Photos of Israel as seen from the International Space Station on Christmas Day are attracting immense interest online, with tens of thousands of likes on NASA’s Facebook page.
The photos were posted by US astronaut Barry Eugene “Butch” Wilmore, who is currently on his second space mission as part of Expedition 41 to the International Space Station.
The pictures were posted by NASA with the message: “Israel – completely clear – on Christmas morning from the International Space Station. Astronaut Barry Wilmore woke up early on Christmas to reflect upon the beauty of the Earth and snap some images to share with the world.”
Facebook discussion of the pictures has included exchanges about the area’s geology and falling water resources, and also much bitter political argument about whose land it is anyway.
Wilmore, 51, is a US Navy test pilot with more than 6,200 hours of flight time, who flew combat missions in support of operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm and Southern Watch over the skies of Iraq.