The latest spate of violence in Jerusalem during July 2017 has been described by the mainstream media as stemming from Israel’s erection of metal detectors on the Temple Mount in reaction to the shooting of Israeli security guards by Israeli Arabs. The explanation falls flat.
Metal detectors are found all around the world at mosques, churches and synagogues. Just a few hundred feet from the Temple Mount, metal detectors are in place at the entrance to the Western Wall Plaza. Security cameras can be seen at the Vatican and Mecca. Metal detectors are found at the entrances to mosques throughout the Middle East.
So why the protest?
It is not about security. It is about control over the Temple Mount and the Al Aqsa Mosque that sits at its southern tip.
Many Arabs and Muslims strongly object to any Islamic holy site being under the control of non-Muslims (known as kafir, non-believers). Jews are supposed to have a lower secondary status (known as dhimmi) in lands that they consider as Islamic lands. As such, Jewish control over an Islamic holy site in a land that they view as Arab is considered extremely insulting to the honor and pride of many Muslims.
Muslims are not insulted by the presence of metal detectors to protect visitors from violence. They are outraged by anything that implies the authority and control of the Temple Mount by non-Muslims; even the placement of an umbrella to act as a protection from the sun.
That is neither a joke nor an exaggeration.
Arab states put forward a resolution at the United Nations in October 2016 condemning Israel for placing an umbrella in the Western Wall Plaza at the approach of a ramp that goes up to the Temple Mount (known as the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate).
“19. Deprecates the continuing Israeli unilateral measures and decisions regarding the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate, including the latest works conducted at the Mughrabi Gate entrance in February 2015, the instalment of an umbrella at that entrance as well as the enforced creation of a new Jewish prayer platform south of the Mughrabi Ascent in Al-Buraq Plaza “Western Wall Plaza”, and the removal of the Islamic remains at the site, and reaffirms that no Israeli unilateral measures, shall be taken in conformity with its status and obligations under the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict”
The authority of the Jewish State at the Temple Mount is repulsive to many devout Muslims, and they have taken to the United Nations resolutions and to violence to purge such Jewish presence.
Will Israel remove an umbrella to keep the Muslim world from “resorting to violence,” the way it removed the metal detectors? Who is throwing shade on this topic?
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