Israel

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Israel

Capital
Jerusalem.
Government
Parliamentary Democracy.
Language
Hebrew.
Population
7,112,359
  • 50.116% male
  • 49.884% Female

Area
20770 km2

  • 97.882% Land
  • 2.118% Water

Currency
Shekels
Ethnicity

  • Native: 67.1 %
  • Arab: 23.6%
  • Europe/American: 22.6%
  • African: 5.9%
  • Asian: 4.2%

Religion

  • Jewish: 76.4%
  • Non-Jewish: 23.6%

Occupations

  • Services: 50%
  • Industry: 23.7%
  • Agriculture: 18.5%

Coordinates
33o 30' N, 34o 45' E

Welcome to Israel, the land of God's people! Israel is largely known as the land of the Jews. Its history, setting, and people is an interesting topic. In this article, we will discuss the country, modern Israel, in details of the five themes of geography.

Location

Map of Israel
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This is a map of Israel detailing the location of the Negev Desert and the major cities of the north.

Israel is relatively located in the Middle East on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea between Egypt and Lebanon. It's absolute location on a latitude longitude scale is 33o 30' N, 34o 45' E. It's location is similar to where ancient Israel was.

Israel is known as the land of the Jews. Jews were the first settlers of the country, and they made establishment there as a promise of Britain. Britain wanted to gain Jewish support for World War One. To do that, they made the Balfour Declaration which promised the Jews safe settlement in Palestine, or where it was thought ancient Israel was around Jerusalem. However, they had already made a contradictory promise of independence to other Arabian countries. Britain was in a predicament.

After World War Two, a large number of Jews immigrated into the region as a result of the oppression in Nazi Germany. Jews used any means of getting into the land they were promised; they even immigrated illegally. Palestine created conflict with the Jews. Now that Britain had two promises to keep, it was up to it to decide what to do. Britain, rather than suffer through the unbearable situation, gave the problem to the United Nations. The United Nations ultimately decided to give Israel some land in the area, and Israel officially became a nation.

Mainly, Jews selected the area because of its history. In the Torah, the location of Israel was around that area. It is ideal because of its Mediterranean climate along the coast of the Mediterranean sea. Jerusalem, also in the area, was a center for them, and having a country around it was ideal for Israel.

The location of Israel is a good coastal one, yet still, Israel is in a bad spot. Israel is surrounded by countries that are "tolerating" its existence. Even after Israel's recognition as an official country, the Arab countries surrounding it launched attacks. They were not happy about losing land for Jews. The War of Independence was fought, and Israel suffered about 6400 casualties, but Israel withheld its land and country hood, as well as gain some more.

From the time of its birth, Israel has endured five other wars against the Arab countries. Israel's existence is certainly not welcomed, and its growth is seriously limited. Negotiations are in play trying to convince Israel to forfeit some land. Israel's location is certainly no good if it wants to expand. Israel's resources are good, but its neighbors are not.

Place

When Israel is mentioned, some people think of the war in the Middle East, and some think of the Jewish population. Another thing that comes to mind is the Biblical times of Israel, like Abraham and Isaac. Geographically, people would thing of desert and mountains. Some think of the spots of agricultural land.

Israel actually does have a lot of desert. The south is mainly desert. However, the north is a bunch of low coastal plains and a few central mountains. Around the mountains exists the Jordan Rift Valley. It extends from Syria to the Red Sea. Most of the land is relatively flat, though. The Negev desert is the main feature in Israel when we are pertaining to geographical features. It takes up 66% of all of Israel. Even though it is practically inhospitable, two towns, Beer Sheva and Eilat, exist in it. The land gets at most 12 inches of annual rain, and even as little as 2 inches. The desert is certainly not arable. It has sand dunes up to 90 feet tall, impervious and salty soil, and large amounts of erosion and runoff.

Even with all this hard environment, Israel still prevails. It has affected the people by making them find ways to adapt to the harsh ways. You can see some of the behavior when you observe where the people ant towns are. 242 of 313 settlements are on the West Bank, or Israel's only arable land. Water remains a limited source, but this is not demeaning to them. Israel has created water and soil conservation programs that are very effective. It is in fact so successful, Israel is planning on increasing their agriculture in Negev.

The Dome of the Rock
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There are not many notable features in Israel. However, its biggest feature is very popular. It is the Dome of the Rock, the building in Jerusalem with the golden dome. Supposedly, it can be seen from anywhere in the city. The Dome of the Rock is a Muslim shrine and the oldest building in Jerusalem. It was built in 691 A.D. in honor of Muhammad's ascension to Heaven. The building was built with absolute precision, and it shows superior architecture. It's main walls are 67 feet long which is congruent to the dome's diameter and height. The Dome of the Rock features elaborate decorations, inscriptions, columns, and mosaics. The main part of the sacred building is its ancient rock which was believed to be the center of Solomon's Temple.

Israel's place in the world being the ancient location of God's people has affected the residents in positive ways. It made the people determined to live and prosper in the land and live onward. They created different systems to ensure survival, and they are expanding their economy to better their future. Although this nation can't grow physically, their strength gets better.

Movement

Population Pyramids

israel-2005.png
is-2050.png

These are population pyramids for Israel; the top is Israel 2005, and the bottom is Israel 2050. As you can see, there is a clear difference between the 45 years. In the first, the sections get smaller as age increases. The life conditions are probably not all that great, and Israel is probably a poorer country. Babies are being born, and the elderly are dying. Unlike in most pyramids that show percentage, this shows the approximate population of the age/gender group. With that said, Israel seems to fit the first Demographic model. However, in 45 years, Israel gets more of a US type pyramid. It has less babies, and there are more older people. This probably means demographers expect Israel to gain in economically. This also puts Israel in the third Demographic model. So, it can be inferred that Israel might have a population boom within 45 years. These population pyramids show that Israel is heading for a better economy and larger population making it a stronger nation.


