web analytics
April 18, 2014 / 18 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



Flashpoint: The Shepherd Hotel


Keeping-Jerusalem

Share Button
As we focus on Jerusalem as the central issue of the on-again, off-again – but always looming – negotiations with the PA, let us take a look at the latest flashpoint in our holy city: The Shepherd Hotel.
The essential details are these: The Shepherd Hotel stood for 81 years overlooking Shimon HaTzaddik‘s gravesite in a neighborhood that was once very Jewish but is now predominantly Arab; a Jew purchased it in 1985; the world is aghast at the prospect that a new Jewish neighborhood of 20 apartments is to be built there.
Of course, there is more to be told – and it explains the historical justification for the presence of Jews on the site: The land in question was originally owned by Hajj Amin el-Husseini, who, as mufti of Jerusalem, forged close ties with the Nazis. In 1929, when his anti-Jewish incitement led to Arab riots and over 120 Jewish deaths across the Land of Israel, he had a spacious house built there – later to be known as the Shepherd Hotel.
The mufti later rented the house to a Christian Arab historian named George Antonius, another enemy of the Jewish people. Antonius helped the Arabs create many myths of “Palestinian Arab nationalism” and, together with his wife, Katy, rendered the building a meeting place in which top Arabs and like-minded British officials often socialized.
On April 16, 1948, with British forces standing by, a Jewish convoy to Mount Scopus was attacked and 78 Jews were brutally murdered. This infamous incident occurred just down the block from the site of the Shepherd Hotel where British forces were stationed.
In terms of historical justice, then, it is a no-brainer that this symbol of anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish nationalism make way, legally and above-board, for the Jewish nation’s return to its eternal homeland and capital.
Recently, in accordance with plans by owner Irving Moskowitz to build a Jewish neighborhood there, the hotel was demolished. A few days later, a stop-work order was issued when the “Muslim Committee” complained that a historic Muslim site was being destroyed. Three days later, the Interior Ministry rejected the complaint and work resumed.
In light of disapproving noises by world leaders, including U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Prime Minister Netanyahu has noted repeatedly that the project is a private venture – and that the construction is an expression of democratic values: “The State of Israel cannot be expected to forbid Jews from purchasing private property in Jerusalem. No democratic country in the world would impose such a ban on Jews, and it cannot be expected that Israel will be the one to do so.”
“Just as Jerusalem’s Arab citizens are allowed to buy or rent assets in Jerusalem’s Jewish-majority neighborhoods,” Netanyahu added, “Jews are allowed to rent property in a Jerusalem neighborhood with an Arab majority.”
Just below the Shepherd Hotel site is the holy site of the grave of Simon the Just, of the Second Temple period, where Jews study, pray and visit all day long. Just across the street lies the Shimon HaTzaddik neighborhood – houses that one by one are being restored, after protracted legal proceedings, to their original Jewish owners. Some ten Jewish families currently live there.
Radical left-wing groups such as Ir Amim have called for a halt to Jewish construction plans in the area and a “freeze” on the evictions of Arab residents from the area. Such organizations want the borders between the Jewish and Arab parts of the city to remain as distinct as possible, in order to facilitate the “negotiated process [regarding Jerusalem] between Israel and the Palestinians” that Ir Amim’s website calls for.
Since the Arab side insists unyieldingly that such negotiations give them nearly complete control over all of eastern Jerusalem, it is clear that those who oppose Jewish construction in Shimon HaTzaddik and the Shepherd Hotel site actually want nothing less than the division of Jerusalem.
It must be made crystal clear: Opposition to a Jewish Shepherd Hotel means support for the division of our holy eternal city of Jerusalem into two: A Jewish city, on the one hand, with the Knesset, Central Bus Station, Supreme Court, luxury hotels, and the like – and on the other hand an Arab city that includes the Old City, Mt. of Olives, City of David, Mt. Zion, etc.
On a practical level, it may well be asked: Do Jewish enclaves in Arab-populated neighborhoods work? The answer is yes, though they have 24/7 protection – similar to many buildings in New York City. An example of this co-existence is the Maaleh HaZeitim project at the foot of the Mount of Olives in the Ras el-Amoud neighborhood, a 15-minute walk from the Western Wall. Dozens of Jewish families, the first of whom moved in eight years ago, live there with barely a hostile incident recorded.
Not far away live some 75 families in the City of David, amid thousands of Arabs – many of whom live in illegal structures. The area was the site of some clashes recently, but the 20-plus years of the Jews’ renewed presence on the site of ancient Jerusalem – the seat of King David’s kingdom – have made basically little news on the security front.
In future columns, we will elaborate further on some of the above points. Meanwhile, we have seen that expanding Jewish life in all of Jerusalem is safe, legal, historically correct and politically wise.

