Thousands attend funerals of terrorists who killed two cops at Temple Mount
Thousands of people attended the funerals overnight Wednesday of the three Arab-Israeli terrorists who carried out a terror attack at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem two weeks ago, killing two Israeli Druze police officers with weapons they had smuggled onto the holy site.
Some 3,000 people were at the funerals in the northern Israeli city of Umm al-Fahm, according to Hebrew media.
The three terrorists, Muhammad Ahmed Muhammad Jabarin, 29, Muhammad Hamad Abdel Latif Jabarin, 19 and Muhammad Ahmed Mafdal Jabarin, 19 — all relatives — were residents of the city.
The burial processions included cheers and celebratory chants, Hebrew media reported, as attendees vowed to become “martyrs for al-Aqsa,” in reference to the mosque that sits on the Temple Mount along with the Dome of the Rock sanctuary.
Some flew the Palestinian flag, according to Channel 2.
An unnamed member of the Jabarin family praised the attackers, telling Channel 2 they were “shahids” (martyrs), and saying “they received the respect they deserved with a mass funeral the area has not seen before.”
Palestinian Authority Ambassador to the UN Riyad Mansour refused to condemn the brutal slaughter of three Israelis at their Shabbat table last Friday and justified the murders in a statement at the UN headquarters in New York Monday.
An Arab terrorist entered the home of the Salomon family in Halamish as they ate their Shabbat evening dinner and murdered Yosef Salomon (70), and his children Haya (46) and Elad (35).
Mansour responded to a reporter’s query that the PA cannot condone such an attack by telling the reporter not to “expect all Palestinians to be angels.”
“If people think that the Palestinian people are going to live that situation without any form of resistance to it, that is not realistic and that is not fair.”
Thousands of Muslim worshipers entered the Temple Mount on Thursday for the first time in nearly two weeks, many shouting in delight as they did so, and violent clashes erupted between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at the compound.
A police officer was lightly injured after a rock was thrown at his head, police said.
Some 46 Palestinians were hurt in the clashes both inside the compound and in the surrounding area, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent.
Police said worshipers began hurling rocks at security forces upon their reentry to the compound.
Some stones fell at the Western Wall plaza below, causing no injuries, a police spokesperson said.
The police responded to the stone-throwing with riot dispersal methods and vowed to forcefully combat any violence.
After Israel removed the metal detectors and other security measures around the compound installed by police after a July 14 terror attack, Palestinians were given the all-clear by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Jerusalem’s Muslim religious authorities on Thursday to end their 12-day boycott of the holy site.
Israel late Wednesday removed minor security installations, including fairly flimsy metal railings, from an entrance to the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem, a sensitive holy site that has been at the center of violence over the past two weeks in the wake of a terror attack in which two Israeli police officers were killed near the compound. The Muslim authorities who administer the site had demanded that the railings be removed, among other steps, in a list given to Israel Police earlier Wednesday.
In response to the July 14 attack, in which three Arab Israelis killed the two officers near the Lions Gate with guns they had smuggled into the holy site, Israel installed security measures at the entrances, including metal detectors, which set off protests and deadly unrest in and around East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
Early on Tuesday, Israel had removed the metal detectors. Late on Wednesday night, newly installed railings and scaffolding where cameras were previously mounted were also removed from the Lions Gate area near the entrance to the Mount.
The removal of the railings and scaffolding late Wednesday prompted celebrations by Palestinians, who danced, whistled and honked their horns near the site.
Mordechai Kedar: Caving in cravenly to terror, acting stupidly towards Jordan
Instead of heeding the Jordanian king’s demands on security measures in Jerusalem, Israel should have told him clearly: “The murderous attack on July 14th proved that you are not living up to your responsibilities on the Temple Mount. Accordingly, you have not kept that part of our peace agreement and have relinquished the special status Israel [stupidly] granted your father in 1994. As far as the security guard who defended himself in Amman is concerned, you have one hour to hand him over to us healthy and whole. Until that happens, Israel will not transfer the tens of millions of cubic meters of water that it promised your father in the peace agreements.”
That is the way Israel should be communicating with the king of Jordan, especially since he led the anti-Israel UNESCO decision on Jerusalem. Is that the behavior of a country that has a peace agreement with us?
When Israel put the security equipment on the Temple Mount about ten days ago, King Abdullah II of Jordan turned to the American government and the countries of Europe, saying that Israel’s actions might cause the Muslims in Jordan and outside it to be furious with him because of his “special status” in Jerusalem, and might threaten the stability of his monarchy. In order to guard his shaky throne, he demanded Israel remove the security apparatus it had placed there. Is there a more ridiculous demand than this one? Is Israel expected to put its own citizens in danger to protect the job the king inherited from his grandfather Abdullah I, himself put there by the British with no justification whatsoever?
