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October 20, 2016 / 18 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘KING’

Jordan’s King Abdullah: Threatening the World

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

Last month, Jordan’s King Abdullah addressed the world from the UN Podium, directly warning Israel that it could “be engulfed in a sea of hatred in a region of turmoil.”  These threats were not “just talk” as some of his few remaining Western cheerleaders would like to claim, but in fact, the king was making a threat, which he has executed into actions that could bring the world one step closer to another war in the Middle East.

But, why is the King doing this?

For the Jordanian Opposition Coalition (JOC), the answer is simple – Abdullah is weak, fragile and literally standing on his very last leg. As a result, he is playing the oldest trick in the book, blackmailing the world by working both ends against the middle and either threatening war or allowing it to happen. Let’s see how.

One day before the king made his threats at the UN, the Jordan’s parliamentary elections took place on 20 September, and they were largely boycotted by the Jordanian people. In fact, even with the “success” that the king claims, the official turnout rate was the lowest in Jordan’s history – just a mere 37.5% of those eligible to vote, voted. Even worse, this rate is being contested amid allegations that the king’s Ministry of Interior “rigged the elections,” issued fake IDs for its affiliates, allowing them to vote multiple times in order to increase the rate. Furthermore, the turnout rates in Jordan’s major cities, Amman and Irbid, were as low as 17%.

In addition to the low turnout rates, it appears that for some reason, the king executed the elections in a very hasty and chaotic fashion. For example, several ballot boxes were lost, while many more mysteriously disappeared. For example, in the “Central Bedouin District” where the candidates are contesting the results in court because of the missing ballot boxes, 8 appeals have been made in court by several candidates accusing the government of rigging the elections.

This holistic chaos and royal disregard for the public’s desire has evolved into protests, marches and a general public outcry against the king, the elections and those who won seats.

What’s most alarming about this whole situation is this: the king clearly handed the parliament to Islamists whose agenda is to radicalize the public, cause instability in the region, and spread hatred against the West, USA and Israel.

In total, at least 35 members of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) are now in the parliament (Almost 27% of 130 seats) 15 members come from the Islamic Action Front Party, 10 from the Centrist Islamic Party and 10 MB affiliates who are not official members, similar in nature to the way Mr. Bernie Sanders was not a registered Democrat, yet ran as one.

What’s alarming about this should be clear to everyone who follows Jordanian politics: Islamist have boycotted the last three parliamentary elections, making their vigorous return to the parliament evidence of a much-rumored “handshake” deal between the MB and the king. In fact, with Constitutional changes made by the Parliament just before they were disbanded last year, the king ensured that changes in the elections law not only gave him more power, but muddied the elections law allowing for these fundamentalists to not only take hold, but to capture seats in an already contentious Parliament. For example, take the so-called

Virtual District” This odd concept gave the king a free hand to secure the Islamists a victory by assuming a non-factual contingency, and came at a time when concrete fundamental connections between the MB and ISIS ideology and structure are clear and evident. As a result, it appears that the king’s new elections law was specifically designed to empower fundamentalists in the next parliament in exchange of their unconditional support that will keep the monarchy in power.

To make matters worse for Jordan and the world, the king allowed the so-called Centrist Islamic Party to secure 10 seats. Despite their name, that party’s leaders are known as diehard loyalist to the king who have an extremely radical Islamist agenda that is against women’s rights -such as passing citizenship to their children-and is vehemently anti-peace and Israel.

Finally, the king helped usher in many anti-Western figures from the non-Islamist camp. An example of those is 3 newly-elected parliament members from the newly-found, and mysteriously well-funded, Maan List. For those unfamiliar with the Maan List, it is well known within Jordan that those on the list are vocally loyal to the king and are publicly very close to Queen Rania’s office. In fact, on its official site, the Maan List ran on highly anti-Western, anti-peace and pro-BDS ticket. Ironically, one of those – Qais Zaiyadeen – allegedly won his seat by securing thousands of votes, despite running for one Amman Christian parliamentary slot, a slot which barely gets a few hundred votes. This alone confirms that the elections were rigged by the king, and in Zaiyadeen’s case, someone seems to have gotten carried away and given him more votes than there are possible voters. To add insult to injury, Zaiyadeen is a very vocal advocate of Syria’s Assad, making his victory unexplainable in a country where Assad is passionately hated and considered to be a butcher.

