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December 19, 2014 / 27 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Old City’

Arab Rioters Take Over Temple Mount on Jerusalem Day (+Video)

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Arab rioters succeeded in violently shutting down the Temple Mount this Jerusalem Day to everyone except Muslims.

One police officer has been injured so far by a rock hurled by a rioter as security personnel battle Palestinian Authority Arabs on the Temple Mount in the first hours of the morning on Wednesday.

Masked Arab youths have been hurling stones and firebombs (Molotov cocktails) since the start of the morning, once again effectively preventing Jews and anyone other than Muslims from reaching the site. Their handy weapons are stored in piled caches in and around the Al Aqsa mosque, one of two Muslim houses of worship located on the Temple Mount.

The Arab rioters are taken to calling themselves “Almoravids”, which were an early version of Muslim knights.

While only 250 Israelis managed to ascend to the Mount prior to the attack, four times that many — 1,000 foreign tourists — succeeded in reaching the site before police closed it down to everyone except Muslim ‘worshipers.’

Jews are routinely arrested on the site simply for moving their lips, in what might be construed as a prayer. The Waqf Islamic Religious Authority, which rules the site, forbids Jewish religious activity on the Temple Mount. It is part of the Western Wall complex and believed to be the location of the “holy of holies” in the ancient Jewish Holy Temple of Jerusalem, Judaism’s most sacred site.

Once safely shut down, police moved forward to take control the Temple Mount plaza area, according to Walla! The rioters have since retreated and are currently within the mosque, according to a local source, who said they are continuing to hurl rocks and firebombs at security personnel.

Police officers are using riot control methods in an attempt to disperse the mob.

Today marks the 47th anniversary of the liberation of the 3,000-year-old Jewish capital of Israel, the Old City of Jerusalem, from Jordanian occupation in the 1967 Six Day War. Jerusalem Day celebrates the unification of the holy city and its restoration as the healed capital of the Jewish State.


Arabs carrying Hamas flags on the Temple Mount chanting “With blood we will free Palestine.”

Religious Zionist Rabbis Celebrate Jerusalem Day on Temple Mount

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

About 30 religious Zionist rabbis visited the Temple Mount Tuesday to mark the 47th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem during the Six Day War.

The group included Rabbis Gidon Pearl, Yitzhak Levi and Yosef Tzvi Rimon (Alon Shvut), Yaakov Medan (Yeshivat Har Etzion), Avraham Gisser (Ofra), (Alon Shvut), Yisrael Rosen (Machon Tzomet), David Dudkevitch (Yitzhar) and others.

Participants in the group reported that the event took place amongst a festive atmosphere to usher in Jerusalem Day. The rabbis thanked God for beginning the ingathering of the exiles and for liberating Jerusalem and the Temple Mount in 1967. They also said the event was intended to encourage Jews to visit the Temple Mount, a phenomenon that has grown in recent years.

“Forty-seven years ago we  merited God’s mercy when we returned to Jerusalem and the site of our holy Temple. But there is still much to do,” the rabbis said in a statement.

“This event is an expression of the eternal and constantly renewing connection of the Jewish people to the Temple Mount, the home of the holy Temple, and of the growing public demand to impose Jewish sovereignty here.

The rabbis discussed halachic issues related to visiting the Temple Mount and stressed that Jews entering the Temple Mount compound must take care not to violate the holiness of this place. One must not enter the part of the Mount that housed the Temple itself, because we are all ritually impure (t’me’i met). “(It is forbidden to) enter the plaza at the center of the Mount, and especially the Dome of the Rock , which according to tradition stands on the place of the Holy of Holies.

“The Torah forbids all people from entering that place, under a penalty of spiritual excision from the Jewish People (“karet”),” the rabbis said.

The rabbis also addressed the police ban on Rabbi Yehuda Glick, preventing Glick from entering the Temple Mount compound. “We must remember on the 28th of Iyyar we celebrate first-and-foremost the liberation of the Temple Mount,” Glick said. “The Temple Mount is the heart of the Jewish People; therefore, it is only natural that our leaders went up to the site today, on the eve of Jerusalem Day.

“We call on all other leaders to join their call and to lead this relationship between the Jewish People  and its heart – the Temple Mount.”

No Protests

Although Arab and left-wing leaders often claim that opening the Temple Mount to Jews would create “a storm of protest from the international Muslim community,” no signs of protest were evident during or after the visit. No English- or Hebrew language website noted rioting by Muslims in Indonesia over the visit, or even protests by Palestinians in Jerusalem or Ramallah.

