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Mount Herzl Cemetery

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Mount Herzl Cemetery

Flickr - Israel Defense Forces - Remembering the Fallen.jpg

Basic Information

Location 31°46′26″N 35°10′50″E
Phone number 02-6321515
Country Israel
City Jerusalem

General Information

Open to visitors yes
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility yes
Website http://www.goisrael.com/Tourism_Eng/Tourist%20Information/attractions/Pages/Mount%20Herzl%20Cemetery.aspx
Geographical Coordinates 31.77338,35.18246


Mount Herzl, also called Har HaZikaron ("Mount of Remembrance"), is the site of Israel's national cemetery and other memorial and educational facilities, found on the west side of Jerusalem beside Jerusalem Forest. It is named for Theodor Herzl, the founder of modern political Zionism. Herzl's tomb lies at the top of the hill. Yad Vashem, which commemorates the Holocaust, lies to the west of Mt. Herzl. Israel's war dead are also buried there. Mount Herzl is 834 meters above the sea. Every plot section in Mount Herzl has a broad plaza for memorial services. Most state memorial ceremonies for those killed at war are conducted in the National Military and Police cemetery.

History and time period

Mount Herzl has served as Israel's national cemetery since 1951, following a government decision to establish a cemetery for Israeli leaders and fallen soldiers. Mt. Herzl is the burial place of four of Israel's prime ministers: Levi Eshkol, Golda Meir, Yitzhak Shamir and Yitzhak Rabin (who is buried beside his wife Leah). Israeli presidents are also buried on Mt. Herzl, as are other prominent Jewish and Zionist leaders. Mt. Herzl is the venue for many commemorative events and national celebrations. the Architect "Dr. Asher Hirem" that was the designer of military cemeteries in Israel and Memorials of the Israeli army was chosen to design the cemeteries. the Landscape Architect "Haim Giladi" was design of the gardens in Mount Herzl.

Theodor Herzl's grave

In 1903, Theodor Herzl wrote in his will: "I wish to be buried in a metal coffin next to my father, and to remain there until the Jewish people will transfer my remains to Eretz Israel. The coffins of my father, my sister Pauline, and of my close relatives who will have died until then will also be transferred there." When Herzl died a year later, he was interred in Vienna. Forty-five years later, Herzl's remains were brought to Israel and re-interred in Jerusalem. The location of the burial site was selected by a special state commission in the top of a hill in West Jerusalem next to Military cemetery of Jerusalem. He was buried in 17 August 1949. A temporary stone marked his grave for several years until the site was developed into a national cemetery. Sixty-three entries were submitted in the competition for the design of his new tombstone. The winner was Joseph Klarwein's design, consisting of an unadorned black granite stone inscribed with the name Herzl. The area around his tomb has been expanded into a the plaza where the first Independence Day ceremony was held in 1950. Despite Herzl's wishes, his daughter Pauline and son Hans were not originally buried beside him. Their remains were moved to Mt. Herzl in 2006.A third daughter was murdered in the Holocaust and her place of burial remains unknown. Norman Park, a small garden behind the Zionism is dedicated to the memory to Herzl's only grandson, who committed suicide in the United States and was re-interred on Mt. Herzl in December 2007. Herzl's parents and sister are also buried at Mount Herzl.

