The internet is down at the home place, so today I’m hunkered down using Son #2’s connection. I’ll just re-post this fascinating article from the UK’s Daily Mail because I’m SO thankful American ranchers and farmers are not trying to feed the world under the conditions these Israelis face.
God bless all y’all until next time when I might be thankful for a working internet connection.
PUBLISHED: 12:45 EST, 18 November 2013 | UPDATED: 13:25 EST, 18 November 2013
The cowboys of the Golan Heights: It looks like the Wild West (and when the Israeli army turns up for live-fire training exercises, it sounds like it too!)
It may look like a perfect scene from a Wild West film, with cattle being herded across vast plains by cowboys, but the violence near this ranch is all too real.
These Israeli cowboys are growing beef cattle on the Golan Heights just miles from the border with Syria, where a bloody civil war is raging.
The men work on the Merom Golan ranch, in the Israeli-annexed area, which is just a short ride from the ceasefire line between the two countries.
It is a tense existence. As well as possible threats from neighbouring Syria and Lebanon, the Israeli army also use the land as live-fire training zones.
This year, it became embroiled in the civil war when the Israeli army returned fire with Syrian rebels over no-man’s land.
In May, there was also fire between the Israeli’s and the Syrian army.
Despite the strategic region’s proximity to war-torn Syria, it is still popular with tourists, who book treks across the land.
Israeli cowboys have been growing beef cattle in ranches on the Golan Heights disputed strategic volcanic plateau for over 30 years.
The disputed plateau was captured by Israel from the Syrians in the 1967 Six Day War and in 1981 the Jewish state annexed the territory.
Yechiel Alon prepares food for his cattle(left) at the Merom Golan ranch and calfs are penned in as they wait to receive vaccines
The cowboys of Golan Heights lead a simple and active life. Wafik Ajamy plays with his dog (left) and Erez Ashtamker moves aside a calf (right)
About 20,000 Israeli settlers live and work in Golan Heights across 30 Jewish settlements. About 20,000 Syrians also live in the area