Roman ‘Palestine’ before the Siege of Jerusalem in the Year 70

The Roman province of Judaea.

The name Palestine was established, too, but it seems to have been a Hellenistic invention. In 150 BCE, Polemon of Athens wrote about “Syria-Palestine”. After the Roman attack on Judaea in 70 CE, the Europeans forced most of the Jews to flee their homeland, renamed Judaea and Samaria to erase their strong link to the former kingdoms of Israel and Judah, and began calling the whole province Palestine. Today, Europe along with most of the world does its best to uphold the idea that Jews have no legitimate claim to Judaea and Samaria. In April 2016, the UN passed a resolution that only recognises Arabic names for all areas, including what’s left of the Jewish temples in Jerusalem. Despite the fact that Judaea existed more than 600 years before Islam, it’s now persevered as true that only Muslims have a justified right to Jerusalem and the so-called West Bank. I’m not saying that Palestinians have no right to call the land theirs, but every honest person must acknowledge that Jewish people have that same right. To force this one-sided, anti-Israel agenda is simply an abuse of history. It’s fake historiography.

Same-Sex Marriage Has Finally Been Passed by the Australian Parliament

“It was done. Almost every member of the House of Representatives had voted ‘Yes’ to changing the Marriage Act,” Tony Wright of the Sydney Morning Herald writes. “From that moment forth, the nation’s laws would no longer restrict marriage to that between a man and a woman. It would, simply, be for two people.”

Monet in Venice

Claude Monet’s San Giorgio Maggiore at Dusk (1908).

I’ll travel to Venice for the first time on 2 January. I can’t remember the last time I was this excited about an upcoming trip. Venice has been on my bucket list for years.