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UPDATES 10 am Israel time, Sunday, December 8 2013:
*It has been another bad week for Hezbollah. Eight more Hezbollah “fighters” were buried yesterday following the publication several days ago of pictures of 48 others who were killed in recent battles in Syria:
Perhaps even more damaging to the Lebanese terrorist group, however, was the assassination this week of Hassan Al-Laqis–a senior commander in Hezbollah who was one of Nassan Nasrallah’s closest and most long-time confidants, and a person high on the list of key people Israel identified years ago as behind the Iran-Hezbollah-Hamas terrorist pipeline. Al-Laqis was shot to death by four men as he parked his car near his home in Beirut:
Al-Laqis follows a long line of others assassinated before him: Imad Mughniyeh, supreme military commander of Hezbollah (2008), Gen. Mohammed Suleiman, Assad senior advisor and conduit for Hezbollah (2008), Gen. Hassan Tehrani, key figure in the Iranian missile program (2011), Mohammed al-Mabhouh, Hamas smuggler working with Hezbollah (2010), and many others.
*Nothing new emerged from President Obama’s self-serving appearance before a Jewish group in the U.S. yesterday–except his comment that a peace plan with the Palestinians would have to be accomplished in stages.
If this sounds like a disastrous replay of the Oslo Accords, it should.
Let’s see if we can understand this.
On Friday, more than 30,000 Palestinians worshiped on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem–Judaism’s holiest place and a place under the sovereign control of Israel. They worshiped “unbothered” by any religious Jews–all of whom were prohibited from ascending the Mount on Friday by the Jerusalem Police.
After services at the Al-Aksa and Dome of the Rock Mosques were over, hundreds of these worshipers began throwing “rocks” at the Jerusalem Police. So many in fact that the police were forced to use stun grenades to control the rioters. In the ensuing melee, 3 Palestinians were arrested and no soldiers suffered “serious” wounds.
On Saturday, when asked what caused the hundreds of Palestinians to riot on Friday, Jerusalem Police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby said: “The Arabs don’t like the Jews coming there to pray, and an extreme group of Jews is going there to provoke them.”
This entire scenario is absurd on so many levels that your humble servant hardly knows where to begin, but allow me to enumerate:
1. It is absurd that Arabs have virtually unfettered access to Judaism’s holiest place–and that Jews can only ascend the Mount at the whim of the Jerusalem Police.
2. It is absurd that hundreds of Palestinians can riot for hours and attack the Jerusalem Police with “rocks” and who knows what else–and all the Police can do is arrest 3 rioters.
3. It is absurd that Jerusalem Police are so invested in protecting Arab rights that they no longer even treat the wounds inflicted by Arab “rock throwers” on their own policemen as something “serious.”
4. It is absurd for the Jerusalem Police to label Jews who want to pray at Judaism’s holiest site as “extreme”.
5. It is absurd for the Jerusalem Police to think that the only reason that Jews want to pray on the Temple Mount is to “provoke” Arabs. (And remember that none were attempting to pray on the Temple Mount on Friday).
6. Finally, it is absurd that the Jerusalem Police have totally bought into the Islamic narrative of the “Muslim Temple Mount”. Working in collusion with the Islamic Wakf, the Jerusalem Police continue to deny one of the most basic freedoms to Jews–the right of religious freedom.
But there is a larger point here–one that was raised by MK Moshe Feiglin last week.
Feiglin correctly points out that what is happening on the Mount is a microcosm of what is happening in Israel itself. Israel has become so afraid of the reaction of the Palestinians and their international friends, and so beset by political correctness that it is willing to deny Israelis basic rights in our own country and to expose Israelis to injury and even death.
Not until Israel accords Jewish Israelis basic human rights and protections on the Temple Mount, will Israel provide Israelis with basic human rights and protections in Judea, Samaria, and elsewhere in Jerusalem.