web analytics
April 21, 2015 / 2 Iyar, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Temple Mount: Test Of Israeli Sovereignty

Keeping-Jerusalem

One doesn’t have to be a Temple Mount loyalist to realize that something not good for the Jews is happening in the world’s holiest spot – under Israeli sovereignty.

Let’s start with the recent news that “The Jerusalem police chief has decided to limit male Muslim worshipers on the Temple Mount today to those over age 50 who do not live in Judea and Samaria. This, in light of intelligence information of intentions to disturb the peace following Friday prayers.”

This did not happen in a vacuum. Just a week earlier, the Temple Mount –site of the Beit HaMikdash, now situated “behind” the Western Wall – saw some of the most violent Arab rioting in recent memory. For the first time, Arabs on the Mount actually hurled Molotov cocktails at Israeli police, causing injuries.

Not only did the police not take advance action to restrict Muslim entry to the mosque for Friday prayers, they also, according to witnesses, barely took action to contain the violence once it started. The Mount remained open to Muslims throughout the incident and after it.

By way of comparison, in the course of the week before that, Israeli police closed the Temple Mount after Muslim disturbances three times – to Jews!

It is true that entry to the Temple Mount by Jews is a matter of dispute among contemporary rabbis, of whom only a minority permits it (after immersion in a mikveh and other precautions). Yet this matter transcends rabbinical disagreements, with long-term ramifications regarding continued Israeli sovereignty in any place the Muslims deem their own.

As such, even those who would not themselves visit Har HaBayit must protest when Israel prevents Jews from doing so. Not only is this an unjust and prejudiced policy against religious Jews, it also signals to the Palestinian Authority that sufficiently strong opposition by small groups of Arabs can actually impede Israeli enforcement of its own laws and policies. There can be no greater threat than this to a country’s sovereignty.

Let us review what happened during the week in question: On Sunday, the police closed the Mount to non-Muslims because of a mini-riot caused by the dropping of a copy of the Koran. It happened when a group of Muslim women gathered at the site to harass Jewish visitors. Afterward, Muslims continued to enter the site freely; Jews and Christians were kept out.

On Monday, the scene repeated itself: Knesset Member Moshe Feiglin of the Likud arrived for his monthly visit, Arabs at the site protested threateningly, and the police quickly closed the Temple Mount to all non-Muslims.

On Wednesday, Arab women surrounded and threatened a Jewish group, leading to another near-riot, as well as the closure of the holy site once again to Jews.

Former Labor MK Daniel Ben-Simon, never a fan of Israeli presence in Judea and Samaria, was a witness to Sunday’s events: “Because of a book that fell, they close the Temple Mount to hundreds of people waiting to get in? The Minister of Public Security must be called and asked about this.… Who’s in charge here?”

He added that Knesset members should visit the Temple Mount to see the situation themselves and find solutions. “It cannot be that every Jew who comes to visit is suspected of wanting to blow up the compound.”

Clearly, the main interest of the police – and apparently of their overseers in Israel’s government – is to ensure that each day passes as peacefully as possible. They take the short-term view: Anything that threatens to disturb the peace and arouse international headlines must be avoided at all costs, as quickly as possible. If this means forbidding Jews from entering their holy site, so be it.

The problem is that Israel – unlike Jordan, when it ruled Jerusalem, and the Palestinian Authority that now controls the site of Joseph’s Tomb in Shechem – takes pride in ensuring free access to members of all religions to all religious sites under its control. Ever since the internationalization of Jerusalem was first proposed in the mid-20th century, Israel has always claimed that such arrangements are unnecessary, as the Israeli government sees to it that all holy sites remain open for free religious worship.

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 reside 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.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

2 Responses to “Temple Mount: Test Of Israeli Sovereignty”

  1. Maybe we should limit it to non-Muslims only. Jordan limited to Muslims only for 19 years and not one member of the "international community" said a single thing about that – the reverse should be done for the same amount of time.

  2. The Temple Mount belongs to Israel, and Jewish People should be allowed to not only to worship there but to witness the site of their coming Third Temple. Stop being stupid politicians, and be a true Jewish Partner.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Rav Aharon Lichtenstein
My Encounter with Rav Lichtenstein
Latest Indepth Stories
Rav Aharon Lichtenstein

What was supposed to have been a 15 minute interview, turned into an intense learning session and intellectual battle, the likes of which I had never experienced in my entire life.

Rabbi Lichtenstein (z"l).

Rav Lichtenstein did not learn Tanaim, Amoraim, Rishonim and Achronim, rather he learned with them

Israel Supreme Court at Night

How can NIF claim they don’t support BDS when they try to repeal laws forbidding boycotts of Israel?

Rabbi Lichtenstein (z"l).

“Rav Lichtenstein’s vision and inspiration served to guide the development of Tzohar.”

As Holocaust survivors decline rapidly attacks on the veracity of the Holocaust rapidly escalates

The Constitution created history’s most powerful legislature & inherent foreign policy power battle

The S-300 poses a major problem; Israel will have to get creative as to if, when & where it strikes

“The resentment towards us (Jews/Israelis) was really intense. They clearly hate Zionism & Zionists”

Egypt has been more effective against Gazan smuggling tunnels than Israel’s military operations

She had many names and was many things to many people, but to me she was just Babineni.

Is ISIS in Gaza? “No, but there are ISIS loyalists here..we pray to God they unite under ISIS’ flag”

Rabbi Portal was that great “inspirer,” changing people for the better, enriching the lives of all

Iran knows Obama, Putin, and the Europeans don’t have a Red Line beyond which they will go to war

There is no way to explain the Holocaust. I know survivors who are not on speaking terms with G-d. I know many who are the opposite. I have no right to go there…

When a whole side of your family perishes, friends become the extended family you do not have.

“We stand with Israel because of its values and its greatness and because its such a wonderful ally”

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

Negotiations with the PA raises fears that some of Jerusalem will be handed over to foreign control

Keeping-Jerusalem

All Zionist parties must demonstrate that a united Jewish Yerushalayim is an absolute imperative

Israel’s full sovereignty over a united Jerusalem is the only path for true peace in the region.

Despite its name, the Muslim Quarter was home to many Jews and 6 yeshivot in the 19th century

A unified Jerusalem’s most threatened by a leading Prime Minister candidate: Labor’s Yitzchak Herzog

As Israel slowly loses its grip on parts of its capital, the Arabs are working to fill the vacuum.

The EU wants to replace the US with an increased role for the UN and its built-in anti-Israel stance

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/keeping-jerusalem/temple-mount-test-of-israeli-sovereignty/2013/03/22/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: