Afternoon Tea in Jerusalem Blog

Life in Israel

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Israeli commercial life and society

In addition to my work as a business coach, one of my interests is blogging about life in Israel. This is a country full of contrasts – over eight million citizens living in an area the size of Wales. You can see snow and the lowest place on the globe in the same day. Although surrounded by geopolitical extremes, Israel has achieved a decade of high economic growth. My work brings me in contact with an array of new companies, exciting technologies and dynamic characters. Sitting back with a relaxing cup of strong tea (with milk), you realise just how much there is to appreciate in the Holyland. Large or small operations, private sector or non profit, my clients provide experiences from which others can learn and benefit.

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The changing Middle East – Israel’s exports to Syria

As far as Israelis are concerned, Syria has probably hated them longer than any other member of the Arab League. So, when you look at the new exports sent from Jerusalem into its northern neighbor, you have to take another peep at what is going in.

By way of background, the ruling Alawites in Damascus consider about half of Israel to be a central part of Greater Syria. It is Syria that for decades hosted former Nazis. Before the 1967 war, Syria would regularly shell the farms and kibbutzes from the protection of the Golan Heights. Yes, a state of permanent war.

However, come the civil war in Syria, it is as if somebody has magically presented Israel with an opportunity to wipe the slate clean. First, as extensively reported in the world media, about 3,000 Syrian casualties have been treated in Israeli hospitals.

That level of aid is about to be stepped up significantly. Israel is to establish a field hospital on Syrian land, but within the Israeli side of the demarcation line between the two countries.

Further, it appears that Israel is now exporting large amounts of essential products into Syria, directly:

These efforts included transporting about half a million liters of diesel fuel, 360 tons of food, 77 tons of clothing and shoes, as well as dozens of generators and water delivery systems.

The humanitarian aid is provided to some 200,000 Syrian citizens living in 80 villages and towns in the Syrian Golan Heights and controlled by rebel groups not affiliated with ISIS. It is a strip of land 15 kilometers deep into Syria and 40 kilometers long, from the Syrian village of Jubta al-Hashib in the north to the Tal Saki area in the south-central region.

Yes, I admit, ‘exports’ may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it makes the point. These actions not only reveal the true human face of Israel. They show how Syria could have achieved peace with Israel decades ago, if only it had chosen that path.

And meanwhile……….

Just have a look at what is happening on one of Israel’s southern borders. A report from Reuters detailed how the political haggling between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority is impacting adversely on the health of many critically ill people in Gaza…….as the world continues to blame Israel for the depravation in the enclave.

It makes you think. Funny how Hamas refuses to accept Israeli exports to Gaza………. just like Syria’s policies of yore!

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