Sunday, May 20, 2012

Knesset members on the Temple Mount

Haaretz reports:
Earlier Sunday, as part of Jerusalem Day events, National Union MKs Uri Ariel and Michael Ben-Ari arrived at the Temple Mount accompanied by a group of about 20 right-wing activists to conduct a tour of the site.

Temple Mount - Michal Fattal - 20.5.2012

Originally, Ariel and Ben-Ari were supposed to be joined by fellow National Union MK Aryeh Eldad, along with Ze'ev Elkin (Likud) and Otniel Schneller (Kadima), who all cancelled at the last moment.

During the tour, four or five of the activists, including Ben-Ari himself, kneeled to pray on the Temple Mount, with a nearby police force preventing them from doing so.

However, as a result of the questioning of two the group's participants following the act, the tour's leader, Yehuda Etzion, a one-time member of the Gush Emunim Underground, sat on the ground and refused to move on.

He was then forcibly removed by police and arrested, with MK Ben-Ari confronting police officers to try and prevent the arrest.
Yehuda Etzion was one of the leaders of the Jewish underground who plotted the blow up the mosques on the Temple Mount, but was fortunately stopped by the police. Gershom Gorenberg wrote about him in his book, End of Days.

What I don't understand is why they knelt to pray - Christians kneel in prayer, not Jews (except for one prayer on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur).

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