Real Problem with Israel's Geography

Real Problem with Israel's Geography

Show Video

This video was made using insights  from vidIQ. Stick around after the   video to find out how we used vidIQ as our  secret YouTube weapon while making it! Israel is a relatively new nation that is rife  with conflict. Tens of thousands of people   have died as a direct result of Israel's  creation; millions have been displaced,   leading to uprisings and violence;  terrorist organizations are gaining   more and more support to reclaim the holy  land and what once belonged to the Arab   people. The location and landscape of Israel  have led to many of these problems, and when  

we break the country down into its different  regions, one thing becomes very clear. The   geography of Israel sucks and is the main reason  why this part of the world may never find peace. The State of Israel sits on the Mediterranean Sea  with Lebanon and Syria to its north, Jordan to   its east, and Egypt to the southwest. Knowing that  Isreal is a Jewish State, it becomes pretty clear  

right away why the location that the country is  located in isn’t ideal. Its neighbors are nations   with mostly Arab populations, some of which have  extremist cells operating within them that want to   unify the Middle East under an incredibly strict  form of Islam. These groups have a common goal:   to remove the Jewish State of Israel from the  region so that Islam can reclaim the Holy Land. Let’s be very clear. The vast majority of  people who are Muslim want peace and have   no problem living in a diverse world where  different views and cultures are accepted.   The extremist organizations that want to  destroy Israel are not representative of   the Muslim population as a whole. That  being said, there are many Arab people,  

especially Palestinians, that have been  forced from their homeland by Israel,   and they do hold a grudge against the Jewish  State, and as we’ll see, rightfully so. There has been conflict within this region  ever since Israel first became a nation in the   1940s. Before we can examine the intricacies  of why the geographic location of Israel has   put it in a very precarious position, we need  to better understand what the geography is like   within the country itself. Israel is a small  nation. From north to south, it spans around   290 miles or 470 kilometers, and from east  to west the nation is only about 85 miles or   135 kilometers wide. This makes Israel around  the size of New Jersey in the United States.

The country’s size wouldn’t be such  a problem if it sat on fertile land   or an area with a large amount of natural  resources. Unfortunately, Israel doesn’t   have either of these things. Only around 20%  of the land in Israel can grow crops. Although,   Israeli farmers and agricultural scientists  have come up with some ingenious methods to   ensure that they can grow enough food to feed  their population and even export large amounts   of crops. In fact, Israeli agricultural  technology is some of the most advanced   in the world. They use a sophisticated  network of water treatment facilities,  

sensors, and software to optimize crop growth  even in the driest and hottest climates. Israel has four major geographical regions;   each has its own unique challenges. The  most fertile area is the coastal plain,   which runs for about 115 miles along Israel’s  western border with the Mediterranean Sea.  

It is here that most of the fertile land of the  country is located. However, at the southern tip   of the coastal plain lies the Gaza Strip, which  is technically not currently a part of Israel. This region is full of conflict as the extremist  group HAMAS is currently in control of Gaza and   continually finds ways to terrorize Israel  and its citizens. This conflict is ongoing   but has its roots dating back to the conception of  the Israeli nation. What this means is that part  

of the geographical region that is most fertile  in Israel is also one of the most dangerous in   the country. Also, Israel can’t take advantage  of the fertile land in Gaza, which reduces   the amount of farming they can do along their  coast. And when your country only has a strip   of fertile land that is around 100 miles long,  you want to take advantage of every inch of it.

A lot of the coastal plain is used for growing  citrus and wine due to the region's warm,   humid climate. It is no surprise that  Tel Aviv, the largest city in Israel,   is located along the coastal plains.  This region is also where the country’s   densest population is found. This comes as no  surprise as you’re about to find out just how   harsh the rest of the geography  within the nation’s borders is. After the coastal plain, the Central Hills are  the most fertile land in the country. However,  

the terrain can make it difficult to travel  through this region. The hills vary in height,   but most are between 1,600 and 2,300 feet tall,   with the highest altitude reaching 3,963  feet at Har Meron. However, it is the valleys   in this part of the country that tend to be  the most hospitable. Unfortunately, conflict  

still exists in much of the region as significant  amounts of the territory are in Palestine. This   is one of the most complicated geographical  regions in the world and sits at the heart of   why Israel finds itself constantly battling to  maintain control of certain parts of the land. The rest of the country is split into two  almost completely inhospitable geographical   regions. The first is the Jordan Rift Valley,   which lies east of the Central Hills. There  are some freshwater sources in the rift valley,  

such as the Jordan River and the Sea of Galilee.  These vital water sources are highly contested   by the area's populations and have forced many  people to settle in a relatively small area.   The other main body of water in this region is  not useful at all, as its name would suggest.

