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March 24, 2019 3:06 pm

Moon-Bound Israeli Spacecraft Photographs Jewish State From 131,000 Kilometers Away

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

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A photograph of Earth taken by the Israeli spacecraft Beresheet. Photo: Beresheet.

Israel’s Beresheet spacecraft has sent back new photographs from its ongoing voyage to the moon, including one of the Earth from a distance of 131,000 kilometers (81,400 miles).

In the image, it is just possible to see the State of Israel on the distant Earth.

In addition, the image shows the Israeli flag and a plaque with the Hebrew caption “Am Yisrael Chai” — “The people of Israel live” — a rallying cry used to symbolize Jewish perseverance in the face of persecution. Under it, in English, is the text, “SMALL COUNTRY, BIG DREAMS.”

The unmanned craft, developed by SpaceIL and Israel Aerospace Industries, recently completed a successful maneuver to put it on course for its projected landing site on the moon.

Yoav Landsman, a leading engineer, told the Hebrew news site Mako that the maneuver shifted the spacecraft’s course in order to “reach the moon’s orbit at exactly the optimal time and place.”

Beresheet is scheduled to land on the moon on April 4.

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