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29450 SW Asia

Vocab for Southwest Asia

Gloan Heights hilly plateau overlooking the Jordan River and the Sea of Galilee; a strategic location that has been the site of conflict in Southwest Asia for decades
wadi A riverbed that remains dry except during the rainy seasons
Tigris River One of the most important rivers of Southwest Asia; it supported several ancient river civilizations, and flows through parts of Turkey, Syria, and Iraq
Euphrates River A river of SW Asia, which supported several ancient civilizations and flows through parts of Turkey. Syria, and Iraq empties inot the Persian Gulf
Jordan River A river that serves as a natural boundary between Israel and Jordan, flowing from the mountians of Lebanon with no outlet to the Mediterranean Sea
Dead Sea A landlocked salt lake between Isreal and Jordan that is so salty that almost nothing can live in its waters; it is 1,349 feet below sea level, making it the lowest place on the exposed crust of the Earth
Rub a Khali Also known as the Empty Quarter; one of the largest sandy deserts in the world, covering about 250,000 square miles; located on the Arabian Peninsula
oasis A place where water from and aquifer has reached the surface; it supports vegetation and wildlife
salt flat Flat land made of chemical salts that remain after winds evaporate the moisture in the soil
drip irrigation The practice of using small pipes with slowly drip water just above ground to conserve water to use for crops
desalinization The removal of salt from ocean water
fossil water Water pumped from underground aquifers
crude oil Petroleum that has not been processed
refinery A place where crude oil is converted into useful products
Mecca The holiest city of Islam, located in Saudi Arabia, where people make pilgrimages to fulfill Islamic religious duty
Islam A monotheistic religion based on the teachings of the prophet Muhammad and the biggest cultural and religious influence in North Africa
Muhammad The founder and prophet of Islam. who lived part of his life in the city of Mecca
mosque An Islamic place of worship, where Muslims pray facing toward the holy city of Mecca
theocratic Form of government in which religious leaders control the government, relying on religious law and consultation with religious scholars
OPEC The organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, a group established in 1960 by some oil-producing nations to coordinate policies on selling petroleum products
Western Wall For Jews, the holiest city in Jerusalem; the only remaining portion of the Second Temple, built in 538 B.C. and destroyed in A.D 70 by the Romans
Dome of the Rock A shrine in Jerusalem, located on the Temple Mount, which houses the spot where Muslims believe Muhammad rose into heaven and where Jews believe Abraham prepared to sacrifice his son Isaac to God
Zionism A movement that began in the 19th century to create and support a Jewish homeland in Palestine
Palestine Liberation Organization A group formed in the 1960's to regain the Arab land in Israel for Palestinian Arabs
Kurds An ethnic group in SW Asia that has occupied Kurdistan, located in Turkey, Iraq, and Iran, for about a 1,000 years, and who have been involved in clashes with these three countries over land claims for most of the 20th century
Mesopotamia A region on SW Asia between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers, which was the location of some of the earliest civilizations in the world; part of the cultural hearth known as the fertile Crescent
Sunni One of the two main branches of Islam, comprising about 83 percent of all Muslims, including those in Turkey, Iraq, and Afghanistan
Shi'ite One of the two main branches in Islam including most Iranians and some populations if Iraq and Afghanistan
Taliban A strict Muslim group in Afghanistan that has imposed rigid rules on society, including prescribed clothing styles for both men and women, restrictions on the appearance of women in public places, and regulations on television, music, and videos
Guest Workers A largely unskilled laborer, ofter an immigrant from South and East Asia, brought in to the oil-booming countries to fill job openings that the region's native peoples find culturally or economically unacceptable
Stateless Nation A nation of people that does not have a territory to legally occupy, like the Palestinians, Kurds, and Basques
Palestinians A displaced group of Arabs who lived or still live in the area formally called Palesntine and now called Israel
West Bank In Israel, a strip of land on the west side of the Jordan river, originally controlled by Jordan, which is part of the land set aside for Arab Palestinians
Garza Strip A territory along the Mediterranean Sea just northeast of the Sinai Peninsula; part of the land set aside for Palestinians, which was occupied by Israel in 1967
Strategic Commodity A resource so important that nations will go to war to ensure its steady supply
Human Resources The skills and talents of employed people
Created by: 29450mrb