Posts Tagged ‘Mediterranean Sea’
“Hello, Israel Antiquities Authority? Look, I am cleaning out my basement and there is a whole bunch of pottery and other stuff here that my family of fishermen left me. Maybe you guys want the junk so my grandchildren can see it in the future?”
That is not a direct quote, but is closer to the truth than what the archaeologists at IAA expected when they arrived at the home of Osnat Lester in the northern Israel tower of Poriya.
They certainly did not they would discover a whole treasure of well-preserved ancient pottery.
They found a bunch of boxed that contained ancient and rare unbroken pottery vessels. Lester explained that a fisherman in her family had hauled the pottery out of the Mediterranean Sea.
The vessels cover several period of time, evidence of the importance of the Mediterranean in journeys my merchants whose wares often were left behind or were sunk, often with their ships, said IAA spokeswoman Yoli Shwartz.
One of the vases was identified as being about 3,000 years old, at the time of the Jewish kingdoms. Other pieces of pottery were from the Roman and Byzantine periods.
Israel will enjoy average rainfall this winter, according to the Israel Meteorological Service, and there is a good chance that the dam at the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) will have to be opened up before summer because of the increasing use of desalinated water from the Mediterranean Sea.
The Meteorological Service said its annual winter forecast has a margin of error of up to 25 percent but generally does not miss the mark more than 10 percent in either direction.
The sea has replaced the Kinneret as Israel’s largest source of water, not including the underground aquifer system that is being replenished thanks to the use of more desalinated water.
The Kinneret rose approximately 2.5 meters (8 feet) last winter, which brought average or slightly more than average rainfall in most regions.
As of Monday morning, the Kinneret was exactly 2.5 meters below the level at which the dams would have to be opened to prevent flooding in the beachside city of Tiberias and neighboring farms and tourist parks. If the forecast turns out to be accurate, the Kinneret will rise to near flood level this year.
Opening the dams would dump more water into the Jordan River, which feeds the Dead Sea that is in desperate need of more water.
In Israel, the prayer that cites God as the “rainmaker” began on Shemini Azereth-Simchat Torah, the day after Sukkot. The actually request for rain began two weeks ago, on the seventh day of the Hebrew month of Cheshvan in Israel. The prayer is not said until December 4 outside of Israel.
If rain does not fall within 30 days of the request, special prayers and fast days are held. From a climactic standpoint, Israel received its first rains a month ago during the Sukkot holiday, when a measurable amount of rain, although only 1 millimeter, was recorded in most of the country.
Most of the rain and snow in Israel usually falls in the months of December, January and February.
An Israeli Air Force drone crashed into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast south of Tel Aviv Tuesday, the second drone crash in three months.
The Navy picked located the debris of the Hermes 450 UAV and brought it experts to analyze the reason for the malfunction, which probably was in the engine, according to preliminary estimates.
The drone was involved in a training exercise and not an intelligence operation, the military said.
American authorities said Monday they will question an Al Qaeda terrorist, re-captured in Tripoli over the weekend, while he is on a Navy ship in the Mediterranean Sea and without reading him his rights, making it impossible to use the information at a trial.
If the terrorist, Abu Anas al-Libi, reveals the same information after later hearing his rights when questioned again in the United States, the information can be used at his trial, NBC reported.
Interrogators from the CIA, the FBI and Navy officers aboard the USS San Antonio will question al-Libi to learn more about Al Qaeda activities both inside Libya and elsewhere.
Al-Libi has been in custody before for bombing attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Libya 15 years ago. Two other terrorists are at large for the attack, while eight others, including Osama bin Laden, have been killed. Nine are in custody and one has died while awaiting trial.
A shark attacked a fish pond worker at the port city of Ashdod Sunday and bit off part of his hand before he was rescued and rushed to a hospital in Tel Aviv., where his is recovering from moderate wounds.
The man, described to be in his late 20s, was working in fish cages when the shark attacked, a relatively rare occurrence in Israel.
Last year, two fishermen were surprised when they caught a shark weighing more than 100 pounds. In April 2005, two sharks were captured in two separate incidents off the coast of Ashkelon, approximately five miles south of Ashdod.
A new oil discovery in southern Israel might turn out to be the catalyst for an internal and self-destructive war in the Palestinian Authority, with Hamas in Gaza and chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah likely to claim ownership of a new Israeli offshore oil discovery near Ashdod.
When the Tamar and Leviathan gas and oil fields off the Haifa and Hadera coast, in northern Israel, were discovered, Lebanon and Hezbollah quickly claimed that energy reserves were in their territorial waters.
The oil and gas reserves are clearly within Israel’s territorial waters, but the fields could extend as far as the waters off the Lebanese coast.
Lebanon warned the American Noble Energy company not to approach its territory, and Hezbollah it would go to war over the oil and gas fields. Since then, Israel has brought gas into production, and Lebanon and Hezbollah have kept quiet, partly because the United States has mediated by proposing a boundary between Lebanon and Israel’s maritime economic zones.
Now comes the Israeli Shemen Oil and Gas Company which reported on Saturday indications of “high quality of oil” following offfshore drilling at its Yam-3 well, 10 miles from the southern port city of Ashdod, located only a few miles north of Gaza.
The drilling reached a depth of 19,000 feet undersea, but the possibility of commercial production awaits further tests.
“This is good news for Shemen but it is still too early to pop the champagne,” Noam Pincu, an analyst at Psagot Investment House Ltd. in Tel Aviv, told Bloomberg News. “We have to see the results of the production tests to estimate the quantities and quality of oil at the site.”
It still is not clear from the drilling report how thick the reservoir is and how much much oil could be commercially produced. Analysts said it could be only a few barrels a day or it could be several hundred a day, which would bring in millions of dollars.
If the Yam 3 well turns to be commercially viable, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu might be able to relax at U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s peace talks and let Fatah and Hamas knock each other out.
Hamas and its rival Fatah movement likely would be at each other’s throats, literally, to claim that Israel is “stealing” the reserves from them.
Abbas was head of all of the Palestinian Authority in Judea and Samaria as well as Gaza until Hamas completed a bloody military coup six years ago. Abbas dissolved the Fatah-Hams coalition government and declared himself as ruler of Gaza by presidential decree, which Hamas correctly terms as “worthless.”
Abbas and Hamas de facto prime minister Ismail Haniyeh have since failed to carry out several declarations of unity.
All it will take is a few barrels of oil near Gaza’s waters for both leaders to draw their knives and guns for energy reserves that are so close to Gaza that Haniyeh and Abbas can claim that Israel is “stealing” them by drilling diagonally into Gaza waters.
Both Ramallah and Gaza City are in serious trouble financially. Egypt’s new war on terror in the Sinai has choked off the flow of commercial goods through the border at Rafiah, and Abbas is totally dependent on the economically ailing European Union, to stave off bankruptcy.