Ezri Tubi give a tour of Israel’s historical roots.Video of the Day
Posts Tagged ‘tour’
Arab terrorists opened fire Tuesday morning at IDF personnel at the Qalandiya checkpoint north of Jerusalem.
The attack took place during a visit to the outpost by a security team from Cyprus.
No injuries were reported. However, a bullet hit one of the military vehicles, according to the Hebrew-language 0404 website.
Israeli forces searched the area and raised the alert level. It appears the attack came from within Qalandiya.Hana Levi Julian
Online visitors to the Binyamin Regional Council virtual tour can fly over the gorgeous landscapes and get a real feel for the region, then click on whatever grabs their fancy for an in-depth explanation.
In recent months the increase of tourism to Judea and Samaria has made international headlines with talk of the over 200 hundred Bed and Breakfasts options available, fifty of which are just in the Binyamin Region, north of Jerusalem. In the last five years, tourism has increased significantly across Judea and Samaria, and tourism-related businesses have more than doubled. Fifteen new visitors centers have opened, all of which offer presentations in multiple languages. The wine industry has also blossomed with more than 20 boutique wineries, making internationally acclaimed wine.
An estimated 1.5 million tourists visit sites across Judea and Samaria annually. The major demographic is faith-based tourists, both Jewish and Christian, with a special interest in Judeo-Christian history. A record number of Biblical sites have recently initiated new and extremely high-quality audio-visual presentations in multiple languages, including Shiloh, Hebron and the Herodian.
In recent years the Yesha Council together with the 6 regional councils and 13 local councils that it represents has invested a great deal of funds in telling its story to the world. Finding that the best way to explain the Israeli resettlement of Judea and Samaria is to invite people on life-changing visit of the area.
The Binyamin Regional Council has launched two new initiatives to highlight the abundance of new tourist attractions and internationally accessible programs this Passover. One is a video showcasing some of the 36 activities available from visiting ancient Shiloh to swimming in the 9 springs and riding camels at Eretz Bereshit to visiting internationally acclaimed wineries and breathtaking hikes across multiple nature reserves.
In addition, the council has launched a new website to showcase its wares, which includes a state of the art new virtual tour (still in beta version) which offers viewers a birds-eye view of Western Binyamin with the aid of hours of interactive drone footage.
The website offers additional resources and information to maximize and personalize tours.
“This Passover we are expecting a huge rise in tourism to the Binyamin region in particular and Judea and Samaria in general, because there is just so much more for people to do here. We are especially looking forward to welcoming all of our supporters from abroad that are visiting Israel for the holiday and understand the importance of visiting the Biblical heartland of Israel” Said Miri Maoz-Ovadia, spokesperson for the Binyamin Regional Council.
The Beach Boys were supposed to play Israel next month at Nokia Arena, but unfortunately they just cancelled their upcoming performance.
The ticket site had only the following message to say on the subject:
“The Beach Boys have cancelled their appearance Saturday night, November 29, 2014 at Nokia Arena in Tel Aviv. The band looks forward to returning to the region as soon as possible. Ticket holders will receive refunds within 14 days”.
The Beach Boys official website still lists Israel on the itinerary.
No other explanation was put forward. We hope they are able to come back soon.Jewish Press News Briefs
New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo and a bi-partisan delegation of state government and community leaders have spent the past three days packed back-to-back with briefings, meetings and tours of Israel.
Mostly, they have been expressing their solidarity with residents of the Jewish State. It comes in stark contrast to this week’s White House hold on a routine delivery of Hellfire missiles to its “closest friend and ally, the only democracy in the Middle East” — at a time when that ally is threatened by a foe receiving arms from Iran and Syria.
Cuomo and his fellow New Yorkers have done endless ‘meet and greets,’ especially in Jerusalem, where they stopped for the requisite snack at ‘Big Apple Pizza’ on the Ben Yehuda tourist walkway at the heart of the capital, and in the Old City of Jerusalem where the governor said a prayer at the Western Wall and was hugged by the leader of probably every represented faith, plus others.
Now Cuomo, Senate Majority co-leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein, and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver are reaching the end of their three day solidarity visit. They’ve seen the people most affected by the current conflict: the millions of Israelis targeted by Hamas and allied terrorists in Gaza with their missiles and kidnapping plots and tunneling projects.
The state leaders arrived on August 12 to reaffirm “the State of New York’s support in light of the continued threat of attacks by Hamas and other terrorist organizations,” according to the media statement sent out by the governor’s office. Cuomo and his delegation met with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, President Reuven Rivlin, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, New York students living and learning in Israel and Israeli residents directly affected by the Gaza attacks.
