+972 Magazine's Stories of the Week

Directly In Your Inbox

Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

Five killed in attack on Jerusalem synagogue

Two Palestinian men murdered four Jewish worshippers with a meat cleaver, knives and a pistol in a gruesome attack at a synagogue in the Har Nof neighborhood of Jerusalem Tuesday morning. Eight others were wounded, four seriously. The two attackers were shot dead by Israeli police in a firefight at the scene.

Update: A police officer succumbed to his wounds late Tuesday night, bringing the death toll to five.

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu quickly put out a statement blaming Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas, pointing to what he described as their incitement. For his part, Abbas quickly condemned the attack.

Israeli emergency personnel remove victims’ bodies from the Jerusalem synagogue where two Palestinians killed four worshippers and seriously wounded seven others. (Photo by Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

Israeli emergency personnel remove victims’ bodies from the Jerusalem synagogue where two Palestinians killed four worshippers and seriously wounded seven others. (Photo by Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

ZAKA volunteers collect blood, according to Jewish ritual, at the scene of a Jerusalem synagogue where two Palestinians killed four worshippers and seriously wounded eight others, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

ZAKA volunteers collect blood, according to Jewish ritual, at the scene of a Jerusalem synagogue where two Palestinians killed four worshippers and seriously wounded eight others, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

Families mourn as the victims of a terror attack at a Jerusalem synagogue are laid to rest, Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

Families mourn as the victims of a terror attack at a Jerusalem synagogue are laid to rest, Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

According to Palestinian and Israeli media, the attackers were from the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber. When their identity became known, residents said, Israeli police closed the entrance to the neighborhood with concrete blocks.

Police were reportedly using the “Skunk” truck to spray putrid water near the attackers’ families’ homes, along with other crowd dispersal means as clashes broke out. Police arrested 12 relatives of the attackers, according to Ma’an, and a number of others were injured.

Israeli police outside the family home of one of the men who killed four Jewish worshippers in a Jerusalem synagogue hours earlier, Jabel Mukaber, East Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Orly Noy)

Israeli police outside the family home of one of the men who killed four Jewish worshippers in a Jerusalem synagogue hours earlier, Jabel Mukaber, East Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Orly Noy)

The aftermath of a police raid on the home of one of the men who killed four Jewish worshippers in a Jerusalem synagogue hours earlier, Jabel Mukaber, East Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Orly Noy)

The aftermath of a police raid on the home of one of the men who killed four Jewish worshippers in a Jerusalem synagogue hours earlier, Jabel Mukaber, East Jerusalem, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Orly Noy)

The attack against the synagogue came a day after a Palestinian bus driver was found hanged inside his bus. Israeli authorities ruled his death a suicide but Palestinians officials and media contend he was murdered by Israelis.

Read also:
Hundreds protest collective punishment in East Jerusalem
In wake of stabbing attacks, Bibi says protesters ‘can go to Palestine’

Before you go...

A lot of work goes into creating articles like the one you just read. And while we don’t do this for the money, even our model of non-profit, independent journalism has bills to pay.

+972 Magazine is owned by our bloggers and journalists, who are driven by passion and dedication to the causes we cover. But we still need to pay for editing, photography, translation, web design and servers, legal services, and more.

As an independent journalism outlet we aren’t beholden to any outside interests. In order to safeguard that independence voice, we are proud to count you, our readers, as our most important supporters. If each of our readers becomes a supporter of our work, +972 Magazine will remain a strong, independent, and sustainable force helping drive the discourse on Israel/Palestine in the right direction.

Support independent journalism in Israel/Palestine Donate to +972 Magazine today
View article: AAA
Share article
Print article
  • LEAVE A COMMENT

    * Required

    COMMENTS

    1. TOMER

      International fakestinyanism shows its nasty, evil and barbaric face!

      Never mind, every attack is a vote for Moshe Feiglin!

      Reply to Comment
      • “International fakestinyanism shows its nasty, evil and barbaric face!”

        No, it was 2 Palestinian men.

        “Never mind, every attack is a vote for Moshe Feiglin!”

        Be careful what you wish for.

        Reply to Comment
        • Sluggo

          Marnie,
          Can you not hold your tongue one day?
          This is the sort of talk at Mondoweis.

