1. The Site
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Tell el-Far'ah (South) is some 14 miles (22 km) south of Gaza and 16 miles (26 km) west of Beer-Sheva, close to an ancient route connecting Egypt with Syria and Mesopotamia. Situated along the Nahal Besor, the site lies on the border of the arid zone. This position between the desert and the sown characterizes the importance of Tell el-Far'ah. At the periphery of empires and regional states, the site was instrumental in administrating economic and political contacts with the pastoral people to its south.

In addition to its regional importance, the site often served the needs of ancient empires such as Egypt, Assyria, or the Achaemenids. The area was an interface of the geopolitical interests of Egypt and the ancient Near Eastern continental empires. These continental empires had to struggle with opposition forces at their periphery which formed coalitions against the center. Such events were already a deadly threat to these empires and their activities against these coalitions at the periphery constitute a structural pattern in their policies.

Amnon Ben-Tor (ed.), The Archaeology of Ancient Israel, pg. 167

General Map of the Eastern Mediterranean with Modern Day Political Borders

Yet another impact on Tell el-Far'ah stems from its location near the route towards the Arabian Peninsula, which starts on the coast at present day Gaza. This route connected the Mediterranean with the Red Sea, thereby making Tell el-Far'ah an important site on the southern border of ancient Israel and a perfect place to conduct research focused on the understanding of ancient Israel's role as a border region. 

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