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February 11, 2016 / 2 Adar I, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Jordan’

Jordan Adds to Western Wall Mixed-Gender Prayer Controversy

Sunday, February 7th, 2016

Jordan is demanding that Israel “return jurisdiction” over part of the Western Wall to the Islamic Waqf controlled by Amman.

The demand followed the decision by the Israeli government last week to set aside the southernmost section of the Wall, known as Robinson’s Arch, as a place for mixed-gender prayer. Jordan refers to the same place as the “Umayyad Palaces.”

Jordan contends that the decision violates the jurisdiction of the Waqf Islamic Authority over Jerusalem’s holy places, an agreement made between the two countries in 1967.

On Saturday, Jordanian Minister of Communications and Media Affairs Muhammad Momani “urged Israel not to meddle with the Umayyad Palaces area and to ensure its return under the jurisdiction of the Jordanian Jerusalem Waqf Department, which is the entity responsible for administering and safeguarding the site,” the Jordan news agency Petra reported in the Jordan Times.

“Israeli occupation forces have recently settled internal differences among followers of different Jewish sects at the expense of the area of the Umayyad Palaces,” Petra said.

“Israeli occupation forces had decided to expand a platform to allow more Jewish worshippers into the area. The violation against the Umayyad Palaces is the latest in a long series of assaults and violations against the site. Occupation forces have carried out several excavation works there, destroying Arab and Islamic heritage,” Petra added on behalf of Jordan’s government.

Israel’s government approved plans last week to expand the Western Wall plaza in order to accommodate the increasing demands for non-Orthodox prayer at the site. A small wooden platform at Robinson’s Arch has already been set up for mixed-gender prayer.

Jordan’s lamentation over Israeli “occupation” is a bit spurious, given the Hashemite tenure itself as custodian over parts of Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria lasted only from 1948 to 1967 – a total of 31 years.

Jerusalem has long since been reunited and whole for a period much longer than that: June 2017 will mark half a century since the restoration of the Temple Mount, the Western Wall and elsewhere in Jerusalem and the Land to the Jewish State of Israel.

However, to be fair, the dismay of the Hashemite Kingdom over the compromise over non-Orthodox prayer allowed by the government is also reflected among some Muslims in Israel and ironically is shared with some observant Jews locally and globally as well.

Mixed-gender prayer has never been allowed at the Western Wall – in fact, historically it was not allowed in either Holy Temple. In Torah law, women are not counted among a minyan (quorum) of men.

Not that this grants validity to the Jordanian claim of authority and hopes to win Waqf control of the site, which is more of a simple attempt at another political territory grab.

The Umayyad Palaces were two buildings which archaeologists say were built by the Umayyads who ruled for a period of 100 years in the late seventh century. They were destroyed in an earthquake and lay buried until they were unearthed by Israeli archaeologists in a 1970s excavation, creating a public history park to educate all.

The Western Wall is part of Judaism’s most sacred site on the planet, the Temple Mount, located alongside. The site is also the third holiest in Islam. The Wall is part of the outer retaining wall of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, its sole material remnant that has survived throughout the centuries. In Islam, it is believed that the prophet Mohammed rose up to Heaven on his mighty steed el-Buraq from a site near the Western Wall.

In Judaism, it is believed that somewhere on the grounds of the Temple Mount lies the site of the “Holy of Holies” of the two Holy Temples of Jerusalem – the inner sanctum where the High Priest (Kohen Gadol) communed with G-d Himself during sacrifices and services. No one other than the Kohen Gadol was ever allowed to enter this place, and to this day countless rabbis forbid Jews to tread upon the Temple Mount grounds for fear of erroneously entering this area.

The Israeli government does not allow Jews to pray within the Temple Mount in accordance with a status quo agreement with the Jordanian Waqf. Within the Temple Mount grounds are built the Al Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, where Muslims are allowed to pray.