          Reply to Comment
          • I don’t understand your point Sluggo. This is not Arutz Sheva or JPost. Mondoweiss is not the only site with a narrative that isn’t settler-driven. And the answer to your actual question is obviously hell no.

            “Arabs in Eretz Israel are living om borrowed time.

            Feiglin is coming!”

            This is the sort of talk at Arutz Sheva.

            Reply to Comment
          • Piotr Berman

            I am totally curious: what was offensive in Marnie’s reply “Be careful what you wish for”? Is it anti-Semitic to wish Feiglin as the leader of Israel? He is an idiot and fanatic, to be sure, but then what to make out of “Every attack is a vote for Moshe Feiglin”? That attacks are evil because they mean votes for idiot Feiglin?

            Reply to Comment
        • zaba

          What is a ‘palestinian’?

          Reply to Comment
          • MuslimJew

            “What is a ‘palestinian’?”

            A native of Palestine.

            What is a ‘jew’?

            Reply to Comment
          • Avdim

            No. A Palestinian is just someone that lives in a geographical area some call Palestine.

            I this sense, I’m a Palestinian.

            For political reasons, this has become a nationality. However, being “native” (whatever that means) has nothing to do with anything.

            Judaism is both a nationality and a religion and a Jew is someone that belongs to one of these categories.

            Reply to Comment
        • zaba

          Can you define ‘palestinian’?

          Reply to Comment
      • Brian

        “Never mind, every attack is a vote for Moshe Feiglin!”

        Whether Tomer realizes it or not, and whether his right wing chorus here admits it or not, what Tomer has just done is reveal his casual delight at five dead in Jerusalem. His attitude is “never mind.” Every attack is a feather in his cap. A vote for Moshe Feiglin! Joy!
        The unspoken logic is: The more attacks the better! It’s more votes for Feiglin! Gotta break eggs to make an omelet!
        I wonder how the family of the dead would feel if we sent them Tomer’s and his buddy Feiglin’s true sentiments: “Never mind, you’re just useful pawns. It’s more votes for us!” So just whose “ism” just exposed its “nasty, evil and barbaric face”?

        Reply to Comment
    2. Pedro X

      The answer to terror attacks is to build thousands of more homes in Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.

      Tomer is partially right, every terrorist attack is a vote against Netanyahu and a vote for Bennett and Feiglin and the annexation of all communities in Judea and Samaria and eventually Area “C”.

      Reply to Comment
      • Brian

        Another happy camper.

        Reply to Comment
    3. Richard

      My tears today before God were difficult to dry. I call on all Christians today to get down on their knee’s and pray a FERVENT prayer to God for the protection and salvation of Israel.

      Reply to Comment
      • Really, at this site?

        Reply to Comment
    4. Tomer

      Arabs in Eretz Israel are living om borrowed time.

      Feiglin is coming!

      Reply to Comment
      • Brian

        Five dead and Tomer just can’t conceal his happiness.

        Reply to Comment
    5. Avdim

      1. “Two Palestinian men killed four Jewish worshippers” – No, they murdered them.
      2. “The attack against the synagogue” – and I thought the “attack” was against Jews.
      3. “but Palestinians officials and media contend he was murdered by Israelis.” – Of course they do. The official also said that “the Israeli government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was responsible for the murder” and that it “shows the criminal mentality that dominates the Israeli society”. At least he didn’t “quickly put out a statement” like Netanyahu, that would have been so much worse.
      4. Marnie – you can’t both speak of the evils of all of Zionism or a sick Israeli society and then make a point of the Terrorists being just two men that do not represent THEIR society (in all its glory).

      Reply to Comment
    6. Avdim –
      1. Of course it was murder.
      2. They weren’t looking to damage the structure, but murder as many people as possible.
      3. ?
      4. Marnie – you can’t both speak of the evils of all of Zionism or a sick Israeli society and then make a point of the Terrorists being just two men that do not represent THEIR society (in all its glory).”
      I was responding to the “International fakestinyanism” remark by resident genius Tomer. These 2 men don’t represent their society.

      Reply to Comment
      • Avdim

        “These 2 men don’t represent their society.”

        Are you sure? Did you take a look at recent polls? How many articles in Arab media that condemn them can you show me? Do you think they will become controversial figures like Goldstein or Kahana are in Israel?

