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Insurgency in Ancient Times: The Jewish Revolts Against the Seleucid and Roman Empires, 166 BC-73 AD

Insurgency in Ancient Times: The Jewish Revolts Against the Seleucid and Roman Empires, 166 BC-73 AD published on

Authored by U.S. Army Command and General Staff College

This book examines two insurgencies conducted by the Jews in ancient times: The Maccabbee Revolt against the Seleucid Empire from 166-164 BC and the Revolt against the Roman Empire from 66-70 AD. This work proposes that all insurgencies have a nature and the nature of insurgency is as critical to understanding an insurgency today as it was two thousand years ago. Ancient Jewish history provides an excellent case study of a successful and failed insurgency. The Jewish revolt against the Seleucid Empire (Maccabbee Revolt 166-164 BC) was a successful insurgency, which gained the free practice of religion for the Jewish people and ultimately an independent Jewish State. This independence lasted for one hundred years until 63 BC when Palestine was annexed by the Roman Empire. Subsequently, the Jewish people again revolted in 66 AD against Roman rule, but the result of the insurgency was a failure catastrophic to the Jewish people and the prospects for an independent Jewish state.

This book concludes that the differences in the nature of the two insurgencies defined why one succeeded and the other failed. Both insurgencies upon initial examination appear to have a similar characteristics (religious persecution, desire for an independent state, fear of lost cultural identity), but subtle differences in the nature distinguish them. The examination of the Jewish insurgencies in ancient times is relevant to the US military today as it faces insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan fueled by strong religious ideologies. The concept of “nature” is still a valuable tool for military planners in the counter-insurgency environment.

Publication Date:
Sep 22 2014
1502456117 / 9781502456113
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
8.5″ x 11″
Black and White
Related Categories:
History / Ancient / General


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