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September 25, 2016 / 22 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Al Aqsa Mosque’

PA PM Hamdallah Prays on Temple Mount

Sunday, June 19th, 2016

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah on Saturday prayed in Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The visit was conducted with the approval of Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, one day after the DM had permitted 10,000 PA and 300 Gaza residents to attend Friday prayers on the Temple Mount.

Israeli lawmakers, both Jews and Arabs, are not allowed to ascend the Temple Mount.

David Israel

Meet the Activist Rabbi and his Gay Bodyguard: the Knesset’s Most Incredible Allies

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

By Jesse Lempel/TPS

Jerusalem (TPS) – Looking at the two newest lawmakers for the Likud party, you would never guess they were close friends: Yehuda Glick is a Brooklyn-born Orthodox rabbi who built his career on pressing for Jewish prayer on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount; Amir Ohana is the first openly gay parliamentarian of the center-right Likud party and founder of its LGBT Caucus.

Yet the two men share an extraordinarily unique bond that began in earnest in 2014 when Glick was gunned down by an Arab would-be assassin, an attack he miraculously survived. After being released from the hospital, the death threats continued pouring in – yet the police declined to provide protection.

That’s when Amir Ohana, a relatively unknown LGBT activist from the southern city of Be’er Sheva and a former agent with the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), stepped in: he volunteered to be Glick’s personal bodyguard.

“I’m not a religious person, but I believe in freedom – and it was my honor to defend freedom,” Ohana, 40, explained in a recent interview with Tazpit Press Service (TPS) that took place, together with Glick, 51, in Ohana’s office in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament. “I don’t hold religious views but I can respect our legacy and our history as a people. What I want is for everyone to be free to pray wherever they want, and the Temple Mount is the holiest place for Jews.”

The Temple Mount, however, also houses the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock complex – the third holiest site in Islam. The shrine has been a frequent flashpoint of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and tensions surrounding the site – in particular Palestinian claims that Israelis, including Glick personally, are “invading” and “defiling” the complex by visiting – are widely seen as underlying the most recent wave of terror attacks against Israelis.

Because of that tension, for the last several months all members of the Israeli parliament – Jewish and Arab alike – have been banned from visiting the holy site by order of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, head of the Likud party. And in keeping with the “status quo” on the site: Jews may visit sections of the compound in small groups, and only during designated hours, but are evicted if they attempt to pray.

Both Glick and Ohana strongly protest this policy. Glick has been perhaps the most visible advocate of Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount and, with his striking red beard, has become something of an infamous figure in the Arabic-language media and social networking platforms, where he has been caricaturized as a serpentine villain.

Glick as snake

The hatred directed at Glick eventually led to his near-assassination and, later on, brought him together with Ohana – who is now, as chance would have it, his colleague in the Knesset.

The ‘Enemy of Al-Aqsa’

On the night of October 29, 2014, Glick was leaving an event at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem. At 10:04 p.m. Mutaz Hijazi, a Palestinian from eastern Jerusalem, showed up on a motorbike.

“This guy stops right next to me on his motorcycle, wearing a white helmet and all black,” Glick recalled to TPS. “He says to me, in Hebrew, ‘I’m very sorry.’ I said, ‘What are you sorry about?’ I get close to him and he says to me, ‘You are an enemy of Al-Aqsa’ and he takes out a pistol and shoots four bullets into the center of my body.”

As Hijazi sped off, Glick staggered along with four bullets in his torso.

“My wife hid under the steering wheel. I saw that I was bleeding and – I have no explanation for this – I had no pain. I managed to walk maybe twenty yards, then I collapsed,” Glick said. “I heard Shai [Malka] say, ‘We just witnessed murder.’ He rips off my shirt and yells to me, ‘[Rabbi] Yehuda, don’t go! We need you!’ That was the last sentence I remember.”