        I’m not claiming anything, just asking some questions…

        Reply to Comment
        • Yes I’m sure these 2 men do not represent their society. Let’s be more precise. I don’t believe for one minute they represent their society as a whole. Do they represent a segment of their society – I would think yes, a segment. How large of a segment? I have no idea.

          Will they be famous like Kahane and Goldstein? I hope not. Their actions deserve only condemnation.

          Abbas already spoke out against the murders. I don’t believe the action of these 2 men has been well-received by the majority of Palestinians, but I don’t have any polls for you.

          Reply to Comment
        • Read the post by Zim.
          See article “A House of God No More” at +972.

          Reply to Comment
      • Gustav

        “These 2 men don’t represent their society.”

        I would buy that once, twice, … 10 times … heck even a hundred times. But …

        These types of attacks have been perpetrated against us by Palestinian Arabs for 100 years. Even before there was “occupation”, even before Israel was born …

        So, at what point would you accept that this type of hatred is part of the national psyche of Palestinian Arabs, Marnie dear?

        Reply to Comment
        • “So, at what point would you accept that this type of hatred is part of the national psyche of Palestinian Arabs, Marnie dear?”

          Look at what zionism has done. You want to talk about hatred?

          David Ben-Gurion
          Zionism Israel Palestine
          Quotes
          “We must expel Arabs and take their places.”
          — David Ben Gurion, 1937, Ben Gurion and the Palestine Arabs, Oxford University Press, 1985.

          “We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population.” – David Ben-Gurion, a.k.a. David Grn (1886-1973), Israeli Prime Minister (1948-53, 1955-63) and Chief Architect of Zionist terrorism and the state of Israel; revered by Israelis as “Father of the Nation”

          “Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you because geography books no longer exist. Not only do the books not exist, the Arab villages are not there either. Nahlal arose in the place of Mahlul; Kibbutz Gvat in the place of Jibta; Kibbutz Sarid in the place of Huneifis; and Kefar Yehushua in the place of Tal al-Shuman. There is not a single place built in this country that did not have a former Arab population.”
          — David Ben Gurion, quoted in The Jewish Paradox, by Nahum Goldmann, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978, p. 99.

          “Let us not ignore the truth among ourselves … politically we are the aggressors and they defend themselves… The country is theirs, because they inhabit it, whereas we want to come here and settle down, and in their view we want to take away from them their country.”
          — David Ben Gurion, quoted on pp 91-2 of Chomsky’s Fateful Triangle, which appears in Simha Flapan’s “Zionism and the Palestinians pp 141-2 citing a 1938 speech.

          Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Manic dear, you are reading the wrong sources. Many of those quotes are actually misquotes. The New Historians should not be your only reading material. Read the link below and take the trouble to do more research …

            http://en.m.wikiquote.org/wiki/David_Ben-Gurion

            Then again, you probably deliberately seek out information which supports your pre-existing biases. Go on admit it …

            Reply to Comment
          • Brian

            So precisely which quotes are misquotes, Gustav? Please give us your analysis with references. Please include your thoughts on the happiness of Tomer. (See above.)

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            I will …

            As soon as you and Manic review this comment in view of 100 years of similar attacks to this latest atrocity …

            “These 2 men don’t represent their society.”

            Unfortunately, reality says that this latest act still reflect prevailing attitudes at least amongst the majority of Palestinian Arab society. Does it mean, they would all be capable of carrying out such acts? Of course not. Does it mean that the majority approve and even laud such acts? Of course YES!

            Reply to Comment
          • Classic Gustav from “Occupation’s Greatest Hits”, (Volume 48, and counting)

            Brian: “So precisely which quotes are misquotes, Gustav? Please give us your analysis with references. Please include your thoughts on the happiness of Tomer. (See above.)”

            Gustav: “I will …” (really, oh good, finally some answers!)

            “As soon as you and Manic review this comment in view of 100 years of similar attacks to this latest atrocity …” (oh, bother)

            “These 2 men don’t represent their society.”

            You must be the genius who always advised “Bugsy” Netanyahu to make a new demand just in case there’s the remote possibility of an accord being reached.

            You’re nothing if not totally predictable G! There’s a lot of that here, perhaps part of some national psyche?