Now let’s turn our attention to Jordan’s strong General Intelligence Department (GID). The GID has vigorously opposed the king’s empowerment of the Islamists. What’s most significant here is that more than 30 parliamentary candidates who lost their elections are all known operatives and loyalists of the GID, which signifies the perception that Jordan’s king is not only at odds with Jordan’s intelligence body but made their candidates lose in an attempt to put the department in its place. This should come as no surprise as the GID has been distancing itself from the king since 2012 for his apparent alliance with Jordan’s Islamist. What helps the GID maintain its moderate position is its cemented counterterrorism cooperation with the CIA, British MI6 and the Mossad.

To the untrained and uninformed -who usually claim authority about Jordan- they will argue that the above outcomes are evidence that the Jordanian public is radical, and hence, the radicalized parliament is “not the king’s fault.” To those we ask: if the elections were transparent, how come even the major tribal figures lost? How come anyone who is considered a moderate has lost? How come even moderate Christian candidates lost and radical anti-peace candidates won? Why is there no free press in the country to actually report on the violent aftermath of the elections? And, how on earth could the intelligence department’s candidates lose?

It should be quite clear to the world that Jordan’s King created an Islamist and anti-Western parliament so on one hand, “the king can stand up and say to the West that the only one who can protect it and Israeli interests in Jordan is me” and then urge all Western governments to support him economically and militarily. Yet on the other hand, should this parliament become active on 7 November 2016 as planned- the king has primed the country for an all-out political, social and economic civil war that will threaten Jordan and destabilize the region, as well as the interests of the USA, UK, Saudi Arabia and Israel.

In fact, the disastrous outcomes of the king’s gamble are already in, with the results and their effects waiting just around the corner. Today as you read this, Jordanian society has broken out in public unrest that is sweeping the country from the North to the South. In fact, fire, gunfire, riots and confrontations with the police, as well chaotic protests have engulfed the country under a regime-forced media blackout, nonetheless, images and reports of the unrest are still surfacing on Jordan’s social media to this day. The JOC’s Shadow Secretary of Homeland Security, Naseem Al-Gheewan, estimates the “violence will cool down eventually but unrest and chaotic protests shall remain for a long time, this is the beginning of trouble, not the end of it.”

The world must recognize the coming storm in Jordan and at the same time understand the political sabotage Jordan’s king is executing is a threat to the region and therefore the world in order to buy himself more time on the throne, and if the region explodes, he will retire to his mega mansion in the French countryside where he could follow news of the next Middle Eastern war from the safety of his living room.

Mudar Zahran

Jordan’s King Asking UN Help on Syrian Refugees, Offering Lip Service on PA

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016

The two main concerns Jordan’s King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein brought up in his speech before the UN assembly this week were the need to halt the spread of terrorism in the Middle East and elsewhere, and his country’s dire need for help in caring for millions of Syrian refugees that have crossed over from the civil war next door. The king ended his eloquent speech with a scant reference to the Israeli-PA conflict, cautioning that “no injustice has spread more bitter fruit than the denial of a Palestinian State,” and stressing that “Israel has to embrace peace or eventually be engulfed in a sea of hatred.”

Meanwhile, it’s been Jordan being engulfed, as the ISIS hordes have been hammering at its borders from several directions, leaving only one safe border, the one with those bitter fruits of the Israeli-PA conflict. Or, as His Majesty described it, the outlaws of Islam — the “khawarej” — have murdered, plundered, exploited children and rejected the equality of women before God. But he insisted that it was crucial to recognize the difference between that image of Islam and what the religion really teaches.

“False perceptions of Islam and of Muslims will fuel the terrorists’ agenda of a global struggle by polarizing and factionalizing societies, East and West,” the king warned. Islam teaches that all humanity is equal in dignity and that there is no distinction between different nations, regions or races, he said, but the khawarej deliberately hide such truths in order to drive Muslims and non-Muslims apart. “We cannot allow this to happen,” he warned. He explained that those radical outlaws do not exist on the fringes of Islam, but outside it altogether. A new mind-set, new partnerships and reformed methodologies would be needed to confront such a non-traditional enemy. For Muslims it is, first and foremost, a fight for their future.

Admirably truthful and useful ideas, which is why one must wonder how come the king is recommending that, while the rest of the world should be combating these radicals, Israel, his only safe neighbor, should embrace peace with them. It may have to do with the fact that Jordan’s population is 80% “Palestinian,” meaning it is made up of the indefinable hordes who flooded the area from all over the Middle East starting in the 1920s, seeking jobs and safety alongside the Zionist enterprise and under the rule of the British Mandate. Jordan has become a home to many of them who fled Israel during the 1948-49 war, just as it became a home to an estimated 400,000 of them who were deported by Kuwait after the Gulf War of 1991. Indeed, the close to two million refugees who have been invading Jordan in the past five years are no more “Syrian” than the others are “Palestinian.” Those national definitions are synthetic, Western inventions imposed on a region that lives by tribalism.

That was the real message the Jordanian king was sharing with the world in NY City this week, as he put it bluntly in his speech before the Leaders’ Summit on Refugees, co-hosted by the US, Jordan, Mexico, Canada, Sweden, Germany and Ethiopia.

“For many years, our country’s security and stability and our citizens’ generous compassion have led desperate refugees to our doors,” King Abdullah II told the summit. “In the past five years the Syrian crisis has sent Jordan’s burden skyrocketing. Some 2.5 million Syrians have crossed into Jordan since 2011. Today we are hosting 1.5 million Syrians, one for every five of our own citizens. Across my country, Jordanians are suffering. No one is justified in questioning our commitment and sacrifices. The economic and social impact has shocked every sector, every community; and it has set back the strides of our economy and has created tremendous problems in our development, job growth and debt reduction. We are spending a quarter of our national budget on refugee-related costs.”

Noting that “all countries agree that the Syrian refugee crisis will be with us all for years to come,” the king warned that “if regional refugee hosts are abandoned and left to fail, the need won’t disappear. The crisis will simply spread further, prolonging the time it takes to end this ordeal. The cost in human suffering will be unspeakable.”

Which is why the takeaway from King Abdullah II’s speech is not about his faint call on Israel to be more peaceful with its terrorist neighbors, but a cry for help in managing the Arab hordes on either side of his gates.


Netanyahu Heads to The Hague for Diplomatic Mission

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is heading to the Netherlands for a diplomatic visit on Tuesday for meetings with top officials on “deepening the bilateral relations” between Israel and Holland.

Netanyahu with meet in The Hague with Prime Minister Mark Rutte as well as with the Dutch King Willem Alexander at the Noordeinde Palace — the first meeting between the prime minister and the monarch since his succession to the throne on April 30, 2013.

The prime minister will also visit the Dutch States General (parliament) and meet with Senate President Ankie Broekers-Knol and House of Representatives Speaker Khadija Arib.

Netanyahu is also scheduled to meet with members of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, and expected to discuss with them Israel-Netherlands relations.

According to a statement from the prime minister’s office, Netanyahu will present Israel’s policy in the regional context and vis-à-vis Europe.

Hana Levi Julian

Anti-Semitic Obama Cartoon in Leftwing Spanish Poster on Eve of State Visit

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

A cartoon showing a generalized form of President Obama hugging a generalized cartoon of a religious Jewish man with dollar bills as explosions erupt in front of them was posted on Twitter by the far-left United Left party, inviting its followers to come to a protest rally in front of the American Embassy in Madrid on Sunday.

Obama was scheduled to arrive in Seville on Saturday night and on Sunday visit an American military base in southern Spain. On Monday he is having lunch in Madrid with King Felipe VI and leading Spanish politicians. However, because of the Dallas shooting, the president will arrive in Spain only on Monday, directly for that lunch with the king.

The Israeli Embassy on Friday condemned the poster, stating, “Nothing can justify the usage of anti-Jewish caricatures, and silence shouldn’t be maintained in the face of this flagrant expression of anti-Semitism.”

United Left said the rally on Sunday will protest both American and Israeli policies, and that it opposes the president’s visit because the US promotes “neocolonialist international relations” of war, destabilization and interference.

This is Obama’s very first visit to Spain as president, at a time when this country is facing political instability following an election last month that didn’t give any party a conclusive victory.

Guerras No


David Israel

The King Of Jewish YouTube: Daniel Finkelman Is Pursuing His Chabad Shlichut Through Popular Jewish Music Videos

Friday, June 10th, 2016

“My plan is to win an Academy Award by the time I’m 45,” says Daniel Finkelman, the 38-year-old director and producer of a recently shot feature film and countless short films and Jewish music videos, including Gad Elbaz’s Paris-located “Hava Nagila” and Lipa Schmeltzer’s futuristic “Hang Up the Phone.”

Go ahead. Roll your eyes. You’ve heard this before – from people far more famous and with more industry connections than Finkelman. And it’s true: Finkelman tends to make grand pronouncements like that. But spend enough time with the filmmaker and instead of dismissing him as delusional, he’ll make you not only believe it’s possible, he’ll have you rooting for him to succeed. It comes from confidence and ample talent – yes – but also from Finkelman’s striking appetite and sense of purpose.

In the specialized corner of filmmaking that creates Jewish music videos, Finkelman – who also directs and produces Jewish music concerts – has earned a reputation as a visionary. He has been creating YouTube videos full time for the past five years and has already worked with over a dozen major Jewish music including (in addition to Schmeltzer and Elbaz) Mordechai Ben David, Dudu Fisher, and Avraham Fried.

Before taking on filmmaking, Finkelman was a secular studies principal and teacher in a Chabad school. He looks at all of his work from an educator’s point of view. Now, he says, “instead of inspiring a class of 12 or 15 students, I have the ability to inspire millions of people with help from Gad Elbaz, Lipa Schmeltzer, Avraham Fried, and many others. That responsibility gives me tremendous satisfaction.”

Finkelman, who lives in Brooklyn, says he pursues his shlichut like all Chabad individuals do. But Finkelman’s shlichut is fulfilled not by by traveling via rickshaw in New Delhi, camel in Beirut, or elephant in Johannesburg. Instead he does so through his videos, which, though they display a broad range, have a core set of messages in common: of faith, simcha, and Jewish pride.

During the filming of one of these videos, the phosphorescent glow of the stage lights were dim as buzzing chatter came from dozens of costumed men, women, and children. The Soho Lounge in Brooklyn was as ethereal as it has ever been. The lounge’s brick walls and swooning musical vibes were emitting a Roaring Twenties aura. Soon, a hush blanketed the crowd. Bartenders stopped tending, DJs stopped mixing, and customers stopped mingling.

All eyes focused on the far end of the quaint room, which was brilliantly illuminated by violet, turquoise, and scarlet spotlights. A man appeared dressed casually in jeans and a t-shirt and introduced himself: “I’m Daniel Finkelman, and welcome to Lipa Schmeltzer’s music video shoot. I hope you’re all having a great time. Sit back and enjoy.” The crowd applauded then stopped as Finkelman raised his hand. Finkelman took his place behind the camera with the rest of his crew and shouted, “Action.”

Schmeltzer moved onto center stage and commanded everyone’s attention with his red sparkly vest and fashionable glasses. He belted out his newest tune, while members of the Holocaust Survivor Band accompanied him on their string instruments. Schmeltzer has become one of the top two or three performers in Jewish music, those who can manufacture a sure bet every time they step on a stage or cut a new album, and it’s no oversimplification to say that a significant chunk of his renown and reach is thanks to Finkelman. Schmelzter – and, for that matter, Gad Elbaz and others – are the talent; Finkelman is their impresario.

