For more photos see: Ammunition Hill, ISRAEL
What is the significance of Ammunition Hill?
Strategically located in the northern suburbs of Jerusalem is the elevated position known since the British occupation as Ammunition Hill or Givat Ha-Tachmoshet. Because of its strategic elevated location, the capture of Ammunition Hill was the key, the pivotal point that enabled the reunification of the city of Jerusalem in 1967.
Jerusalem has a special place in the purpose of God, being the city God has chosen to place His name and it is destined to be the future capital of the coming Kingdom of God. Jerusalem has an amazing history centred in the nation of Israel – Abraham offered up Isaac there pointing forward to the time when God would give His own Son that we might have everlasting life, the Kings of Judah reigned from here, the focal point of the nation. The fortunes of the nation changed, the centuries have seen many invaders, bloodshed, war, terrorism and hatred.
The prophet Daniel was told of Jerusalem’s down-treading for 2300 years in Daniel 8:13-14. From the rise of the horn of the goat, a symbol of Alexander the Great, to the re-unification of the city of Jerusalem into the hands of the Jews in 1967, when the sanctuary would be cleansed was to be this period of 2300 years (BC333–AD1967).
Jesus told his disciples, Lk 21:24,27,32 And they (Israel) shall fall by the end of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled… and then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory… This generation shall not pass away till all be fulfilled. We are living in exciting times that will see the return of the Lord Jesus Christ very soon.
But what of Ammunition Hill’s history leading up to Jerusalem’s reunification?
In the 1930’s the British built a police academy and on the adjacent hill, which is now known as Ammunition Hill, established an ammunition storage warehouse.
During the 1948 War of Independence, Mt Scopus (where the Hadassah hospital and university are located) was cut off from the rest of Jerusalem. The battle at Ammunition Hill was about breaking the blockage of the mined access road and sniper attacks, and also maintaining access to this vital medical service. You may have heard of the Hadassah Medical Convoy Massacre, a convoy of 79 Hadassah doctors and nurses, who were so tragically killed by the Arab forces here at this time.
The Jordanians captured this heavily fortified trenched strategic hill, which sat at a crossroads of defence, during this war of independence, and retained control of it, resulting in the city of Jerusalem being split into two.
The 1948 War of Independence had re-established a homeland, a state for the people of Israel, a dream of the ages come true, but had also created a divided Jerusalem. The bible foretold these events, the prophet Joel (3:1), speaks of a time when God would restore Judah (the 1948 War of Independence achieved this) and also Jerusalem (the 1967 Six Day War).
After the war, armistice lines were drawn up on a 1:20,000 map with wax pens, stretching from Armon HaNatziv to the south of Jerusalem, to Ammunition Hill to the north. The Israelis used red and the Jordanians green lines and as these lines dried the ink expanded to cover an equivalent distance on the map of 200 metres. Quite a delicate problem to work out exactly where the borders were meant to be! Mount Scopus where the university and the Hadassah hospital are located remained in Jewish hands even though they were without doubt within the Jordanian boundaries and technically under the protection of the United Nations.
By visiting Ammunition Hill you can personally appreciate the intensity of the battle the Israeli soldiers fought for the reunification of the city of Jerusalem, in the 1967 Six Day War. The battle started on the night of 6 June and lasted just 4 hours – in these few hours 36 Israeli and 71 Jordanian soldiers died.
The 1967 Six Day War had expanded the borders of Jerusalem by 71km2, which included dozens of Palestinian villages where Israel have built 12 Jewish neighbourhoods.
The prophet Zechariah (12:3) foretells that at the time of the end, Jerusalem would be a burdensome stone to all people as a prelude to all nations coming up to it to battle (chapter 14), a battle outlined also in Joel 3 and called Armageddon in Rev 16:16.
Peace talks continue to try and resolve the Israeli-Palestinian question. East Jerusalem and the ever-persistent Jewish building programs to expand existing boundaries of the larger settlements and establish smaller compounds in Palestinian neighbourhoods are a stumbling block to its progress.
How will all this end?
The bible clearly shows the nations would partition the land Daniel 11:39; Joel 3:2 I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations and have parted (partitioned) my land.
Israel are God’s people, Israel is God’s land – God has a purpose with them:
Jeremiah 30:11 For I am with thee (the people of Israel) saith the LORD, to save thee: for though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee: but I will correct thee in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished.
Ezek 37:21-28 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all: Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God. And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them. And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children’s children for ever: and my servant David shall be their prince for ever. Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And the heathen shall know that I the LORD do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore.