The ongoing Zionist occupation of Palestine, with its latest manifestation in Gaza, carries a historical legacy spanning nearly two centuries. To fully comprehend the systematic and enduring Zionist policy of settlement, massacre, exile, and occupation, a thorough understanding of recent events is crucial. The events unfolding in Gaza today represent a nearly two-century-long pattern within Palestine. The only difference is that we are now able to follow the events in Gaza in real-time, thanks to technology. Historically, what occurred in Gaza has been replicated dozens of times in places like Deir Yassin, Sabra Shatila, and many other places we have never heard of. This article delves into the insidious demographic erasure of the Palestinian people and their land, utilizing population and demographic data to expose this narrative. For, in the words of Ibn Khaldun, “The past resembles the future more than one drop of water resembles another.”

During the Islamic and Ottoman Peace (Pax Islamica/Ottomana), Christian and Jewish communities in Palestine were able to preserve their presence, religious traditions, and cultural identities. This was facilitated by the legal framework established under dhimmi law, which outlined the rights and obligations accorded to non-Muslim subjects within Muslim-ruled territories. Paralleling the massacres and exile experienced by Muslims and Jews during the Crusader capture of alQuds and Palestine in 1099, the Christian reconquest of Andalusia in the 15th century witnessed similar persecution of these religious minorities. Faced with exile or massacre, many Jews sought refuge within the Ottoman Empire. Following the Muslim conquest of alQuds, Patriarch Sophronius secured the inclusion of a clause “prohibiting Jewish settlement within the city limits” in the declaration to be given to them by Caliph ‘Umar. Considering what the Zionists did in the 20th and 21st centuries, it can be safely said that Palestine and al-Quds, with its population of Muslims, Christians, and Jews, experienced its most prosperous times under Muslim rule.