Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

No helicopter allowed to land at Masada, so Trump cancels visit

No helicopter allowed to land at Masada, so Trump cancels visit

The Jerusalem Post reported on Monday that Trump would not be able to land a helicopter on top of the fortress and would need to take a cable auto up the mountain instead, as former President George W. Bush did when he visited.

President Donald Trump has canceled plans to deliver a speech at an ancient Israeli fortress after being told he can not land his helicopter on it, Israeli media reported.

Trump refused to visit the Masada National Park because "it was too hot" and he would have to travel using a cable vehicle - even though other presidents including Bill Clinton, George Bush and Barack Obama have travelled to the site in cable cars. Campbell said helicopter landings have been banned at the site because the dust and wind kicked up in the landing can cause "damage to the antiquities".

The visit to Israel comes as part of Trump's first overseas trip, which will include other stops in the Middle East, according to the Times.Trump has said he would like to make a deal that would finally bring peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

The ancient site became a symbol of Jewish heroism after dozens of Jews - 960 in total - there chose to kill themselves, rather than surrender to the Romans in 70 AD.

The Masada is one of Israel's most important historic sites. The Israeli Foreign Ministry also declined to comment on Trump's schedule. Trump will visit the Western Wall alone and without Prime Minister Netanyahu and the visit will be deemed a private visit which is not under Israeli responsibility.

Trump refused to visit the ancient Israeli site because he would have to travel using a cable car

'George W. Bush came by the new cable vehicle.

News of the president's cancellation stirred reactions among observers of the American-Israeli relationship and officials inside the country. The move angered Israel and officials asked the White House for an explanation.

During the nine-day, five-city foreign trip, he will travel to Saudi Arabia, Israel, Belgium, Italy and the Vatican.

Herod got hold of the land after a battle, following the death of his father.

After two to three months of trying to break through, the Romans succeeded.

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