Within a few hours, Israeli security agents – “Amir’s friends” in the Shin Bet, Glick says – discovered footage of Hijazi on the security camera from St. Andrew’s Scottish Church adjacent to the scene of the shooting. By 4 a.m. Israeli forces had tracked Hijazi to his family’s home in the Abu Tor neighborhood and, following a shootout on the roof, killed him.

Hijazi was a member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group, but a local official of the mainstream Fatah party also claimed responsibility for the “heroic act.”

“I knew there were threats, but I didn’t really believe that it could happen,” Glick said of his attitude before the shooting. “I also believed we have a democratic country and people don’t kill people because they have different views.”

“Now he’s dead and I’m alive,” Glick summed up.

‘A Zealot for Human Rights’

For all the fury he attracts from extremists in the Arab world, as well as from his left wing colleagues (one of whom boycotted his swearing-in ceremony at the Knesset), Glick also faces a backlash from rightist Israelis who recoil from some of his more liberal ideas – including his acceptance of non-Orthodox Jews, his criticism of an Israeli soldier who shot an already-wounded Palestinian terrorist, and his extensive interfaith work (which, according to Glick, was sparked by hours spent in his Bedouin .

Ohana, too, finds himself in the odd position of fending off attacks from opposing sides of the aisle. As he attended the Tel Aviv Pride Parade nearly two weeks ago, despite remarks from some of his right-wing political allies who have crudely likened the to parade to a celebration of bestiality, Ohana also received threats from some in the largely liberal gay community who despise his nationalist politics – so much so that the police, in a twist of fate, decided to provide Ohana with a personal bodyguard for the march. (The interview with Glick and Ohana took place before massacre at the gay bar in Orlando this past weekend and before the terror attack at Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market last week, at which Ohana happened to be present.)

“In Israel it’s quite unique. When you talk about right and left, unlike everywhere else in the world, you primarily talk about the Arab-Israeli conflict,” Ohana explains. “So there is no reason why a person can’t be right wing – and even, as I’m sometimes called, a hawkish right winger – and yet support LGBT rights, women’s rights, freedom of speech, everything that is considered liberal. We are a liberal national party.”

Remarkably, despite all their drastically different backgrounds and religious beliefs, Glick and Ohana seem to share this view. Both men seem determined to fight for issues beyond their own sectarian interests – whether it’s Ohana, the LGBT activist, protecting Glick’s struggle for the Temple Mount, or Glick, the Orthodox rabbi, irritating his base by supporting non-Orthodox women’s prayer groups at the Western Wall, for example, and even gay rights.

“I’m a zealot when it comes to human rights and respecting every single human being,” Glick boasts. “I think that every single person deserves rights. I mean it’s obvious, you know, we’re living in a democratic country.”

Does he, then, support gay marriage, an impossibility under the current Israeli arrangement in which marriage is governed by the Orthodox rabbinate?

“I support that he should have every single right he deserves,” Glick says somewhat evasively, pointing to Ohana, and referring to Ohana’s partner: “I know that he has a wonderful mate.”

Yet when asked why he wouldn’t attend the Tel Aviv Pride Parade, Glick replied: “I don’t see a problem with [going to the parade], but I wouldn’t go because other people might see me as a problem,” adding that he went to visit Shira Banki, a teenage girl stabbed by a Jewish religious extremist at the Jerusalem Pride Parade in 2015, while she was in the hospital. Shortly afterward, Banki died of her wounds.

‘Jerusalem of Peace’

Glick was sworn in to his parliament post in late May, following the resignation of former Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon. As our interview ended, he decided to inaugurate his new office by placing the ritual mezuzah on the doorpost – a small box holding verses of the Torah which is thought to protect one’s home.

Ohana tags along to Glick’s new office, borrowing a kippa from an aide, and the two hang the mezuzah together.

“I protected you once, so I may as well finish the job,” Ohana quips.

Glick then declares that his office has a name.

“This isn’t Yehuda Glick’s office,” he says. “It’s called ‘Jerusalem of Peace.’”