            That being said, I’m disinclined to acquiesce to the petty demands of an overindulged child; that’s you.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Well Manic dear …

            Let’s review the sequence of posts around here …

            First you posted this:

            (1) “These 2 men don’t represent their society.”

            I then challenged your claim and reminded you…

            (2) …that we have been subject to countless such attacks in the last 100 years even before the occupation or even before Israel existed, so this type of attack is endemic in Palestinian Arab society.

            You then, instead of negating what I said, went on the attack and made a counter accusation …

            (3) … oh yea but look at you Israeli Jews and look at what Ben gurion said …

            I then disputed your claims about what Ben Gurion supposedly said. And …

            (4) … I even posted a link.

            Brian then butted in with his …

            (5) … asking me to spell out which specific quotes of Ben Gurion do I dispute …

            So, logic would suggest that since I challenged your (1) you need to deal with that first before we move on to Brian’s challenge (5) to me. But then again, I do know that you two are not too big on logic, so I thought I better explain again.

            Oh and also, I don’t want you to get off the hook by obfuscating. You made a stupid assertion, so I want to focus on YOUR silly assertion first. It is your big chance to either prove that your assertion was not silly or leave it and just look silly. Your choice deary, I don’t mind either way …

            Reply to Comment
    7. NIZ

      In the absence of a political solution, the palestinians -naturally- will refuse to live forever in bantustans while the jews take it all. All of those who die in this conflict, jews or muslims, Palestinians or Israelis, are victims. They are victims of a system that continues to segregate according to religion. As the Quran says “ًFor we have not oppressed them, but they only oppress themselves”. That system that inflicts yearly, daily, on Palestinians more than Israelis such tremendous structural violence has to go. That is the lesson we have to get out of it. If we don’t, all the energy will go into perpetuating the cycle of hatred. I condemn the attack over civilians. I hope next time, Palestinians would target military targets like Gazans did.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Good points NIZ.

      Reply to Comment
    9. Tomer

      NIZ – I am opposed to a system that segregates on the religion. I just want all the foreign arabs OUT. They will be put on buses and shipped out to Jordanian border. Then they will forced at gunpoint to leave and never come back.

      Their properties?
      Well, we will have to add up all the property stolen from Mizrachi jews in the 50s and 60s and see who owes money to whom. In anycase, I am prepared to pay them a little if they leave quietly and quickly.

      have a nice day

      Reply to Comment
    10. Explain “foreign arabs”.

      How many Jews in israel would you guess are native to the land (before 1948)?

      Reply to Comment
      • Brian

        What percentage of Jewish Israelis today do you estimate are frank, fascist feiglinites like Tomer? And what percentage silently think what Stormtrooper Tomer is willing to say out loud?

        Reply to Comment
      • Gustav

        “How many Jews in israel would you guess are native to the land (before 1948)?”

        Is that a real question? Anyone born before 1948 would be older than 66.

        So are you saying that Israelis who were born after 1948 in Israel are not natives?

        Seriously, I am not trying to score points, I am genuinely perplexed with such a question. Please clarify the point that you are trying to make …

        Reply to Comment
        • Yep.

          Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            So what are you saying?

            All Israelis born after 1948 have no right to be here? I am just asking.

            Reply to Comment
          • Nope

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            “Nope”

            Ok we established it. As usual, you have nothing worthwhile to say, Manic.

            Reply to Comment
    11. The Trespasser

      ““What is a ‘palestinian’?”

      A native of Palestine.”

      Wrong. By your logic only those native to USA might be called ‘Americans’.

      Reply to Comment
    12. Murder of any civilian is wrong. It should never be a cause for joy. If Jews and Palestinians would mourn together, pray together, fast together, maybe at some point they can celebrate together.

      Reply to Comment
      • Gustav

        Noble sentiments, I like the sentiments very much.

