Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Those Disruptive Women

Diaa Hadid's NYTimes' story:

does make it clear what the groups do - the women

chase and shout at Jewish visitors...often surround visiting Jews and the Israeli police guarding them, shouting “God is Great” and holding up the Quran, trying to disrupt their visits to the compound.

and the men are

a less-vocal affiliated group

who 'contest' the Temple Mount.

And are called 

mourabitoun for the men and mourabitat for the women, which roughly translate to “garrison soldiers,” formed in recent years to assert Palestinian sovereignty over the sprawling compound that Jews call the Temple Mount and Muslims call the Noble Sanctuary, or Al Aqsa, which is the name of one of two main Islamic shrines there. 

That's very balanced and fair although the Jews don't "contest" the site.  We do challenge the government's ban on prayer, on hours allotted to visit, on the number of entrance gates permitted

She does quote the Defense Minister's statement (see below) but misses something which I highlighted:

“The two organizations aim to erode Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount and change the religious status quo on the site,” the statement from the defense minister’s office said.

Are they changing the status quo by interfering with the legal right of Jews to pray?  If so, can we pray?  What other religious act is involved?

And how religious is this political goal?

In recent years, Palestinians have come to see the compound as their last real institution in East Jerusalem, their hoped-for capital of a future state.

So, what exactly is the dispute about?

Communicated by the Defense Minister's Media Adviser) Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon, last night (Tuesday, 8 September 2015), upon the recommendation of the ISA and the Israel Police, signed a declaration declaring the "Mourabitoun" and the "Mourabitat" as illegal organizations, having been convinced that the step was necessary in order to defend the security of the state, the well-being of the public and public order. The activities of the "Mourabitoun" and the "Mourabitat" are a main factor in creating the tension and violence on the Temple Mount in particular and in Jerusalem in general. They engage in inciteful and dangerous activity against tourists, visitors and worshippers at the site, which leads to violence and is liable to injure human life. The aforesaid organizations strive to undermine Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount, change the existing reality and arrangements at the site and infringe on freedom of worship. They are linked to – and frequently guided by – hostile Islamic organizations. The declaration was signed after receiving the approval of Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein and means that henceforth, those who participate in, organize or finance activity of the "Mourabitoun" and the "Mourabitat" are committing a prohibited act and are subject to trial. Defense Minister Yaalon: "The State of Israel allows freedom of worship to all its citizens, tourists and visitors regardless of their religion and holds this to be an important and essential basic value. However, we have no intention of allowing violent and inciteful elements to harm public order and threaten the safety of worshippers especially at a sensitive and holy site such as the Temple Mount."


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