Nakba Day

15 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  12 minutes

Al Nakba graffiti in Nazareth © PRA/cc-by-sa-4.0

Al Nakba graffiti in Nazareth © PRA/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Nakba (lit.: “disaster”, “catastrophe”, or “cataclysm”), also known as the Palestinian Catastrophe, was the destruction of Palestinian society and homeland in 1948, and the permanent displacement of a majority of the Palestinian Arabs. The term is also used to describe the ongoing persecution, displacement, and occupation of the Palestinians, both in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip, as well as in Palestinian refugee camps throughout the region. The foundational events of the Nakba took place during and shortly after the 1947–1949 Palestine war, including 78% of Mandatory Palestine being declared as Israel, the exodus of 700,000 Palestinians, the related depopulation and destruction of over 500 Palestinian villages and subsequent geographical erasure, the denial of the Palestinian right of return, the creation of permanent Palestinian refugees and the “shattering of Palestinian society”. The most important long-term implications of the Nakba for the Palestinian people were the loss of their homeland, the fragmentation and marginalization of their national community, and their transformation into a stateless people.   read more…

Charles Bronfman Auditorium in Tel Aviv

21 March 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  4 minutes

© Idan shilon/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Idan shilon/cc-by-sa-3.0

Heichal HaTarbut, also known in English as the Culture Palace, officially the Charles Bronfman Auditorium, until 2013 the Fredric R. Mann Auditorium, is the largest concert hall in Tel Aviv, Israel, and home to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.   read more…

Sderot in Israel

9 March 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  9 minutes

Yanchik Hill near Kibbutz Nir Am, view on Sderot and railway Beersheba-Sderot © Dr. Avishai Teicher/cc-by-2.5

Yanchik Hill near Kibbutz Nir Am, view on Sderot and railway Beersheba-Sderot © Dr. Avishai Teicher/cc-by-2.5

Sderot is a western Negev city and former development town in the Southern District of Israel. In 2019 it had a population of 27,635. Sderot is located less than a mile from Gaza (the closest point is 840 m), and is notable for having been a major target of Qassam rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip. Between 2001 and 2008, rocket attacks on the city killed 13 people, wounded dozens, caused millions of dollars in damage and profoundly disrupted daily life. Although rocket fire subsided after the Gaza War, the city has come under rocket attack on occasion since that time.   read more…

Red Sea–Dead Sea Water Conveyance

16 February 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Energy, Environment, General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  12 minutes

Red Sea-Dead Sea Canal map © Makeandtoss

Red Sea-Dead Sea Canal map © Makeandtoss

The Red Sea–Dead Sea Conveyance (RSDSC), sometimes called the Two Seas Canal, is a planned pipeline to run from the coastal city of Aqaba by the Red Sea to the Lisan area in the Dead Sea. It will provide drinking water to Jordan, Israel and Palestine, bring water with a high concentration of salts resulting from the desalination process (reject brine) to stabilise the Dead Sea water level, and generate electricity to support the energy needs of the project. The project is planned to be carried out by Jordan and is entirely in Jordanian territory. It will be financed by the governments of Jordan, Israel, and a number of international donors.   read more…

ANU – Museum of the Jewish People in Tel Aviv

27 January 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  6 minutes

© www.anumuseum.org.il/cc-by-sa-4.0

© www.anumuseum.org.il/cc-by-sa-4.0

ANU – Museum of the Jewish People, formerly the Nahum Goldmann Museum of the Jewish Diaspora, is located in Tel Aviv, Israel, at the center of the Tel Aviv University campus in Ramat Aviv. ANU – Museum of the Jewish People is a global institution that tells the ongoing story of the Jewish people, intended for people of all faiths. Re-opened to the public on March 10, 2021, it is the world’s only museum dedicated to celebrating and exploring the experiences, accomplishments and spirit of the Jewish people from biblical times to the present. Through its educational programming, the institution works to connect Jewish people to their roots and strengthen their personal and collective Jewish identity. The museum presents a pluralistic narrative of Jewish culture, faith, purpose and deed as seen through the lens of Jewish history and current experience today.   read more…

Holy Land

24 December 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  9 minutes

Star of Bethlehem in the Church of Nativity © Dirk D./cc-by-sa-3.0

Star of Bethlehem in the nativity grotto of the Church of Nativity in Betlehem © Dirk D./cc-by-sa-3.0

The Holy Land is an area roughly located between the Mediterranean Sea and the Eastern Bank of the Jordan River. Traditionally, it is synonymous both with the biblical Land of Israel and with the region of Palestine. The term “Holy Land” usually refers to a territory roughly corresponding to the modern State of Israel, the State of Palestine, western Jordan, and parts of southern Lebanon and southwestern Syria. Jews, Christians, and Muslims regard it as holy. Part of the significance of the land stems from the religious significance of Jerusalem, and the location of the First and Second Temples), as the historical region of Jesus’ ministry, and as the site of the first Qibla of Islam, as well as the site of the Isra and Mi’raj event of c. 621 CE in Islam.   read more…

Malkhei Yisrael Street in West Jerusalem

1 December 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  10 minutes

Morning shoppers © Yoninah/cc-by-sa-3.0

Morning shoppers © Yoninah/cc-by-sa-3.0

Malkhei Yisrael Street (lit. “Kings of Israel Street”), also spelled Malchei Yisrael, is an east-west street in the Geula neighborhood of north-central West Jerusalem. Its eastern flank, which abuts Mea Shearim Street at an intersection called Kikar HaShabbat (Sabbath Square), is the main shopping district for Haredi Jewish residents of northern West Jerusalem. The remainder of the street, which extends to Sarei Yisrael Street at its western end, includes the historic Schneller Compound and numerous Haredi and Hasidic yeshivas, girls’ schools, and synagogues.   read more…

Towns and villages depopulated during the 1947–1949 Palestine war

29 November 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  2 minutes

Towns and villages depopulated during the 1947–1949 Palestine war © Wiki Commons

Towns and villages depopulated during the 1947–1949 Palestine war © Wiki Commons

During the 1947–1949 Palestine war around 400 Arab towns and villages were depopulated, with a majority being entirely destroyed and left uninhabitable (Nakba). Today these locations are in Israel; many of the locations were repopulated by Jewish immigrants, with their place names replaced with new Hebrew place names.   read more…

Jisr az-Zarqa in Israel

29 October 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  7 minutes

© ShelleyAnne Peleg/cc-by-2.5

© ShelleyAnne Peleg/cc-by-2.5

Jisr az-Zarqa (lit. “The blue bridge”; often shortened as Jisr) is an Israeli Arab town on Israel‘s northern Mediterranean coastal plain. Located just north of Caesarea within the Haifa District, it achieved local council status in 1963. According to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) the town had a population of 13,689 in 2014, living on 1,500 dunams (1.5 km²) of coastal land. 80% of residents reportedly live below the poverty line. The name Jisr az-Zarqa is a reference to Taninim Stream, which is known in Arabic as the “Blue Valley” (Wadi az-Zarka). Jisr az-Zarqa is the only Arab-majority town in Israel located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea.   read more…

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