The raging civil war in Syria has created a new spectator sport for Israeli vacationers: war tourism. Mortar shells from Syria are now landing in the demilitarized zone in the northern Golan Heights, and residents in the area say they can hear gunfire as well. Many Israelis are foregoing the pool or the beach, flocking instead to the Israel-Syria border for a little action. As Maariv reported Tuesday, the intrigue attracts "dozens" of Israelis who arrive each day with their binoculars, inspired by the broadcast images of Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak "watching the shelling of Jobata al-Khashab across the border in Syria."
"We saw a few days ago how Defense Minister Barak watched the battles in the Syrian village of G'ovta with binoculars," Yosi, a resident of Tel Aviv, told Maariv. "I know that it's dangerous and the border becomes explosive, but it is still intriguing."
According to The Times of Israel, tour guides have caught on to the fad and are adding the "Syrian unrest" to their agendas. Police in northern Israel are on alert in case any curious travelers try to get into any sensitive army installations on the border. Hopefully we won't be reading any stories about overly adventurous tourists.