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16 June, 2007

Jebel Ali's secret cave

A secret cave has been revealed in Jebel Ali, the "mountain" that overshadows Cell Block G. According to Hussain Al Badi, GM of the Emirates Centre of Heritage, History and Culture, the cave's floor is "littered with spent ammuntion":

Al Badi believes that the cave was built by warring tribes and may have been used by the British to store weapons during the Second World War. There are other holes in the side of the hill, but none as large and wide as the cave of Ali. "This can be a major tourist attraction if the authorities pay attention to this place," he says.

Jebel Ali, which translates to Mountain of Ali or High Mountain, is actually a sandy hill only a couple of hundred yards high. But it turns out to be an area with a fascinating and bloody past. According to historians, the assassin of Shaikh Theyab Bin Eisa, a tribal leader killed around 1750, fled here to hide. Dr Faleh Handhal, also from the Heritage Centre, says Jebel Ali also used to be an "area of contention" between Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

One can just imagine the hordes of bedouin warriors on camelback swarming onto the hillside with their curved swords gleaming in the sun; the harsh Arabic battle cries as the tribesmen fought to plant their flags on the summit.

Certainly a more appealing vision than today's beer-bellied expats trudging up the hill for a pint at Jebel Ali Cloob, and the satellite dishes that now look down upon us.

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14 Comments:

Blogger nick said...

I think it's in order to thank the wise vision of Sheikh Mohammed for providing the country with a historical landmark discovery for the benefit of all tourism marketing executives.
I feel truly proud today of having been granted residence in this amazing country full of natural wonders and archeological history.

Move aside, Giza.

16 June, 2007 12:22  
Anonymous da man said...

Is it April 1st already?

16 June, 2007 14:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, if anyone is genuinely nostaglic about blood feuds, waterwell wars and other modes of conflict resolution in tribal societies, they can always head off to Iraq, northwest Pakistan, or Darfur. The rulers' wise vision may not be terribly aesthetic, and it certainly is replete with socioeconomic injustices, but every time I touch down in Dubai from Baghdad I feel like personally thanking them for taking their country's martial past and burying it deep beneath the landfill and cookie-cutter condos.

16 June, 2007 14:39  
Blogger screwed.mind said...

This should be registered as the 9th wonder of the world(Palm Islands have been already called 8th one by Shaikhsters).

This can unearth a lot of mysteries behind human culture which is not answered for thousands of years.

16 June, 2007 16:17  
Blogger DUBAI JAZZ said...

It's more like Don Kishot with his rapier fiening the satellite dishes!

16 June, 2007 20:16  
Blogger navind said...

lol secretdubai, so you're actually a romantic at heart :)

16 June, 2007 22:32  
Blogger samuraisam said...

They should bring the mountain to Mohammed.

17 June, 2007 18:44  
Anonymous oh fiash said...

http://www.rsf.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=639
press freedom index

israel 50
uae 77 (most islamic countries are at the bottom of the list)

17 June, 2007 20:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Inventing a past when having none? You cannot buy everything... not culture, not history, not glory...

18 June, 2007 18:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, UAE is further down at 79.

18 June, 2007 18:34  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sometimes people from say other places like europe can be so irritating with statements like: inventing a history when there was none. Just because it's a different type of history than say the glorious european one (ahem) doesn't make it "no history".

18 June, 2007 21:19  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ahhh, so these caves may be the reason for the subsidence at Garden View Villas then? Good planning there Nakheel . . .

Dubaiscribe

19 June, 2007 16:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not only Europe, darling, your history is made of sand, money, oil...your government destroyed all the good that was there, they sold it. In 1970 your nice Dubai was only a couple of sandy streets, then Europeans and Yankees arrived, with their money...Is that history? Do you believe that you still have a bit of bedouin blood in your veins? Your history is made of skyscrapers, you forgot what you were so you are nothing (as a nation, I mean) Do you have literature? (good local literature), good local music? Where is your culture? Lost in the hands of expats??? (I'm not European, and I dislike Brittons and there colonialism...)

19 June, 2007 17:33  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whoever said that the UAE was an Islamic country? Just because Islam is the major religion there does not mean that it is an Islamic country. I think that the UAE is perhaps the most 'fake' country that I have ever been to. I mean when you look at all the buildings one would be impressed, however, it seems that they are trying to be something that they will never be. Most of the people want to be 'westernized', they come to London, LA, NY, or any other place and try to fit in - yet they never do. I think that the people in the UAE should be themselves, and try not to copy every one else. Maybe they are trying to bring all the western stuff into their country so they will not have to leave - but I think that this is a serious mistake.

18 July, 2007 14:14  

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