After Surprise Visit to Jordan, Ben Carson Wants No Refugees in America

Monday, November 30th, 2015

(JNi.media) A seemingly compassionate statement posted on Facebook by Republican presidential hopeful Dr. Ben Carson after his visit, along with his wife, Candy, to a refugee camp in Jordan where Syrian civilians have sought shelter, reiterated the broad Republican position against letting any of them into the US.

“Amman, Jordan – Just over two months ago I began planning a trip over the Thanksgiving Weekend to visit with Syrian Refugees, Jordanian Government Officials, and NGO’s. I wanted to come to see with my own eyes this great human tragedy.

“Today I listened to the life struggles of many Syrians who were forced to flee their own homes. I met with medical professionals, humanitarian workers, and government officials. I saw pain on the faces of mothers and children.

“They came to Jordan for safety. Jordan is doing an amazing job opening its doors and extending a hand in relief. The rest of the world could be doing so much more.

“These brave people want nothing more than an end to the war in Syria. They want to go back to their lives. We must find a political end to this conflict.

“Millions of refugees have now been waiting years for the end of the war to come in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. Some are giving up hope that they will ever be able to return to their country. We must keep their hope alive. Until it is safe for them to return home, Jordan is a safe place for them to wait. The kingdom has welcomed them with open arms. But Jordan is a small country. They need the world’s help to feed, educate, and care for these refugees until the war ends.

“The United States must do more. We can do our part to help this crisis without bringing 10-25,000 refugees to the United States. Jordan already houses 1.4 million refugees. Jordan needs and deserves our logistical help and financial support.

“In the coming days I will offer what I believe are real solutions to the problems created in part by the Obama-Clinton Administration’s failed policies.”

The Carson approach, acknowledging the refugees’ suffering, respecting their human dignity and refusing them entry may end up being a potent tool for Republican governors as well, as they attempt to resist the White House’s efforts to distribute several thousand asylum seekers around their states. Judging by his statements, the GOP plans to demand that Jordan’s wealthy Arab neighbors lend a hand and a few shoulders, rather than send the suffering overseas.

According to reports, Carson told reporters the Syrians have a reputation as very hardworking, determined people, which should only enhance the overall economic health of the neighboring Arab countries that accept and integrate them into the general population.”

Jordan Luring Israeli Industry to Invest in Aqaba with 5% Corporate Tax

Sunday, November 15th, 2015

(JNi.media) Jordan is enticing Israeli industrialists and entrepreneurs to invest in Aqaba through a series of benefits that center on a reduced corporate tax rate of 5% on profits and duty-free on imports of raw materials.

A group of 34 Kibbutz industry executives visited the Aqaba Special Economic Zone, to become familiar with the region and with the Jordanian economy, and to examine the possibility of cooperation and establishing joint production lines.

Aqaba is Jordan’s only coastal city, on the shores of the Red Sea, across the bay from Israel’s tourism Mecca, Eilat. It boasts a population of 140,000 on a 144.8 square mile area. The city’s strategic location at the northeastern tip of the Red Sea has made its port a valuable asset to this day, and it serves several countries in the region.

The tour included a visit to the modern industrial area located north of the city of Aqaba, and to the air and sea ports, and a meeting with local entrepreneurs. The hosts presented the benefits of investing in the region, which would include trade agreements with third countries which would otherwise be easier for Israeli enterprises operating in an Arab country to get, as well as the cheaper costs of services and labor and flexibility in currency exchanges.

Kibbutz Industries Association CEO Udi Orenstein said in a statement that the visit is the first step in establishing cooperation between kibbutz enterprises and Jordanian entrepreneurs in ways that are mutually beneficial. “Global changes require industry to constantly test new possibilities. Aqaba is in the midst of a tremendous development and is functioning as an economic zone with specialized tax and planning laws, and can offer us advanced logistical options for shared production and production for export,” Orenstein said.

“In a situation where many factories are struggling to survive against competition from abroad, we have to examine all the possibilities,” Orenstein said. “In the last decade the kibbutz industrial enterprises have expanded production activity abroad and have become a major growth engine for the kibbutzim. The volume of production plants outside Israel have reached $2.32 billion annually.”