“We are grateful for the Governor’s support and words of encouragement, and proud of the strong relationship we share with the people of New York, which is based on our shared values,” Consul General of Israel in New York, Ido Aharoni said.
“Friends stand together in times of crisis, and I am proud to lead this bipartisan delegation to Israel to reaffirm our friendship and support,” Governor Cuomo said. “New York has always had a special relationship with Israel. As Hamas and other terrorist organizations continue to threaten Israel, now is the time to deliver that message of solidarity in person.”
Senate Co-Leader Dean G. Skelos said, “During this important moment in history, it is incumbent upon New York to reaffirm its strong and unconditional support for Israel’s right to defend itself against Hamas-led attacks and to take whatever action they deem necessary to protect their people from the brutal tactics of homicide bombers. I am pleased to join the Governor, Senate Co-Leader Klein, and Speaker Silver as part of the official New York State delegation visiting Israel this week, and look forward to bringing the good wishes of the people of my district and the state of New York to our nation’s most trusted and reliable ally.” Senate Co-Leader Jeffrey D. Klein said, “As the grandson of Holocaust survivors the State of Israel is not only personally sacred to me but a beacon for the values and rights inherent in a Democracy which I hold dear. I am pleased to join Governor Cuomo, Senate Co-Leader Skelos, and Speaker Silver as part of the official New York delegation, as a show of support that we will always stand in solidarity with Israel.” Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said, “Having visited many times, I am delighted to join Governor Cuomo and Senators Skelos and Klein in our mission to Israel to show New York’s solidarity with the people of the Jewish State. As a lifetime supporter of Israel, I cannot overstate the importance of this trip. I am proud that many New York businesses were started there and I believe it is essential that the Empire State’s leaders express our solidarity with Israel and its people, especially during these difficult times. I am certain our visit will reinforce the already strong ties that bind New York and the State of Israel.”Rachel Levy
The first time was many years ago. I had just concluded explanations about Yeshivat Knesset Yisrael” which arrived in Hebron from Slobodka, in Lithuania in 1924. The Hebron Heritage Museum at Beit Hadassah features an exhibit about this illustrious Torah-learning academy, nicknamed the ‘Hebron Yeshiva,’ which includes a ‘class picture’ from 1928.
As I finished my brief account, an older man approached me, put his finger on a picture of one of the yeshiva students and asked me, ‘do you see him? That’s me.’
That was Rabbi Dov Cohen, a phenomenal Torah genius, who, following my tour, came back to Hebron and gave us his tour.
I always thought that this was a ‘once in a lifetime event,’ having someone point themselves out in a photo taken so many decades ago, here in Hebron.
But it happened again.
On Friday afternoon the Farbstein family came into Hebron for Shabbat. Rabbi Moshe Mordechai Farbstein, today dean of the ‘Hebron yeshiva,’ now located in Jerusalem, arrived with his wife and many grandchildren. And his mother, Rabbanit Chana Farbstein.
Chana Farbstein was born in 1923. Her father was Rabbi Yechezkel Sarna, a Torah giant. Her grandfather was the legendary Rabbi Moshe Mordechai Epstein, dean of the yeshiva, located then located in Slobodka, which, a year or so later, moved to Hebron. Chana lived in Hebron until the 1929 riots, in an apartment next to Eliezer Dan Slonim and his family.
Friday afternoon, before Shabbat, the Farbsteins took a short tour of Hebron, which began in the museum. When we approached the Hebron Yeshiva exhibit, she moved, as hypnotized, to one of the photos on the bottom row, stared at it, and then pointed to a small girl in the right corner, saying, ‘that’s me.’ To her right, a young woman had her hand on little Chana’s shoulder. ‘That’s my mother.’
A ‘once in a lifetime event.’ And it happened to me for a second time.
Chana later told us that she must have been about four years old at the time the photo was taken.
Even though she was barely five and a half at the time of the riots, she remembered them quite clearly: “I remember a big truck going through the streets. They were throwing rocks at our house and calling out my father’s name ‘Chezkel.’ They were looking for him. It was our good luck, he was in Jerusalem.”
“Do you remember what was told to you, what was going on?”
“No one had to explain. We knew exactly what was happening.”
She said that on Saturday afternoon, her family was removed from Hebron and taken to the ‘Strauss Building’ in Jerusalem, across the street from ‘Bikor Cholim hospital. Asked when she ‘left’ the city,’ she replied: “We didn’t leave. The British came, on Shabbat, and took us to Jerusalem.”
