Israel is setting up a new kibbutz on the strategic Golan Heights captured from Syria during the Middle East war.
Soldiers clearing minefields; prefabricated houses being erected; streams; valley.
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Background: Israel is setting up a new kibbutz on the strategic Golan Heights captured from Syria during the Middle East war.
The soldiers were the first to arrive on the Golan Heights, and they're still there. Now they've got the dangerous task of clearing the extensive minefields laid by Syria in this border area. Specialist units move slowly across the fields, probing the ground. Markers are left where mines are found, and later they're detonated on the spot.
The civilian pioneers are there too. They're working with excavators to demolish the system of Syrian trenches and bunkers, and then they put up the prefabricated houses that will be the first Jewish homes on the Golan Heights.
From their new settlement they have a commanding... and militarily important....view across the Jordan valley. And near them are the bubbling streams that give rise to the Banyas River, which is in turn the major source of the River Jordan.
It is the vital importance of the Jordan, and control of its sources, that has for years been one of the main causes of tension between the Arabs and the Israelis.