Determined to strengthen the Assyrian Empire and to crush dissent, King Sennacherib (705–681 BCE) turned his attention from Babylon to repress a rebellion in Palestine (701 BCE). King Hezekiah of Judah, the ringleader of the rebels, appealed to Egypt for help. Sidon and Tyre had already fallen and Jerusalem was now under siege. The 25th Dynasty Kushite pharaoh, Shabaqo, despatched his cousin, Taharqa, to lead the campaign. Sennacherib forced Taharqa into retreat at Ashdad. Determined to crush the Kushite dynasty and extend the Assyrian Empire, Esarhaddon, Sennacherib’s successor, advanced across Sinai (674 BCE) where he was defeated. In 667 BCE Esarhaddon was successful and advanced into Memphis, forcing the Egyptians into retreat. The Assyrians occupied the delta region, giving the towns Assyrian place names and installing their own officials.
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