History and Geography of Palestine

Essay by hiflyinggymnast October 2008

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Palestine"This is my homeland. No one can kick me out," proclaimed Yasser Arafat, but he is not the first person to state this claim. Palestine is not a large country, but people have fought over it for over 5,000 years and continue to do so to this day ("Palestine" World 85). It is the Holy Land of the Bible. It is sacred to three great religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam ("Palestine" Young 1865). Palestine is one of the most famous lands in the world.

Palestine is one of the smallest regions in the Middle East. Most of its territory is under Israeli control. Palestinians control less than 400 sq. miles. However, the total area is 2,400 sq. miles (Kjeilen). Palestine refers to a region of the eastern Mediterranean coast from the sea to the Jordan Valley and from the southern Negev Desert to the Galilee lake region in the north (Honig).

Palestine borders Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and the Mediterranean Sea. Palestine can be divided into four main distinct geographic regions. The first region is the coastal and inner plains. This land is very fertile. The second region includes the mountains and hills. This part of Palestine is rocky, but has terraces suitable for many trees. Olive trees are the most common trees in this region. There are also almonds, apples, and other types of plants ("Geography of Palestine"). Many areas rely on the mountains for a source of water (Kjeilen). The Jordan Valley and ghawr is an area well below sea level, hence the name ghawr, with very good soil, but very little resources. The last region is the Southern Desert. This region covers almost half of the land of Palestine. It is triangular shaped. The base is fertile and the rest is poor with scattered patches of area...