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Jewish Women to Breastfeed in Al-Aqsa Mosque, Palestinian Authority Minister Warns

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

By Michael Bachner/TPS

Jerusalem (TPS) – The Palestinian Authority minister of religious affairs warned on Sunday that rabbis had permitted Jewish women to breastfeed in the “Al-Aqsa Mosque” in Jerusalem, known better as the Temple Mount, Palestinian Authority media sources reported.

Palestinian Authority Minister of Waqf and Religious Affairs Youssef Ideiss issued his warning at the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs Conference held in the southern Egyptian city of Aswan over the weekend.

The statement was met with a response on Monday evening by Ofir Gendelman, the Israeli prime minister’s spokesman to the Arab media. “PA Minister of Religious Affairs lies, says that Rabbis allow Jewish women to breastfeed on the Temple Mount,” he wrote on his Twitter account. “It’s a clear incitement to violence.”

Ideiss was apparently referencing an obscure recent ruling issued not by “rabbis” but by a single “rabbanit”. Rabbanit Idit Bartov, one of the first Israeli women ever ordained for the Orthodox rabbinate, permitted breastfeeding on the Temple Mount in a post on the Facebook page of a group called “Women for the Temple,” dated May 3.

“I am visiting [the Temple Mount] with my nursing baby. Is it permitted to breastfeed on the Temple Mount (of course with a nursing cover so that it will be totally hidden and modest)?” Bartov was asked.

“There is no prohibition of breastfeeding on the Temple Mount when you are covered,” she replied. “It’s a modest, natural act that doesn’t violate the sanctity of the site,” Bartov explained, though a disclaimer at the bottom says that the ruling was “general” and “one should consult privately for specific cases.”

In February, Ideiss criticized an Israeli plan to build an egalitarian prayer section at the Western Wall to be used by non-Orthodox Jews, claiming that the plan will “Judaize the holy site.”

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said on television in September that the Temple Mount and other Jerusalem holy sites belong to the “Palestinians” and Jews “have no right to defile them with their filthy feet.”

Under the current status quo, Israeli Jews may visit sections of the Temple Mount in small groups but are forbidden from praying or worshipping on the site. Police regulations do not specify whether women may breastfeed on the Temple Mount.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

5 Jews Arrested by 9 am at Temple Mount, Passover Day 2

Sunday, April 24th, 2016

It’s “that time of year” again at the Temple Mount, when thousands of Jews flock to the holiest site on earth in Judaism – and Israel Police are especially vigilant in making arrests.

By 9:00 am Sunday morning, the second day of the Passover holiday, three adult Jews and two minors had already been removed from the site where the two Holy Temples of Jerusalem once stood.

No information was released to media on why the little group was pulled out of the compound, over which the Jordanian Islamic Waqf exerts control. The Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa Mosque are both built on the site.

By the end of non-Muslim visiting hours, 13 tourists had been removed from the site.

“The police are working and will continue to work with determination against any attempt to disturb the public peace and security, with favoritism,” Israel Police spokesperson Luba Samri said in a statement Sunday. “We will not allow disturbances of public order or security and we will act decisively against anyone who tries to do so.”

But according to Yehuda Glick, head of the Temple Mount Heritage Foundation, Jews are not coming to the site to create “disturbances.” They are coming out of instinct, to connect with the sanctity of their ancient birthright. “People want to come to connect to the Temple Mount” said Glick. “No one has the desire to create any disturbance. People want to come to connect … I would like everyone to come and that the Temple Mount will be as it should – a center of world peace.”

Passover is one of three mandatory festivals requiring Jews to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Tens of thousands of Jews do indeed stream into the ancient holy city, including many who feel compelled to ascend the Temple Mount.

Muslim Arabs who pray in the mosque on the site are especially incensed by this.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced prior to the holiday that extra security forces would be deployed in the area to prevent “all sorts of extremists [from spreading] lies about our policy concerning the Temple Mount.”

In Biblical times, special animal sacrifices were made in the Holy Temples at this time. The sacrifices ceased with the destruction of the Second Temple by the occupying Romans and the Diaspora.

