How they see it

Here are how some mainstream news reports refer to the Temple Mount:

JERUSALEM – Israeli police stormed the grounds of Islam’s third-holiest shrine Friday, firing stun grenades and tear gas to disperse thousands of Muslim worshippers who hurled stones, bottles and trash in an eruption of outrage over Israeli renovation work nearby. — Yahoo News (from AP. The same report appeared in CNN, the LA Times, and our own Fresno Bee)

In Jerusalem the Israeli building project is taking place on the most sensitive ground. The Al Haram al Sharif, or Noble Sanctuary compound, is where the second Palestinian uprising erupted in 2000 following a controversial visit by Ariel Sharon, who was then the Israeli opposition leader.
It contains the Al-Aqsa mosque, the site where, Muslims believe, the Prophet Muhammad ascended to heaven. It is also revered by Jews as the site of their ancient temple, destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD. — Timesonline (UK)

Clashes at disputed Jerusalem holy site (headline)
JERUSALEM: Protestors and Israeli police clashed today outside the Al Aksa Mosque, Islam’s third-holiest shrine… (IHT)

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israeli police forces entered the area around Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem and fired stun grenades at stone-throwing Palestinian worshippers in clashes at the end of Friday prayers. (Boston Globe, others)

Please note, we are talking about the site which has been most holy to Judaism for several millennia. The best we get is an ‘also’ mention in one report. Note too that the International Herald Tribune emphasizes ‘disputed’. The BBC recently called it ‘contested’.

There’s lots of discussion about the historical importance (or lack thereof) of this site to Islam, and especially the emphasis placed on it since 1967. Recently, there have been attempts by Muslims to deny that the Temple ever was at this location! But keep in mind that Israel has allowed access to all the holy sites of all religions in Jerusalem since 1967, whereas Jews were not permitted to pray at the Wall when the area was under Arab control.

2 Responses to “How they see it”

  1. Shalom Freedman says:

    I may be wrong but it seems to me most of the reports do not contain an exact description of the nature of the work and where it is being done. Were that given properly then the ‘objective third- party’ ( if there is such a thing) could clearly see that what we are dealing with is another case of infantile Islamic mass – hysteria.

  2. Vic Rosenthal says:

    Interesting. There are plenty of photos, etc. in the Israeli media. Of course the Arab and pro-Palestinian media (which I didn’t even mention in my article) are saying that the Israelis are digging up the foundations of Al-Aqsa.

    I don’t know that it matters what hypothetical objective third parties think about the work itself, because a lot of them are saying that Israel should stop so as not to ’cause’ violence among the Muslims. Their position is that Israel is always wrong, even when it’s right.