It is also worth noting that according to Prof. Sheikh Abdul Hadi Palazzi, the Koran itself predicts the return of Jews to the holy site. Palazzi has also said that nothing in Islamic doctrine or law suggests that Jews, or any non-Muslims, should be prevented from praying on the Mount.

 

Pope Francis Lashes Out at Nazi Murderers During Yad Vashem Visit

Monday, May 26th, 2014

Pope Francis has had a busy day so far in the ancient Old City of Jerusalem.

He began his day on the Temple Mount, in the Al Aqsa Mosque, visiting with the Mufti of Jerusalem and the Waqf Islamic Authority. The pontiff was quoted as telling both, “May we work together for justice and peace.”

Given the violence that has emanated week after week from that quarter towards Christians and Jews alike, that would seem to be a tall order. There is no information about the response of the Arab officials to the Pope’s comments at the mosque. On the first leg of his journey to the Holy Land, yesterday, he made an unscheduled stop at the separation barrier that was built by Israel to prevent suicide bombers from infiltrating and murdering citizens in areas of the country that were under the government’s control prior to 1967.

The Pope was then led to Judaism’s holiest site for prayer by Western Wall Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovitch. The Kotel (Western Wall) had been cleared of visitors for security reasons earlier by police. The pontiff bowed his head in prayer with his hand on the ancient stones. He followed those silent moments of communion with the Creator by placing a note in the Wall — an ancient tradition observed by nearly everyone who comes to the Wall — and embraced close Jewish and Muslim friends with him.

Francis met with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres and made a quick visit to the Mt. Herzl cemetery where he laid a wreath at the tomb of the ‘father of Zionism,’ Theodore Herzl. He then visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Center in a moving ceremony where he laid a wreath in the Hall of Remembrance and greeted six Holocaust survivors. There the pontiff questioned the role of G-d in the slaughter of the millions of victims murdered by the Nazis.

“The Father knew the risk of freedom, he knew that His children could be lost, yet perhaps not even the Father could imagine so great a fall, so profound an abyss,” he reflected. Having lit the memorial light in the center just minutes before, he compared the Nazi Holocaust to idolatry, and standing before Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres and former Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, himself a survivor, lashed out against the murderers.

“Who convinced you that you were G-d? Not only did you torture and kill your brothers and sisters, but you sacrificed them to yourself, because you made yourself a god. Today, in this place, we hear once more the voice of G-d: ‘Adam, where are you?’ Hear “L-rd and have mercy,” Francis prayed. “We have sinned against You. You reign for ever.”

The Pope also received from Yad Vashem chairman Avner Shalev a reproduction of a painting of a Chossid engrossed in prayer created in the Lodz ghetto by a teenage victim of the Holocaust.

He is expected to celebrate Mass at the Cenacle, the upper room in the complex where some believe the tomb of the Biblical King David is located – and where Christians believe the Last Supper took place, sometime before leaving to return to the Vatican in the afternoon hours.

There have been protests against the Pope’s visit to various sites in the Old City of Jerusalem by both Muslim and Jewish groups, both saying the leader of the worldwide Roman Catholic Church is intent on defiling their respective holy places of worship.

No Sovereignty Grab by Vatican at King David’s Tomb For Now

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

The Vatican has confirmed it has no plans to attempt a sovereignty grab at King David’s tomb, at least at this point.

In an interview posted this week on the Vatican Insider website, Jerusalem-based Bishop William Shomali confirmed that Pope Francis is going to celebrate Mass in the Cenacle – the upper room which is considered holy to Christians because they believe it is the place where Christianity’s founder, Jesus, celebrated the Last Supper.

A niche on the lower level of the same building is alleged to be the burial site of the Biblical King David, marked by a large cenotaph-sarcophagus set up by 12th century Crusaders. However, most scholars consider this attribution to be incorrect; in Kings I 2:10[13] the burial site of the ancient Biblical king is said to be “in the City of David”, identified as the eastern hill of ancient Jerusalem, rather than in what is today called Mount Tzion, the western hill of the ancient Old City of Jerusalem.

The site is one of many located in the area claimed by the Palestinian Authority for its hoped-for independent Arab state within Israel’s borders. The PA has insisted in talks that Israel hand over all of the areas of Jerusalem restored in the 1967 Six Day War — including all Jewish holy sites — so it can establish a new capital city there. PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has also said repeatedly that he will never allow any Jew to set foot on “Palestinian land” once borders for a new PA state are established.

