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A. 1933, in Iraq. Ben-Zion 'on the rivers of Babylon'
B. A convoy of camels in Kurdistan
C. Ben-Zion standing next to 102-year-old Jew in village of Sindoor, Kurdistan
D. Ben-Zion meeting with Jewish families in village of Sindoor
E. Ben-Zion near the pyramids in Giza, Egypt
F. A palm orchard in Giza, Egypt
Ben-Zion Israeli's travels to the East
Ben-Zion Israeli visited Egypt, Iraq and Persia in search of high quality palm species for Zionist settlement to grow in Land of Israel. During his trips, which took place in 1930s, he met Jewish communities in eastern countries
Ben-Zion Israeli (1887-1954) was an enterprising man. Among other things, he was one of the founders of the Kinneret Yard in the early 20th century and one of the founders of the Kinneret collective settlement.

 

This article and the following one will feature photos from the 1930s documenting Ben-Zion's trips to Egypt, Iraq, Kurdistan and Persia. Ben-Zion was sent on a mission by the Zionist settlement, which sought to revive the growing of palms in Israel.

 

Ben-Zion would locate palm species on his trips and bring them to the Land of Israel, but his meetings with the Jewish communities in the different places he visited were also important.

 

These interesting photographs were found in the albums of Aharonik Israeli, Ben-Zion's son, and we would like to thank him.


 

1. 1933, on one of Ben-Zion's first trips to Iraq in search of high quality palm branches. In the photo: Stopping for breakfast on the desert road from the Land of Israel to Iraq


 

2. 1933, Ben-Zion near Prophet Jonah's grave in Nineveh (Mosul)


 

3. 1935, on another trip to Iraq, this time on a bus through the desert


 

4. 1935, Ben-Zion left Iraq for Persia in order to bring high quality palm branches from there


 

5. Ben-Zion was accompanied on his trips by Amram Raver, a member of the Kinneret Colony, who was proficient in Arabic


 

6. In the Iraqi city of Kirkuk


 

7. In 1934, the Agency asked Ben-Zion to contact the Israel community in Mosul. In the photo: A classroom for Jewish children with the teacher holding a stick


 

8. That year Ben-Zion travels to the Kurdistan region in order to contact the Israel communities in the villages. This is a photo from one of the villages in Kurdistan


 

9. In the city of Kirkuk, known for its oil wells (Ben-Zion is holding on to the electric pole)


 

10. 1934, Jews' homes in the village of Sindoor in Kurdistan


 

11. Ben-Zion meets with Jewish families in the village of Sindoor


 

12. Ben-Zion meets with Jews in the village of Sindoor


 

13. 1934, the Ahi-Ever Jewish group in Baghdad during a meeting with Ben-Zion


 

14. In 1937, Ben-Zion traveled to Egypt in search of high quality palm species. In the photo: Standing next to a date palm near al-Arish

 

  • For all trips to the past – click here

 

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