Israel Booming: From Jerusalem to Tel Aviv to Beer Sheva


It is impossible to compress all that has happened

this past week into a 30-second blog post.

Complexity has to be cut to a sound bite, while

we keep trying to share what the mainstream media misses.

President of Cyprus flag up in Jerusalem

The President of Cyprus was visiting,

and his country’s flag hung on Jerusalem, Israel streets.

I wonder what dignitaries see of what is really happening.

Did the President meet regular Israelis?

Did you know he was here?

Or that the German Bundestag President is speaking at the Knesset?

Most people just read of “conflict” and troubles,

 but construction is booming.

Huge cranes fill the skylines.

The Museum of Tolerance is above ground,

Museum of Tolerance

the construction site is busy with dozens of Arab workers.

building in Tel Aviv

In Tel Aviv, more towers are under construction,

two are going up near the Google office.

desert blooming

The flatland of the Negev is such a contrast

to the Judean Hills of Jerusalem.

large Hebrew sign saying they keep shmita

For the shmita year, some farmers are taking

the sabbatical year literally, leaving the land untended.

Negev desert

But in the Negev,

Rahat seen from highway

the Bedouin town of Rahat is booming,

Soda Stream plant near Rahat

 and Soda Stream’s new plant stretches out in the sand nearby.

A few kilometers down the road

large sign welcome to Beer Sheva

there is a new sign welcoming visitors to the new Beersheva.

The once sleepy desert town is the largest city in the Negev.

Beersheva is booming with new neighborhoods,

new business and new cultural life.

After the hundreds of rockets from Gaza last summer,

bomb shelter built in south

 Beersheva homes are getting new safe rooms.

There were so many sleepless nights due to red alert sirens

announcing the oncoming missiles that

home bomb shelters are being installed.

Will running to a safe spot be the summer activity again?

There was another rocket last night in the south,

and it was not the first of the season.

The UNHRC has released its report.

Did they take into account the millions of Israelis

living under terrible conditions last summer?

peace slogan in Hebrew

“I believe in PEACE” says this sticker on a Jerusalem crossing.

Everyone hopes those rockets from Gaza,

and the explosions on the Golan border will stop.

Preparing for summer in Jerusalem

Big plans for this summer.

The start-up nation is booming.

Weddings and end-of-year school performances fill the evenings.

No bombs and rockets are welcome.

Nothing is simple,

but like this Jerusalem bus sign,

Neseya tova

here’s wishing all a good and safe trip.

25 New Reasons There’s Hope for Future in Israel

Human Rights Watch finally called Hamas’ firing on Israel a “war crime,”

however, a month after Operation Pillar of Defense,

 new rockets were launched toward Israel from Gaza that fell short.

As the year 2012 comes to an end, how about some good news?

Last week I got out of Jerusalem, Israel, and went south,

sign Gaza photo

    near the Gaza border, where the sign was only in Hebrew and Arabic.

Sign Kibbutz Alumim

Kinneret was kind enough to show me around Kibbutz Alumim,

field near GAza

whose fields are 4 kilometers from Gaza, which can be seen in the distance.

factory on kibbutz

Carrots from the fields are sorted in this factory,

bomb shelter

whose bomb shelter is at its entrance.

bomb shelter children playgournd

Another shelter is placed on the children’s playground

bomb shelter Israel

and all the housing has safe rooms added on.

cows photo

 Alumim also has cows and avocado trees,

sunset photo

and impressive sunsets.

Like a pearl that started from a grain of sand in the ocean,

in this seemingly unlikely place, and because of “the situation”

Mechinat Yonatan

a new program began called Southern Task Force-Yonatan

or Mechinat Yonatan, for Yoni Netanyahu.

Started last year by a few idealistic girls who found others on Facebook,

study group

this co-ed, religious group of 25 young people

are taking a year after high school to work on the kibbutz,

class room lesson

 study Torah, and volunteer in schools in nearby cities.

music photo

They get up early and work hard, but still find time to relax,

Israeli tank

and all of them plan to join the army next year.

With young leaders like these, I say we have 25 new reasons to hope

Mechinat Yonatan

 for a better future in Israel.


The young people I spoke with talked of wanting

to work the land, learn Torah, and make a difference.

As 2012 comes to an end, can you think of a better hope for the future?

To see more photos, click HERE.