Shomali, who was born in the PA and is auxiliary-bishop of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, confirmed the Pope is expected to celebrate Mass in the room. However, he firmly denied the Holy See had any intention of attempting to take control of the site from Israel.

“There is some opposition (to celebration of Mass at the site) but it is coming mainly from ultra-Orthodox Jews who have misunderstood the event,” he told Vatican Insider. “They thought the Pope is coming to receive sovereignty over the Cenacle. This is not true! The Pope and the Vatican do not want sovereignty; they only want more use of the place in the early hours of the morning for masses and for prayer,” Shomali explained.

All of the tickets for the visit of the Pope to Bethlehem and for the Mass there are exhausted, he added, noting that 10,000 were distributed and that many asked for more. “This is different from the two previous papal masses in Bethlehem, when John Paul II and Benedict XVI came,” he said. “It means that this Pope attracts crowds.”

Israeli security is expected to be extremely tight and for the two days the Pope will be in the country, travel within Jerusalem and surrounds will be difficult.

Likud, Labor MK s Unite to Submit Temple Mount Prayer Bill

Monday, May 19th, 2014

Two Knesset members from separate ends of the political spectrum plan to submit a bill allowing Jews to pray on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem.

Likud MK Miri Regev and Labor MK Hilik Bar say they will unite to advance the measure, but were mum on when. “There is no reason that Jews should not be allowed to pray in the holiest site in the world,” Regev said, according a report this weekend by Ynet.

The bill is intended to promote co-existence, added Bar. “I insisted the authority of the Muslim Waqf not be harmed, but Muslims must understand that we also have a right to pray there. I see in these holy sites the cradle of our existence. If someone on the left has complaints against Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount, they will have a hard time claiming that other ethnic groups suffer discrimination,” he added.

Jews are not allowed to even move their lips when touring the site, considered the holiest place on earth in Judaism.

Muslims pray in front of the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount

Muslims pray in front of the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount

Many times Muslims in the area simply accuse Jews of “praying” and police immediately force the “suspect” into custody and off the grounds, fearing violent reactions by Arabs if they don’t.  By contrast, Muslim children run freely throughout the plaza area, even playing soccer around the site.

The fiercest verbal provocations by Arabs are generally met by stony silence by Israeli police when accompanying Jewish tour groups, and usually also by hurrying their charges away. Sometimes closure of the site to anyone other than Muslims follows as well — even if the site has just opened and it is the eve of a Jewish holiday.

The Al Aqsa mosque located on the Mount has become a hotspot for fiery sermons each Friday that whip worshipers into a frenzy of hatred against the State of Israel. The site has also been at the center of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The PA has insisted the Old City — including all Jewish holy sites — must be handed over to be part of a capital for its hoped-for independent state.

Arab rioters carefully store piles of rocks, bottles and other handy missiles in the mosque that they can hurl at Jews – or police — when “protesting” after prayers have ended. Such incidents occur often prior to Jewish holidays, and became the opening salvo to the second intifada in the year 2000. In response, police simply close the Mount to Muslim men under age 50 and limit entry to those bearing Israeli identity cards. Any Muslim woman can enter.

“I firmly believe that each event of Muslim unrest on the Mount should lead to its closure to Arabs,” Regev said. “The prime minister is not the only one to decide on the issue, and if the proposal does not pass I will turn to the High Court of Justice in a public petition until Jews are allowed to pray with tallit (prayer shawl) and tefillin on the Temple Mount,” she said.

According to the language of the bill as it is currently written, “no demonstration of protest or incitement that disturbs the peace will be tolerated.” Violators will be fined,” Ynet reported.

Deputy Religious Affairs Minister Rabbi Eli Ben Dahan (Bayit Yehudi) said after Passover the ministry was in the process of creating new regulations to allow Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount.

Jerusalem District, Border Police Block Jewish March to Temple Mount

Tuesday, May 6th, 2014

Border Police and Jerusalem District Police had their hands full late Tuesday afternoon trying to stop a demonstration by Jewish protesters determined to reach the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site.

Arab police officers questioned and detained kipa-wearing Jews at the Jaffa Gate to the Old City of Jerusalem on Yom HaAtzma’ut, Israel’s Independence Day ahead of a scheduled march demanding Israel reestablish its sovereignty on the Temple Mount. No provocation was apparent prior to the questioning and arrests.

Police also confiscated signs the group held without even looking to see what they said, according to an eyewitness who watched as the Jews gathered for a march to the Temple Mount.