Israeli egregiousness is blatant when it comes to Jordan. Israel prefers to serve tactical, immediate, short term and narrow interests instead of the strategic, long term interests provided by overthrowing the present Hashemite monarchy and turning Jordan into a Palestinian Arab state. The last few days proved that the peace agreement with Jordan does nothing but put constraints on Israel while allowing pressure to be imposed on it by an illegitimate monarchy living on borrowed time, that can collapse any minute as did the other much more stable Arab regimes in our area
The Hashemite monarchy owes its life to Israel and Israel has no need to give in on anything it demands. But it is hard to expect a government that caves in to terror to be able to wend its way safely along the crooked roads of the Middle East.;
Israel will have to invest much effort to restore its image, severely damaged by the government decision. Perhaps the time has come for Israelis to ask themselves if they would not be better off with a more steadfast national leader who has the guts to stand up to the challenges that could lead to security in the terror-wracked area in which the Jewish state would like to survive. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
To clarify what is actually going on: it is not the security measures that really anger the Palestinians; for them, this crisis is not about a metal detector or a security camera. Rather, it is about sovereignty over the Temple Mount, Jerusalem and the whole of Israel. For the Palestinians, the real struggle is not over the Temple Mount, but over the presence of Jews in what they consider “occupied Palestine, from the (Jordan) river to the (Mediterranean) sea.”
In the face of the metal detector removal, the Palestinians are calling for yet more “days of rage.” The Palestinians were hoping to drag the Arab and Islamic countries into a confrontation with Israel. This is a hope they have thus far failed to achieve, especially as the short-lived crisis with Jordan proved. The Palestinians now feel disappointed that they were unable to drive a wedge between Israel and Jordan.
So, what else is on the Palestinian agenda of violence? They are aiming to stop Jews from visiting the Temple Mount. They are also hoping to show Israel and the rest of the world that sovereignty over the Temple Mount belongs to Muslims and to Muslims alone. In short, this is about strong-arming Israel and portraying it as weak and volatile and scared — a country ripe for intimidation and taking apart.
First, the Palestinians demanded that Israel dismantle metal detectors. Then, they were demanding that Israel end all forms of security measures at the Temple Mount. It is not difficult to imagine what the next demand will be. It is not the security measures that the Palestinians want dismantled. It is Israel that they want dismantled.
Thus, dismantled or intact, the metal detectors have played a vital role by exposing Palestinian and Muslim lies and blood libels.
Then there are the 12 Israeli Arab Knesset members (10% of the Knesset) who clearly and vocally reject the very sovereignty of Israel and see their Knesset presence as a Trojan Horse intent on destroying Israel from the inside. These Israel Arab MKs have made their feeling towards Israel abundantly clear. Just google “Ahmad Tibi” and you’ll see plenty of videos and statements that will make your hair stand on end. For example, Tibi stated, “I’m a Palestinian patriot whether you like it or not. If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be Ahmad Tibi.” Try Haneen Zoabi next.
What is truly remarkable is not these Arab MK’s treasonous acts and statements, it is the Israeli sanction of treasonous Arab behavior. It is a rare day when an Arab MK is actually punished for his/her despicable behavior.
And, at core, the Israeli inaction and sanction is the heart of the problem. One can’t be responsible for Israeli Arab behavior, but the Israelis and their government are fully responsible for allowing this anti-Israel hate of the Arab MKs to vest and just watch it grow and grow. If Israeli MK Tibi says he’s a “Palestinian Patriot” that’s fine, but his Palestinian loyalty must disqualify him as an Israeli Knesset member who (one would assume) is supposed to swear loyalty to Israel just like an American congressman or Senator swears an oath to the United States. Failure to disqualify Tibi has been a green light to all Israeli Arabs to abhor and foment terror against Israel.
The failure of Israel to forcefully enforce its national legal identity has corrupted Israel’s very existence. PM Netanyahu should spend less time asking Abbas to call Israel a “Jewish State,” and more time himself saying and enforcing the fact that “Israel is an Israeli State.” Otherwise, the Palestinians won’t need another state to destroy Israel, they will only need the Israeli Arabs voting with an extreme leftist Israeli government to cede not only Judea and Samaria, but also the Galilee and Haifa.
Religious officials at Islam’s third-holiest site plan to waste no time today upon coming back there in making up for all the parkour, soccer games, and other leisure activities they were unable to conduct at the site during a boycott over Israeli security measures there.
