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October 26, 2016 / 24 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘temple’

Does the UNESCO Resolution REALLY Nullify Jewish Ties to Temple Mount? Yes, it Does.

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

{Originally posted to the author’s blogsite, Elder of Ziyon}

Electronic Intifada and idiot blogger Richard Silverstein both claim that the UNESCO resolution passed last week actually does not deny any Jewish connection to the Temple Mount.

They mention (correctly) that the resolution affrims “the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions,” which presumably includes Judaism.

However, in regard to the Temple Mount itself, the resolution says the “Al-Aqṣa Mosque/Al-Ḥaram Al-Sharif, as reflected in the historic status quo, [is] a Muslim holy site of worship.”

Silverstein (who refers to the site as “the Haram” exclusively and falsely claims “When I was last in Israel in 1980, I visited the Haram and it was a peaceful place of worship for all who visited, including Jews)* argues that the resolution “simply doesn’t address the issue” of Jewish ties to the Temple Mount.

Ah, but it does – by omission.

Because the resolution refers to two other “Palestinian” holy sites, the Ma’arat HaMachpelah and Kever Rochel. And in both of those cases, while it mentions their Arabic titles first, it does identify them as the “Tomb of the Patriarchs” and “Rachel’s Tomb.” And it specifically says that both of those sites “are of religious significance for Judaism, Christianity and Islam.”

Clearly, the authors of the resolution are not denying the Jewish ties to those holy sites, even if they minimize those ties.

Given that, the lack of mentioning any Jewish (or Christian) connection to the Temple Mount, and the refusal to use any other name but the Muslim names for the site, are clearly deliberate and an attempt to frame the site as exclusively Muslim and having nothing to do with Judaism.

Elder of Ziyon

UNESCO Passes Resolution Denying Jewish Ties To Temple Mount

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

UNESCO, the United Nations cultural body, passed a resolution last week that condemns Israeli actions at Jerusalem’s holy sites and ignores any Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall complex.

Calling the vote “another hallucinatory decision” by the group, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “To say that Israel has not connection to the Temple and the Western Wall is like saying
that China is not connected to the Great Wall of China or the Egypt has no connection to the pyramids. I believe that historical truth is more powerful and this truth will prevail.”

The resolution, backed by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, and Sudan on behalf of the Palestinians, passed by a 24 –6 margin with 26 countries abstaining.

The six countries voting against the resolution were the U.S., Germany, the U.K., the Netherlands, Lithuania, and Estonia.

The resolution affirms “the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions” and goes on to denounce Israel as an “occupying power,” condemning it for a number of “aggressions and illegal measures” at the holy site.

It also blames Israel for inciting violence on the Temple Mount, which it exclusively refers to as the Al-Haram Al-Sharif, a Muslim term for the holy site that means in Arabic “The Noble Sanctuary.”

UNESCO “firmly deplores the continuous storming of Al-Aqṣa Mosque/Al-Ḥaram Al-Sharif by Israeli right-wing extremists and uniformed forces, and urges Israel, the occupying Power, to take necessary measures to prevent provocative abuses that violate the sanctity and integrity of Al-Aqṣa Mosque/Al-Ḥaram Al-Sharif.”

Additionally, it refers to Western Wall Plaza by its Muslim name “Al-Buraq Plaza,” a reference to the horse from Islamic mythology that transported the prophet Muhammad from Mecca to Jerusalem.

Jonathan Schanzer, vice president of research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told JNS that “the move is ironic in the sense that the Israelis have probably done more than any other sovereign that has controlled Jerusalem to ensure that all faiths can have access to the city and practice their faith.”

The latest UNESCO resolution follows another one passed in April that also ignored Jewish ties to the Temple Mount. That resolution passed with 33 votes in favor, six against and 17 abstentions.

Schanzer said the politicization process at UNESCO has been growing since the Palestinians joined the international body in 2011.

“This sadly shows that UNESCO is heading in the direction of the UN Human Rights Council where it is a caricature of itself,” he said.

“It underscores the dangers of the Palestinian statehood initiative, this process after the Palestinians joined of delegitimizing anything regarding Israel without any basis for it. It is a warning for any other UN agencies that may begin with working with the Palestinians.”

Despite the disappointing outcome for Israel, not a single European country voted in favor of the resolution, with nations like France, Spain, Slovenia, and Sweden abstaining. Other allies of Israel such as India also abstained.

Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama-Hacohen, said the outcome of the vote was a significant victory for Israel.

“The Palestinians have lost all support in Europe, including France, Spain, and even Sweden,” Shama-Hacohen said. “Along with the shift of position of key countries such as India and Argentina to abstention, the vote constitutes a significant achievement [for Israel] compared to the opening conditions for prior votes.”