The Dead Sea sits within the borders of both  Israel and Jordan. It is one of the most   inhospitable environments on the entire planet due  to its incredibly high saline content. Therefore,   the very fact that this body of water, which can’t  be used for much, sits partially within the small   country of Israel is just another reason why  its geography is not ideal. The Dead Sea has   a salt content of around ten times higher than the  oceans. This means that its waters cannot support  

either plants or animals. It obviously also means  the water is undrinkable. The only living things   that can utilize the waters of the Dead Sea are  extremophiles, such as certain types of bacteria. Just south of the Dead Sea, the Rift  Valley continues without any water   flowing through it. Basically, much  of this region of Israel is a deep   crack with a parched landscape. The Rift  Valley here is almost completely dry,   with jagged rocks jutting out from the landscape  and little vegetation. However, Israel's final  

geographic region is one of the main reasons  the country’s geography is so terrible. The Negev Desert is around 4,600 square  miles meaning that it covers over half   of the total land mass of Israel. Think  about that for a second. Israel is a small   country sandwiched between much larger  nations that it doesn’t have the best   relationship with and the Mediterranean Sea.  This already means its geographic location  

is not optimal. But on top of that, over half  of the country is a harsh desert environment. Even though the Negev Desert encompasses nearly  60% of Israel, only around 8% of the population   lives there. This isn’t surprising as water  sources are hard to come by, and although   there is some arable land, most of the desert  can’t grow crops. Israelis living in the Negev   region have utilized water-saving methods such  as state-of-the-art irrigation technology and   ancient shading practices to grow a variety of  plants. The climate is naturally dry and hot,  

but the topography does vary slightly from region  to region. There are some parts that receive   several inches of rainfall each year, which allows  for small communities to live in these locations. That being said, this geographic region of Israel  is an incredibly difficult place to survive,   which is why so few people live  in such a large section of the   country. And this brings us to another  important yet really unfortunate point   about Israel’s geography. Many Middle Eastern  countries control oil supplies that bring in   massive amounts of money to their economies.  Unfortunately, Israel is not one of them.

Access to the Mediterranean is vital for  Israel. Importing goods such as grain is   paramount for the population's survival. However,  it is Israel’s agricultural exports that bring in   large amounts of money for the country. Israel’s  leading agricultural export is citrus fruits,   which grow well in the coastal plains of  the country. However, agriculture also plays   another crucial role in the Israeli economy.  The agriculture technology sector has made huge   strides in growing crops sustainably, and their  tech is being bought and used by countries around   the world. The reason the agricultural sector  in Israel is so advanced is out of necessity.  

The country's geography and climate make it a  difficult place to grow large numbers of crops,   which has led to mass innovation around  agricultural technology and practices. Israel also exports other technologies and brings  in money through its financial services. However,   unlike other countries in the region, oil does  not play a major role in Israel’s economy. This   is due to Israel's location and the lack  of natural resources within its borders.   The geography of Israel really sucks when  you consider how hard it is to access the   oil within its borders. Israel produces  just under 6,000 barrels of oil a day,  

which is the 2nd lowest out of any country  that has access to oil. The only other nation   in the world that produces fewer  barrels than Israel is Morocco. The world needs to move away  from fossil fuels in the near   future if we are to avoid a climate  crisis. However, until this happens,   oil is one of the most lucrative  resources that any country can hold.

Being a country in the Middle East without  accessible oil reserves is really unfortunate   for Israel as it means they need to import  fossil fuels from other countries. When   Israel became a nation, there was little  consideration for what resources were   within its borders. Knowing there was a lack  of oil probably wouldn’t have changed much,   but it could have influenced certain  decisions made in the future and allowed   Israel to be less reliant on outside energy  sources. Plus, having an excess supply of oil  

would only improve their economy, even  if it is at the expense of our planet. Other than the harsh landscape that most of the  country is made up of and a lack of resources,   there is one other aspect  of Israel's geography that   not only sucks but puts it in constant danger. Israel is a Jewish State surrounded by countries  that are made up of mostly Muslim populations.  

There is nothing wrong with this other  than the fact that since its inspection,   Israel has been either at war or on the verge of  war with its neighbors at one time or another. The   location of Israel is one of the main reasons  there is so much conflict in the country. To understand why the geographic location of  Israel sucks so much, we need to go back to the   beginning. Archaeological evidence suggests that  the city of Jerusalem was settled around 3,500   B.C.E. If we are to believe the events in the  Bible, this city was conquered by King David,   who made it the capital of the Jewish Kingdom  around 1,000 B.C.E. There is archaeological  

