Friday, December 5, 2014

Despite the Headlines, It Is Safe to Visit Israel!

Last Friday morning I scrambled up steep stone steps, set in place nearly five hundred years ago. These were the walls constructed for Suleiman the Magnificent, protecting the ancient, timeless city of Jerusalem. Built on a rocky base that had previously served the Hasmoneans and Herod the Great, the Ottoman walls remain solid even today. Walking atop the ramparts one overlooks the Old City of Jerusalem, holy to three of the world's major religions, and on the other side, the busy, modern thoroughfares.

My wife's first cousin had arrived in Israel, along with six other members of his immediate family. They were on a tour of the country, with plans to visit Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, a kibbutz, and the Negev Desert in the south. For some of them, it was their first visit ever. They hired a guide and met with people who spoke to them about Israel, its politics, history, society, and culture. On Friday, I accompanied them as they climbed the ancient city walls, and on a visit to the Old City's Jewish Quarter.

Read the rest of this article on The Oslo Times.

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