The Temple Mount, the site of the first two Jewish temples, has long played a pivotal role in Jewish affairs and worship. Yet after the Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in the first century CE, the site passed through a succession of foreign rulers, from the Muslim Caliphs and Crusaders to more recently the Ottoman and British empires. While the site was under control of the Muslim Umayyad Caliphate in 691 C.E., the Dome of the Rock was built over the site of the former Jewish Temple.

After failing to gain control of Jerusalem’s Old City during the 1948 War of Independence, Israeli forces captured the Old City and the Temple Mount from Jordan during the 1967 Six-Day War. Despite regaining Jewish sovereignty over the Temple Mount, for the first time in nearly 2,000 years, Israeli leaders relinquished religious sovereignty over the site to the Jordanian-run Islamic Waqf. Under that arrangement, which became the “status quo,” Jewish prayer was forbidden on the Temple Mount and non-Muslim access was restricted to certain days and hours.

Before last week’s vote, the Israeli Foreign Ministry launched an all-out diplomatic blitz to convince as many countries as possible to either reject the resolution or abstain from the vote.

As part of that effort, the Foreign Ministry created a brochure detailing the Temple Mount’s Jewish history, including a picture of the Arch of Titus in Rome, which depicts a Jewish menorah carried off by the Romans.

Similarly, a bipartisan group of 39 U.S. lawmakers led by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) wrote a letter to the UNESCO executive board asking them to vote against the resolution.

“UNESCO’s anti-Israel agenda has long been apparent and this latest lopsided vote in favor of this shameful resolution is no different,” Ros-Lehtinen told JNS.

“This resolution attacked the historical connection between Judaism and Jerusalem as part of a larger effort throughout the UN system to delegitimize the Jewish state with Jerusalem as its capital.”

Ros-Lehtinen added that UNESCO’s continued anti-Israel focus “once again proves that this organization is in desperate need of reform, and until those reforms are made, I will continue to ensure that Congress does not allow any U.S. taxpayer dollars to be used to fund this broken organization.”

Prominent Jewish and Christian groups also weighed on condemning the UNESCO resolution.

“UNESCO’s leadership has approved a blatantly biased resolution that attempts to erase the specific deep-rooted, historical connection of Jews (and Christians) to Jerusalem, Israel’s eternal capital,” the Orthodox Union said in a statement. “It also unjustly singles out Israel with false accusations and criticism with regard to recent acts of terrorism.”

Sean Savage

Arab MK: No Jewish Temple Ever Existed on Temple Mount [audio]

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

In a zeal reminiscent of the ISIS hordes destroying archaeological treasures belonging to cultures and religions before the birth of Islam, and a fervor matching that of the Arab members of UNESCO who voted to erase millennia of Jewish history in Jerusalem, MK Ahmad Tibi (Joint Arab List) on Thursday said that “There has never been any connection to the Al Aqsa Mosque to any other religion, and although I don’t wish to enter a religious dispute, there was no Temple.”

Ahmad Tibi is not a religious zealot. A gynecologist with a degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, he has been a Knesset Member since 1999, and has served as deputy speaker for much of that time. He belongs to the Balad (National Democratic Assembly) faction of his Knesset list, which, at least on paper, has a secular, democracy-for-all agenda.

The dispute MK Tibi has just entered is not, as he put it, religious, but scientific, since the numerous archaeological excavations of the past few decades, including the project of sifting through the mountains of earth carved out of the Temple Mount by its supposed custodians, the Jordanian Waqf, are providing literally thousands of bits of evidence to the existence of a thriving Jewish culture in Jerusalem in general and on the Temple Mount specifically.

Why, then, would MK Tibi issue a provocative tweet with no bearing in the commonly accepted science of the day?

Because of another element in his political history which we haven’t yet presented: Tibi served as a close political advisor to PLO chief Yasser Arafat from 1993 to 1999, and represented the PA at the 1998 Wye River negotiations—despite his Israeli nationality. He had the sense to resign from this post in 1999, when he ran for the Knesset.

The Balad leader Azmi Bishara did not possess the same common sense. He was charged with treason and receiving large sums of money from a foreign agent in return for his services, as well as money laundering. He promised to return from a few days’ trip abroad to continue questioning by the authorities, but after several weeks in other Arab states he resigned from the Knesset at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo on April 22, 2007 and never returned to Israel to face court proceedings. He continued to accept his Knesset pension checks for almost four years, until, in February 2011, the Knesset passed a bill revoking pensions for lawmakers who have evaded an investigation or trial for serious offenses.

It’s quite possible that Tibi, who is also famous for his great speech commemorating the Jewish Holocaust, just couldn’t help himself on Thursday and let that tweet fly. But Tibi is a cynic, not easily given to unplanned outbursts (his short fuse is deliberately so). Watch this space for new developments.

