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Jerusalem attractions category

British War Cemetery

Jerusalem Attractions  - 12


Even before the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948 and the seemingly endless series of regional wars that have followed in its wake, the region called Palestine bore witness to more than its share of bloody conflict. What had once been a sleepy Ottoman backwater was swept up along with Europe, North Africa and the rest of the Middle East in World War I, and the British empire, sensing a wealth of colonial opportunities in the lands controlled by the flagging Ottoman Empire, expended much effort to wrest Palestine – and the rest of the Middle East – away from its Turkish overlords.


The campaign lasted a year, from December 1916 to December 1917, and included fierce fighting over the city of Jerusalem. With war comes casualties, and hundreds of British soldiers surrendered their lives, far from home, during the campaign. Since it was impractical to send the deceased soldiers back to their native land, they were buried in Palestine, most in the immaculately kept Jerusalem War Cemetery atop Mount Scopus, located between the Regency hotel and the Hadassah Medical Center. More than 2,500 soldiers are interred in the cemetery, beneath simple headstones indicating unit, name, age and date of death. Also included is a memorial to the 3,300 soldiers of the British commonwealth who died during the Palestine campaign without receiving a proper burial.

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