Friday, February 19, 2016

'Seizing the Mosque' in 1930

Is the recent dispute of Jewish rights to their holy places and the essential element of Zionism - a restored Jewish polity - new to the conflict Arabs have with Israel?

Of course not.

Here's a report from July 21, 1930:

Zionism is Dangerous Scheme Seeking Restoration of Kingdom of Judah,
Moslem Advocate Charges Before

“Zionism is a dangerous scheme which seeks the restoration of the Kingdom of Judah,” declared Mohammed Ali Pahsa, Moslem advocate from Egypt, in speaking for the Arab side yesterday afternoon before the Wailing Wall Commission. “The Jews contend that our fears of their encroachment on our holy places are baseless but the near or distant future will show that our fears are founded on fact,” he continued...

Mohammed Ali spoke before a room packed to capacity with practically the entire Arab Executive present as well as numerous Jewish leaders, Norman Bentwich, attorney general of Palestine, and Keith Roach, district commissioner.

The Moslem dignitary charged that “the Zionists persistently aim to seize the Mosque of Aksa and the Dome of the Rock. Such aims are bound to drive the Arabs from anti-Zionism to anti-Semitism, leading to greater violence toward the Jews than they suffered in Europe.”

...He succeeded in placing in the record the mizrachs, small paper banners which Jewish children carry on Simchas Torah with an inset of the Scrolls of the Law in an Ark with swinging doors and a picture of the Wailing Wall in the background. This, Mohammed Ali charged, shows that the Jews mean to open a gate leading from the Wall to the Temple.

He also put into the record a cartoon from the “Yiddische Folk” of New York dated April 30, 1920. The cartoon, printed soon after the San Remo decision confirmed the Palestine Mandate to England, was entitled “A Dream Come True” and accompanied by a poem of Philip Raskin called “It Has Happened.” This, the Moslem advocate said, was an indication that the Jews were not concerned about the Wailing Wall but were merely simulating indignation in order to approach the Mosque and remove the Moslems from their most holy temple.

Citing a statement of General Louis Jean Bols, a British officer who fought in Palestine during the War, that Menachem Mendel Ussishkin, head of the Jewish National Fund, had proposed, with the approval of Chief Rabbi Kook, the acquisition by the Jews of the pavement in front of the Wall...

...He concluded by saying that he had never thought that under the present circumstances the Jews would hasten to make such unreasonable demands.

Then, we were "seizing".

Now, we're "storming".


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