There are small groups of Jews who now are determined to renew the practice in preparation for the coming of the Messiah and the rebuilding of the Third Holy Temple. Police usually arrest a handful of men and sometimes boys who are being taught the sacrificial ways of the ancients.

On Friday, at first three and then eventually 10 men were detained for bringing goats to a location in the Old City for the purpose of carrying out a Pascal sacrifice. It is forbidden by Torah law to carry out an actual bona fide Pascal sacrifice without the existence of the Holy Temple of Jerusalem.

Hana Levi Julian

Israel Trying to ‘Conquer’ Al Aqsa on Passover, Islamic Agitators Warn. Again.

Sunday, April 24th, 2016

As predicted last week by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, “extremist groups” are trying to incite the Arab population to renewed violence by making wild claims about violations of the status quo on the Temple Mount over the Passover holiday.

At the forefront of this effort is the outlawed Islamic Movement, which is accusing Israel of trying to take over the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mosque during the holiday.

The deputy director of the organization, Sheikh Kamel al-Hatib, told Quds Press “extremist Jewish groups” led by the prime minister “and eight other ministers” (read: Israel’s government cabinet) are working to “break into” the mosque (read: allow Jews to visit the Temple Mount grounds) during the holiday.

According to Hatib, the Israeli government and IDF are facilitating the “intended conquest.”

Such claims are not new, and the same old tired retreads are yanked out of mothballs for every Jewish festival. Nevertheless, there are those in the Arab population who are vulnerable and still somehow believe the fantasies no matter how silly, how embroidered, outrageous or how often the lie is retold.

The Islamic Movement in Israel was outlawed in November 2015 for incitement to racism and violence. The leader of the movement’s northern branch, Sheikh Raed Salah, has been convicted of funding Hamas, and of contact with an Iranian intelligence agent.

He also served time in an Israeli prison from 2003 to 2005, and a five-month term in 2010. Salah is known for repeatedly exhorting his followers as well as Israeli Arab students at universities to “keep fighting until we remove the Israeli occupation and free the holy Jerusalem.”

Hana Levi Julian

Terrorists Sentenced for Plotting to Kill Jews on Temple Mount, Police on Patrol

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Three Jerusalem Arabs were sentenced to prison terms on Monday for plotting to kill Jews on the Temple Mount, and security forces as they patrolled so-called “eastern Jerusalem” neighborhoods.

According to the indictment the leader of the cell, Nor Hamdan, 24, allegedly recruited the defendants and others to form a terror cell after deciding in February 2013 to attack security forces in Jerusalem and Jews who visited the Temple Mount “to pray.”

Under questioning Hamdan confessed that he intended to “defend the Al Aqsa Mosque.”

According to a statement by the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) the members of the terror cell reside in the A-Tur and Ras Al-Amud sections of Jerusalem, and in the Old City. Hamdan received training, guidance and weapons from terror organizations in Judea, Samaria and Gaza with whom he was in contact, according to the indictment.

The Shin Bet added that Hamdan was influenced by YouTube videos of past terrorist attacks that he saw on the Internet channel. One that particularly caught his eye was the shooting attack on Jerusalem’s Merkaz HaRav yeshiva in 2008. Eight Israelis were murdered in the attack. The terror cell was comprised of six members: • Nor Hamdan, leader of the cell, who has not yet been sentenced • Amjad Ra’azam, not yet sentenced • Omar VuzVuz, not yet sentenced • Jalal Koutoub, convicted on charges of assisting the enemy in wartime, conspiracy to commit murder and kidnapping, two counts of attempted murder, abduction for the purpose of murder and other crimes. Sentenced to a prison term of 13 years. • Muhammed Sha’ar, convicted on charges of assisting the enemy in wartime, attempted robbery; sentenced to a prison term of 4.5 years. • Ahmad Bazalmit, convicted on charges of conspiracy to assist the enemy in wartime and attempted robbery; sentenced to a prison term of 3.5 years.