Here is the radio interview Tibi gave to Reshet Bet explaining how all Muslims believe no other house of prayer (or Jewish Temple) existed on the Temple Mount before the Arabs built their structures over the Bayt al-Muqaddas (The Temple)

David Israel

Holiday News: Police Arrest Jew on Temple Mount

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

An 18-year-old Jewish man was arrested Wednesday morning on the Temple Mount on suspicion of bowing before the King of the Universe, Honenu reported. The young man was taken for police interrogation, and Honenu, a legal aid society, is pursuing his release. Rumor has it that the same man also broke the law by reciting the Shema Israel, a radical text introduced in 1248 BCE.

David Israel

Jewish Teen Detained By Israel Police, Allegedly Near Temple Mount

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016

A 16-year-old Jewish teen was detained late Monday night for allegedly being near the gates to the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem, the Honenu civil rights organization reported.

An attorney from the organization was looking into the cause of the detention, the group said in a statement.

The Al Aqsa Mosque, as well as the Dome of the Rock are both located within the Temple Mount compound, and Muslims cite Jewish “interference” of any kind as the slightest excuse for wild riots and major terrorist attacks.

The Jerusalem Arab terrorist who murdered two people this past Sunday (Oct. 9, 2016) and wounded six others in the capital claimed as his excuse the Supreme Court restraining order banning him from entering Jerusalem for 30 days. He ranted in a post on a social networking site 48 hours earlier that his life was “worthless if he could not enter Jerusalem to pray at the Al Aqsa Mosque.”

The real reason for his dedication to Jerusalem, however, was belied by a reference in his rant to “Qassam martyrs,” which later made sense when the Hamas terrorist organization announced he had been a member of the group. The military arm of Hamas is called the Izz a-Din al-Qassam Martyrs’ Brigades.

Tensions over the Temple Mount are extremely high, in particular as the Jewish high holy days are underway. Terror attacks are again on the rise in Jerusalem, as well as on the roads of Judea, Samaria and in the Binyamin region.

Hana Levi Julian

Large First Temple Period Gate-Shrine Excavated in Central Israel

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

An important and unusual discovery was made in archaeological excavations that were carried out in the Tel Lachish National Park, an archaeological site located in the Shfela (lowland) region of Israel between Mount Hebron and the Mediterranean coast. The find is a gate-shrine from the First Temple period (eighth century BCE) in what archaeologists perceive as compelling evidence of King Hezekiah’s efforts to abolish idol worship there, as described in the Bible: “He removed the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles…” (II Kings 18:4).

The archaeological excavation was conducted between January and March by the Israel Antiquities Authority, at the initiative of the Ministry of Jerusalem and Heritage and in cooperation with the Nature and Parks Authority, in order to further the continued development of the Tel Lachish National Park. The northern part of the gate was uncovered decades ago, and the current excavation aims to expose the gate completely. The gate that emerged is the largest known from the First Temple period.


A computerized image of the Lachish city gate. Photo credit: Architects Ram Shoaf and Hila Berger-Onn, Israel Antiquities Authority Conservation Department.

According to Sa’ar Ganor, excavation director on behalf of the IAA, “The size of the gate is consistent with the historical and archaeological knowledge we possess, whereby Lachish was a major city and the most important one after Jerusalem.” According to the biblical narrative, the city gate was where the city elders, judges, governors, kings and officials sat on their benches, as the core of civic life. “These benches were found in our excavation,” Ganor noted.

The Lachish city gate (73.5 × 73.5 ft.), which is now completely exposed and preserved to a height of 12 ft., consists of six chambers, three on either side, and the city’s main street that passed between them. Artifacts discovered in its rooms indicate how they were used in the eighth century BCE: in the first chamber were benches with armrests, at the foot of which were numerous finds including jars, a large number of scoops for loading grain and stamped jar handles that bear the name of the official or a lmlk (belonging to the king) seal impression. Two of the handles bear the seal impression lmlk hbrn (belonging to the king of Hebron). The word lmlk is written on one of the handles together with a depiction of a four-winged beetle (scarab), and another impression bears the name lnhm avadi, who was probably a senior official during the reign of King Hezekiah. It seems that these jars were related to the military and administrative preparations of the Kingdom of Judah in the war against Sennacherib, king of Assyria (705- 681 BCE).