* * * * *

Before I met Daniel Finkelman, we had arranged for an interview at Chocolatte, a 24-hour kosher coffee shop in Crown Heights. As I wait for him, the favorite hymns of the Lubavitcher Rebbe play softly in the background and the heavenly aroma of cinnamon lattes and chocolate croissants fill the air. Soon, Finkelman saunters in, uber-confident, wearing a denim suit jacket, gray slacks, and spiffy gray lace-ups. The only thought crossing my mind is, “Never in my life have I seen a Lubavitcher with this much style.” Finkelman introduces himself – as if I didn’t know it was him – and invites me to take a seat. He is so excited to begin the interview, and acts as if a reporter has never interviewed him before. He is courteous, calm, and collected. And he’s very eager for whatever happens next.

Daniel Finkelman (left) on the set of the black-and-white music video “The Reveal.”

Daniel Finkelman (left) on the set of the black-and-white music video “The Reveal.”

Finkelman was born in Israel and moved to New York when he was 11. Unlike the case with most children, watching a film at home was no simple task for the young Daniel Finkelman. Every couple of minutes, he’d make his younger brother pause the video so that he could absorb the film quality and directorial techniques of each scene – whether he was watching in French, Russian, Hebrew, or English.

“I had bought VHS tapes through Columbia House’s mail order club,” he says. “We also went to the movie theater, but those I couldn’t pause. Right away, I was attracted to directors such as Spielberg, Scorsese, Louis Malle, and others. My parents were hard-working immigrants who didn’t have much time for films, but at least they didn’t kill my passion toward them. I watched a lot. I sometimes went into a marathon of watching four films one after the other – very geeky, but yeah, that was me.”

Finkelman’s family was not associated with Chabad at the time but they spent a Shabbat at 770 Eastern Parkway soon after their arrival. Finkelman cites the Rebbe as his muse and says the Rebbe granted him a modern day miracle.

“As a child I was extremely allergic to the sun – the pain in my eyes when in contact with the sun was excruciating,” Finkelman relates. “None of the doctors could cure me. After my Shabbat at 770 I waited on line the following Sunday to shake hands with the Rebbe in the boiling sun. When I finally met the Rebbe, I asked him for a blessing, and then in the only Yiddish I knew I told the Rebbe, ‘Zei gezint,to which he answered ‘Amen’ followed by ‘You should have hatzlacha with everything in your life,’ and a few weeks later my eyesight was completely restored and my allergy was gone; it was a miracle.”

Finkelman says he was also drawn to the Chabad philosophy of letchatchila ariber: “While some people live life by accomplishing their goals step-by-step, Chabad shoots straight to the top,” he says. “That, in particular, appeals to me. Straight to the top is my motto. Straight to the top in my marriage and straight to the top with career choices. I didn’t want to wake up when I’m 75 and go, ‘Oh, I could’ve done that.’ Now is the time to jump in the waters and be a Nachshon ben Aminadav and just do it. That is why my goal is an Academy Award. I don’t think that it’s a far off dream.”

Finkelman first thought seriously about using his filmmaking for religious ends five years ago. Sholom Rubashkin’s imprisonment had been sitting on his mind and the more he heard about the allegations against Rubashkin, the more he wanted to get involved. He called Mordechai Ben David and set in motion the “Unity for Justice” music video. “The thing that tugs at my heartstrings most,” says Finkelman, “is that Jews from so many communities, from Syrians to Sephardim to Chabad to Modern Orthodox, found a common denominator, and his name is Rubashkin. It’s as if he sits in prison so that the Jewish people can unite.”

Wanting to infuse his projects with a sense of mission has led Finkelman to work alongside Meyer Seewald, founder of the victim advocate group Jewish Community Watch, which helps protect children from sexual abuse and helps victims heal from their traumas. Finkelman calls Seewald “a living saint.” Together they filmed the video “Speak Up” in which seven survivors of sexual abuse shared their stories.