According to the Shin Bet statement, the terrorists “began firearms training with a handgun near Qalandia” and later planned to steal weapons from police officers in A-Turn.

In one incident the terrorists also briefly considered ambushing a police vehicle but were themselves caught off guard by police instead, according to the indictment.

Hana Levi Julian

Palestinian Authority: It’s Really About Israel’s Existence, Stupid

Sunday, November 8th, 2015

A semi-official news outlet that carries statements for Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas proclaimed on Sunday his oft-repeated wild incitement that Israel is out to destroy the central Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. And of far more international interest, the site added, “the current Palestinian uprising has its roots in 67 years” of Arab rage over the rebirth of the State of Israel.

The “Palestine Solidarity Network (PSN)” mouthpiece was quoted by the Palestine News Network (PNN) in the accusation against the Netanyahu administration on Sunday of ordering the destruction of the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount.

Moreover, the PA government confirmed publicly that the issue of “new settlements” is not behind the latest round of Arab violence — nor has the issue of “settlements” been the issue igniting Arab violence over the past 20 years. It is the issue of Israel’s entire existence — as the more direct Gaza-based Hamas terrorist organization explains in its forthright founding charter, which proclaims its determination to annihilate the State of Israel at all costs — that the Palestinian Authority finds so upsetting.

“The current Palestinian uprising has its roots in 67 years of being forcibly and brutally pushed out of their lands and homes,” stated the PSN on the homepage of the PNN website.

PNN, the official Internet mouthpiece for the Palestinian Authority, posted the piece at around the same time a flight bearing Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was arriving in the United States for a meeting with President Barack Obama.

“Three months ago, Israeli illegal settlers burned down a Palestinian home in Duma (occupied West Bank), killing an infant and his parents,” the statement went on, promoting a theory that has yet to be substantiated. Jewish terrorists who in the past carried out “price tag” attacks and atrocities against Arab neighbors were caught by Israeli security personnel and jailed within days of the crime.

The Palestinian Authority instead glorifies Arab murderers, naming public squares, streets and children’s summer camp programs after terrorists who carry out attacks against Israelis and Jews. In the case of the Duma incident, it is still not clear who carried out the despicable arson murder of the two parents and baby.

“The incident was followed by an increased Israeli military and settler presence around the Al Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem,” PSN continued, adding, “Under orders from the far-right Israeli administration, parts of the mosque were burned and destroyed. Moreover, Israeli claims of access to worshipping sites are often a first step for more colonization of land and are inevitably met by a wave of rejection and anger.

“More than 70 Palestinians have been killed in the last month by the Israeli military and armed settlers, many of them civilians who were not involved in violent attacks,” the Palestinian Authority website claimed.

Actually, since October 1, there have been dozens of Arab terrorists — many of them teenagers inspired by the endless incitement broadcast over PA government-run media and taught in PA-approved classrooms — who have carried out more than 60 stabbings, six vehicle ramming attacks and five shooting attacks against Israelis and Jews. At least 10 Israelis died and well over a hundred have been wounded. There were four such attacks within a six-hour period just prior to the posting of the PSN article, in fact.

Most of the attacks have been carried out in and around Israel’s capital city of Jerusalem, and the ancient holy city Hebron. Both cities are sacred to Jews and contain sites holy to Muslims as well.

The blood spilled in our cities is a stupid, useless tragedy for everyone. It serves no one except the evil, corrupted Arab leaders who have destroyed nearly every bit of progress their people manage to achieve, and have succeeded in brainwashing the last three of those generations. They sadly managed to produce an ample supply of young expendables who grew up inspired to give birth, raise “martyrs” and give birth again. And now they are bringing up a whole generation of those silly enough and impulsive enough to rush into death without giving thought to the value of life, the value of true honor, as opposed to the travesty of “honor” sold to them by the fakers in their TV screens.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/palestinian-authority-affirms-its-really-about-israels-existence-stupid/2015/11/08/

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