        Now let’s see how the Manic Marnies of this world are trying to make this very nice vision a reality …

        They post endless and repetitive posts in publications like + 972 exhorting Israel to stop being evil towards the poor defenseless Saint-Palestinians who never did anything wrong and most of whom wouldn’t hurt a fly …

        Then they expect us to listen to them, collapse in a heap, beat our chests in repentance, beg for forgiveness and proceed on our own to implement that noble vision …

        Utter madness! Of course we get our collective backs up and push back. Anybody in our place would. We would not be human if we wouldn’t tell them where to go in no uncertain terms …

        Reply to Comment
        • Brian

          Don’t collapse. No need for histrionics. Start moving. Just get out of the illegally occupied territories. Figure out how to do that. You’re not helpless. You feign helplessness. It’s really simple actually. You’ve been fed, and now consume, so many lies about this that you’re all in some ways like trained Pavlovian dogs. You may think this harsh, but you’re so self righteous and so oblivious to why the other side would “get their backs up” about being obnoxiously occupied and humiliated on a daily basis that it seems appropriate to tell it to like it really is.

          Reply to Comment
          • JohnW

            The only self righteous prigs around here are you Brian and your ilk.

            Just listen to yourself, all you do is shout and bristle. You never listen!

            Reply to Comment
          • Kiwi

            What is even worse than Brian’s bristling and shouting is his pontification.

            Talking about colonialist era paternalism, the Brian types on these sites, think they have all the answers but they know zilch. When did these people get anything right? In North Korea? In Cambodia? In the Soviet Union? No, in none of those places. All they got were prison camps, brainwashings, starvation, prisons, torture, dictatorships and massacres.

            Reply to Comment
          • Brian

            ” No need for histrionics. Start moving. Just get out of the illegally occupied territories. Figure out how to do that…colonialist era paternalism…North Korea…Cambodia…the Soviet Union…prison camps…brainwashings…starvation…prisons…torture…dictatorships…massacres”

            It is impossible here to perceive the cause and effect relationship that can be appreciated in normal psychological experience. We have here perceptions without stimuli, beliefs without justification, thinking without logical connections. A list of things in which no glimmer of cause and effect relationship can be perceived.

            Reply to Comment
          • You’re presence is required in a fruit salad for JohnW ASAP.

            Reply to Comment
          • Brian

            I’m listening quite closely and hear what you’re really saying, delineate that, and lay out the evasions, and that drives you nuts.

            Reply to Comment
          • JohnW

            Brian, your mindset is unmistakably the same as the mindset of the people who ran the Kampuchean holocaust, the Soviet Gulags and who today preside over North Korea.

            All you do is shout about what YOU want but you don’t listen to what people tell you about why it isn’t as easy as you make it out. That is a mindset of a dictator. Or fortunately in your case, a ‘would be’ dictator.

            Reply to Comment
          • Brian

            I don’t think you realize just how Orwellian you sound:
            1. I’m not shouting so stop saying I am. And I am listening quite closely and catch you out on what you’re really saying. You’ve twisted that.
            2. It’s not as hard as you feign it to be if you truly wanted to do it. This is 9/10ths ruse.
            3. For the occupying dictator’s people to turn around and say, “really you must stop ‘dictating’ to us it’s so impolite” is creepy. Right out of 1984.

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            ” stop ‘dictating’ to us it’s so impolite”

            Now that’s what I call a sense of humor. It’s all about impoliteness, no less.

            Reply to Comment
    13. Michael

      Call them what they are, terrorists. They purposefully attacked innocent worshipers.

      Reply to Comment
      • Terrorists.

        Israeli forces storm Aqsa compound, dozens injured and detained

        – Published Sunday 20/04/2014 (updated) 22/04/2014 16:11

        JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Dozens of Palestinian worshipers were wounded and dozens were detained after clashes broke in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Sunday morning with Israeli forces who had stormed the courtyards firing stun grenades and rubber-coated bullets.”

        – July 18, 2014 PressTV
        Dozens of people have been injured as Israeli forces attacked Palestinian protesters at the al-Aqsa Mosque in East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

        This comes as violent clashes erupted in the al-Aqsa Mosque compound after armed Israeli forces stormed the holy site to disperse Palestinians protesting the war on Gaza.”

        “Around 100 Israeli police officers stormed the al-Aqsa’s courtyards and assaulted worshippers,” media outlets quoted witnesses as saying, who also added that Israeli forces fired stun grenades and rubber bullets at Palestinian protesters.

        Sources say more than 40 protesters were injured during the unrest.