As the march began from Jaffa Gate, the group of 25 protesters was not permitted to march through the Arab souk (market) in order to prevent violent protests by Arab shopkeepers. Instead, police funnelled the group southward through the Armenian and Jewish Quarters as they chanted, “Lo Niten Et Ha Bayit L’Oyev” (“We won’t give the Temple to an enemy”) and “Ha am doresh et ha har l’ishachrer,” (“The People demand the liberation of the Temple Mount”)

“Yesterday we marked Yom HaZikaron (Memorial Day) (for fallen Israeli soldiers). Today is a day of mourning for Israel’s independence,” one of the activists told The Jewish Press.

As the group moved through the Jewish Quarter, most bystanders looked on with mild curiosity, but one group of observers – members of the radical leftist Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) looked on with clear distaste. The group, comprised of foreign nationals who volunteer to support Palestinian Arab aggressors against IDF troops, believes the Temple Mount should belong solely to Muslims.

“The Temple Mount does not belong to Jews,” members of the group told The Jewish Press bluntly they believed the

JP: “I just want to understand correctly – are you saying that Muslims should have freedom of religion in Israel but that Jews should not have freedom of religion in the Palestinian and Arab world?”

“Yes, that’s correct,” said the EAPPI activist, who refused to give her name and would not allow her photograph to be taken.

Temple Mount activist Noam Federman told protesters that Israel must liberate the site, not only in order to rebuild the Holy Temple but also to make clear – to Jews and Arabs alike – that Israel is the sovereign power in Jerusalem, and has no intention of changing that reality.

As the parade wound its way through the Jewish Quarter towards the Arab souk next to the Temple Mount, more than a dozen Border Police and Jerusalem police officers formed a human chain at the corner of the souk and HaKotel Street, several hundred meters to the west of Cotton Merchants Gate, in order to prevent marchers from proceeding towards the Temple Mount.  After a 20 minute standoff and a tense service for the afternoon Mincha prayer, protesters clashed with police, who proceeded to force the gathering south towards the Kotel plaza.

No injuries were reported, but Israel News reporters that four individuals were arrested.

 

Ateret Cohanim Opens Pre-Army Yeshiva Across from Old City

Monday, May 5th, 2014

Just outside the gates of the Old City of Jerusalem, a new yeshiva sponsored by the Ateret Cohanim organization is set to open by the end of the month.

It will be the first all-mechina pre-army Torah Learning Center to be established in Jerusalem.

Otzmat Yerushalayim,’ the first such venture on Sultan Suleiman Street, is housed in the Israel Post Office and Bezeq building. In the same building one can also find offices for the Border Police and the national Israel Police.

The building is located at the main intersection near the Flowers Gate of the Old City, also known as Herod’s Gate, according to the yeshiva’s website.

The yeshiva will be open to some 300 pre-army Jewish students in an area that leftist Jerusalem municipality representative Meir Margalit fears is “a sure recipe for violence. This is a very strategic site and there’s a potential her to cause serious disruptions in civic life in this city,” he told Reuters.

Boys from the pre-army Academy of Otzem in Cholot Chalutza (also known as the Mechina from Atzmona in Gush Katif) are the first group to learn in the yeshiva.

The Otzem Academy will send groups of 30 students each to the yeshiva to learn for 7 to 14-day periods over the coming months, according to the statement posted on the yeshiva website.

Students enrolled in pre-army academies throughout the country will send their students to do the same, sponsored by donors locally and abroad.

Facilities include a Beit Midrash, dining room, kitchen and dormitory which can hold up to 30 students at a time. Attendees will participate in educational tours around the Old City in addition to their studies.

A formal “Chanukat HaBayit” – open house” ceremony – is expected to take place around the date of Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day), the holiday celebrating the reunification of Jerusalem, Israel’s eternal capital.

This year will mark the 47th year since Israeli soldiers took back Jerusalem from its Jordanian occupiers (in the 1967 Six Day War) and the barbed wire cutting the city apart was finally erased from the landscape.  Israel’s restoration and formal annexation of the remainder of the capital has not been recognized by the United States and by the international community.

At present, some 215,000 Jews live in the eastern part of the capital, which is also home to approximately 280,000 Arabs, most of whom hold Israeli identity cards and enjoy state social benefits, including comprehensive health care.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ateret-cohanim-opens-pre-army-torah-learning-center-near-flowers-gate-to-old-city/2014/05/05/

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