Waqf Ignores High Court Ruling, Continues to Destroy Temple Mount Artifacts

January 2, 2013 1:52 am 2 comments

Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Photo: wiki commons.

A demonstration was held Wednesday, December 26th, at the northern entrance to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount in protest of the Waqf’s continued destruction of archaeological artifacts in the area under its jurisdiction. The demonstrators, led by Knesset Member Aryeh Eldad, called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to intervene and save these unique antiques currently being destroyed by the Waqf.

The Waqf, a Muslim Jordanian religious body entrusted with the management of the Temple Mount, has been renovating the Temple Mount for years. In the process they have been moving mounds of earth off the mountain. These piles contain numerous archaeological artifacts from many centuries. In 2004 the High Court of Justice passed a ruling prohibiting the removal of the dirt from the Temple Mount elsewhere, until the contents are combed for artifacts. Since then, these artifacts have been lying at the bottom of the mountain in accumulating mounds. Many of the artifacts dug up are currently being ruined by the weather, after being preserved for centuries.

Tractor working on the Temple Mount, Dec. 24th. Photo: Yitzchak Dvira

Yitzchak Dvira, an archaeologist, recently published a report about the Waqf’s continued disregard of the High Court’s ruling. In his report he states that since the ruling in 2004, many piles of earth have accumulated on the eastern side of the Temple Mount, and the Waqf continues to move the earth from the Temple Mount to dump sites in eastern Jerusalem. Dvira has documented several recent incidents of heavy machinery moving earth away from the Temple Mount. These actions have contributed to the loss of important artifacts of Jewish, Christian and Muslim history on the Temple Mount.

Dvira and his crew have sifted through piles of earth removed from the Mount and have recovered many artifacts belonging to various historical periods. They have recovered seals baring the names of priests mentioned in the book of Jeremiah, support beams from the First Temple, remnants of the structure of the Second Temple, arrow heads and horse-shoe nails from the Crusades Period and even artifacts from the Muslim Period, which the Waqf neglected to preserve.

Artifacts found in the earth dumps. Photo: Yitzchak Dvira

Dvira states that he sees dozens of such artifacts every day in the mounds on the side of the Temple Mount. He told Tazpit News Agency that he believes the earth piles should be removed from the Temple Mount, but it should be done in a supervised fashion, ensuring no further loss of artifacts. Dvira submitted his report to the official bodies entrusted with the supervision of the enforcement of the High Court’s ruling and the preservation of the artifacts. The police have released a statement in which they declare that all construction on the Temple Mount is under their close supervision, and that Dvira’s claims are incorrect. As of now, all other bodies have not provided a response.

Artifacts found in the earth dumps. Photo: Yitzchak Dvira

Dvira points out that all issues regarding the Temple Mount are overseen by the Prime Minister’s office, and he suspects that there is consent on their part to the Waqf’s actions. It was reported that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met secretly with King Abdullah of Jordan last week. Dvira believes they discussed issues related to the Temple Mount. The Jordanians have been pressuring the Israeli government to allow the removal of the earth mounds on the side of the Temple Mount.

Dvira and the Temple Mount organization warn that this continued neglect and disregard of the law will bring to further loss of unrecoverable historical relics, and they intend to petition the High Court on the issue again.

2 Comments

  • Tony Trenton

    We must reset the rules of the game.

    Re-build the 3rd Temple on the temple Mount. NOW !!!

    This will establish Israel as the Jewish State.

    The Waqf shows no respect for us.

    In fact The Koran teaches Muslims that We infidels have no right to be on this Earth.

    The Ark of the Covenant may be there.

    Being politically correct has never, ever done the right thing !!!

    Rebuilding the 3rd Temple on Temple Mount. Will have the support of all Jews world wide and the Christians.

    In fact everybody who is NOT Islamic.

    The Media will love us and here we will have a golden opportunity to reverse the (Big Lie)that Islam has slandered us with for decades.

    Ok! so there will be a price to pay with the Muslims up in arms.

    But it will be worth it and we will have to handle them.

  • The real issue is that the “High Court” is not so high. They are so afraid of the Arabs that they will not enforce the ruling they made. This leaves the court in the minds of most as an ineffective and useless appendage of the government.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Theater US & Canada New Play Explores the ‘Arrogance’ of American Jews Critical of Israel, Playwright Says

    New Play Explores the ‘Arrogance’ of American Jews Critical of Israel, Playwright Says

    In his new play Mr. Goldberg Goes to Tel Aviv, playwright Oren Safdie tackles an issue that he has a major concern with: the relationship between Israelis and left-leaning Diaspora Jews with their “I know better” critical views. At the heart of the one-act play is Tony, a Jewish and gay Palestinian sympathizer who expresses strong anti-Israel sentiments when the play begins and at one point even sides with a Palestinian terrorist who holds his captive. Tony, who is also an [...]

