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September 28, 2016 / 25 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Old City’

Ethnic Cleansing? What Will Israel’s Prime Minister Think Up Next?

Sunday, September 25th, 2016

{Originally posted to the author’s eponymous website}

In a video message, he made the crazy charge that the goal of the Palestinians was “ethnic cleansing.” This atrocious sounding term usually refers to the actions of one ethnic group to not only kill members of another ethnic group, but to take over their land and destroy their homes, social centers, places of worship, and other evidence that they had ever lived there. Even cemeteries are not spared when it comes to ethnic cleansing.

How on Earth could the leader of Israel make such a pernicious accusation?

Because it’s already happened.

Just go back to 1948, not all that long ago. There are even Israelis who can testify to what happened.

That was the year that the Old City of Jerusalem was “ethnically cleansed” of its Jewish community, a community that had been living there for thousands of years. The city fell to the Jordanian Legion with help from local Arabs (who would later be called Palestinians).

Families who could trace their ancestry back through multiple generations of residency in Jerusalem found themselves targeted for destruction. Some were murdered, others were forced to leave their homes with nothing but the shirts on their backs.

Then their homes were destroyed. The synagogues, 58 of them, were ransacked. Every Jewish building was knocked down, burned, or otherwise destroyed. Even the ancient cemetery on the Mount of Olives was not spared. The place where Jews had been burying their dead for thousand of years was dug up and the grave stones used to pave roads.

“Ethnic Cleansing?” Could you find a better term for what happened to the Jews of Jerusalem in 1948.

Lest you think that these actions were one isolated example, look what happened in other areas that fell to the Arabs in 1948. Both the Jewish people and evidence of where they had lived was systematically destroyed.

There were three Jewish communities in the historic area of Judea known as Gush Etzion. These areas were besieged. The last stand of the Jews was the town of Kfar Etzion. They fought to the last bullet but where then forced to surrender.

Then they were collected and massacred. Not content to stop at murder, the homes, schools, and even agricultural fields were burned down. Again, the goal was to remove evidence that Jews had ever lived in the area.

“Ethnic Cleansing? To see that the Prime Minister was not so off-the-mark with his charge, a simple review of Israel’s history shows clearly that it has already happened once. If you listen to the anti-Jewish rhetoric of the Palestinian leaders, it appears that this is their goal once again.

So maybe rather than accusing the Prime Minister of demogeogary, those who condemned the Prime Minister should think about history. We have to ask why the U.S. State Department and

the U.N Secretary General were so quick to condemn Netanyahu while usually remaining silent about the extreme charges stemming from the Palestinian Authority.

Even if they don’t, the media who report their remarks have a responsibility to tell their readers why the accusation of “ethnic cleansing” is not so off base.

It would be refreshing to see the media report “Prime Minister Netanyahu has accused the Palestinians of seeking to ethnically cleanse the area of Jews, something that happened in 1948…” Rather than merely reinforcing the anti-Israel sentiment carried by much of the world, it would help explain why Israelis are so worried about the “peace process.”

Yarden Frankl

Update on Wounded Police Officer

Tuesday, September 20th, 2016

The policewoman wounded in the terror attack on Monday outside the Jerusalem Old City Flower Gate continues to be serious, but she has been stabilized.

She underwent operations at Sharei Tzedek hospital to stop the internal bleeding and the stab wounds to her spinal column.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Security Exercise at Western Wall Ahead of Tuesday’s National Defense Drill

Tuesday, September 20th, 2016

Jerusalem District Police and other security personnel gathered at various areas around the Western Wall around midnight Monday night, sealing off all entrances to the plaza where pious Jews are known to pray at all hours of the day and night.

The move came in advance of the upcoming Jewish high holy days, and as part of the national security defense drill that officially starts throughout the country on Tuesday. It’s just easier to carry out security drills at midnight at the Western Wall — and thereby avoid worldwide panic — because that’s when almost no one else is around. At least, that’s when the tourists aren’t around. And Israelis are used to security drills.

