Scenes From The Temple Mount

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Palestinian worshipers – masked to protect their faces from sunburn – raise their fingers up to Allah during a prayer ceremony near Al-Aqsa mosque. Either that, or they are asking for some underarm deodorant.

Masked Palestinians REUTERS/Ammar Awad
REUTERS/Ammar Awad

A close-up of a worshiper with his special “prayer beads”

masked palestinians
REUTERS/Ammar Awad

See if you can spot the guy with the selfie stick (I’m sure that’s what it is)



Masked palestinians
REUTERS/Ammar Awad

There’s always time to relax after an intensive prayer session.

masked palestinians
REUTERS/Ammar Awad

Ok, you get the message. Now here is what actually happened.

Israeli police on Tuesday banned non-Muslims from a contentious Jerusalem holy site until the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan following repeated clashes with Palestinians rioters.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said rocks and other objects were hurled toward police forces and Jewish worshippers in a nearby plaza. He said a 73-year-old woman was lightly wounded and police arrested 16 suspects in the disturbances.

As a result, police decided to close access to Jewish worshippers and other visitors for the remainder of the week to prevent tensions with Muslim worshippers until Ramadan is over.Throughout the week Palestinians had holed themselves up in the Al-Aqsa Mosque atop the mount and attacked officers with fireworks and other objects they had stockpiled inside.

The mosque is part of a compound sacred to both Muslims and Jews. Muslims refer to it as the Noble Sanctuary, where they believe the Prophet Muhammad embarked on a night journey to heaven, while Jews refer to it the Temple Mount, where the two Jewish temples stood in biblical times.

It is hard to work out what is more ridiculous: the idea that the Muslims riot and it is the Jews who get punished by being prevented from visiting their holy site, or the idea that these rioters see this as their sacred site yet treat it with such contempt in stockpiling weapons and perpetrating violence there.

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An Aussie immigrant to Israel, David Lange is founder and managing editor of Israellycool. He is a happy family man, and a lover of steak, Australian sports and single malt whisky.