Following the murder of two Israeli policemen two Fridays ago by gunmen who had used weapons smuggled into the holy compound, Israel installed metal detectors and security cameras to monitor visitors from all entrances to the Temple Mount, and not only the non-Muslims. The Jordanian Waqf, which administers the site, along with the Islamic Movement and various Palestinian groups, called on Muslims not to ascend the plateau until Israel restores the status quo ante, which it finally did this morning (Thursday). In the meantime, riots and other violence related to the protests claimed several lives.
A Waqf official told reporters that while the refusal to enter the compound was a necessary tool for public political leverage against the security measures, the group acknowledges the need now to compensate for the races, day camp activities, gymnastics displays, and other sacred rituals that were not performed on the Temple Mount during that period.
“This was of course an extreme situation,” explained Shiqron Qoh. “But that does not change the fact that we now have a backlog, a deficit, of dance-offs, water fights, bubble-blowing demonstrations, juggling shows, capture-the-flag games, and aerobics instruction that were supposed to take place at the Haram al-Sharif these past two weeks. We will have to schedule make-up sessions for all of these sacred activities that we were unable to conduct.”
Jordan’s King Abdullah II on Thursday launched an unprecedented, bitter tirade against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his “absolutely unacceptable” warm reception of an Israeli security guard in Amman who shot dead two Jordanian citizens his week after one of them attacked him with a screwdriver.
The king called for the security guard to be tried and accused Netanyahu of “political showmanship” and of using “this crime to score personal political points,” after the Israeli leader posted photos of himself embracing the guard.
The monarch threatened the affair would have a negative affect on bilateral ties between Amman and Jerusalem, directly impacting relations.
The royal palace in Jordan tweeted a series of the king’s criticisms of Netanyahu.
He also appeared to take sole credit for resolving the standoff between Israel and angry Muslim worshipers at the Temple Mount.
“The Israeli prime minister is required to honor his responsibilities and take the necessary legal measures to ensure that the killer is tried and justice is served, rather than exhibiting political showmanship in dealing with this crime to score personal political points,” Abdullah said at a National Policies Council meeting at Al Husseiniya Palace, west of Amman.
Jordanian media outlets reported Thursday morning that the kingdom will not allow Israeli Ambassador Einat Schlein and her staff to return to Amman until Jordanian authorities receive guarantees that the embassy guard who killed 2 Jordanians will stand trial.
In an interview with Arabic-language Sky News, Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Al Safadi criticized Israel’s welcoming of the embassy guard back to Israel, saying, “shameful and unacceptable way to behave diplomatically.”
The incident unfolded last Sunday when two Jordanian workers were installing furniture for the guard in his residence along with the guard’s Jordanian landlord. At some point an argument broke out between 17-year-old Mohammed Jawawdeh and the guard.
According to the Jordanians, the argument was in connection with a delay in the work. At some point, Jawawdeh attacked the guard with a screwdriver, who in turn, drew his pistol and shot him. The landlord was struck by a stray round and later succumbed to his wounds.
IsraellyCool: Jordan Redefines Good Ole Chutzpah
According to a YNET report the Jordanian Foreign Minister has condemned Israel for welcoming back the security guard. He says it was shameful and that Israel should have behaved “diplomatically.” And here’s where we get to the perfect definition of chutzpah.
In March of this year, Jordanians celebrated the release of Ahmed Daqamseh, who attacked and murdered 7 young Israeli school girls in Naharayim in 1997. And, in October, 2011, Jordanians took to the streets to celebrate the return of Ahlam Tamimi, the Palestinian terrorist who helped perpetrate the Sbarro attack in Jerusalem in August 2001, in which 15 people were murdered, including 8 children.
Chutzpah is Jordan having the nerve to question Israel for celebrating the return of a security guard who was attacked and managed to kill his attacker after they had the absolute nerve of celebrating child killers like Tamimi (may God curse her miserable life) and Daqamseh (may God curse his miserable life).
And how do you know what they did was chutzpah? When you understand that they celebrated cold-blooded murderers, did you sputtering in outrage at their audacity? Were you shocked at the nerve? Did you think the pathetic and dishonest actions of the Jordanians were disgusting? That, my friends, is chutzpah.
MK Esawi Frej (Meretz) called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wednesday to apologize to Jordan over the killing of an apparent bystander by a security guard during the incident on Sunday at the Israeli Embassy in Amman.
According to the Foreign Ministry, the security officer was stabbed and slightly wounded by a screwdriver-wielding worker who had entered the embassy compound for furniture replacement. The worker, Mohammed Jawawdah, 17, was shot dead by the guard, who was acting in self-defense, according to the ministry.
The guard also fatally shot Bashar al-Hamarneh, a physician, who according to Jordan’s Petra news agency “happened to be there when the incident occurred as he is the owner of the building.”