In a press release sent out before the visit to Aqaba, Orenstein said production within Israel could be increased with a proper investment policy and the regulation of the Israeli seaports—hinting at eliminating frequent longshoremen’s strikes.

The Kibbutz Industries Association, which was established in 1962, is the umbrella organization representing more than 250 industrial enterprises in kibbutzim, collective moshavim and regional enterprises, located across Israel, mostly in the peripheral areas

UPDATE: Death Toll Rises to 8 in Jordanian Shooting of US Trainers

Monday, November 9th, 2015

The death toll has risen to eight in the deadly shooting attack Monday by a Jordanian police officer who aimed his weapon at his instructors during a training session at the Jordan International Police Training Center in Muwaqar, near Amman.

The attack took place on the tenth anniversary of Al Qaeda suicide bombings that killed 57 at three luxury hotels in Amman. It was the worst terrorist attack in the history of Jordan.

At least two of the victims were identified as American civilian instructors working as contractors at the site. A third victim was a South African trainer, and a fourth was a Jordanian national who was working as a translator at the facility. Four others were believed to have been Lebanese nationals, according to Jordanian media.

According to a U.S. statement, the two Americans were training Palestinian Authority security forces on behalf of the State Department’s International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Bureau.

“We are treating this very seriously,” President Barack Obama told media who snapped photos and recorded his statement as he sat with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Oval Office on Monday.

“We will be working closely with the Jordanians,” the president said. “A full investigation is underway, and the families have been informed. Our deepest condolences are going out to them,” Obama said.

The killer was described as a senior co-trainer and captain by U.S. government sources. He was shot and killed by Jordanian security forces.

“This incident sadly does not come as a surprise, as the threat of Islamist terrorism has only increased in the region in the last few years in the aftermath of Syria and Iraq,” a senior Jordanian official told media, requesting anonymity. “As much as pre-emptive measures have been taken, it is impossible to eradicate all risks.”

The attacker, who worked at the King Abdullah Training Center, was a police captain and co-trainer according to the source. Further information about his identity and background was not made available.

Jordan Policeman Kills Two US Security Guards at Training Center

Monday, November 9th, 2015

A Jordanian policeman shot and killed two U.S. security guards at a police training facility south of Amman before he was shot dead Monday morning.

Two, and possibly three, other Americans were injured.  Their condition is not known.

American officers train Palestinian Authority and Iraqi soldiers at the facility, known as the King Abdullah Special Operations Training Center.

The shooting spree occurred on the 19th anniversary of three coordinate Al Qaeda terrorist attacks on hotels in Amman.

Kibbutz Managers to Visit Jordan, Explore Alternatives to Israel’s Strike-Ridden Ports

Sunday, November 1st, 2015

(JNi.media) A group of dozens of managers of kibbutz industry enterprises will tour and meet with the leaders of the special economic zone of the city of Aqaba, Jordan, to familiarize themselves with the region and with the Jordanian economy, and to examine the possibilities for cooperation and establishing joint production lines.

Aqaba is Jordan’s only coastal city, on the shores of the Red Sea, across the bay from Israel’s tourism Mecca, Eilat. It boasts a population of 140,000 on a 144.8 square mile area. The city’s strategic location at the northeastern tip of the Red Sea has made its port a valuable asset to this day, and it serves several countries in the region.

In the last decade the kibbutz industrial enterprises have expanded production activity abroad and have become the main growth driver for the kibbutzim. The volume of production in kibbutz-owned plants outside Israel today is estimated at about $2.3 billion annually. According to Kibbutz Industries Association CEO Udi Orenstein, expanding operations abroad is an inevitable part of globalization but, production within Israel could be increased as well with a proper investment policy and the regulation the Israeli seaports—as in eliminating those frequent longshoremen’s strikes.