“I respect Daniel and love him like a brother,” says Seewald. “He is an advocate for victims, and in every interview that he has had with them, they feel supported and loved. He speaks to them gently, and supports them even after the video is through. Daniel is never satisfied with just that, he always wants to do more, and has amazing ideas to spread awareness on the subject. With his help we will continue bringing awareness to the community, and help more victims become survivors.”

Working with sexual abuse victims does not come without its share of detractors within the community, but Finkelman generally shrugs off those concerns. For example, the video for the Schmeltzer song “Believe in a Miracle” includes women, which elicited the virtual wrath of many a commenter; they fumed that parading women in an Orthodox music video is both inappropriate and un-Jewish. This made Finkelman livid. “If we’re going to make a revolution,” he tell me, “even a small one, it needs to be heard. I think it’s a disaster that women are not in videos or pictures of Jewish sources. Maybe Lipa’s videos will promote change.”

Finkelman’s sense of mission extends to videos combating anti-Semitism. One of his most popular is “Hava Nagila,” featuring Israeli artist Gad Elbaz. “Hava Nagila” was shot in Paris after the January 2015 massacres at Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish supermarket but before the November attacks which took the lives of 130 in the city.

Finkelman has worked with Elbaz for many years and has created popular music videos for Elbaz’s songs, like “Esh Shel Mashiach” (over 800,000 YouTube views), “Open Up” (a million YouTube views), and “Hashem Melech 2.0” (nearly 1.3 million YouTube views). A recurring element in these videos is impeccable choreography and, often, jazzed-up dance routines, which Finkelman feels can help attract younger Jewish viewers.

“Who’s our target audience? Not only the unaffiliated, it’s also the affiliated,” he says. “They’re not interested in Jewish music, to see some gray-bearded guy jump and say ‘oyoyoyoyoyoy.’ It doesn’t inspire. It doesn’t inspire me. But if you give them something like Gad Elbaz, some good dancing, and it’s like ‘Oh wow; this is good.’ This is almost just as good. It’s good beats, good choreography, and some window of communication with the youth. When I say youth I mean all of us. I’m also youth. I’m also not inspired by the gray-bearded people (except maybe Avraham Fried). I can’t stand going to these concerts where the artist has zero charisma. We’ve changed that.”

Finkelman is especially proud of his Holocaust-related film work. He started exploring Holocaust cinematography when he began working with producer and composer Cecelia Margules, the daughter of Holocaust survivors who’s been promoting Holocaust education for decades. He says, “Ever since she came into my life, I’ve been bringing it to YouTube, and to the masses. These videos unite Jews on a global scale and it allows me to combine my love for Judaism with my love for filmmaking.”

Ever mindful of looking forward toward future Jewish generations, Finkelman says he plans to create online platforms catering to Jewish youth. “We want people to answer the commonly asked question ‘What makes you Jewish?’ Thousands of Jewish individuals worldwide will take minute-long video clips of what makes them feel connected to Judaism. For some, being Jewish is through feeling connected. For others, it’s eating lox. For still others, it’s watching Woody Allen movies. Everyone has their own concept.”

Once he’s gathered enough videos, he plans to showcase them online, hoping they can represent a kind of cumulative snapshot of what Judaism means to Jews worldwide. He’s dubbed the project “We R 1.”

Molly Meisels

Jordanian Parliament Boycotts Israeli Delegation: “We Don’t Recognize the Peace Treaty”

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

By Michael Bachner/TPS

Parliament Speaker Atef Tarawneh announced on Tuesday that the Jordanian Parliament has refused to approve the attendance of an Israeli delegation at an international summit held in Jordan this week. Tarawneh added that the parliament called on the organizers of the summit to shun any Israeli representation at the event, Jordanian media reported.

He explained at a press conference that the Jordanian Parliament is demonstrating through this step that it holds a position different than that of the official Jordanian stance on the peace agreement with Israel. While the leadership’s policy is to maintain the peace agreement, the House of Representatives boycotts Israel and treats it as an enemy state.