Frej, in remarks to The Jerusalem Post, also took issue with Netanyahu’s warmly welcoming the guard home and his office posting a video of him greeting the guard in his office and praising his handling of the incident.
The State of Israel will compensate the family of the Jordanian landlord who was accidentally killed by the Israeli security guard who was attacked in Jordan, Army Radio reported Tuesday evening.
The Israeli security guard was attacked by one of the workers who was replacing furniture in his apartment. The worker stabbed the Israeli several times using a screwdriver.
The security guard opened fire and kill the terrorist who attacked him, but the owner of the home, who was at the scene as well, was accidentally killed.
The landlord, a doctor by profession, is reportedly sympathetic to Israel, and the State of Israel will compensate his family for his death but it is still unclear how much will be paid, according to Army Radio.
NY Post Editorial: Turkish tyrant’s Temple Mount hypocrisy
Protests continue even after Israel agreed to remove the metal detectors from the mount, which includes both the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Western Wall. And Erdogan’s egging them on.
“Israel is trying to steal al-Aqsa from the Muslims,” Erdogan said as he urged “all Muslims” to descend on Jerusalem to “protect” it against Israeli soldiers “defiling al-Aqsa with their combat boots.”
This from a guy whose country has illegally occupied more than a third of Cyprus since its 1974 invasion, and still has 40,000 troops there.
And from a leader who’s gone to war on his own citizens, in 2015 tossing aside a cease-fire to launch raids into majority-Kurd areas. In March, a UN report said the operations have killed hundreds and driven up to half a million from their homes.
As Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon notes, Erdogan “would do better to deal with the problems and difficulties in his own country.”
Well, except that he is the problem.
Turkey needs to know they cannot continue to kick Israel, and Israel will come back and ask for more, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid said Thursday in reaction to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s fanning the flames surrounding the tensions on the Temple Mount.
“The time has come to stop ingratiating ourselves to the Turks, who every time come and kick us harder,” he told journalists during a briefing in Tel Aviv.
“We need to say, ‘okay, we understand, now we have to run our own policy: from now on we support the establishment of an independent Kurdish state, we need to recognize the Armenian genocide, we need to do all the things that we didn’t do when we had good relations with Turkey, because we don’t, and we will not have in the future,” he said.
He also said that Israel needs to give up the idea of a gas pipeline to Turkey.
“Israel cannot allow itself to be dependent on a consumer which has for all intents and purposes turned into a hostile or semi-hostile state,” he said.
The Islamists who incited and ignited the metal detector crisis at the Temple Mount wanted an intifada. They haven’t given up their wish just yet. That’s the main reason the Waqf was preventing Muslim worshipers from returning to the Temple Mount until Thursday afternoon, although the Israeli government had already removed the metal detectors.
One of these famous Islamists is Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who—like in the Marmara crisis—is leading the anti-Israeli religious incitement. He’s doing it in his speeches, but also behind the scenes.
Erdogan wants to be the leader of political Islam in the Middle East—in other words, the leader of all the Muslim Brotherhood movements, which both Hamas and Sheikh Raed Salah’s Islamic Movement in Israel are affiliated with. Preserving the conflict at the Temple Mount serves the Islamist-radical camp in the intra-Arab conflict between the moderate Sunni Arab states and Qatar, Turkey and the different Muslim Brotherhood movements. Hamas is one of these movements, and its supporters—together with Raed Salah’s people—are trying to maintain and leverage the violent energy that has accumulated on the Jerusalem-Palestinian street and in the Muslim world in general. Their goal is to turn this energy into a long intifada, which will encompass not only Jerusalem but also the territories and Israel’s Arabs, and will echo and be imitated in the Muslim world in general.
Barry Shaw: Israel caught in a trap of its own making
Ever seen how a jackal kills its prey? Usually, it doesn’t kill it with one blow or bite. It surrounds it, it challenges it, it probes for points of weakness. It then gets its jaws around the neck of its prey and won’t let go. Whenever the animal struggles it makes itself weaker.
This is what we have been seeing from Israel. We are caught, like an animal, unable to shake off the obsessive hunger of those who have their claws into us and want to destroy us. Like a wounded animal, we didn’t assess the threat, or appreciate the real danger. In nature, the targeted animal often appears to be so powerful it could easily resist the deadly jackals. They thought their strong and non-offensive posture would appease the hungry killers into not attacking.
Like the wounded beast, Israel finds itself caught in a trap of its own making. Like that animal, Israel is caught in the jaws of those that want to destroy us.
