Israel: 60 Years of History
By Adrian Ross Duncan
Whatever happens in Israel has a profound affect on the Western world. It is from this land that out cultural history springs forth, founded as it is in Christian teachings which have imprinted our consciousness for 2000 years. Many in the West held their breath when a united Arab world invaded Israel in a surprise attack in the Yom Kippur war in 1973-4, and breathed a sign of relief when Israel was able to counter-attack and push back the invading forces. Generally Westerners are uncomfortable about the displacement of Palestinians, but at the same time do not want to see the destruction of the state of Israel.
Jerusalem has always had mystical significance for the West, as well as for the Jewish race and the Arab world. Here three of the world's major religions meet, and the fault lines threaten constantly to shift, undermining world security. Traditionally the West has fought against the threat of Muslim domination starting with Pope Urban's speech at Clermond-Ferrand in 1095, which launched the First Crusade, and reaching into modern times, from the Suez war in 1956 (a failed attempt to prevent Egypt's ruler Nasser from nationalising the Suez canal) to the general current demonisation of Iran and Iraq today. It is against this background that the survival of the state of Israel can be seen. Western powers will prevent it being destroyed.
The horoscope for Israel shows the situation quite graphically. With the Taurean Sun placed on the 8th house cusp square Mars, there is a clear indication of the repossession of 'other people's property' by the Lion of Judah. The lands of Israel were wrenched from the Palestinian community just after the Second World War with the tacit agreement of the British Government (who had previously administered Palestine) and the USA. Allowing Zionists to regain their long-lost home was a form of atonement for the sins perpetrated against the Jews in the first half of the 20th century.
The formation of Israel meant immediate war with Arab States, and the new Jewish settlers fought tooth and nail to carve out their little country. In this they succeeded, displacing hundreds of thousands of Palestinians, taking possession of their homesteads. It is noteworthy that the Moon's nodes in Israel's horoscope are exactly square the Pluto-Saturn conjunction in Leo, showing a land born in upheaval, and constantly struggling for survival. The South Node in Scorpio shows their birth in destruction, the North Node in Taurus their dream of peace and prosperity.
Gaining land in this way is nothing new. The United States of America (1) which also has the Sun very close to the 8th house cusp is the result of the colonisation of an expanse of land previously populated by indigenous people who were virtually wiped out by famine, disease and war through the concerted efforts of European settlers. At least the Jewish people did have what they feel to be a historical and religious right to the lands they 'repossessed'.
A closer look at Mars in Israel's horoscope reveals that it had been retrograde prior to Israel's declaration of statehood on 14 May 1948. In fact it went retrograde at 7° 36' Virgo on 8 January, journeyed all the way back to 18° 06' Leo where it went direct on 29 March, to reach its position of 28° 18' Leo at the rebirth of Israel. In other words it went back to (nearly) activate the Saturn-Pluto conjunction (square the Node), before coming up to its birth position again. This retrograde wandering of Mars could be seen to represent the terrible trials of the Jewish people from the past: from the holocaust of the Second World War to the pogroms in history going back to the sack of Jerusalem in Roman times. Notice then how triumphant the returning Mars is, placed as it is in a close trine to Jupiter, and on the Royal star Regulus (at 29° Leo). This Mars-Jupiter trine could hardly be stronger, with Jupiter in its own sign, and Mars supreme in Leo. It's an unbeatable combination, and progressed Jupiter travels retrograde away from the trine, to rejoin the exact trine well into the next century.
It is the Mars-Jupiter trine which has brought war, and brought victory. It was, for example, when progressed retrograde Jupiter exactly opposed progressed Uranus during the six-day-war in 1967 that Israel responded to unprovoked attacks by Egypt with air attacks and ground victories. The result was a humiliating defeat for Egypt. Later, when Palestinian guerrillas attacked Israel's northern borders from Lebanon with rockets in 1978 (when progressed Jupiter opposed natal Uranus) Israel responded by occupying southern Lebanon, and later (in 1982) completely drove out Palestinians from the country.
