Sharon’s most successful campaign trick was to walk with a muscular entourage across the courtyard of Jerusalem’s Dome of the Rock, the sacred Islamic territory from where Muhammad ascended to heaven for a night, and claim this as Jewish territory for ever because down below are the remains of the temple that the Romans destroyed...he showed both his irresponsibility and his total contempt for 1300 years of continuous Muslim presence.
How would Christians have felt if he had strutted across the Piazza in front of St. Peter’s and made a speech that slighted Christian claims to that piece of earth? How would the Jews have felt if the Palestinians had suspended political banners from the Dome at the top of the hill down over the sacred Wailing Wall below? Is there no sense of consistency or basic justice in the Israeli body politic?...aren’t the Jews as a rather small religious group the ones who have the most to lose if religious tolerance is undermined?
...The Jewish notion that they can have this land and no one else can is so wildly anachronistic by any Western standards or historical experience that it is amazing that in 1917 it got the time of day...why should Israel get a free pass today? If the Jews want to believe that Temple Mount (on which the Dome of the Rock is built) is “the focal point of creation” and that in the center of the hill lies the “foundation stone” of the world and that here “Adam came into being” they may be allowed to believe it.
But that the arbiters of the United Nations, including the US, Russia and Europe could go along with this myth at the expense of traditional Palestinian centuries-old occupancy rights is almost impossible to digest.
Monday, December 31, 2007
Okay, I admit. I found this op-ed by Jonathan Power funny.