Jerusalem, the Old City of Jerusalem, also called Jerusalem of Gold.
It’s controversial and it’s guaranteed to raise tensions and emotions, positive and negative no matter which side of the political spectrum you’re on, or what your religion is. In this article you will find out about seven things that you absolutely need to know about Jerusalem.
Jerusalem is Historic
The first thing you need to know about Jerusalem is it is incredibly old. It’s over 5,000 years old, with the real history kicking of 3,500 years ago when King David basically brought together 12 tribes to form the Kingdom of Israel, and made Jerusalem its capital. Jerusalem of Gold is actually one of the oldest cities remained.
Jerusalem is Unique
The second thing that’s fascinating about Jerusalem is that it is very unique as it’s the center of three key religions, and hosts the holiest sites for three different religions. So if you start with Judaism, it’s the origins of the religion and the very holy place is the Mount. The mount was where the holiest temples were built to worship God. They were destroyed a couple of times, and the only remaining structure from these holiest of holy temples is the Western Wall, which is sometimes called the Wailing Wall. It was called the Wailing Wall because it really represents the Jewish people wailing at the destruction of this incredibly holy temple. It’s also an incredibly significant place for Christianity, because it marks the place where Jesus was crucified and buried. And there is also the Church of the Holy Sepulchre that was built on those two sites. Inside are a couple of key things including the Stone of Anointing where Jesus body was allegedly anointed before burial, and then there’s the Tomb of Jesus which is over the cave that he was originally buried. The third religion that is significant for Jerusalem is Islam. So for Muslims it has the third holiest site, the Dome of the Rock which is built on what is the mound where Muhammad rose to heaven.
Jerusalem in Conflicts
The third thing you need to know about Jerusalem is that basically throughout its entire history has been a source of conflict and dispute. Jerusalem has been ruined at least two times, it’s been besieged 23 times and attacked 52 times and captured and recaptured at least 44 times. In more recent times the significant events were in 1948 during the Arab-Israeli war where Jerusalem was actually divided and East Jerusalem, which contains the Old City, was occupied by the Jordanians who held the Old City right up until the Six-day War in 1967 when the Israelis recaptured and took control of East Jerusalem and the old cit. So this is still source of conflict.
Everyone Wants Jerusalem
The fourth thing you need to know about Jerusalem is that multiple states claim it as their capital. the Israelis, who have it as their capital, and the Palestinians who claim that East Jerusalem is their capital. Now the International community doesn’t fully accept Israeli control of East Jerusalem and so you’ll find there are no international embassies or consulates here. However the main operations of the Israeli government are in Jerusalem. So the Knesset, which is the Parliament, and the official residence of the Prime Minister and the President are all within Jerusalem.