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A Tegart fort is a style of militarized police "fortress" constructed throughout Palestine during the British Mandatory period.

The forts are named after Britishmarker police officer and engineer Sir Charles Tegart, who designed them in 1938 based on his experiences in the Indian insurgency.Tens of the reinforced concrete block structures were built to the same basic plan, both along the so-called "Tegart's wall" of the northern border with Lebanonmarker and Syriamarker, and at strategic intersections in the interior of Palestine.

Many of them stand to this day, and some continue to be used as jails. Others are in use as police stations (e.g. in Rehovotmarker and Ness Zionamarker). One is used for the controversial Camp 1391marker prison for "high-risk" prisoners.

The one in Hebronmarker has been used succesively as the headquarters of the Jordanianmarker administration between 1949 and 1967, of the Israelimarker military governor between 1967 and 1997, and of the Palestinian Authority's governor between 1997 and 2002. At the latter year it was destroyed when the city was reconquered by the Israeli forces ("Operation Defensive Shield").

Alternate name

In Israel, Tegart is commonly misspelled as Taggart.A typical example of the misspelling of the name is:"The village [of Salha]'' was known for its '''Taggart''' ''[emphasis added]'' fort, which was built by the British in 1938 as a garrison fort at the height of the Arab rebellion, as part of the plan for building the "northern fence" to separate Eretz Israel from Lebanon. The fortress - like those in Nebi Yusha and in other locations in the Galilee - was named after British police officer and engineer Sir Charles '''Taggart''', ''[emphasis added]'' who initiated their construction after have ''[sic] acquired experience in suppressing insurgencies in India."taken from

This is probably from the compound transliteration of an English name into Hebrew and then back into English. The spelling may have come from the long-running Scottish detective series Taggart.

Existing examples of Tegart forts



References

  1. Anton La Guardia, Jericho Jail Creates Own Modern History, LA Times, reproduced in Arab News, March 24, 2006 accessed at 2007-02-28
  2. McGreal, Chris. Facility 1391: Israel's Secret Prison, The Guardian (14 November 2003). Accessed 27 February 2008.



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