Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Antioch is No More
Antioch was the main Middle East metropolis up to the Middle Ages, with half a million inhabitants. It was a center of the new Christian faith. The city was fed by the Orontes river. That was in the Antiquity. Today, the river is of nobody, and suffers the fate of the commons. There is no water sharing agreement of the Orontes between Syria and Turkey. Antioch is a ghost town, abandoned, not even a tourist attraction for its ruins, and the mighty Orontes is a poisonous seasonal streamlet.
I had a boss in Argentina called Gaupillot who used to say that where the Arab puts down his foot, no grass will ever grow again. He meant the Syrian-Lebanese immigrants in Argentina that caused the desertization of the North (La Rioja, Santiago, Salta, Jujuy, etc.). The depopulation of Eretz Israel started with the Arab conquest. Today we are seeing the final destruction of the Mesopotamia - the valley of the Euphrates and the Tigris rivers.