The city of al-Balat was first permanently inhabited at some point between 3,000 and 2,800 B.C. Its original name was Salem, but, after being conquered by the Jewish people in approximately 1,000 B.C., the city was renamed "Jerusalem." Jerusalem retained its name through years of upheaval and warfare and was considered a holy city by the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic religions.
The exact time at which Jerusalem was renamed "al-Balat" is unknown. Since Chancellor Dominic Cylis's regime made an effort to erase historical records that predate the Total War, if a record of the name change exists, it is almost certainly banned within the Global Union. The Total War hit al-Balat hard, as tinchers from opposing sides battled over the city, especially in the location of the city hospital. When "smart" technology suddenly ceased functioning, the useless tinchers were left where they had fallen, in the hospital's ruins.
Three years after Cylis achieved absolute power over the Global Union, the Ultranet technology that had controlled the tinchers was unaccountably reactivated. The tinchers of al-Balat joined Daniel Peck in his quest to find Ali and returned with Peck and Ali to al-Balat, where they repaired Ali's injuries in the old hospital. From al-Balat, Peck helped the people of the Dark Lands launch an all-out war against the encroaching Global Union.