Excavation work in the gate-shrine exposed at Tel Lachish. The altar with its truncated horns is visible in the center of the frame. Photo credit: Saʽar Ganor, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Excavation work in the gate-shrine exposed at Tel Lachish. The altar with its truncated horns is visible in the center of the frame. Photo credit: Saʽar Ganor, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

The continuation of the building is a gate-shrine whose walls were treated with white plaster. According to Ganor, “Steps to the gate-shrine in the form of a staircase ascended to a large room where there was a bench upon which offerings were placed. An opening was exposed in the corner of the room that led to the holy of holies; to our great excitement, we found two four-horned altars and scores of ceramic finds consisting of lamps, bowls, and stands in this room. It is most interesting that the horns on the altar were intentionally truncated! That is probably evidence of the religious reform attributed to King Hezekiah, whereby religious worship was centralized in Jerusalem and the cultic high places that were built outside the capital were destroyed: “He removed the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles…” (II Kings 18:4)

Artifacts from the First Temple period that were uncovered in the excavation – oil lamps, seal impressions that were stamped for the purpose of identifying jars, arrowheads, etc. Photo credit: Clara Amit, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Artifacts from the First Temple period that were uncovered in the excavation – oil lamps, seal impressions that were stamped for the purpose of identifying jars, arrowheads, etc. Photo credit: Clara Amit, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Besides cutting the horns on the altar, in order to further intensify the abolition of worship in the gate-shrine, a toilet was installed in the holy of holies as the ultimate desecration of that place. A stone fashioned in the shape of a chair with a hole in its center was found in the corner of the room. Stones of this type have been identified in archaeological research as toilets. Evidence of abolishing cultic locations by installing a toilet in them is known in the Bible, as illustrated in the case of Jehu destroying the cult of Baʽal in Samaria: “And they demolished the pillar of Baʽal, and demolished the house of Baʽal, and made it a latrine to this day.” (II Kings 10:27) This is the first time that an archaeological find confirms this phenomenon. Laboratory tests we conducted in the spot where the stone toilet was placed suggest it was never used. Hence, we can conclude that the placement of the toilet had been symbolic, after which the holy of holies was sealed until the site was destroyed.

According to the Minister of Jerusalem and Heritage and Environmental Protection Ze’ev Elkin, “the fascinating new discovery at Tel Lachish is a typical example whereby excavations and further research of heritage sites show us time and time again how biblical tales that are known to us become historical and archaeological stories. … Before our very eyes these new finds become the biblical verses themselves and speak in their voice.”

The toilet archaeologists believe was placed there symbolically in order to defile and abolish the cultic worship in the gate-shrine — at the time of its discovery. Photo credit: Igor Kramerman.

The toilet archaeologists believe was placed there symbolically in order to defile and abolish the cultic worship in the gate-shrine — at the time of its discovery. Photo credit: Igor Kramerman.

According to the Minister of Culture and Sport Miri Regev, “the uncovering of these finds joins a long list of discoveries that enlighten us about our historic past, a past that is manifested in our country’s soil and in the writings of the Book of Books.”

According to Shaul Goldstein, director-general of the Nature and Parks Authority, “Tel Lachish is one of the most quintessential places where one can get unequivocal proof of Israel’s hold on its land. The new visitor center will include the relief that was found in the private room of the King of Assyria which depicts our forefathers in their war and as they entered captivity that led to a life of exile that continues to this day. The altar from the time of King Hezekiah constitutes another sacred link to this important settlement.”

The gate at Tel Lachish was destroyed by Sennacherib, king of Assyria, in 701 BCE. The excavation revealed destruction layers in the wake of that defeat, including arrowheads and sling stones, indicative of the hand-to-hand combat that took place in the city’s gatehouse. Evidence of Sennacherib’s military campaign in Judah is known from the archaeological record, the Bible (II Kings 18 and II Chronicles 32), and the Lachish wall reliefs from Sennacherib’s palace in Nineveh, depicting the story of the city’s conquest.

At this time the gate is temporarily covered for conservation purposes and cannot be seen. The Nature and Parks Authority, in cooperation with the IAA, is currently engaged in the continued development and conservation of the site in preparation of opening it to visitors.


Palestinian University Built Just a Few Feet From the Temple Mount

Sunday, September 25th, 2016

{Originally posted to the Israel Rising website}

In an attempt to appropriate and strengthen the Islamic and Arab narrative in the Old City of Jerusalem, Al Quds in the Old City is financed by the EU and other Palestinian Authority backers.

The area the Al Quds Jerusalem branch is located in is in between the Temple Mount, the Northern Jewish Quarter and the famous Kotel HaKatan (Small Western Wall). This area is more than just strategic, but historically and religiously significant to Jews.  The Northern Jewish Quarter was the home to a thriving Jewish community up until the Arab pogroms of th 1920’s and 1930’s as well a few minutes walk from the now renovated Synagogues in the area.

By the Arabs making a play for the area they are attempting to alter the fragile balance in a Jewishly historic area of the Old City.


David Mark

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/guest-blog/palestinian-university-built-just-a-few-feet-from-the-temple-mount/2016/09/25/

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