April 11, 2009

Sleeping in an Israeli Mamad
Na'ale, Israel and the Palestinian Territories

I've successfully relocated to a small, heavily guarded and gated Jewish community in the West Bank (the eastern part of the Palestinian territories) called Na'ale, just a handful of kilometers northeast of the large city of Modi'in. [ location on Google Maps ]

After the Gulf War in 1991, when Israel was attacked by Iraqi Scud missiles, a law was passed requiring all apartments and homes in Israel to have a mamad, a reinforced security room impermeable to chemical and biological substances. It's in this room, on a couch that folds down into a bed, which I (and hopefully the family, as of tomorrow morning) will be sleeping for the next few days.

This is the first room of this type I've seen in Israel, making me think that only recently (<10-15 years) constructed homes actually sport them.

The door to the room takes a great amount of effort to shut, as the thick rubber gasket outlining the frame prevents the bolt from latching unless compressed with strength (ditto for the window, too). What an interesting place to be CouchSurfing…


The United States


July 28th, 2009

Kinda like..Compton with more grass..

The United Kingdom


August 18th, 2011

I was enjoying your entries about Israel as that is one of my favourite countries and got excited when mentioned going to the West Bank because Palestine is also a country I hold dear to my heart, but I was horrified to see that you actually stayed in an illegal Jewish settlement in occupied territory (for reference see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israeli_settlement or http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/.....3=6&ca) If you are visiting a country that is steeped in religious, political and territorial conflict, you should do a little background research so you are aware of where you're actually staying. Fair enough if you wanted to experience life on an illegal settlement, but you gave the impression you were blissfully unaware of the contentious nature of where you were dwelling. The West Bank is NOT Israel, you were in Palestinian territory where Israelis by law are forbidden to enter.

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