That last comment represents a remarkable shift in Israeli society, coming as it does from the leader of a major kibbutz enterprise. For a leader of an originally socialist, largely agricultural settlements enterprise to voice this jaundiced view of harbor workers’ frequent job disputes, resulting in frequent wildcat and longer strikes, speaks volumes of the new Israel.

The kibbutz industry tour, to begin Wednesday, November 11, will include a visit to the modern industrial area located north of Aqaba, the local air and sea ports, and discussions with local entrepreneurs.

Orenstein said in a statement that “the global economic changes require that industry constantly explore new possibilities. Aqaba is in the midst of a tremendous development drive, and functions as a special economic zone with special tax laws and planning, and can offer us advanced logistical options for exports abroad as well as shared production.”

A.D. Gordon (1856 – 1922), the spiritual force behind Labor Zionism is probably rolling in his grave.

Jordan’s King Abdullah Steps In to Deal With Self-Destructive ‘Wave of Terror’

Monday, October 26th, 2015

Jordan’s King Abdullah II has stepped up to intervene in the groundswell of Arab terror aimed at Jews that if not halted, could become a tsunami to drown Arab-Israeli relations for decades.

In a response to a statement made by Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the weekend, the Hashemite monarch “welcomed” the initiative and said he believed it would help end the violence.

“I heard the statements made by Prime Minister Netanyahu and his affirmation of his commitment to uphold the status quo. This is a commitment that we welcome very much here and we hope to see that those commitments are implemented on the ground,” the monarch said.

“I believe that this would allow the violence to end, to decrease the tension and I hope will allow a resumption of efforts to readdress the core issues through negotiations because this is an issue that has to be dealt with as quickly as possible,” he added.

Netanyahu said in his statement on Saturday night that Israel would install security cameras at the Temple Mount. At the Sunday morning cabinet meeting, the prime minister reiterated Israel would continue to maintain the status quo at the Temple Mount, and “welcomes coordination” at the site with Jordan.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry added his own stamp of approval, supporting the installation of CCTV cameras to record events at the Temple Mount 24/7. The idea did not make local Israeli Arab leaders happy.

King Abdullah’s intervention is a positive contribution to a very complicated picture, one in which local Arabs are once again digging themselves into a great big pit of self-destruction.

Moreover, not only is Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas not doing anything to stop the incitement and terror himself: he is, in fact, ahead of the pack and leading the terrorists.

The unbridled, undisciplined “makeshift kitchen cabinet attacks” by the inspired, unthinking and passionate Arab teens and young adults are the culmination of decades of careful planning and methodical brainwashing curricula formulated by Abbas.

It was Abbas, with a PhD doctorate, who carefully directed the creation of television and radio programs for children, teens and adults; and photos and articles via print and digital media; to further craft and reinforce the message of hatred and purging the land of Jews.

Abbas, who approved and applauded public ceremonies to name important landmarks after those who murdered Israelis and carried out deadly terror attacks.

Abbas, who made sure the schools reinforced that message from the youngest grades through university, in textbooks and in the classrooms and in every extra-curricular activity.

Abbas blessed “every drop of blood, clean blood, pure blood, spilled in Jerusalem.” Abbas, who would like to survive the next assassination attempt by Hamas. He knows a good offense is the best defense.

The Hashemite monarch, meanwhile, has every reason in the world to invest his energies in quelling the current unrest across his border.

Jordan can ill afford unrest in Israel with a savage Da’esh (ISIS) sitting on three of its four borders, and the Jewish State the only local ally close enough to help fend off the barbarians, save Egypt and the U.S.

Unlike Israel, the U.S. is unlikely to put boots on the ground to meet that challenge, and Egypt is already at capacity fighting ISIS itself.

Israel, however, is willing and able to deal with the threat of radical Islamic terror in whatever form it must, in order to end it, for the most important reason of all: The threat of radical Islam that faces Jordan, faces Israel as well.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/jordans-king-abdullah-steps-in-to-deal-with-wave-of-terror/2015/10/26/

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