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Allenby and Jerusalem

edmund allenbyallenby entering jerusalemIsaiah 31: 5: As birds flying, so will the LORD of hosts defend Jerusalem; defending also he will deliver it; and passing over he will preserve it.

British General Edmund Allenby decided upon the recapture of Jerusalem during World War One via a flying leaflet drop over Jerusalem demanding the surrender of the city. The message upon the leaflets was written in Arabic (the language of the Ottoman Turks) and bore Allenby’s surname at the conclusion of the message which had been mistranslated as “Allah en-Nebi”, meaning, “Prophet of God”.

Number 14 Bomber Squadron of Britain’s Royal Flying Corps flew over the city and dropped the leaflets which the Turks read as being a call for surrender by a prophet of God. The Turks fled the city without a shot being fired, thus the city was taken by the British; the official surrender was accepted by Allenby on December 11, 1917.

number 14 bomber squadron emblemThe motto of Number 14 Bomber Squadron is written below the insignia in Arabic and translates… “I spread my wings and keep my promise”. This motto comes from the Arabic Quran, a fitting motto that ties in with the “flying birds” of Isaiah 31: 5 whilst addressing the Ottoman Turkish Empire that was Islamic and had the Quran as its holy book.


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