We invite you to visit Jerusalem and take part in our bus tours of critical but little-known parts of Jerusalem and environs, and see for yourselves the implications of dividing our Holy City. For information, send an e-mail to tours@keepjerusalem.org or visit our website at www.keepjerusalem.org.

 

Chaim Silberstein is president of Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech and the Jerusalem Capital Development Fund. He was formerly a senior adviser to Israel’s minister of tourism. Hillel Fendel is the senior editor at Israel National News/Arutz-7 and an author. Both have lived in Jerusalem and now reside in Beit El.

Share Button

About the Author: Chaim Silberstein is president of Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech and the Jerusalem Capital Development Fund. He was formerly a senior adviser to Israel's minister of tourism. Hillel Fendel, past senior editor at Israel National News/Arutz-7, is a veteran writer on Jerusalem affairs. Both have lived in Jerusalem and now live in Beit El.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

No Responses to “Flashpoint: The Shepherd Hotel”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Flyers ordered Jews to appear at a designated location in Ukraine, in Sept., 1941. The next day, the Jews lined up at the Babi Yar Ravine.
‘Jews Must Register’ Flyer in Ukraine an Echo of Babi Yar
Latest Indepth Stories
Masked Palestinian Authority Arabs hurl blocks at Israel Police during and after "worship" at Temple Mount mosque. (archive photo)

When we are united with unconditional love, no stone will be raised against us by our enemies.

Haredim riot after draft-dodger is arrested.

The reporter simply reports the news, but it is greater to be inspired to better the situation.

Bitton-041814

The Big Bang theory marked the scientific community’s first sense of the universe having a beginning.

MK Moshe-Feiglin

Freeing convicted murderers returns the status of Jewish existence to something less than sanctified.

“The bigger they are the harder they fall” describes what God had in mind for Olmert.

We, soldiers of the IDF, who stand guard over the people and the land, fulfill the hopes of the millions of Jewish people across the generations who sought freedom.

How much is the human mind able to grasp of the Divine?

Jews have brought the baggage of the galut (exile) mentality to the modern state of Israel.

The Haggadah is an instruction manual on how to survive as strangers in strange lands.

It’s finally happened. New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan reported on her blog that “many readers…wrote to object to an [April 2] article…on the breakdown in peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians,” claiming “[they] found the headline misleading and the article itself lacking in context.” Ms. Sullivan provided one such letter, quoted the […]

Nor did it seem relevant that according to widely circulated media reports, Rev. Sharpton was caught on an FBI surveillance video discussing possible drug sales with an FBI agent.

Jewish soldiers in the Polish forces often encountered anti-Semitic prejudice.

When the state was established, gedolim went to Ben-Gurion and asked him not to draft women and, later, yeshiva bachrim.

Perhaps worse than all the above is the acute lack of unity among Jews

More Articles from Hillel Fendel and Chaim Silberstein / KeepJerusalem.org
Keeping-Jerusalem

Under the plan, a person who was not a citizen of either the Jewish or Arab state was to be appointed governor to administer Jerusalem and to conduct external affairs…

Neve Yaakov

Is it not ironic that the renewal of a decades-old Jewish town is considered an “illegal settlement” on “occupied territory”?

Much has been written about President Shimon Peres’s promises to grant the Vatican official status in Jerusalem and control over its holy sites.

One of the claims made by pro-Arab interests on Jerusalem is against archaeological findings.

National park status is, unfortunately, not an ironclad guarantee against Arab encroachment.

While the Temple Mount evokes such strong Muslim emotions, it is no longer clear that it does the same for most Jews.

Gilo, Har Homa and Ramat Shlomo – among the Jerusalem neighborhoods liberated from Jordanian control during the Six-Day War – are scheduled to gain hundreds of apartments.

What exactly does MK Hanegbi mean when he says “no division of Jerusalem?”

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/keeping-jerusalem/flashpoint-the-shepherd-hotel/2011/02/02/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: