The news today is that there is more violence on the Temple Mount, with Palestinian rioting spreading out to the Muslim Quarter of the Old City. The source of this violence is clear: rightwing Jewish efforts to conduct religious rituals on the Temple Mount. Haaretz:
Most incidents involve Jews attempting to access the area in order to pray or demonstrate a Jewish presence. The growing strength of the Jewish Temple Movement and other organizations that seek to change the status quo on the Temple Mount has exacerbated these tensions, as has the crisis in the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.
It turns out that these zealots are getting support in the United States. This is from an American charity that supports Israeli soldiers, undated:
BREAKING NEWS: This morning, after Palestinian and Arab rioters threw stones and Molotov cocktails on the Temple Mount, the police were forced to close the area. Is it time for Israel to take control of the Temple Mount, end the violence, and open it to people of all religions? Click here to vote!
That “vote” is here. Should a Jewish government take sovereignty over the third most holy site in the Islamic faith and allow Jews to worship there?
The group is “Friends of LIBI,” an American nonprofit that donates funds to Israeli soldiers, tax free. “End the Violence on the Temple Mount!” it says, and features a photo of masked Palestinian youths throwing stones.
As for LIBI, it is an official Israeli quasi-governmental org, started by David Ben-Gurion 34 years ago to pass money to soldiers.
Those appeals by the American group may well have gone past incitement to pure hatred, in this suggestion: “Time to… get the Arabs out?” Our friend at I Acknowledge Apartheid Exists sent us this screen-grab of the Friends of LIBI Facebook page earlier last week. It was given to him by a friend; so he can’t vouch for its authenticity.
He points out that the same hateful statement appears on the “Israel Returns” Facebook page:
BREAKING: This morning an Israeli Parliament member was attacked on the Temple Mount by Arab protesters! Is it time to take over the Temple Mount and get the Arabs out? Click here to vote!
Of course the actual appeal by Friends of LIBI is loony enough: End the Violence on the Temple Mount, featuring Palestinian youths. Even Tom Friedman is now explaining to American Jews that Israeli political culture is dominated by zealots. Well, that zealotry gets giant hugs from Zionist zealots in the U.S.A. People on my side like to joke, This is the human brain on Zionism. That feels like namecalling to me till I see a story like this, which reminds us of the consequences in Jewish life of setting up a religious-nationalist garrison in the Arab world.