Israel, one of the oldest civilized countries in human history, is surprisingly young, having been most recently organized as a country in 1948. One can fly with Austrian Airlines to Israel and see that this is no young country. Israel has been inhabited since the dawn of man, with Neanderthal remains from the region, going back as far as 50,000 years. Though mostly a peaceful nation, it's strategic location between Egypt and Saudia Arabia has made it an often conquered land. The first nation to influence Israel was Egypt. Around 1000 B.C, an independent Judean Kingdom was set up under King Saul. After a civil war, the land was conquered by Assyrians and Persians and in 330 BC it was controlled by Alexander the Great. The land was later controlled by the Maccabees and was also conquered in 63 BC by the Romans.