|...no physical evidence shows that King David ever used the buildings.|
From just outside Jerusalem's Old City walls, the simple stone and cinderblock homes of Silwan cascade southwards into a valley, known as the Holy Basin.
The Palestinian residents are used to living in the shadow of history and religion, given dramatic physical form as the great silver dome of the al-Aqsa mosque and the looming presence of the Mount of Olives. But of late, history has become a curse for most of Silwan's residents.
"We have cameras everywhere watching us night and day," said Jawad Siyam, 39. "Armed Israeli guards wander through our alleys. Our open areas, the places where I played as a child, have become no-go zones."
The reason is the growing number of settlers who have moved into Silwan since the early 1990s claiming a biblical right to the land. At least 50 Jewish families, comprising 250 people, have taken over Palestinian homes dotted across Silwan and turned them into secure compounds over which Israeli flags flutter.
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