To say they are complaining is to put it mildly. You would think that Israel has thrown a bomb into their mosque instead of installing metal detectors. You would think that Muslims that pray in an area they consider holy would be grateful for the added security – instead of calling for a day of rage – as did Mahmoud Abbas. I honestly don’t get it.
There have been many articles written about this by people that have been just as perplexed as I am. One of which was by David Horovitz, founding editor of the Times of Israel where he noted:
It’s outrageous that the metal detectors are deemed unacceptable when religious sites the world over are secured in exactly the same way, for exactly the same unfortunately necessary reasons. There is high security around key Islamic sites, notably including at Mecca and Medina.
It’s not as if the decision to put install metal detectors on the Temple Mount happened surreptitiously in some sort of stealth decision to do so, Not that – that would have been so terrible. Upgrading security is the duty of any government as a means to protect its citizens.
But the fact is that Israel did it because 2 of its police officers guarding the mosque were attacked, shot, and killed by Muslim terrorists using guns hidden in the mosque. Ironically, the two police officers that were murdered were Druze Arabs! Israel rightly felt that this needed to be addressed by upgrading security. Arabs killed Arabs, Jews try to do something about it, and Arabs are enraged by it.
(How in the world can those who support BDS and claim the moral high ground, ignore the outrage of this situation? Could it be because those same people are ‘anti Zionist’ (meaning they hate Jews)? Is Roger Waters an antisemite? He may deny it and claim this is all about justice for the Palestinians. But if that were so, I would expect him not to be blinded by such an obvious truth – and say something about it.)
Why are Muslims so upset about this? I believe that this is just about not having full control of Har Habyis. Every day they are reminded that Israel rules over them and they don’t like it. Even though they do have just about full control of it… to the point of not even allowing Jews to pray there, they still resent Israel’s presence in any capacity there. Placing metal detectors is just another indication of Israel’s control. They also realize that Jews have a religious claim to that area too, Even though they discount that – and Israel has done its best to ignore it, they get plenty of reminders about our claim.
When religious people feel that one of their holy places is not fully in their control it upsets them. Any action done by people they see as occupiers is going to result in this kind of reaction.
Which brings me to a group of Jews who just have to show them ‘who’s boss’. The more extreme among them believe we should just blow up the Al-Aqsa mosque on Har HaBayis so that we can begin to re-build the Beis Hamikdash. While those people are few and truly on the fringe, they are a very noisy fringe that makes sure that the Arabs hear them.
And then there are those who insist they must go up their so that they can pray even though it is against Israeli law. And the fact that many Poskim say that they shouldn’t go up – even to the places that are technically permitted by Halacha. These people want to assert their authority over Har Habayis and make sure the Arabs know it.
It happened again – right in the middle of all this. From Ha’aretz:
The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said.
The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled.
If there is going to be a day of rage, which was called for by PA president Abbas, then these people were irresponsibly pouring gasoline on the flame – making sure that the rioters will be as outraged - and as prone to violence as possible.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Yes! Har Habayis is ours, given to us by God. It is the place where the Beis HaMkidash stood and will stand in the future. There is not a scintilla of doubt about that. But neither should there be any doubt about the irresponsibility of those zealots who are willing to make that point on the backs of all the innocent Jews that will be hurt by their exacerbation of the tension.
I’m glad that that authorities have decided to close off Har Habyis to Jews today as a result of this. In my view, it ought to be permanent.