“All the entrances and exits in and out of the Kotel (Western Wall) Plaza have been closed off,  hermetically sealed,” complained one resident of the Old City who asked on an internet chat if anyone else knew what was going on.  “Some kind of operation is underway,” another answered.  A second writer said a security exercise was taking place at the Western Wall and surrounds. Within a very few minutes, however, it was all over and the human traffic was flowing freely through the ancient alleyways once more.

On Tuesday, Israel’s Home Front Command begins a national security exercise for the entire country. Red Alert air raid sirens will activate at various times throughout the country, depending on where in Israel the reader lives.  Each community will  have two opportunities to “practice” making a beeline for one’s safe space or bomb shelter, once in the morning and once in the evening.

The IDF urges each citizen to participate in the exercise and take the opportunity to become familiar with the routine of accessing your safe space and the issues involved in getting there, and staying there.

Readers are advised to check the Home Front Command website to determine what time your Red Alert activation is set to begin. To find out more about the exercise, and to access the Home Front Command site, click here.

Hana Levi Julian

Jordanian Foreign Ministry Condemns Killing of Their Terrorist

Sunday, September 18th, 2016

The Jordanian Foreign Ministry condemned the killing of their citizen, Sayid Amro, who traveled to Jerusalem and committed a terror attack on Friday.

The terrorist’s family in Jordan is demanding his body be returned from Israel, according to a YNet report.

Amro attempted to stab some policeman at Jerusalem’s Old City Damascus Gate (Sha’ar Shechem).

He yelled “Allahu Achbar” during his stabbing attack and wounded one policeman.

The police then shot the terrorist to death.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Body of Terrorist Returned for Funeral

Wednesday, August 24th, 2016

The body of the terrorist, Abd al-Malik Saleh Abu Kharoub, was returned to his family for burial on Tuesday night.

He was buried near the Old City of Jerusalem, in a small funeral at night, as per an agreement made between the terrorist’s family and the police.

On March 9, 2016, Kharoub and a second terrorist, Muhammad Jamal Al-Kalouti, opened fire at a bus in Ramot, Jerusalem and the drove past the Old City and began opening fire on civilians near a train station.

The two were killed by police.

Al-Kalouti’s body was returned last week, and was buried in the Bab al-Zahra cemetery in Jerusalem in a small funeral at night.

At the time, officials only returned Al-Kalouti’s body after the family deposited NIS 20,000 in collateral with the police and pledged not to have more than 30 people at the ceremony.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Jerusalem Mayor to Fire Ancient Ramadan Cannon Ending Islamic Fast

Monday, June 27th, 2016

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat is set to fire the ancient Ramadan cannon on Tuesday signaling the end of the Islamic holy month’s daily fasts.

The cannon will be fired at the ancient cemetery on Salah a Din Street near the Old City police station together with the Haj Yahya Sandouka family.

The Sandouka hamullah (clan) has been responsible for firing the cannon during the month of Ramadan and on Eid al-Fitr, the holiday ending the fast, since the Ottoman period 200 years ago.

The cannon is fired twice each day of the holy Islamic month of Ramadan, at sunrise and sunset, marking the beginning and the end of the fast each day.

Following the ceremony, the mayor will join the dignitaries of the neighborhood for the Iftar meal.

Ramadan, which began on June 6, ends this year on July 5, when Muslims celebrate the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Fitr to mark the end of the fast, and which lasts in countries for up to three days.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Analysis: MK Yehuda Glick Just Keeps On Glicking

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

For a newly appointed Member of Knesset, American-born Yehuda Glick (Likud) is not exactly keeping his head down in the back benches. Since before his swearing-in, Glick has been engaged in a seemingly endless monologue, over his Facebook page and through the media, about his belief system and political agenda, which—to everyone’s surprise—is much more liberal and centrist than one would have expected from a “rightwing extremist,” the tag the media had tied to his big toe.