How did we get to the point that a strong Jewish state is strategically so meek that we have too readily surrendered Judaism’s most holy site to a comparatively weak adversary? It’s down to a failed policy of playing nice.
Israel’s decision to take down the metal detectors at the entrances to the Temple Mount is being portrayed by Fatah as a decision made out of fear.
The cartoon above, which shows Palestinians at the Temple Mount by the Dome of the Rock cheering in victory as metal detectors run away from them in fear, was posted by Fatah on Facebook with the following text:
“The Palestinian people, the nation of giants” [Official Fatah Facebook page, July 25, 2017]
The cartoon refers to Israel’s decision to dismantle the metal detectors and security cameras at the entrances to the Temple Mount that it had placed there following a terror attack at the site on July 14, 2017, in which 2 Israelis were murdered (see note below). Several events over the last two weeks seem to have led to this.
Another cartoon likewise shows Palestinians celebrating together with the Muslim and Christian holy sites, while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, downcast and disheveled, walks away, carrying a metal detector on his back and with a security camera and boot hanging around his neck:
While PA leaders have completely ignored the terror attack last week, in which a terrorist stabbed and murdered 3 Israelis while they were having dinner in their home, PA TV’s “expert on Israeli affairs” presented the murderer as compassionate because he “refused to harm” the children present in the house:
“Israeli affairs expert” Fayez Abbas: “Are they [Arab members of the Israeli Parliament] the reason that the young person (i.e., terrorist Omar Al-Abd) from the village of Kubar entered the settlement [of Halamish] and killed 3 settlers in response to what is happening at the Al-Aqsa Mosque? … This is the picture of the children claimed to be rescued, but there is a different story: The young person (i.e., the terrorist) knew there were children and refused to harm them, at least according to the Palestinian [reports].”
[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, July 23, 2017]
The real reason the children were unharmed was because the mother of the children, Michal Solomon, hid with them in another room and locked the door while her husband, Elad, was being stabbed to death. Elad fought with the terrorist, which bought time for a neighbor to shoot the terrorist and stop his killing spree.
The official PA daily described the terrorist murderer as a man of “morals” because he “could also have killed the wife” of one of his victims but “spared her,” proving that “morals have a place, even in war”:
“Omar Al-Abd succeeded in killing 3 settlers and wounding a fourth during his operation, but he could also have killed the wife of one of the 3 settlers that were killed. However, he preferred not to do so as she was a mother holding two of her children in her arms, and thus he proved that ‘morals have a place, even in war.'”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 25, 2017]
In the heat of the midday sun outside the Temple Mount, Palestinian sentiment regarding the site was uncompromisingly clear and bellicose: Jews have no rights to the compound and Israel has no right to take control of it.
Palestinians once again flocked to the entrances to Mount on Tuesday, but prayed outside of the holy site again despite the removal of the metal detectors that generated so much opposition from the Palestinian political and religious leadership.
Although the prayers passed peacefully, there was a heavy police presence around the Temple Mount and throughout the Old City of Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter, with border police wearing heavy neck-guards to block any stabbing attacks. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
The Prime Minister’s Office evidently enjoys a surplus of advisers and experts on American affairs, Likud matters, economics and Israeli politics. But there is apparently a shortage of Arabic speakers who could have whispered in Netanyahu’s ear, just before the photo op with Ziv, Stop! This will cause serious harm to our relations with Jordan.
Netanyahu is not the only Israeli leader to have under-performed. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman simply disappeared for the duration of the crisis. Normally so garrulous, Liberman was silent, and allowed everybody to blunder deeper into the quagmire. Were Israel to have a defense minister with more military and security experience, understanding and interest, such a voice would have been significant and might even have helped Netanyahu avoid some of the mistakes, the zigzagging, and the damage. Erdan and the police might also now better realize that the Shin Bet chiefs and IDF officers derided as alarmists and panickers actually do know a thing or two about security.
Unfortunately, one cannot argue with the conclusion of Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett and his friends on the right: Israel’s deterrent capability has indeed been harmed in this crisis. The Palestinians — the public and the decision-makers — sense weakness on the part of the State of Israel, especially its prime minister. Sadly, nonetheless, the government’s capitulation became a necessity given the looming threat of bloodshed. Sometimes one has to know when to withdraw.
Dore Gold: Beyond the Debate Over Metal Detectors
Holy sites across the Middle East have lost their traditional immunity. The Taliban dynamited 2,000-year-old Buddhist statues in the Bamiyan Valley in Afghanistan. There were attacks in areas controlled by the Palestinians such as Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus and the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
This year, Saudi Arabia foiled a suicide attack on the Grand Mosque in Mecca. A year ago there was an attack on the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina where four Saudi Arabian security officers were killed. ISIS recently destroyed the 800-year-old Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, Iraq. Given this wave of attacks, all governments around the Middle East feel the necessity to put in place security measures that will prevent jihadi organizations from carrying out their plans.