The 2016 Women in Parliaments (WIP) Global Forum is scheduled to begin in Amman on Wednesday, marking the first time it has been hosted in the Middle East. According to the organizers of the forum, some 260 female politicians and parliamentary figures, including heads of state, former European and African prime ministers, and ministers from 89 countries have confirmed that they will attend the event.

Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty in 1994, which resolved the territorial disputes between the countries and included water-sharing agreements. The countries signed a trade treaty in 1996, and economic ties since then have developed and grown. Two years ago, Israel and Jordan signed a $500 million natural gas deal effective for 15 years.

Israel’s security and intelligence ties with Jordan are more discreet, but have likewise strengthened and developed, especially since the Arab Spring uprisings in 2011 and the rise of the Islamic State.

Relations have also hit some rocky spots in recent years, however, especially over Jewish access to the Temple Mount compound. Jordan has repeatedly demanded that Israel prevent religious Jews from entering the site, which is holy to Jews and to Muslims, and has even recalled its ambassador over the issue in the past.

Moreover, the Jordanian people, comprised mostly of self-identified “Palestinians”, mostly oppose the peace treaty and reject any form of normalization with Israel.

The recent announcement by the speaker of the parliament reflects this position and it remains to be seen whether King Abdullah and his successors will continue to maintain ties with Israel in the future or if they will concede to public opinion at some point.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

A Soldier’s Mother: An Open Letter to King Adbullah II

Sunday, May 1st, 2016

In 1948, King Abdullah the First of Jordan, joined in a war to push the Jews into the sea after he and his fellow Arab leaders rejected the UN Partition plan that would have divided the remaining 1/3 of Palestine (2/3 of which had already been pilfered to form his government), into two states – an Arab one and a Jewish one. In the land grab that followed, Abdullah I took all of what is known as the West Bank to some, Judea and Samaria to others. He took the Old City of Jerusalem as well; the Jews gained land in the north, south, and kept Western Jerusalem, widely known as the New City.

For 19 years, Jews were denied any chance to visit the Old City, the Western Wall, the Mount of Olives. Over 40,000 headstones were vandalized, latrines built from the tombstones. In 1967, in a preemptive attempt to head off attacks by Syria and Egypt, Israel responded to the mobilization of Syrian and Egyptian troops, the closing of the Straights of Tiran, and the mounting and increasingly threatening rhetoric. As Israeli jets flew to cripple the Syrian and Egyptian air forces at the outbreak of what was to be called the Six Day War, Israel sent a very clear message to King Hussein, son of Abdullah I. Stay out of the war, Israel said. We will not attack you.

Hussein answered back that he would fight with his brothers, as he sent his forces on the attack. His motives were not nearly as noble as his words. In reality, he anticipated – incorrectly – victory for the Arabs and was afraid he would miss out on another land grab like the one that brought his father east Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Hussein’s forces were pushed back beyond the Jordan River. Lost was Judea, lost was Samaria and lost was the Old City…which was, once again, reunited with the newer parts of the city, which had been under Israeli control from the beginning. And then, in a landmark move of monumental stupidity, Israel’s Moshe Dayan handed over the keys (figuratively speaking) to the Temple Mount and the game was on.

The Western Wall was clearly returned to the Jews who could once again pray before the last remnant of a Temple that was destroyed 2,000 years earlier. The Temple Mount was given to the Muslims, who have spent the last 45 years attempting to return to the 19 years of Jordanian intolerance.

Slowly over the last few years, Jews have become more and more aware of the absurdity of our being denied the right to simply whisper a prayer at our holiest site. Would worlds really fall if a Jew were to close his eyes and ask God for peace, safety and health for his family? Apparently so.

Over this Passover holiday in Israel, hundreds of infidels Jews and Christians have visited the Temple Mount. Today, two young men lowered themselves to the ground of the Holy Temple Mount and as they attempted to…yes…pray…they were attacked, beaten, arrested. In response, the Jordanian government, under the leadership of King Abdullah II issued a demand that Jews be banned from the Temple Mount.

