Rick Steves' Travelers Café Kamal’s mother: Sahtein. This tower marks a checkpoint between Jerusalem and Ramallah. The reviews I have read were positive. Sahtein. Like border towns between rich and poor lands all over the world, each day workers with special passes cross the wall from here for higher-paying jobs in the far more affluent Israel. Its exquisite mimber — where the imam stands to give sermons — is a rare original from the 12th century, with inlaid wood and no nails. For centuries, Jews were generally not allowed to worship here. The main square bustles with commerce. On one side of the glass Jews worship in the synagogue — the second most holy place in Judaism. ... Rick Steves: Steves has parlayed a successful series of well-produced public TV and radio shows and guidebooks into a European tour business that thrives on his personal brand. Rick learns about the culture, politics, and people of Iran from two Iranian-American experts, a journalist and a professor. She’s cooked up a classic local stew. In the West Bank, we’ll travel from Jerusalem to Bethlehem, then Hebron, through the Judean Desert to the Dead Sea, before finishing in Ramallah. Today, on the eve of a Muslim holiday, the market is particularly busy. As long as times are calm, the West Bank’s wide open for the adventurous traveler. Produce vendor: Yeah, fresh dates. In the name of its security, Israel has built what it calls the “security fence” and what millions of Palestinians think of as an affront to their dignity, and a land grab — as it often encroaches beyond the internationally agreed-upon border and well into Palestine. I find people living difficult lives are expert at coping — whether through hero-worship, venting with a spray can, or dark humor. Within minutes they can lock down and isolate every Palestinian city. In 2012 the United Nations recognized Palestine as a state. From Hebron we drive north. The golden dome upon that rock today is a shrine marking the spot from where Muslims believe Mohammed journeyed to heaven. It’s time to hit the road. Rick: No wonder! Rick: Free women with a good future. The ancient technique survives — though boosted by hard-working machinery — as a busy crew in oil-soaked shirts meets the demands of the harvest season. After visiting Jerusalem, we harvest olives near Ramallah, follow pilgrims to the site of Jesus' birth in Bethlehem, approach Abraham's tomb — as both Jews and Muslims do — in Hebron, join friends for dinner, and bob in the Dead Sea. Until next time, salaam, peace, and keep on travelin’. Israel is the only country in the Middle East where the actual number of indigenous Christians has increased in recent years according to Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) special Christmas 2019 report. "There's no crying in baseball!" Rick Steves with a group of school girls in Iran. Produce vendor: You’re welcome. But, in fact, their Christian roots go all the way back to the time of Christ. Today’s vistas feel timeless — in fact, I can’t help imagining Abraham, Jesus, or Mohammad traversing these same valleys. ©2020 Rick Steves' Europe, Inc. | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy. Second student: Women, I believe, women… I can learn about Islam on the carpet of a mosque, get tips on roasting coffee, and gain insight into how a proud and independent young woman chooses to cover her head. Good time, everybody! Today, the combined population of Israel and Palestine is about 12 million — roughly half Jews and half Arabs. Approaching any Palestinian city, a bold red sign makes it clear: You’re leaving the realm controlled by the Israeli military, and entering an area controlled by Palestinian security. Experiences like these are why we travel. It was the only way for them to survive. And for Palestinians, the olive tree is a kind of lifeblood for their culture. Rick Steves watched Peace, Propaganda, and the Promised Land and had an epiphany, he has seen the light. Go and have a wonderful time. Season 9 Episode 9. It’s fall, and the landscape is pretty brown after a scorching summer. But during a Muslim service in 1994, an Israeli settler entered here with his gun, and killed 29 Palestinian worshippers. At Rick Steves’ Europe, one of our big projects this summer is to produce our first-ever Rick Steves Iceland guidebook. I’m Rick Steves. Whether coming together at the Square of the Lions or browsing along a stylish shopping street, Ramallah helps me envision a future with a peaceful and prosperous Palestine. Rick Steves' Europe is an American travel documentary television series created and hosted by Rick Steves.In each episode, he travels to the continent of Europe, documenting his experiences along the way.. Southeast England. Even before this special was available for viewing, the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America, a pro-Israeli media watchdog, lashed out in a July 10 blog post titled “Rick Steves’ Misguided Venture into the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” But such attention just makes Steves … Israel is the predominantly Jewish State, while Gaza and the West Bank are Palestinian — mostly Muslim and Arab. Here, Jews live literally atop Palestinian Muslims as the two communities struggle to be near Abraham’s tomb. Many assume Palestinian or Arab Christians were converted in modern times. That’s why I love this place. Student: I hope to live in peace, to live freely. Poignantly, access for the feuding descendants of Abraham is divided by a pane of bullet-proof glass. Rick: So, what is this, here? The focal point for both faiths is this: the tomb of Abraham. Rick: And this is dates…old dates. Kamal: We are in Palestine. 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