What has been motivating many young Palestinians who are protesting outside of the Temple Mount area has been the complete falsehood that Israel intends to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque. This myth was originally begun by the infamous Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini back in 1929. It has returned every four or five years with greater force.
Raed Salah, the leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel’s northern branch,Â has for the last decade been convening large rallies with huge posters asserting that Al-Aqsa is in danger. Beyond Israel, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual head of the Muslim Brotherhood, who sits in Qatar, who has been asserting that the Al-Aqsa Mosque is in greater danger than ever before. Young people hear these stories and are convinced that if they don’t take action, then their cherished mosque is at risk.
Even if you solve the problem of what kind of sensors you put in place at the Temple Mount, you’re going to be left with the incitement that is the principal cause of the violence. This is why, if the issue of religious incitement is not explicitly addressed, then the seeds will still be left in place for the next round of violence ahead.
King Bibi Hizkiyahu of Judah emptied the treasury of Solomon’s Temple and sent them as tribute to the advancing King of Assyria Sennacherib today, reassuring the people of Jerusalem that surely the Assyrians will be satisfied with the gift and stop trying to conquer city after city in the kingdom of Judah.
King Bibi went as far as to strip the decorative gold from the doorposts of the sanctuary, which was by built by Solomon nearly three centuries before. The king hoped to appease Sennacherib and spare his capital city after an Assyrian campaign to subdue vassal states in the Levant that had ceased to pay tribute, among them Judah. Now that the enormous sum has been sent to the invading king, King Bibi promised his constituents that there is no way Sennacherib will continue his campaign against Judah, and certainly no more threat of a siege of Jerusalem with 185,000 attacking soldiers.
Spokesmen for the king dispersed throughout the city and its environs to reassure the populace. “This was a bold, decisive move,” insisted Yuval Shebnitz, an official closely allied with King Bibi. “It may look to many of you like a capitulation, a sign of weakness, and that is your right. But it was surely a courageous move.”
A series where I bring to you news from the archives and historical documents to debunk common misconceptions about the Middle East conflict.
As the Muslim world continues to display severe anger management issues over Israel’s initial decision to install metal detectors at entrances to the Temple Mount after the murder of two of our police officers up there – even though we capitulated and now rolled back the detectors and security cameras – it bears reminding that before Israel regained control over the old City of Jerusalem, Jews were not able to access the Western Wall (except sometimes, at a price).
I am not even speaking about the period during Jordianian control between 1948 and 1967, but even earlier than that.
In 1930, the situation was so bad that an International Wailing Wall Commission sat for the first time. We had to submit a case as to why the Wailing Wall was so important to us so we could pray there, while the Muslims claimed we had no rights there at all.
I kid you not. This actually happened.
Several dozen prominent national-religious rabbis issued a statement on Thursday encouraging Jews to visit the Temple Mount, a call which comes against the background of severe tensions that have surrounded the site since two Israeli policemen were murdered there by three Arab-Israeli men two weeks ago.
The rabbis declared that it is of religious merit to visit the Temple Mount and that such visits bolster the Jewish people’s claim to it.
“It is a great merit to go up, and to be raised up, to the holy mountain in order to seek guidance for Zion and to strengthen our hold on this holy place,” wrote the rabbis.
Among the most prominent rabbinical leaders on the list of signatories are far-right leader and halachist Rabbi Dov Lior, Rabbi Nachum Rabinowitz, a highly respected arbiter of Jewish law, Rabbi Yisrael Rozen, together with another 37 yeshiva deans, and communal heads.
The decision to remove the magnetometers at the Temple Mount entrances is also affecting elements outside the political arena. Police stationed there are signalling concern and wonder whether they are meant to be “sitting ducks”, as they put it.
Arutz Sheva spoke with Avigail Sherara, Executive Director of the Police and Wardens’ Wives Association, who says she is concerned not only for the police but also for their families.
“It is inconceivable that the security of police and visitors to the Mount will be affected; the police are performing a holy function by protecting all citizens of the State of Israel, and their security is paramount.”
Sherara supports calls for police officers to refuse stationing at the Temple Mount gates. She recalls the tragic murder of the two policemen a week-and-a-half ago, and says that even if she does not know how widespread the call for refusal is, she “assumes that we are dealing with many policemen. Perhaps not all of them express this out loud, but the families who send the policemen to defend Israel feel that way, maybe even more than the police themselves.”