National Civil Cemetery of the State of Israel

srael's main Israel cemetery for the leaders of the country and people that was sacrificed their lives for the country are located on the southern slope of Mt. Herzl. established in 1952 when Ben Gurion decided to buried the finance minister in Helkat Gedolei Ha'Uma, close to Herzl's grave. the design of the all cemetery area was continue more few years later when more famous people from the Zionist movement where brought to are buried there. Helkat Gedolei Ha'Uma: In 1934, Zionist leader Menahem Ussishkin organized the re-interment of Leon Pinsker in Nicanor Cave on Mount Scopus in an attempt to build a pantheon for the great leaders of the nation. Ussishkin was buried there himself in 1941. When Mount Scopus became an enclave, cut off from Jerusalem, this plan was no longer feasible. A site was thus set aside for state leaders on Mount Herzl. Presidents of Israel, Prime Ministers of Israel, and Knesset speakers are buried there. To the north of Herzl's grave is a plot reserved for the leaders of the World Zionist Organization, among them David Wolffsohn, Nahum Sokolow, Simcha Dinitz, and Arieh Dulchin. Zalman Shazar, Chaim Herzog, Levi Eshkol, Golda Meir, Yitzhak Rabin and his wife Leah Rabin are also buried there. Other notable graves are those of the first speaker of the Knesset, Yosef Sprinzak and his wife Hanna, the first Minister of Finance, Eliezer Kaplan, and Jerusalem mayor Teddy Kollek. The grave of Ze'ev Jabotinsky and his family is in a separate plot on the west side of Helkat Gedolei Ha'Uma. Despite the national significance of the cemetery, some Israeli leaders, including David Ben-Gurion and Menachem Begin have asked to be buried elsewhere. Deciding who should be buried on Mt. Herzl has sometimes been controversial. For example, the decision to bury Ze'ev Jabotinsky, who died in 1940, on Mt. Herzl, was fiercely opposed by many Labour Party stalwarts, who claimed that Jabotinsky was an ultra-right nationalist undeserving of such an honor. Only in 1964 did Prime Minister Levi Eshkol decide in favor of burying him there, in the interest of promoting national reconciliation and setting aside political grievances. Soldiers awarded with the Medal of Valor may also be buried in Helkat Gedolei Ha'Uma.

National military cemetery

The main Israel Defense Forces cemetery is located on the northern slope of Mt. Herzl. It was established in 1948 when soldiers who fell in the Jerusalem area was buried here. In 1949, the government decided to turn the site into the main cemetery for IDF members who have fallen in the line of duty. The Israel Police cemetery, for police officers who have fallen in the line of duty, is also located there. All soldiers, regardless of rank or unit, are buried side by side. The gravestones are plain and unadorned, only recording name, rank, and place and date of birth and death. The military cemetery has a large plaza where a state ceremony is held on Yom Hazikaron, honouring the memory of Israel's fallen soldiers. Christians and Muslims who have served for the Israeli security forces also buried there. Garden of the Missing Soldiers: The Garden is a Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Memorial and Memory Garden for soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces and those who fought for the pre-state Land of Israel whose resting places are unknown from 1914 until today. The garden was established on 29 February 2004 in a ceremony attended by army chiefs, the Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz, and members of the Jerusalem Municipality at the National Military and Police cemetery. The garden also contains memorials to those lost aboard the submarine INS Dakar and the 23 Who Went Down at Sea. An annual memorial service for the Missing Soldiers of Israel takes place in the garden's main plaza on Seventh of Adar day. The garden includes "empty graves" and stone monuments to the memory of missing soldiers. At the entrance to the garden, there is a small plaza where memorial ceremonies to the missing are held. On the north side of the plaza there is a memorial to the missing sailors of the INS Dakar submarine, which sank in the Mediterranean sea. On the north side of the plaza is a memorial wall bearing the names of all missing soldiers and fighters from 1914 until today on the top of the wall there is a waterfall.

Hall of names

Israel plans to establish a new national memorial hall to be built at the entrance to the National Military and Police cemetery. The new memorial is intended to honor the memory of the 22,684 soldiers and security personnel who have fallen defending the land of Israel since 1860.It will be built in the shape of a torch rising some 18 meters where a fire will burn all year long. The Ministry of Defense plan includes all 22,684 names, each with a candle to be lit twice a year—once on the anniversary of the soldier's death, and on Memorial Day, as well as Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The estimated cost of the project is 40 million NIS.

Nations Garden

Above the Herzl Museum and the main plaza is the Nations Garden, where trees have been planted by visiting presidents and heads of state. There are two small observation decks looking out over Jerusalem. The Menorah sculpture is opposite main plaza entrance.

Photo Gallery

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