and historical evidence to corroborate  this story, but it is what happens next   that explains why Israel and the surrounding  area are constantly at odds with one another. Around 586 B.C.E., the Babylonians conquered  Jerusalem and cast the Jews out of what they   considered a Holy Land. The region changed  hands over the next several hundred years   from rulers such as Alexander the Great  to the Romans to the Arabs. According to   historical and religious accounts, in 30  C.E., Jesus Christ was crucified just outside   the city of Jerusalem. Then in 632 C.E.,  Mohammed died, and in the Islamic faith,  

it is believed he ascended to heaven  from Jerusalem. So, as you can see,   this region of the world is incredibly  important for the three main Western religions. This meant that everyone wanted to control  it, which led to countless bloody battles   and wars between the Christians and Muslims  to reclaim the Holy Land from one another.   The most famous of these wars was the Crusades,  but eventually, Jerusalem and the surrounding   area were secured and held for many centuries  by the Islamic faith starting in 1299 C.E. Fast forward to the end of the 19th century. A  movement called Zionism was started by Theodor  

Herzl, which called for a Jewish State in which  the Jewish people could make their home and   be free from persecution. When the Ottoman  Empire collapsed at the end of World War I,   Britain gained control of part of the Middle East,   including Jerusalem and what would later  become Israel. The area around the Holy   Land was called British Palestine, and at  the time most of the population was Muslim. After Britain colonized the region, a large  number of Jewish people living in Britain   and its territories started to move back  to the Holy Land. As more and more Jewish  

People settled in the area, violence broke  out between them and the Arab populations   who had been living there for the past  several hundred years. Britain tried to   stop more Jewish people from moving to the  area, but it was too late. The populations   already there formed militias to fight the  Arabs and to try to overthrow British rule. Then in 1947, as a result of the escalating  violence and destruction in the region,   the United Nations decided that the land should  be divided into two separate independent states.   It was also agreed that Jerusalem would remain an  international territory since so many different   religions had ties to the city. The hope was  that if the Jewish people got their own state  

and the Arab population gained independence from  Britain, the fighting would cease. The geography   of the region was carved in a somewhat equal way,  and the new borders were proposed to both sides. The Jews agreed to the UN’s proposal, while  the Arabs in the surrounding areas saw   this as just another form of European  colonialism and rejected it. However,  

this didn’t matter. Things had gone too  far, and on May 14, 1948, Jewish Agency   Chairman David Ben-Gurion proclaimed that the  State of Israel was officially its own nation. That very night as the Jewish people in their new  country celebrated, fighting broke out across the   region. The Jews continued to celebrate as  they now controlled the first Jewish State  

in over 2,000 years. The fighting escalated into a  full-blown war known as the Arab-Israel War. After   two years of fighting, Israel defeated most of  the Arab forces in the area. However, rather than   just protecting its borders, Israel expanded  into what the United Nations had designated   as Palestine. The Israelis captured Jursuelem  and even expanded further south towards Egypt.

In creating its own geographic boundaries  in the region, Israel displaced millions of   Arab families, causing a massive refugee  population that numbers around 7 million   today. For the next two decades, conflicts  between Israel and the Islamic populations   surrounding them continued to break out. Then  in June of 1967, the Six-Day War began. Israel   lashed out at the countries along its borders.  Jewish forces launched a campaign into Egypt,   Jordan, and Syria. They captured  the Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip,   and the West Bank. When the war concluded,  Israel had nearly tripled its territory. The world watched as the relatively  new nation of Israel secured more and   more territory and continued to displace  Arab populations. Its geographic location  

is one of the main reasons that other major  powers felt like they needed to get involved.   If Israel was taking over land that hadn’t  angered countries with huge oil reserves,   they probably would have been left to expand  their borders and relocate entire populations   as they saw fit. However, this was not the case.  Israel was destabilizing the region, and it was   causing issues for countries that relied on  fossil fuels coming out of the Middle East. Therefore, in 1978 Israel and Egypt were invited  to sit down for peace talks in the United States,   where Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli  Prime Minister Menachem Begin agreed upon the Camp   David Accords. These talks would eventually lead  to Israel returning the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt.   It also began a gradual peace between Israel  and most of its neighbors. This was what the  

U.S. and many other world powers wanted. However,  it was not what many in the Middle East wanted. It is interesting to theorize what would  have happened if Israel was located in a   less resource-rich area of the world. Suppose  the U.N. had carved out a piece of land in   Senegal for the Jewish people. This part of the  planet has large amounts of oil and natural gas,   but not to the extent that the Middle East  does. If Israel had been set up here and then   began expanding its borders, it would still have  upset the people already living in the region,   but would countries such as the United  States have cared? Probably not. And   even though this is incredibly  messed up, it is also likely true.