        Thousands of Palestinian worshippers were forced to perform Friday prayers outside the mosque compound because Israel has restricted access to al-Aqsa.”

        – Details Published on Wednesday, 24 September 2014 09:54.
        PNN/ Jerusalem

        “Al-Aqsa foundation for Endowment and Heritage announced today Wednesday, that the Israeli military troops attacked Al-Aqsa mosque this morning and threw countless teargas bombs, sound bombs and black metal bullets. The foundation stated that soldiers assaulted the worshippers, which caused more than 15 injuries in the worshippers’ queues so far.

        September 24, 2014
        “In a foundation release, that PNN got a copy of, the injured people were shot by black metal bullets.

        At the same time, hundreds of women and men prayed the Fajir prayer on Al-Aqsa gates after being denied access into it.

        Tens of Israeli military troops now surround The Mughrabi Gate (Dung Gate), which seems like a preparation for an invasion.

        Israeli Occupation’s persecution has been going on since yesterday. Men under the age of 45 are denied access into al-Aqsa, while women are denied access at all. Military checkpoints are set inside.”

        Reply to Comment
        • What is the difference between Muslim worshippers, Jewish worshippers or Christian worshippers?

          Nothing.

          Reply to Comment
    14. phil

      I avoided reading this article until today as I knew there would be some really sickening comments for some of the usual suspects.

      Before I write anything else, I want to make it absolutely clear that I reject and condemn the killing of all civilians regardless of race, colour, creed, any any other characteristic you wish to name.

      What is sad, although not unexpected, is that certain posters -and you know who you are-choose to piss on the graves of these murder victims by using them as an excuse to justify the murder of other civilians

      You are scum and should be ashamed of yourselves

      Reply to Comment
    15. “Netanyahu has now avowed a religious battle in which one group will control a city held holy by three religions. That can’t end well for any of us.”

      “Netanyahu’s ‘battle for Jerusalem’ can’t end well for any of us” Mondoweiss Israel/Palestine
      Philip Weiss on November 20, 2014

      Reply to Comment
      • Brian

        Internationalization is needed.

        Dr. Lorenzo Kamel today in Haaretz:

        Kamel talks about how religious fanatics on both sides are trying to commandeer the issue and then about how one alternative is to continue the status quo — and notes that “To require a change in the equilibrium achieved in these last few centuries within Suleiman’s walls, while maintaining the status quo in the Palestinian territories and continuing to turn a blind eye to the policies carried out by right-wing groups such as Elad – often using the controversial Absentee Property Law to takeover apartments in densely-populated Arab quarters – would be a recipe for more violence.”

        Then Kamel outlines the only viable alternative to the status quo — internationalization of the Old City and its holy places:

        “The second alternative is the internationalization of the Old City and its holy places, a solution in line with the original international consensus when the State of Israel was established. It is noteworthy that Israel’s admission to the United Nations (May 11, 1949) was not unconditional but bound up with the full acceptance of the UN Charter and provisions regarding Jerusalem (Israel’s original application for admission was, not by chance, rejected by the UNSC): “Negotiations,” assured Abba Eban (1915-2002) in front of the UNGA on May 5, 1949, “would not, however, affect the juridical status of Jerusalem, to be defined by international consent.” None of the historical events of the last 65 years have the legal power to erase these assurances.

        Jerusalem’s Old City has not belonged to one single people in its entire history. At the turn of the twentieth century almost 80 percent of its population lived in mixed neighborhoods and quarters. This is why in its nature it must be internationally, or at least bilaterally, shared. Moshe Ma’oz, one of the most renowned Israeli historians, explained to me why in this complex process religion must play an inclusive role: It functions as a recipe against the denial of others’ claims and in support of the acceptance of others’ traumas and “myths.”

        “The mosque of al-Aqsa, or ‘the farthest,’” Ma’oz clarified, “which is discussed in Quran’s Sura 17, the one on prophet Muhammad’s night journey, is certainly the result of an interpretation. But I wonder what difference it makes if Jerusalem is explicitly mentioned or not in the Quran. All religious matters are the result of interpretations. A number of academics have demonstrated that the history of the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt is full of distortions. This does not change anything for us, Jews. We continue to believe in our myths, as other peoples continue to believe in theirs. It is not a matter of facts, but of beliefs. A billion and a half Muslims believe in the Isra and the Mi‘raj, the Prophet’s night journey to Jerusalem. This is what matters, unless we do not intend to scrutinize all the events mentioned in the books of the three monotheistic religions, to find historical evidence. If so, we would be very disappointed.”

