Monday, October 29th, 2007...9:01 am

A walk thru Joan’s Arc

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Acre. ¬†Arc.¬† Akko .¬†Joan of Arc never made it there since she was burned at the stake! In French she is Jeanne d’ Arc.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_of_Arc

In Hebrew Arc is called Akko also in Arabic.

SO……..¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† ¬†what¬†¬†¬† ¬† about¬†¬†¬†¬† ¬† ¬†¬† ???????????

Don’t worry I never will fail you, you see….I’m on a mission.

I’d like to list a few of the video uploads that I found on YouTube. Since there are the silent film movie, 1999 Joan of Arc T.V. movie, 1928 movies, the movie “Messenger”, so I’ll offer a few, plus the 2 versions of the Gevaldtik song by Leornard Cohen “Joan of Arc”. Of course you would realize that he is using the medium of Joan’s passion in a more universal theme, and really opens out the whole idea.

This is “Apocolyptica” doing the music of the 1999 tv movie

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“Messenger” film J.o.A. @ the Stake scene

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1999 version

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Beginning scene

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Leonard Cohen composed and sings this with Jennifer Warren (Warnes)

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Second version solo L. Cohen with movie film video

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Its more like the early Leornard Cohen works of¬† the early 1960’s.

 ??? Yeah give me 30 seconds, huh?

 Akko brings back some hard memories for  me since in November 1971 I started my 3 full years in the Israeli  infantry of Golani doing basic training for 6 months.Beginnings are always the hardest. Comming back from 30 hours leave at home , as I travelled north to the base and got to Acre, I knew I was just 3 kilometeres from the (gulp) base, and the Sgt.Major or worse- his flunky Corporals shouting and getting on our nerves!

Joan’s Arc is where I want to¬† take you. Today it is a city of Jews and Arabs, some of them Moslem some Christian . The old city is on the Meditterean Sea right next door to the city commercial area and the homes which are only apartment dwellings as most Israelis live only in apartments.

Old City of Akko

Well, if you didn’t get the¬† idea. The old city of akko is much smaller than the old city of Jerusalem. For religous, historical reasons. actually Jerusalem as it was fought over at the time of the First Temple by Greeks against the Jews and later the Romans who completely destroyed the Second Temple, Jerusalem was plowed with salt so that¬† nothing would grow and the water was undrinkable. Arrevaderci Romans! You’ve been dead for 1800 years and we are still here. But Jerusalem was not any more the commercial center that it was. It still brought¬† pilgrims from the Moslem and Christian countries and a very few Jews were barely allowed by both. Thanks buddies. Acre Akko Acco Arc became a very big centre for trade as it was on the Mediteranean Sea to supply the Galilee, with Yaffo -Jaffa supplying the centre and Jerusalem. Akko was fought over in the various Middle Age Crusades by Christians and Moslems, just like today though New York City, all of Europe ¬†and Kabul¬† Afganistahn¬† are the prizes.Seems like Islam is making very deep roads into Europe being a quiet revolution of religous change. But it was all the Med. Sea ports that were fought for like Akko, Sidon, Sur, Beirut, Tripoli and of course Jerusalem inland to Lebannobanon until 25 years ago had a slight Christian majority.

Akko the Old City is a bit more modern than the old city of Jerusalem historically it was razed many times¬† in the Crusades.Both Christians and Moslems had one thing in common, Jewish civilians and pilgrims ¬†were fair game to hunt and slaughter. Next on the scene was Napolean Boneparte’ who captured Akko and made some fortifications with cannon that are standing quite strong today. One is surrounding the old city and looking out to sea is just like a mini Great Wall of China, except that in Akko it is in perfect shape, and the “Great” wall in China is mostly in ruins, but tourists and journalists only see the good parts. Alright, its been 3000 years after all.

Going into the old city of Akko  you are greeted in umpteen languages, as the  Arabs all over the world seem amazingly well adept at foreign languages. I remember being in the 1982 Israel-Palestinian war in Lebanon .I was doing reserves then as I had since 1974 after the mandantory 3 years .I was inas back to Lebanon 4 times for around 6 months total. In 1983 of the winter, within half a year of our being there, quite a few people could address us in Hebrew. ((which shows A) they had  been having social contact with the Israelis because B) they were not afraid of getting beaten or killed.

Back to Akko…any language from Europe they speak. Now there are Asian people comming there, but as they are mostly Christian, I would imagine they know english french, german etc.

“Hey- you student? I geev yu nice hookah cheap “.

The only shisha tobacco I found there on my last visit up north to Akko was “Nakhla” and it cost more than in local ¬†Israeli stores.Most of the Akko shops have a very high overhead with the Middle East version of Park avenue¬† display windows. “Buy a paper signedby Napolean Boneparte’ himself! This coin from time of Crusades, yes?”

“Hey! Whatta ya mean my Grandma was Arab?We are proud Sicilianos”. (Who had been attacked¬† , captured, put into slavery and Sicily was repopulated with Arabs from¬† close by Morocco, Tuniasia, Libya, etc.¬† They today speak the Italiano cuz they blended int wt dem see? Did you ever wonder why the Sicilians were so “Genteele”?

At any rate, I looked¬† for a hookah-tea smoke shop and found one only, not like any of the luxurious statements you’d see in USA, but a very spartan¬† white tiled large room with a wood burner in the middle.Nothing but a few circular large tables and simple plastic chairs, or as they say in Arabic “blastic chairs” since they have a hard time saying the letter “P”. “Pita” bread which is spelled with a “P” is called “Bita”. And they say “give me biece” which means give a me a piece. They can’t even pronounce the name “Palestine”.Its a Roman word -name for Jerusalem anyhow.

So, I¬† went in and asked if I could pay to smoke a narghilah. I don’t mind smoking with Arabs. Straight off, the proprioter said “no”. Alright then, if it was an Arab who came into a Jewish restaraunt and was refused, he would already have on his mobile phone at least 5 numbers of Jewish Israeli journalists, the BBC, Foxnews and Amnesty International which he would call, after talking to a lawyer. It would make the main Israeli newspapers on page 4, the Arab newspapers on page one and it would stink.

So what did I do? Well, I took “no” as “no”, totslly understood and went away with no feelings hurt. I understand them, even though I could have brought¬† suit in court against them and made a tiny bit of money and noise. I understand quite well. If you had seen the hookah shop you would understan, its¬† so missing of any decoration, no drapes on the windows, no rugs on the floors, no belly dancers, just a few of the homies comming to get away from their family and chill-out!

“Hey yo gramma smokes a hookah, dude!”

Hookah 1

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