This brings us to another reason why Israel’s  geography sucks. Its surrounding neighbors have   power due to their oil reserves, and therefore,  Israel will always have international pressure   placed on it to make concessions to appease these  oil-rich nations. Don’t get us wrong; we are not   saying that the wars Israel started and the land  they claimed as a result were justified. In fact,   one of the main reasons why Israel and the  surrounding region are such a big mess is because   of the wars and policies that Israel started. Both  sides have pursued questionable tactics to claim  

what they believe is rightfully theirs. And it  does not seem like that will change any time soon. Even in a hypothetical scenario where  Israel was located somewhere else,   it is not clear if the Jewish community would  have accepted it. One of the main draws for Jews   was that the location of their new state was to  be established in their ancestral homelands and   located near the Holy City of Jerusalem. If  the United Nations had carved out a piece of   sub-Saharan Africa and given it to the Jewish  people, they probably wouldn’t have accepted. As Israel declared war on its neighbors and  continued to persecute the Muslim populations   within its borders, a group called the Palestine  Liberation Organization was formed. Their goal   was to reclaim all of what was once British  Palestine for the Arab people. This group often  

used terrorist tactics to try and weaken  the Israeli government. At the same time,   Jewish citizens of Israel began to move  further west into what was supposed to   be Palestine. They created new settlements by  forcing Arab families who had lived there for   generations off their land and building fortified  neighborhoods protected by Israeli soldiers.

By using these settlements to divide  the lands of the region even further,   Israel made it harder for Palestine to  ever become an independent state. The   crazy part is that many Israeli settlements  in the West Bank are considered illegal by   the international community. Again, it  didn’t necessarily have to be this way.   The geographic location of Israel made  it so two groups of people were put at   odds with one another, which inevitably  led to sustained conflict in the region. In 1993 a new set of talks was carried out,  and the Oslo Accords were signed to try and   bring peace and stability to the region. The  Oslo Accords allowed Palestine to govern itself   in certain areas of the West Bank. However, this  was so unpopular with many Israeli citizens that   it led to the assassination of Israeli Prime  Minister Yitzhak Rabin by an extremist sect of   Jews in his own country. This series of events  showed how there were factions on both sides  

of the conflict that would stop at nothing  until the other was completely destroyed. The insane thing is that both the Jewish and  Muslim people are fighting over a location   where they share a lot of joint history.  The Jewish God and the Muslim God are the   same entity. Almost every story in the Torah is  in the Quran. They believe in the same prophets   and the same narratives. The difference is that  Muslims believe Mohammad was the final prophets,  

and the Jews don’t. The locations around  Israel and Palestine are part of a shared   history between the Jewish and Arab people.  Yet, it is this geographic area that has   caused so much bloodshed and conflict over  the centuries because groups of people   would rather focus on their differences  even when they have much more in common. Between 2000 and 2005, what is known as the Second  Intifada occurred in Israel. This was the result  

of Palestinians who had been oppressed by the  Israeli government rising up and carrying out   acts of violence across the region. Around  1,000 Israelis and 3,200 Palestinians were   killed in the conflict. This prompted large  walls to be built throughout the area to   control the movements of Palestinians as the  Israelis no longer believed any sort of peace   could be reached. As the fighting raged on, some  countries recognized Palestine as its own State   while others did not. It seems as if no one can  decide on the political geography of the region. The geographical makeup of Israel and Palestine  is made even more convoluted by the fact that   the Gaza Strip is considered by many to be a part  of Palestine even though it is in a sort of limbo   controlled by the extremist group HAMAS. They  claim Gaza is unaffiliated with either Israel  

or Palestine. Nonetheless, Israel has tightened  its grip on the region around the Gaza Strip,   strangling the area to make sure resources  cannot reach the terrorist organization. However,   this is also causing horrible consequences  for the population of innocent people,   both Jewish and Muslim, living in Gaza. Even after decades of conflict and peace  talks, nothing has really changed in Israel,   and that is because you can’t change  geography. The location of Holy Sites  

for both Jews and Muslims cannot be changed. The  fact that both populations share an ancestral   homeland in the region cannot be changed. The  resources and lack of resources in the area   cannot be changed. This is because the  geography of Israel cannot be changed,   and that’s why it sucks so much  if we want peace in the future. Ever wondered how we decide what to make videos  about? We’re going to let you in on a little   secret. It’s vidIQ. It lets us see exactly how  many searches per month a certain keyword gets.   More searches, means more potential viewers, But  of course there’s more to it than that. VidIQ also  

shows you the competition for that keyword.  The less competition there is, then the more   likely it is that your video will stand out.  Which means more views for your video! I know,   it sounds too easy, but it really is! You don’t  need to have a genius IQ, you just need to have   vidIQ! But try it for yourself! Get a 30 day trial  for only $1 by going to Now watch “How Does The Iron Dome Actually Work.”  

Or check out “Scientists Reveal  Where the Garden of Eden Is.”

2023-02-17 01:05

Show Video

Other news