“What mother would want to send her son, and what woman would send her husband, to a place where there is not enough security, where any moment a terrorist event could occur?” she asks, and when asked about dangers in other places, she says the Temple Mount is “an unusual place, where police are murdered in cold blood. Maximum protection must be afforded, not moves that forgo the police officers’ security.”
Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett accused Joint List lawmakers of supporting and inciting terrorism in a speech to the Knesset on Wednesday.
“For 10 days, we have been witness to an intentional heating up of the situation by Palestinian factors and some Israeli Arabs,” he said, specifically mentioning Joint List MKs Haneen Zoabi and Ahmad Tibi, as well as Sheikh Raed Salah, head of the Islamic Movement’s Northern Branch .
Bennett accused them of spreading an “antisemitic blood libel against Israel.”
“You know that the Temple Mount is open and those who want can pray. Why don’t you say the truth, that the State of Israel is keeping it secure and there is no attempt to change anything?” he asked. “Blood is being spilled, and you remain silent.”
Bennett argued that the current violence must be fought forcefully. He said he voted in the security cabinet against removing metal detectors from outside the Temple Mount, but that he backs the prime minister and the government.
The head of the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah called Israel’s removal of metal detectors from Temple Mount entrances a “victory” in a televised speech Wednesday, even as Muslim leaders have said that the move is not enough and vowed to continue protests.
“The resistance salutes and hails the people of Jerusalem, the West Bank and all Palestinians, who have flocked to the Old City in defense of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and have managed to impose a new victory through forcing the enemy to remove its new measures,” Hassan Nasrallah said, according to a report in the Lebanese daily al-Nahar.
Israel placed the metal detectors and cameras at entrances to the Temple Mount following a shooting attack on July 14, in which three Arab-Israeli men killed two Israeli policemen with guns they had smuggled into the holy site.
Israeli, Jewish and Conservative media have been widely reporting about a Davis, California, Imam who called for the annihilation of Jews in a sermon after the Israelis installed metal detectors then entrances to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The mainstream media has almost completely ignored the story.
But it turns out there is a second Californian Imam who engaged in similar incitement.
As we have reported, the metal detectors were installed after three Islamic terrorists murdered two Israeli policemen with weapons hidden in the al-Aqsa mosque on the Temple Mount.
After Palestinian violence, including the murder of three Israelis having Sabbath dinner, and Jordan effectively holding Israeli diplomats hostage, Israel agreed to the hostage release in exchange for removing the metal detectors. That move did nothing to satisfy the Palestinians, who have announced yet another day of rage and called for a widespread uprising on Friday.
Mahmoud Abbas is behind much of this, including calls for the armed Tanzim brigades to participate in the Friday violence.
This all takes place against a backdrop of anti-Semitic incitement in Palestinian and Arab media that has been going on for decades. We have documented how Palestinian Imams repeatedly have called for holy war against the Jews, and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas participates in the incitement:
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday he would work to close the Jerusalem offices of Qatar-based Al Jazeera news network, accusing it of inciting recent violence in the city.
Jerusalem is experiencing one of its most tense periods in years as Palestinians protest heightened Israeli security measures near the Temple Mount compound, one of the city’s holiest sites. The spike in tensions has raised international alarm, and while Israel has heeded world leaders’ concerns and has rolled back the controversial security measures that have sparked Palestinian violence, the Palestinian Authority announced that the modified measures are still unacceptable.
The events have been widely reported, including by Al Jazeera.
“Al Jazeera continues to stir violence around the Temple Mount,” Netanyahu wrote on his Facebook page. “I have spoken several times to law enforcement authorities demanding to close Al Jazeera’s offices in Jerusalem. If this does not happen because of legal interpretation, I will work to enact the required legislation to expel Al Jazeera from Israel.”
The Al Jazeera network on Thursday hit back at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “hostile” call to close its Israel bureau, dismissing Israel’s allegations of incitement to violence.
In a statement, the Qatar-based satellite station said it “denounces such arbitrary accusations and hostile statements,” after Netanyahu said he had asked law enforcement authorities to shutter the station’s local offices.
“Al Jazeera stresses that it would take all necessary legal measures in case they act on their threat,” it said.
The station also rejected the prime minister’s claim that it incited violence.
“The network moreover reiterates that it will continue covering the news and events of the occupied Palestinian territories, and elsewhere, both professionally and objectively,” the statement said.
Clifford D. May: Qatar’s ‘press poodle’
In other words, Al Jazeera is Al Jazeera. Its mission is to shape public opinion. Its owners are savvy enough to understand that different audiences will be persuaded by different messages.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has been working hard to find a diplomatic solution to the Gulf family feud. My guess is that he’ll eventually convince Qatar to make significant compromises but that closing Al Jazeera won’t be among them.