So he started posting very mainstream, rational, even slightly left-leaning messages, including his shock at the behavior of that IDF soldier who shot and killed a terrorist who was already lying on the ground. That statement made him some favorable headlines, and soon enough he became a kind of pet-rightwinger, sharing his views on everything to the amusement of the readers everywhere.

Yehuda Glick is a serious man, despite his disheveled red hair and rumpled suits. He has been a consistent voice in favor of Jewish presence on the Temple Mount, and almost paid for it with his life when an Arab terrorist tried to assassinate him at point-blank. But he should probably be more careful when he gives interviews to, say Ha’aretz, spewing what sounds like radical observations without the benefit of historic or scholarly context. It’s difficult to overestimate the ignorance of the average Israeli leftwing reader of traditional Jewish sources, and so one probably should refrain from making the following observation:

“The Kotel is important to me just like the whole Old City is important to me,” Glick told Ha’aretz on Tuesday. “There’s no difference between the Western Wall and the eastern wall, the southern and northern walls. The Kotel is important to me because millions of Jews raise their eyes to it. But the Temple Mount is the only holy site. The Kotel doesn’t have that. It is a heaven and earth kind of difference. It’s like your parking garage is important to you, but you won’t compare your parking garage to your bedroom. So I’m not comparing the Kotel to a parking garage, but it does not have the same holiness as the Temple Mount.”

The fact is, Glick is absolutely right. The Temple Mount is where two Jewish temples have stood, while the Kotel was a supporting wall built by King Herod around the year zero, during the renovations of the Temple. As someone who shares Glick’s love for the Temple Mount, I understand his frustration when he looks down on the multitudes gathered like working ants by the Kotel, when all they have to do is walk up twenty yards and with their sheer numbers break through the police barricades, the Arab threats, everything, and stand in an earth-changing Amidah prayer where it counts.

I would venture that very few of Glick’s readers in Ha’aretz Tuesday understood that this is what he meant. Because this is what he said further on in the interview: “This is a place that causes harm, because people think it’s a holy place, and they think it’s a substitute for the Temple Mount. People come to the Kotel and feel they’ve reached the summit. It’s not a summit, it’s nothing. People are enjoying the substitute, which in my eyes is a desecration of God.”

Again, Glick is not so far from the truth, although he does step on the toes of literally millions of good Jews who have flocked to the Kotel over the centuries, and especially since 1967. And next, to the delight of the left, Glick outright condemns good Jews who pray at the Kotel:

“God said that He chose one place and people come and say, ‘that’s not true, we decided You picked a different place.’ It’s almost tantamount to the sin of the gold calf, when the whole nation said, ‘This is your god, Israel.’ It’s a huge desecration of God. … It’s almost similar to if the Zionists had gone to Uganda despite the fact that God said the Land of Israel.”

And so, in three paragraphs, MK Yehuda Glick removed his covers of a liberal democrat, protector of fallen terrorists and lover of every person, and revealed the raging fundamentalist within, unable to contain his ire at the multitudes who just won’t listen.

The fact is, Yehuda Glick is not that kind of a fundamentalist, although he is willful and persistent. He is kind and sweet, and probably the best representative the lovers of the Temple Mount have found in many years. Former MK Moshe Feiglin was also a persistent advocate for Jewish ascent to the Temple Mount, but his style is too precise and restrained to appeal to the masses the way Glick has been doing.

Glick should beware, though, of his newly acquired power, and avoid delivering to the unschooled messages they cannot truly comprehend. By telling the Ha’aretz readers that the Kotel is just like the gold calf (he said no such thing, but I’ll bet you, that’s what they took away) he did not advance the cause of Jewish redemption. Let’s hope he didn’t harm it much.

David Israel

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/analysis-mk-yehuda-glick-just-keeps-on-glicking/2016/05/31/

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