Later she also spoke about remembering the pain of having to pray at the 7th step at Ma’arat HaMachpela, not being allowed to enter the structure. “We would stand there for a few minutes, and then leave.”
Were relations with Arabs always poor? “No, when we went shopping in the market an Arab with a large round basket would go with us. We would put the produce we wanted into the basket, he would carry it and later bring it to our home.”
Chana Farbstein is a phenomenal woman. She also stood with us on Friday afternoon, at the cemetery in Hebron, where 59 of the 67 massacre victims are buried. Her son, Rabbi Moshe Mordechai Farbstein, recited two Psalms at the site, his voice breaking, sensing the atrocities and pain of the events occurring 84 years ago.
The next morning, Mrs. Farbstein walked from Beit Hadassah to Ma’arat HaMachpela for morning prayers, and later in the afternoon, to the Avraham Avinu neighborhood to attend a special class presented by her daughter-in-law, Dr. Esther Farbstein, an expert on Holocaust studies, author of the book, “Hidden in Thunder.”
After Shabbat, as I arrived to interview her, I found her sweeping the floor.
Her son, Rabbi Farbstein, told me that that last winter she had been very ill, and there was grave concern that she might not recover. But recover she did, and despite only meeting her for the first time, her inner strength and iron will were quite obvious.David Wilder
For most people, we live our lives within circles. We travel from our homes to our work, an occasional night out and perhaps, if we are lucky, once or twice a year, we break out of the circle and fly off or drive off somewhere exciting for a few weeks. And then we return to our circles and remember the last vacation or dream of the next.
A few among us break this pattern and spend part of their lives flying very often as part of their jobs. As I organized this year’s MEGAComm (www.megacomm.org), I met two of these men. One came from India, one came from Canada. In addition to an amazing day of sessions and all, I had a chance to take each around a bit.
It is quite an experience to see your country, your world, through another’s eyes. On the first day, I took our guest from New Delhi around the walls of the Old City, parked on Mt. Zion, and walked with him through the Jewish Quarter and a bit of the Arab shuk (open market/bazaar). On the way down to the Kotel, the Western Wall, a woman stopped us.
She had a cup of hot liquid (soup, I guess) in her hand. I thought she was asking for money, as often happens there. Usually, I give a few coins, here and there. But this time, I realized that I had left the car with only my keys and cellular phone. I began to apologize when she said she didn’t want money.
She then handed me the soup and said, “could you give this to Shoshana?”
Almost as a reflex, I took the hot soup but looked at her in confusion, “who is Shoshana?”
“She’s sitting at the bottom on the steps, on the way to the Kotel,” she answered.
Now, I’ve never met Shoshana and it all seemed a bit strange. On the other hand, why not? So, I took the soup and set off with my guest, explaining about various sites in the Old City while carrying a warm cup of soup.
After a few minutes of walking, I came to the top of the many steps that lead down to the plaza where the Kotel stands. I’ve never counted the steps…but there are dozens of them – at a guess, I would say at least 50-60. I had planned to go about half way down where the view is incredible. Apparently, God and Shoshana’s friend had other plans. So, I gave my quick explanation, aware the soup would get cold.
Then I glanced down the steps – and found not one woman, but two, sitting on the side in chairs hoping people would give them money. Which was Shoshana?
I approached the first, “Are you Shoshana?” I asked her and she said she was not.
I approached the second, already sure this was the intended recipient. She already was looking at the soup, “Shoshana?” I asked and she confirmed that she was, gratefully took the soup, and thanked me – even gave me a blessing.
I think my guest from India was wondering in what kind of society does a stranger hand you a cup of soup? In what world do you then go searching to deliver it?
We walked down to the Kotel plaza; I explained about how this was retaining wall for our ancient Temples. I pointed to the levels of stone and explained about how the land on the other side is so much higher that a century or two ago, Arabs would throw garbage down on the Jewish worshipers and so a generous man from Europe donated funds to add the smaller stones and raise the level of the Wall.
I explained about how we turn to this Wall, the Western Wall of the Temple Mount, three times a day in our prayers and finally we began to climb back up those 60 or so stairs. Around 30 stairs up, a man stopped us, took my guest’s hand and as he began blessing him in rapid fire Hebrew (not a word of which could my friend understand), the man tied a red string around his wrist. Then he turned to me, carefully tying a string around my wrist as well.Paula R. Stern