Israel's chart is a study in the significance and meaning of retrograde planets in the progressed horoscope. During 1967 progressed Venus (which is the ruler of Israel's chart) reached 11° 09' Cancer, turning retrograde in the six-day-war in a long-term square to Neptune in Libra, an aspect which that must have awakened the horrors of martyrdom for the Israeli people. Subsequently, Venus moved backwards into Gemini in 1993, exactly when Mercury did, bringing Israel and the Palestinian leadership under Yasser Arafat into dialogue for the first time. With the Oslo agreement (2) in September 1993 the creation of an official Palestine presence commenced, and Arafat was able to move back to the West Bank and Gaza.
In moving into Gemini progressed Venus opposes both radix Jupiter and progressed Uranus from 1998 to 2000, coinciding with the tremendous international pressure to implement the Oslo peace accords. Venus conjoined progressed Uranus late 1999-an aspect which is simply not conducive to peace. It is far more likely that the land of Israel splits in two (the Gemini influence), with the formation of a separate Palestinian state. This is, of course, what Arafat has been threatening, and the last thing Israel's government wants. Venus continues its retrograde motion until 2011, when it goes direct at 24° 38' Gemini... in exact conjunction with natal Uranus at 24° 21' Gemini. Obviously this will be a dramatic period for Israel, and it would seem to be the time that Israel definitively splits into two. Uranus enters Aries in 2011, going on to make a long-drawn-out square to Pluto in Capricorn well into the year 2013 (from 4° to 11° Aries-Capricorn). This indicates major change, especially because Israel's ruler Venus is also at 4° in a cardinal sign.
Progressed Mercury turned retrograde at 7° 15' Cancer in the mid-1970s, and following in Venus' footsteps, returned to its own sign Gemini in 1993-Arafat returns to his homeland after Oslo peace agreement. It is precisely here in the year 2000 that progressed Mercury turns direct at 28° 18' Gemini, in very close opposition to progressed Uranus at 27° 21' Gemini. Whilst this certainly reflects the hectic shuttle diplomacy of this period, it is not easy to imagine lasting agreements being cemented at this time. This aspect reflects the fragmentation and isolation of the different Palestinian enclaves, and the increased polarity between Jews and Arabs. But obviously it is a turning point in some way. A process which has been moving backwards since 1976 now moves forward. On the positive side this could be an acceptance of the diversity of language, religion and culture in the region, and the need for a twin policy towards Palestinians and Israelis, or on the negative side, an acceptance that dialogue leads nowhere. The progressed movement of Mercury in 2000 has been echoed by transits-particularly the momentous t-square of early October when Mars was in Virgo, Pluto in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Gemini at 10° to 11° homing in on Israel's natal Mercury at 10° 22' Gemini in the 8th house. This was the time when negotiations which had been going on through the summer were exploded by the ill-considered visit of Ariel Sharon to the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. Sharon is no diplomat, and with Jupiter (together with Uranus) exactly conjoining his Aries Ascendant, he is a man who excels at battle and victory.
Sharon is obviously a key figure here towards the end of the year 2000, as the Likud party manoeuvres to get into an Israeli government of national unity to combat the current Palestinian uprising. At first glance it seems like getting a wolf in to guard the sheep. Yet Sharon is a key figure for Israel, and was a hero in the 1974 Yom Kippur war where he routed the Egyptian army on the western side of the Nile in a daring attack. His Moon at 25° 35' Taurus (exactly on the ill-fated star Algol) conjoins Israel's Sun at 23° 40' Taurus, making him totally bonded to his country. Of course, with the 20-year Saturn-Jupiter synod falling at 22° Taurus in May 2000, both Sharon and Israel were marked by the planets to play a significant role in world history at this time. Sharon himself has Sun in Pisces and Moon in Taurus, which at first glance seems both peaceable and idealistic. However, if he is still alive at 83, at the time of the Uranus-Pluto square, which falls on his Ascendant and MC, then it will not be peace that he will be advocating.
