September 19, 2016

2759 ISRAEL - Akhzivland

Achziv is an ancient site on the Mediterranean coast of northern Israel, in Western Galilee, between the border with Lebanon and the city of Acre (15 kilometers north of Acre, within the municipal area of Nahariya). Remnants of ancient Achziv, now known as Tel Achziv, are located on a sandstone mound between two streams, Kziv on the north and Shaal on the south. An ancient port was located on the coast, and another secondary port is located 700 m to the south.

Excavations have unearthed a fortified Canaanite city of the second millennium BCE. The Phoenician town of the first millennium BCE is known both from the Hebrew Bible and Assyrian sources. Phoenician Achzib went through ups and downs during the Persian and Hellenistic periods. In Roman times Acdippa was a road station. The Bordeaux Pilgrim mentions it in 333-334 CE still as a road station; Jewish sources of the Byzantine period call it Kheziv and Gesiv.

In 1146 the Crusaders established there a settlement protected by a castle (Casale Huberti). The Arab village of Az-Zeeb was established during the Mamluk period, the houses erected using the stones of the Crusader castle. Just prior to the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Az-Zeeb was captured by the Haganah's Carmeli Brigade. Many of the inhabitants fled to Lebanon or nearby villages, but many also remained until they were relocated by the Israeli authorities to Mazra'a. The localities of Sa'ar and Gesher HaZiv were established on the village lands in 1948 and 1949.

In 1952, Iranian-born sailor and Palmach veteran Eli Avivi moved into buildings in the abandoned village. In 1970, the Israeli government sent bulldozers to demolish the home in which Avivi had been living. In protest, Eli founded Akhzivland in 1971, setting up a hostel and a museum inside the former home of the mukhtar of Az-Zeeb. The micronation elected Avivi to be President, established a flag and national anthem, and even issued passports.

Following the founding of Akhzivland, Avivi was arrested and detained, but was released 10 days later. After Avivi sued the Israeli government, a court ruled to lease the area to Avivi for 99 years, but did not rule on the legal status of the state. Achzivland also has a House of Parliament - a timber structure with scatter-cushions round a table - though it has no serving MPs and has never held any sessions. The micronation became a tourist site, attracting artists, writers, and countercultural figures.

About the stamp

The stamp was issued on September 9, 2014 to honor Tel Aviv as a Global City.

Akhzivland - Wikipedia
Achziv - Wikipedia
Az-Zeeb - Wikipedia
One-man rule in Israel's hippy micro-state - BBC News

Sender: Dorian
The postcard was first send from Achziv in 1952, as evidenced the postmarks, then circulated again in 2016, reaching the destination on 15.09.2016.

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