Israeli security forces and law enforcement got into a violent and heated brawl with Muslim worshippers near the Temple Mount in Israel this past Monday. All reports indicate that Muslim rioters started the fight by throwing stones as well as other objects at Israeli police officers.
However, they did not act alone. The rioters were being egged on by the Qaqf which is the Mount’s Islamic custodians. Chairman of the Palestinian National Initiative Party, Mustafa Barghouti was present at the fight.
They were there because they were allegedly protesting the Israeli government’s decision to put into place metal detectors at the entrance of the Mount. The Mount is the holiest site in all of Judaism. The rioter’s actions were deplorable while also taking into consideration the site is considered holy by the Islamic community as well. The security was there because of a Palestinian terrorist attack the previous weekend. You’ve got to love the irony there.
Over the weekend three Waqf officials had been arrested by Israeli police during raids over suspicion they had been involved in the deadly terrorist attack. Despite this, Waqf had called for people within the Muslim community to protect Israeli security measures. The details of that day are somewhat scattered but eyewitnesses were able to piece together the major events.
Police were stationed near Lions Gate when they tried breaking up the protesters who were attempting to block a road that was adjacent to the Old City in Jerusalem, a highly contested territory. Five protesters were injured one of whom was the Chairman Mustafa Barghouti. It was The Red Crescent who reported this to the Palestinian Wafa news agency. Three civilians were badly injured from receiving a beating and one was injured by a stun grenade. Barghouti had been hit in the head with a bullet that was rubber coated.
Some of the protesters were heard yelling “Allahu Akbar” while they were attacking officers. One protester was heard saying,
“We will not respect the metal detectors. We will continue to resist until the death and we will die here as martyrs.”
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abba’s denounced the attack on Friday in a phone call with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Both of whom have a contentious relationship. Abbas is the leader of the Fatah Party in Palestine. However, reports from Breitbart Jerusalem found that the official Facebook page of the party saw Abbas calling for a religious war at none other than the Al Aqsa Mosque.
This attack is nothing surprising in the least. The Temple Mount has been a place where Palestinians have used violence to attack the Israelis. In October of 1990 fights broke out which brought about the First Intifada. The Second Intifada was kicked off there in September of 2000. Then they used the Temple Mount to launch a planned terrorist campaign which broke the U.S. brokered peace agreement between the Israeli’s and the Palestinian state.
Breitbart reported the following,
“Two Israeli Border Police Officers were murdered and a third was wounded on Friday when three Palestinian terrorists opened fire at security forces near an entrance to the Temple Mount at the Lions Gate and then fled into the Mount complex. The Palestinian assailants, reportedly carrying two rifles and a pistol, were pursued by Israeli forces and were shot and killed as they tried to escape toward the mosques on the Mount.
Friday’s attack occurred less than two weeks after the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed an anti-Israel resolution declaring Jerusalem’s Old City and its ancient walls to be “occupied” sites and listed the areas as Palestinian heritage sites in “danger.” And the terrorist attack took place one week after UNESCO passed another anti-Israel resolution regarding the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron – considered the second holiest site in Judaism after the Temple Mount – claiming the tomb is a “Palestinian” world heritage site in danger.”
The Israeli’s and the Palestinians have been fighting for centuries. The fight between Islam and Judaism leads all the way back to biblical times. To think this issue will somehow be resolved in a short period of time is nothing more than naïve. This is a highly complex issue and the struggle will continue as this weekend has shown especially given the divisive climate internationally and throughout the Middle East.