Ehud Barak has his Sun at 23° 03' Aquarius, also constellating with Israel's Sun, but by square aspect. With his Sun and Mercury squaring the Mars-Saturn-Uranus conjunction of 1942, there is no doubt that he is a hard man-a fighter- playing the role of a statesman. He was for example the leader of an assassination squad sent into Beirut to murder a leading Palestinian terrorist. It is probably unfavourable for Israel that his Saturn is so close to Israel's Sun, and his period as leader has certainly been an ignominious one for the country. Nevertheless his Sun square Saturn and Mars echoes the same aspect in Israel's horoscope: an unhappy combination for both. Barak's horoscope is also marked out by the Saturn-Jupiter conjunction, and during this period of Palestinian uprising (October 2000) he has a Jupiter return, opposing Pluto, on his Ascendant-Descendant axis. (If his birth time is correct.) His Jupiter is exactly on Israel's Mercury, so the Mars-Pluto-Jupiter t-square of October 2000 has also put him under enormous pressure, forcing him to transform or abandon his ideals and beliefs. Yet both Sharon and Barak have Venus in early Aquarius (5° and 7° respectively) and making harmonious aspects to Jupiter-Ascendant conjunctions. Generally this aspect is associated with both victory and peace, and it would not be surprising if they both were capable of delivering it, though it is likely to be a peace through victory rather than compromise.
It is a never-ending saga for Israel, and it is difficult to know if it can ever end harmoniously. There has been struggle in the area throughout the past millennia. The chart for Israel shows a country born in upheaval and fighting victoriously for survival. With the ruler Venus in the 9th house, it is the Jewish Diaspora which finances and maintains its survival, mostly from America, whose own Jupiter-Venus conjunction at 3° and 5° Cancer is firmly placed on Israel's Venus. As long as the USA is in existence, Israel will receive support from it and will survive. It will survive through sheer doggedness (Saturn-Pluto square the Sun), through skill and bravery (Mars trine Jupiter), through outside help and through ingenuity. There will be periods of crisis and tension in the near future. The Uranus square Sun in April 2001, July 2001 and January 2002 will certainly show leadership change and uncertainty. Uranus' opposition to Mars from March 2002 to February 2003 will bring explosive attacks from unpredictable directions, and sudden response. Every danger and threat will reinforce the self-perception of Israel as a country which can survive through the show of strength and military might rather than weakness. Israel leaves diplomacy to America (ruler Venus in 9th).
The coming years are crucial. The significance of the Saturn-Jupiter conjunction is probably the setting of limits to the policy of 'land for peace'. Progressed Mercury turning direct marks a turning point which may mean the abandonment of peace moves dictated by foreign pressure-Israel will want to communicate on its own terms, turning away from the 'foreign' Jupiter-Uranus opposition which has exacerbated the fault lines running through the country. The Uranus transits show Israel going it alone, with little consideration for international pressure. This is the end of an era for Israel, and the beginning of a new period: with a progressed new Moon in September 2001 at 14° Cancer, the people of Israel will be struggling to redefine their security and needs. This is likely to lead to a policy creating a moat around Israel and reinforcing its protective shield. It's not a happy picture for the Palestinian people.
USA: (2nd Sibley variation) 4.07.1776, 17.10.40 (EST +5) Philadelphia, 39N57, 75W10, ASC 12SG21
Oslo Peace Accord: 13.09.1993, 11.41.26 (EDT), Washington DC, 38N54, 77W02, ASC 18SC46
Israel: The Book of World Horoscopes.
Ariel Sharon: I. Starkman quotes Ariel's mom in MH 10/1986, 'about one hour after sunrise.' Source: AstroDatabank.