Temple Mount Closed to Jews on Sukkot After Intelligence Indicates Violent Arab Plot

September 24, 2013 6:09 pm 1 comment

Rabbi Chaim Richman, director of the Temple Mount Institute, with Jews visiting the site of the Temple Mount for Sukkot on Monday, September 23, 2013. In the background, Muslim women can be seen descending the steps leading into the Dome of the Rock. Photo: Temple Mount Institute.

Rabbi Chaim Richman, director of the Temple Mount Institute, with Jews visiting the site of the Temple Mount for Sukkot on Monday, September 23, 2013. In the background, Muslim women can be seen congregating on the steps leading into the Dome of the Rock. Photo: Temple Mount Institute.

The Jerusalem District Police on Tuesday closed the Temple Mount to Jewish visitors during the Sukkot festival, citing “intelligence indicating intentions [by Arabs] to disturb the peace” in the area, Ha’aretz reported.

Rabbi Chaim Richman, director of the Temple Mount Institute, told The Algemeiner that “promises had been made by the police to ‘make every effort’ to ensure that the Mount would be open to Jewish visitors throughout the holiday of Sukkot,” but security concerns after the violence there on the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashana trumped those assurances.

“More and more Jews have been visiting the Temple Mount in recent months,” the rabbi said. “Until it was closed today, this Sukkot has seen record numbers — over 300 Jews a day visiting the Temple Mount. If the draconian and discriminatory rules and hours were not in place, that number would skyrocket. Hundreds more, waiting in line, were denied entry.”

While he was disappointed that the Mount would be closed on Tuesday, Rabbi Richman was able to lead a tour of 55 Jews to the site in conjunction with Israeli political faction Manhigut Yehudit on Monday.

Monday’s Sukkot tour was the first of many, he hoped, aimed at reinstating the ancient tradition of Aliya L’Regel, Jewish pilgrimages to the Holy Temple on Sukkot, Pesach and Shavout. According to rabbinic sources, including Maimonides, the rabbi said, Jews are obligated to visit the Temple Mount, despite the lack of a Holy Temple, during the three pilgrimage holidays.

“Rather than point a finger and place the blame for the closure of the Temple Mount on the police or on the government, in reality it is the Jewish people who are to blame. For too long we have been indifferent to the fate of our holiest site,” he said.

While no further information was available as to the extent of the violent threat or when the mount would again be open to Jews, the rabbi said, “I certainly hope it will reopen tomorrow.”

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

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


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Middle East Hamas Commander Reportedly Urges Hezbollah to Join Forces Against Israel

    Hamas Commander Reportedly Urges Hezbollah to Join Forces Against Israel

    JNS.org – Five months after Israeli forces tried to assassinate Hamas military commander Mohammed Deif in Gaza, Deif appears to have signed a letter that the terrorist group claims he wrote in hiding. The letter, addressed to Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, expressed Deif’s condolences for the death of Hezbollah terrorists during Sunday’s reported Israeli airstrike in Syria. Deif is said to have survived multiple assassination attempts, but he has not been seen in public for years. According to the Hezbollah-linked Al-Manar [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Theater Shlomo Carlebach Musical Has the Soul to Heal Frayed Race Relations

    Shlomo Carlebach Musical Has the Soul to Heal Frayed Race Relations

    JNS.org – The cracks that had been simply painted over for so long began to show in Ferguson, Mo., in November 2014, but in truth they had begun to open wide much earlier—on Saturday, July 13, 2013. That is when a jury in Sanford, Fla., acquitted George Zimmerman of culpability for the death of a 17-year-old black man, Trayvon Martin. The cracks receded from view over time, as other news obscured them. Then came the evening of Aug. 9, 2014, [...]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada ‘Homeland’ Season Finale Stirs Controversy After Comparing Menachem Begin to Taliban Leader

    ‘Homeland’ Season Finale Stirs Controversy After Comparing Menachem Begin to Taliban Leader

    A controversial scene in the season finale of Homeland sparked outrage by comparing former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin to a fictional Taliban leader, the UK’s Daily Mail reported. In the season 4 finale episode, which aired on Dec. 21, CIA black ops director Dar Adal, played by F. Murray Abraham, justifies a deal he made with a Taliban leader by referencing Begin. He makes the remarks in a conversation with former CIA director Saul Berenson, a Jewish character played by Mandy [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Placing Matisyahu Back Within a Life of Observance

    Placing Matisyahu Back Within a Life of Observance

    Shining Light on Fiction During the North Korea-Sony saga, we learned two important lessons. The first is that there are two sides to this story, and neither of them are correct because ultimately we should have neither inappropriate movies nor dictators. The second is that we cannot remain entirely fixed on the religious world, but we also must see beyond the external, secular view of reality. It’s important to ground our Torah-based thoughts into real-life activism. To view our act [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Nine Decades of Moses at the Movies

    Nine Decades of Moses at the Movies

    JNS.org – Hollywood has had its share of big-budget biblical flops, but until now, the Exodus narrative has not been among them. Studios have brought Moses to the big screen sparingly, but in ways that defined the image and character of Moses for each generation of audiences. The first biblical epic In 1923, director Cecil B. DeMille left it to the American public to decide the subject of his next movie for Paramount. DeMille received a letter from a mechanic [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Exodus on Screen (REVIEW)

    Exodus on Screen (REVIEW)

    JNS.org – The story of the Exodus from Egypt is a tale as old as time itself, to borrow a turn of phrase. It’s retold every Passover, both at the seder table and whenever “The Ten Commandments” is aired on television. But the latest adaptation—Ridley Scott’s epic film, “Exodus: Gods and Kings”—fails to meet expectations. Scott’s “Exodus” alters the source material to service the story and ground the tale, but the attempt to reinvent the biblical narrative becomes laughable. Moses [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Lifestyle ‘Jewish Food Movement’ Comes of Age

    ‘Jewish Food Movement’ Comes of Age

    JNS.org - In December 2007, leaders of the Hazon nonprofit drafted seven-year goals for what they coined as the “Jewish Food Movement,” which has since been characterized by the increased prioritization of healthy eating, sustainable agriculture, and food-related activism in the Jewish community. What do the next seven years hold in store? “One thing I would like to see happen in the next seven years is [regarding] the issue of sugar, soda, and obesity, [seeing] what would it be like to rally the [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Education Seeds of ‘Start-Up Nation’ Cultivated by Israel Sci-Tech Schools

    Seeds of ‘Start-Up Nation’ Cultivated by Israel Sci-Tech Schools

    JNS.org – Forget the dioramas. How about working on an Israeli Air Force drone? That’s exactly the kind of beyond-their-years access enjoyed by students at the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) industrial vocational high school run by Israel Sci-Tech Schools, the largest education network in the Jewish state. More than 300 students (250 on the high school level and 68 at a two-year vocational academy) get hands-on training in the disciplines of aviation mechanics, electricity and energy control, and unmanned air [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.