        Two major lessons can be drawn from the events inflaming current-day, terrestrial Jerusalem. First, religion cannot be used as a political tool, to deny the beliefs and the “myths” of others – in this case either Jews or Muslims. Second, a solution must be found through sharing or internationalizing Jerusalem’s Old City and in striving to trigger a radical political change in the status of the Palestinian territories. If none of these scenarios can be achieved, the status quo in the Temple Mount/al-Aqsa complex remains – at least for now – the least worst alternative.”

        Reply to Comment
        • Thanks again for the link Brian. Jerusalem historically is an international city and requires the protection of an international body. This can’t be worked out by one party or both; it’s been proven a failure.

          Reply to Comment
          • Brian

            Thanks, Marnie. The silence on this one is deafening as well. I think Kamel exposes too many absurdities. Where’s “Tomer the Trespasser”? Where’s the others?

            Reply to Comment
    16. Brian

      Internationalization is needed.

      Dr. Lorenzo Kamel today in Haaretz:

      Kamel talks about how religious fanatics on both sides are trying to commandeer the issue and then about how one alternative is to continue the status quo — and notes that “To require a change in the equilibrium achieved in these last few centuries within Suleiman’s walls, while maintaining the status quo in the Palestinian territories and continuing to turn a blind eye to the policies carried out by right-wing groups such as Elad – often using the controversial Absentee Property Law to takeover apartments in densely-populated Arab quarters – would be a recipe for more violence.”

      Then Kamel outlines the only viable alternative to the status quo — internationalization of the Old City and its holy places:

      “The second alternative is the internationalization of the Old City and its holy places, a solution in line with the original international consensus when the State of Israel was established. It is noteworthy that Israel’s admission to the United Nations (May 11, 1949) was not unconditional but bound up with the full acceptance of the UN Charter and provisions regarding Jerusalem (Israel’s original application for admission was, not by chance, rejected by the UNSC): “Negotiations,” assured Abba Eban (1915-2002) in front of the UNGA on May 5, 1949, “would not, however, affect the juridical status of Jerusalem, to be defined by international consent.” None of the historical events of the last 65 years have the legal power to erase these assurances.

      Jerusalem’s Old City has not belonged to one single people in its entire history. At the turn of the twentieth century almost 80 percent of its population lived in mixed neighborhoods and quarters. This is why in its nature it must be internationally, or at least bilaterally, shared. Moshe Ma’oz, one of the most renowned Israeli historians, explained to me why in this complex process religion must play an inclusive role: It functions as a recipe against the denial of others’ claims and in support of the acceptance of others’ traumas and “myths.”

      “The mosque of al-Aqsa, or ‘the farthest,’” Ma’oz clarified, “which is discussed in Quran’s Sura 17, the one on prophet Muhammad’s night journey, is certainly the result of an interpretation. But I wonder what difference it makes if Jerusalem is explicitly mentioned or not in the Quran. All religious matters are the result of interpretations. A number of academics have demonstrated that the history of the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt is full of distortions. This does not change anything for us, Jews. We continue to believe in our myths, as other peoples continue to believe in theirs. It is not a matter of facts, but of beliefs. A billion and a half Muslims believe in the Isra and the Mi‘raj, the Prophet’s night journey to Jerusalem. This is what matters, unless we do not intend to scrutinize all the events mentioned in the books of the three monotheistic religions, to find historical evidence. If so, we would be very disappointed.”

      Two major lessons can be drawn from the events inflaming current-day, terrestrial Jerusalem. First, religion cannot be used as a political tool, to deny the beliefs and the “myths” of others – in this case either Jews or Muslims. Second, a solution must be found through sharing or internationalizing Jerusalem’s Old City and in striving to trigger a radical political change in the status of the Palestinian territories. If none of these scenarios can be achieved, the status quo in the Temple Mount/al-Aqsa complex remains – at least for now – the least worst alternative.”

      Reply to Comment
    17. Click here to load previous comments