In the past, the Jordanian government demanded cameras be installed and then when Israel welcomed the suggestion, knowing what violence there is up there is mostly not started by the few Jewish visitors, Jordan announced that it has canceled the plan and no cameras would be installed.

As I contemplated the demand by Jordan, I wondered if perhaps the Israeli government would be willing to appoint me as the temporary spokesperson to respond. I know exactly what I’d say to Abdullah:

Dear Abdullah,

In response to your government’s threat that there would be consequences if Jews were not banned from the Temple Mount, please note that 45 years ago, when Jordan last threatened Israel…they lost the Temple Mount and all of Judea and Samaria. If the consequences involve an attempt to bring this holy site under your control, I have to say, bring it on…but this time, Abdullah, this time we don’t give it back. This time we won’t let another idiot like Moshe Dayan hand over the keys.

Bring it on….you want no Jews on the Temple Mount…try it…and quickly find that we have learned much since you last held our holiest site and we will not return to those days. It was ours long before your precious Mohammed ever lived; it will be ours long after you are dust.

Arabs pray on the Temple Mount because WE allow it, and in our utter stupidity, rather than insisting that we TOO have a right to pray, we catered too long to an unfair and impossible situation. The site is holy to Christians, Muslims and Jews. Either everyone is free to pray there, or no one is free.

No, you will not keep it from us entirely, not now. Not ever. Your threat shows that 68 years after the 1948 war, your nation still fails to understand the Jew. We will tolerate much to avoid what bloodshed we can but if you insist on attempting to take the Temple Mount from us…there will be war…because this time, we will insist that the Temple Mount be open to all religions – as we have kept it for the last 45 years, and as you refused to do for the 19 years it was in Jordan’s hands.

You kept us from the Temple Mount for 19 years…we’ll take full control if you dare to think the consequences to be paid will be ours. We will never forbid Muslims from praying there, but nothing says the WAKF has to be in charge; nothing says that Jews who go up to Har Habayit have to be beaten and abused and if your religion is insulted by seeing Jews pray, that is your problem, not ours.

If the problem is so insurmountable that the mere sight of Jews whispering in prayers sends Muslims into rioting, I suggest we initiate a rotation plan. There are three great religions. Each can be given the Temple Mount for 8 hours a day. Each can choose to share it with others. For the record, we will allow Christians up during our 8 hours and will seek permission in return such that Jews and Christians, tolerant and accepting of each other, will be allowed 16 hours per day. Muslims may have the Temple Mount, alone and unbothered for eight hours. What eight hours would you like?

Also, I recommend that each religion be given a specific number of days in which the Temple Mount will be closed to all other religions for a period of 24 hours. How many days would you like and which ones? I recommend 10 days, as we do in the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron.

Please note that you’ll need to remove your prayer rugs during the 16 hours that the Temple Mount is not in your control and on the full days as well. We can build three separate storage units (perhaps Keter would donate them, but if you prefer a Jordanian brand, that’s fine too). You can store your holy stuff in it and we’ll store our holy stuff as well. Not sure what the Christians have, so we’ll need to check with them as well.

Please note that you will also no longer be allowed freedom to build additional mosques up there unless we can build up there as well and I suppose we’ll have to let the Christians build up there too if they want. It might be a good idea to tell the teenagers that they can no longer play soccer up there as well, as access will now become fully equal and balanced for all. Domination of the Temple Mount has come to an end. Your people have occupied this historic and religious site for too long, abusing it by storing rocks and fireworks, endangering the infrastructure by illegal excavations.

You are correct; it is time to implement a true status quo based on equality; and there must be consequences for those who riot and refuse to accept the sanctity of the place.

Let us know when you want to begin implementing the 24 hour cycle – I suggest we do it quickly as Israelis would really love to have the Temple Mount to ourselves this coming Independence Day in a few weeks.


Paula Stern

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/a-soldiers-mother-an-open-letter-to-king-adbullah-ii/2016/05/01/

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