People are typically distinguished as either Jewish or Gentile. The Jewish population takes up 76.4% of the total population. Of this population, most of them are native born. The other Jews immigrate from Europe and America, and few come from Africa and Asia. The non-Jewish population is mostly Arab.

The first people to establish living in Israel were the Jews. As mentioned above, the Jews came to the land because of the oppression in Nazi Germany. Hitler put the Holocaust in full blow, and he was slaughtering many Jews. Because Britain had promised the Jews land in Palestine, the Jews decided to immigrate there, either legally or illegally. When Britain found the promise contradictory to their promise to Palestine, they put the situation in the United Nation's hands. The United Nation made Israel an official country, and the Jews settled comfortably.

The total population of Israel is 7,112,359. Of these, the breakdown is generally 50:50 male to female. As of right now, there are a lot of young people in the country and few elderly people. If you observe the population pyramids to the right, you can see a graphical display of the ratio. Most of the population is native born. The rest come from Arabian countries or Europe and America. The biggest jobs in Israel are services and industry. The general population is Jewish. This is what Israel is mainly known for. You can see it by the traditions in Jerusalem. All the Jews gather and celebrate Yom Kippur, they commemorate the Wailing Wall, and the Muslims have their shrine. The culture is seen in Israel everywhere.

The Wailing Wall is the main feature of Jewish culture. It is the last remaining remnant of the Jewish Temple which was destroyed in 70 A.D. It is the Jews' holiest shrine by which they pray at. Jews come from all around the world just to get their prayer at the wall. Special clothing is worn in respect of the sacred wall.

Cultural diffusion from Israel is hard because of oppression from neighboring countries. Israel's main diffused culture is Yiddish Music. It was adopted from Israel and became a popular type of music. It's Middle Eastern tone gives you a feel for the location of Israel.

Region

There are a lot of regions in Israel. These regions can be divided into three main types that represent different fronts. A formal region is one with obvious uniformity, an functional region serves a purpose according to scale, and a perceptual region is one of which we as humans create for a good sense of location.

Formal

A formal region in Israel is the Negev desert. Its boundaries are clearly seen and obvious. There is a distinct division where the farm-able land is and where it becomes impossible. As before, the Negev desert takes up two thirds of Israel. The land in the Negev is very poor; its soil is impossible to farm on. As a result, not many people live in the region. The Negev is in the south. One way you can tell the desert starts is by observing where the towns end. On the other end of the Negev boundary in Israel, you find mountains and low coastal plains. It is obvious where the desert is for it gets hot, dry, and inhospitable.

Functional

A functional region in Israel is Haifa, one of Israel's largest ports on the Mediterranean. This port serves Israel as its connection to the countries on the Mediterranean. It imports goods and exports goods to maintain a good economy for Israel. The port has three main docks that each handle cargo, grain, oil, and passengers. One of Haifa's main functions is handling chemicals. Haifa has two terminals and a storage tank for these chemicals in order to keep them organized. Haifa handles 65% of the containers and cargo for Israel, and in 2005, it handled 1.123 million TEU's. Not only does this important port take care of cargo, but it also provides for visitors and tourists. Haifa is a crucial region to Israel, for it is considered Israel's main gateway into Israel for Europe and the US.

Perceptual

A perceptual region in Israel is the Coastal Plain. This is where land is supposedly the most fertile in Israel, but its boundaries are not obvious and vary according to people's perspectives. The Coastal Plain would be Israel's Western Bank around the Mediterranean. Israel has 15% arable land, and this is where that would be. The land is low, and its climate is fair. This is considered a perceptual region because, really, Israel has two formal regions. Israel is the north and south. The north can be divided into regions based on human convenience and organizational breakdown. The Coastal Plain is one of them, and truthfully, it doesn't have to be a region. However, having it as a perceptual region makes navigation easier, and it shows the general locations in Israel on where you can expect to find certain features.

Interaction with the Environment

Negev Desert
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Israelites have built many cities. This large urbanization, however, has altered the climate in Israel drastically. As a result of this interaction, water supplies have fallen, the coast has retreated, mosquito population grew, crops are damaged, desertification, and electrical demand increase. An increased weather intensity causes vegetation loss and desertification. Because temperatures have risen, and winter comes later, fires are more common. The Mediterranean biome is slowly migrating northward, and the desert's volume is increasing. Seas get saltier which makes fishing harder. Also, because of the sea level rise, some ports have to shift back or be abandoned. Because of all of this negative change, an increase in elderly and child mortality rate is expected. This is all due to the building of cities.

Israel has realized the problem and is attempting to combat it. To stop desertification and forest loss, Israel is attempting reforestation programs to plant more trees. Agro technology has been modified, and a greater investment has been placed of protecting agriculture. Israel aims to improve drainage systems which would help get rid of unwanted insects. Aquifer recharge is being done to increase the water supply, and there is a height increase in ports and harbors. One of Israel's greatest achievements is innovations of "greener" machines.

The overall environment of Israel, as a relation to feeling, is religious. Israel is very Jewish, and it is very religious. You would feel compelled to take part in their religion for you would see them always practicing it. God would be big there, and you would feel the effects he has on the people.


Works Cited

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