In the multidimensional conflict underway in the world today, propaganda is a highly strategic weapon. As al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri put it: “More than half of this war is taking place on the battlefield of the media.” What’s remarkable is that so many Western media professionals still don’t get that.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicated on Wednesday that he would support an initiative to integrate four Jewish communities in the West Bank, as well as a large settlement bloc, into the Jerusalem municipality.
The Jewish communities that would be absorbed into Jerusalem’s municipality — Ma’aleh Adumim, Givat Ze’ev, Beitar Illit, Efrat and the Gush Etzion bloc of neighborhoods — are home to about 130,000 Israelis. Some of the communities are situated deep in the West Bank, as far as six miles from Jerusalem.
The plan was initiated by Likud Knesset member Yoav Kisch. If implemented, residents of the communities in question would be able to cast ballots in Jerusalem municipal elections, but the communities would not fall under complete Israeli sovereignty. The proposal states that it would serve to balance the demographics of Jerusalem and “bring back Jerusalem’s status as a symbol.”
The initiative would also see about 100,000 Palestinians living in eastern Jerusalem removed from the city’s census and integrated into a new municipality. Netanyahu has instructed Kisch to implement the plan after the Knesset’s summer recess, Haaretz reported.
The U.S. State Department defended an annual report on terrorism under fire from pro-Israel groups for saying that a lack of hope drives Palestinian violence.
Meanwhile, the umbrella foreign policy group for Jewish organizations expressed its “deep concerns” about the report, saying it shifts responsibility for terrorism from the Palestinians to Israel.
“In that report we consistently highlight terror attacks perpetuated against Israelis – and I’m just talking about the Israel portion – because this is a worldwide report,” Heather Nauert, the State Department spokeswoman, said Tuesday in a briefing when asked about a call from the Zionist Organization of America for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s resignation because of the report.
“Those terror attacks that are perpetuated against Israelis by Hamas and others, there is no justification – and we will say that time and time again – there is no justification for any acts of terrorism,” she said, adding that Tillerson had no plans to resign.
The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations on Wednesday said it wrote Tillerson to express “deep concern” about the report.
“We hope that Secretary Tillerson will rescind this report and see to an amended version that properly puts the responsibility for the terrorism and incitement that has taken such a heavy toll where it belongs on [Palestinian Authority] President [Mahmoud] Abbas and the PA,” a Presidents’ Conference statement said. “This report cannot be allowed to stand because other countries and terrorist groups may use it to justify their anti-Israel actions.”
IDF soldiers distributed early Wednesday morning a demolition order issued against the home of one of the terrorists responsible for a deadly shooting attack in Tel Aviv in 2016.
In the June 8th, 2016 attack, two residents of the Palestinian Authority-controlled town of Yatta south of Hevron opened fire on diners at a restaurant in the Sarona Market in Tel Aviv. The pair then fled the restaurant, shooting at pedestrians as they fled.
The demolition order issued permits IDF forces to demolish the second story of the home after a 72-hour notice.
Elsewhere in Judea and Samaria, IDF forces captured 21 wanted suspects, including 17 suspected terrorists who are believed to have committed terror attacks against Israeli civilians and security forces.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s exiled rival took part in a public meeting with Hamas members of parliament Thursday for the first time in a decade.
Mohammed Dahlan was Abbas’s ally inside the Fatah party until they fell out, with Dahlan expelled from the PA in 2011.
He now lives in exile in the United Arab Emirates and has been moving closer to Hamas, the terror group that rules the Gaza Strip, in recent months, with rumors he could join a government in the Palestinian enclave.
Abbas, the internationally recognized Palestinian leader based in the West Bank, has sought to isolate both Dahlan and Hamas.
A portion of the Palestinian Legislative Council, which has not met in full since Hamas seized Gaza from Fatah in a near civil war in 2007, held an emergency session Thursday.
Dahlan attended via video link, while seven of his allies in Gaza attended in person along with 22 Hamas members, according to Hamas’s media office.
An Egyptian tank crew saved the day after spotting a car racing toward an army checkpoint in the North Sinai on Monday.
In the video below, the tank quickly turns and flattens the vehicle carrying the four terrorists who were armed with automatic weapons and over 220 pounds of explosives:
According to the video’s descriptions, “An Egyptian army hero intercepted a car bomb with his tank saving lives of dozens in Sinai. Four terrorists sat in the vehicle which carried 100kg of explosives. Three of them planned to step out and shoot troops while driver would attack the checkpoint.”
The tank crew is credited with saving the lives of at least 50 people who would have not survived had the terrorists been able to execute their plan.
We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.