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Kibbutz Kalia - A Holiday In Israeli Apartheid

Corporate Watch | 07.05.2010 14:40 | Campaign against Carmel-Agrexco | South Coast | World

Kibbutz Kalia is an illegal Israeli settlement on the North coast of the Dead Sea. It offers bed and breakfast and a private beach and is attempting to tap in on the steady flow of tourists to the area.

Visitors to the area could be forgiven for not realising that Kibbutz Kalia lies in occupied territory. Its a straight drive along route 90 which bypasses Palestinian communities almost entirely. The North coast of the Dead Sea, although only a few kilometres from Jericho, is completely devoid of Palestinian areas and, only when you go inside Carmel Agrexco date packing houses will you see Palestinians. Visible workers on Kibbutz Kalia’s settlement farms are Thai migrants.

Kalia advertises rooms at its guesthouse on a number of websites including,,, and None of these websites make clear that Kalya is in occupied Palestine or that it is an illegal Israeli settlement.

The Kibbutz itself is a fenced and gated unit guarded by an IDF soldier. The guesthouse is run by the kibbutz itself from the main office, which also sells tickets for Kalia’s private beach. Kibbutz Kalia has approximately 300 residents. Inside the kibbutz there is a dairy farm but the main source of income other than tourism seems to be the fields of dates palms stretching toward the border with Jordan.

Kalia beach, where tourists can swim in the dead sea for around 20 pounds, boasts a shop selling dead sea mud and mineral products packaged by Sea of Spa, Premier and Ahava.

Kibbutz Kalia also runs the other major tourist attraction in the area, Qumran. Qumran is the site of the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls. However, the site is now a stopping point for tourist buses who are taken into a series of gift shops where Ahava, Premier, Revival and Sea of Spa Dead Sea Products are on sale.

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Wikipedia Entry

07.05.2010 20:47

A little more information

The kibbutz was first established during the Mandate era. Moshe Novomeysky, a Jewish engineer from Siberia, won the British government tender for potash mining on the Dead Sea's northern shore, the marshland surrounding the plant was drained and housing was built to accommodate employees of the Palestine Potash Company. The company, chartered in 1929, set up its first plant on the north shore of the Dead Sea at Kalia and produced potash, or potassium chloride, by solar evaporation of the brine. It employed both Arabs and Jews. [2]
Kalya was spared violence in the 1936-1939 Arab rioting due to good relations with the Arabs; the plant employed many Arab laborers from Jericho. Despite negotiations between the kibbutz leadership and Jordan's Arab Legion to preserve the kibbutz under Jordanian control at the time of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the imprisonment of Jews in the Jordanian-held Naharayim complex and the Kfar Etzion massacre led David Ben-Gurion to call for the residents' evacuation and their consolidation in the southern Dead Sea. Residents ultimately fled by boat on 20 May 1948, and the two kibbutzim were destroyed by the Jordanians. The area remained unpopulated save a Jordanian military camp.
Following Israel's capture of the West Bank from Jordan in the 1967 Six-Day War, Kalya was re-established as a paramilitary Nahal settlement in 1968, the first in the area. Civilians temporarily settled in the deserted Jordanian army camp in 1972 while planting the first date trees and building their permanent settlement houses. They moved to their permanent houses in 1974.

Captain Kirk

Kibbutz Kalia also features in the Lonely Planet

07.05.2010 23:50

Boycott it, get the Rough Guide instead.

rimbim fimbim