Israel 2009 – 2012

May 5, 2012 at 2:03 pm

  • Israel 2009 – 2012

    Zionism was initially a spiritual theme, deeply rooted in Jewish tradition, based on a longing to return to “Zion”. It sought to establish a national home for the Jewish people in and around Mount Zion in Jerusalem in order to provide a setting to fulfil the renewal of Jewish culture.

    The first Zionist settlement in Palestine was established at Petach Tikvah (“Opening of Hope”) in 1878 by a group of Jewish pioneers. The settlements were shaped like fortified towns, often located on hills with militias, military training camps, barbed wire fences and stonewalls.
    Zionist leaders associated the fulfilment of the Jewish national renaissance with colonization, a project that they were determined to realize and, if necessary, use force in order to achieve.

    A declaration issued by the British in 1917, promised the establishment of a Jewish national home in Palestine.
    However, the same international law that protects the rights of Israel and gives it the right to defend itself, also states that its presence in East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip is a military occupation and therefore illegal according to international law.

    About 500 000 Israelis live in illegal settlements within the West Bank today. Israeli soldiers protect the settlers and there are more than 500 checkpoints within the area. In addition to the military presence, the Israeli government have built a wall to protect themselves as well as monitoring and regulating the movements of the Palestinian people. The Israelis argue that they need to defend themselves as they are facing a growing threat from Muslim fundamentalist groups, sworn to their destruction.

    Among the Israelis there is much disagreement whether a state should be defined in ethno-religious terms and if the occupation is justifiable.
    The controversial question of Israel’s ‘right’ to exist as a Jewish state is however overtaken by urging questions of how to put an end to one of modern history’s longest conflicts and whether or not Israelis and Palestinians will be able to share the land as equals.

    We traveled to Israel in August; its hottest, driest period. We drove across the country for three weeks and in that time, tried our best to get to know, and perhaps understand its people a bit better.

    This was my first trip to Israel and these images are a starting point to a project that needs to be pursued further.

  • Israeli cowboy, Golan Heights.
  • Cut down Palestinian olive tree plantations, West Bank
  • Israeli tourists at Rosh Hanikra near the Lebanese border.
  • Beach resort, Eilat.
  • Dead horse, West Bank.
  • Torn down Israeli settlement, West bank.
  • Road crossing, Be’er Sheva.
  • Beduin man with camel near the Dead Sea.
  • Palestinian girl, West Bank.
  • Campers, Netanya.
  • Beduin camp, Be’er Sheva.
  • Palestinian martyrs memorial sign, Qalqilya.
  • Palestinian home, West Bank.
  • Bus off duty, Haifa.
  • Illegal settlement, West Bank.
  • Israeli watchtower, West Bank