of worshippers... - Arab writer Muqaddasi, complaining that in Jerusalem the large majority of the population was Jewish, 985 C.E.

Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel extended over 1400 years... It was the Jews who implanted the culture and customs of the permanent settlement. - Ibn Khaldun, one of the most creditable Arab historians,1377 C.E.

Since we cannot defeat Israel in war, we do this in stages. We take any and every territory that we can of Palestine, and establish a sovereignty there, and we use it as a springboard to take more. When the time comes, we can get the Arab nations to join us for the final blow against Israel. - Yasser Arafat, on the same day he signed the Declaration of Principles on the White House lawn in 1993, explaining his actions on Jordan TV.

[Military action against Israel] was necessary to fix the Palestinian identity. - Alan Hart, in his book, Arafat: A Political Biography (IndianaUniversity Press, 1989), page 124, reporting the beliefs of Fatah leader Khalil Wazir (also known as “Abu Jihad”)

In 1590 a 'simple English visitor' to Jerusalem wrote: 'Nothing there is to bescene but a little of the old walls, which is yet remayning and all the rest is grasse, mosse and weedes much like to a piece of rank or moist grounde'.- Gunner Edward Webbe, Palestine Exploration Fund, Quarterly Statement, p. 86; de Haas, History, p. 338

The land in Palestine is lacking in people to till its fertile soil.- British archaeologist Thomas Shaw, mid-1700s

Palestine is a ruined and desolate land. - Count Constantine François Volney, 18th Century French author & historian

Ashkelon is in the Bible. Who are the Muslim Arabs to invade, steal, and occupy Jewish land? http://biblehub.com/zechariah/9-5.htm

Zechariah 9:5 Ashkelon will see it and fear; Gaza will writhe in agony, and Ekron too, for her... Ashkelon shall see it, and fear; Gaza also shall see it, and be very sorrowful, and Ekron; for her expectation shall be ashamed; and the king shall perish from Gaza, and Ashkelon shall not be inhabited. -biblehub.com