    Read more →
  • Music US & Canada Hassidic Parody of Taylor Swift Song Apes Long Jewish Holidays (VIDEO)

    Hassidic Parody of Taylor Swift Song Apes Long Jewish Holidays (VIDEO)

    A Jewish comedy troupe released a parody video on Wednesday of Taylor Swift’s hit song Shake It Off in which they joke about taking extensive time off from work for Jewish holidays. “And the goyim gonna stay, stay, stay, stay, stay. And the Jews are gonna pray, pray pray, pray, pray. I’m just gonna take, take, take, take, take. I’m taking off,” goes the chorus for I’m Taking Off. Menachem Weinstein, the video’s lead singer, is the creative director at [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish Literature On 75th Anniversary, Looking at the Jewish Influence on Gone With the Wind

    On 75th Anniversary, Looking at the Jewish Influence on Gone With the Wind

    JNS.org – The 75th anniversary of the premiere of “Gone with the Wind” on Dec. 15 presents an opportunity to examine the Jewish influence on one of the most popular films of all time. That influence starts with the American Civil War epic’s famed producer, David O. Selznick. Adjusted for inflation, “Gone with the Wind” remains the highest-grossing movie ever made. It earned the 1939 Academy Award for Best Picture, the same honor another Selznick film, “Rebecca,” garnered in 1940. Selznick [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Music US & Canada EXCLUSIVE: Matisyahu Provides Most Extensive Analysis Yet of His Religious, Musical Evolution (INTERVIEW)

    EXCLUSIVE: Matisyahu Provides Most Extensive Analysis Yet of His Religious, Musical Evolution (INTERVIEW)

    Matisyahu got candid in an exclusive interview with The Algemeiner on Monday about his religious and musical journey – after shedding his Chassidic skin, yarmulke, long beard and all – from the start of his career in 2005 when he became a reggae superstar with hits King Without a Crown and Jerusalem. The singer-songwriter embarks on his Festival of Light tour this month, an annual Hanukkah event that stops in Montreal, New York, and other cities before ending in San Juan, [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Personalities ‘Sheriff of Mars’ Unveils Endearing Life of Jewish Music Star Hidden in the Fields of France

    ‘Sheriff of Mars’ Unveils Endearing Life of Jewish Music Star Hidden in the Fields of France

    JNS.org – It was an era of steel strings, guitar heroes, and storytellers—high on heroin, rebellious. Outlaw country music, the hallmark of Nashville’s powerful and angry music scene of the 1970s, was the brew of greats such as Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Townes Van Zandt. But there is another, little-known music hero of that era: Daniel Antopolsky. A Jewish lad from Augusta, Ga.—the son of immigrants who settled in the south and ran a hardware store on Main Street—the [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada Iranian Actress Replaces Israel’s Gal Gadot for ‘Ben-Hur’ Remake

    Iranian Actress Replaces Israel’s Gal Gadot for ‘Ben-Hur’ Remake

    Iranian actress Nazanin Boniadi replaced Israeli star Gal Gadot as the female lead in the new Ben-Hur remake, Hollywood.com reported on Tuesday. The Homeland actress will play Esther, a slave that Ben-Hur sets free and falls in love with. Gadot quit the movie when it became clear that filming conflicted with her schedule for the Man of Steel sequel. The Israeli actress plays Wonder Woman in the superhero film Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Actor Jack Huston takes on the [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Personalities Biography Sheds New Light on David Ben-Gurion’s Place in Jewish History

    Biography Sheds New Light on David Ben-Gurion’s Place in Jewish History

    JNS.org – There is one sentence in “Ben-Gurion: Father of Modern Israel” that made me sit up in surprise. I thought that I knew the basic facts about how Israel came into being, but while describing what it was like in the days and hours before the state was declared, author Anita Shapira provides one important anecdote I was not aware of. On the 12th of May, the Zionist Executive met to decide what to do. Moshe Sharrett had just returned [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada ‘Death of Klinghoffer’ Actress Compares Met Opera to ‘Schindler’s List’

    ‘Death of Klinghoffer’ Actress Compares Met Opera to ‘Schindler’s List’

    An actress starring in the controversial Met Opera The Death of Klinghoffer defended the show on Tuesday by comparing it to the 1993 Holocaust film Schindler’s List, New York Post reported. “To me, this was like [the movie] Schindler’s List. We make art so people won’t forget,’’ said the actress, who plays a captured passenger in the show and asked not to be identified. The Met Opera focuses on the infamous murder of Lower East Side Jewish resident Leon Klinghoffer, 69. The wheelchair-bound father of [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.