Kabara Before 1948
At 30 km from Haifa, the village was situated on the coastal plain, at the foot of the western slopes of Mount Carmel, just east of the coastal highway. Its name was probably a plural of kubri, a loanword from the Turkish word for bridge (köprü), referring to the numerous bridges built across the nearby al-Zarqa River. The inhabitants of the village were Muslim, and their main economic activities were agriculture and animal husbandry. Above the village (on the slopes of Mount Carmel) and to the east of it lay a cave known as Mugharat al-Kabara, an important prehistoric site discovered in 1929 and excavated by several teams. The cave contains a deep Middle Palaeolithic deposit that was covered by a Natufian layer dating to about the ninth millenium B.C.
Occupation, Depopulation and Israeli Settlements
There is no information on the occupation of the village, but it was most probably taken during the second campaign to 'clear' the northern coastal plain of all Arab communities between Tel Aviv and the settlement of Zikhron Ya'aqov, south of Haifa. This would suggest that it was captured either in April, or in the first half of May 1948. Nevertheless, it might have held out until late May, like the nearby village of al-Tantura.
The settlement of Ma'yan Tzevi was founded in 1938 on village lands to the north of the site. Two other settlements, Ma'again Mikha'el and Beyt Chananya, were built on village lands in 1949 and 1950, respectively, after the village had been depopulated.
The Village Today
The rubble from the village houses has been moved up the slope where is it now visible, covered with dirt. Cactuses and banana trees, as well as isolated fig, carob, and olive trees grow on the site.
Source: al-Khalidi, Walid (ed.). All that remains: the Palestinian villages occupied and depopulated by Israel in 1948. Washington DC: 1992.
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