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World Religion
Religious Wars and the Holy Land



Religious Wars and the Holy Land
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 9 to 12
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.22

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    muhammad, messiah, disastrous, present-day, overlay, modern-day, mutual, spite, desirable, relationship, detour, founding, turmoil, abundance, magnificent, enormous
     content words:    Holy Land, Mediterranean Sea, Jordan Valley, King Solomon, Some Jews, Roman Empire, Pope Urban, Richard I.


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Religious Wars and the Holy Land
By Colleen Messina
  

1     From the time we are toddlers, people tell us to "share and share alike." Unfortunately, this lesson hasn't been learned very well by three major world religions. Christians, Jews, and Muslims have fought for hundreds of years over the Holy Land, or modern-day Israel. These religious wars have caused a great deal of suffering and loss of life.
 
2     The Holy land has mountains, fertile plains, and deserts. The beautiful blue Mediterranean Sea lies to the west of it, and a dry, barren desert lies to the east. The Jordan Valley runs down the center of the Holy Land, and rugged mountains jut up on either side. Rain from the mountains feeds the black, rich soil. This abundance of water, good soil, and access to the sea made this valley desirable to many ancient peoples. Everyone wanted to live in the Holy Land!
 
3     Like toddlers tussling over toys, members of three faiths fought furiously over the Holy Land. It's not because they never learned to share, but they all felt this land was important to their history. They defended their right to control this area as fiercely as a toddler screams "MINE!"

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