Israel land of the Jews

Following are a series of letters written between The Temple Institute and the Ministry of Internal Security, over the past six months. We present the letters for the purpose of highlighting present police practice concerning observant Jews who wish to visit the Temple Mount, and exposing the discriminatory nature of this practice. We refrain at this point from calling it “policy,” for, as you will read below, the official police policy, as it was expressed to us, is in direct contradiction to the actual practice that takes place on location at the Temple Mount. We wish to make it abundantly clear that we appreciate the police presence on the Temple Mount, and regard it as vital for maintaining law and order. But we do protest the political agenda which lurks behind the police policy, which is discriminatory againt religious Jews that wish to fulfill the mitzva of “Revering My Holy Temple” (Mora Mikdash), by visiting the mount. There is no place in a democratic society, especially one which claims to uphold the principles of freedom of religion, and freedom of access to places of worship, for this type of behavior. There is certainly no place for this policy in the context of Israel as a Jewish state. We will not make peace with this policy, but will continue to protest against it, until the day that our basic human rights are recognized, and equality before the law has been granted us.
  In October 2004, one year after the Temple Mount was reopened to non-Moslem visitors, a member of The Temple Institute’s research staff wrote to then Minister of Internal Security Tzachi Hanegbi, asking for his perspective on the security ramifications presented by the re-opening of the mount. On October 24, he received the following answer. The Hebrew is followed by an English translation:
 
 
  The English translation:
 
             
       

Prime Minister’s Office

 

     
      October 24, 2004

Dear ****,

I appreciate your letter, dated October of this year. There is no question about the fact that the presence of Jews on the Temple Mount strengthens Jewish sovereignty in this holy site in a significant way. Since the Mount was reopened on July 20, 2003, it has been visited by more than 70,000 Jews. These visits necessitate a permanent police presence on the Mount, and they serve to help the Palestinians get used to the fact that the Jewish people have a deep bond with the dwelling place of the Holy Temple. Obviously, this adds to the strength of our claim to sovereignty on the Mount.

With Blessings, Zachi HaNegbi

 

     
             
 
We were very gratified by Minister Hanegbi’s response: not only was Israeli sovereignty enhanced by the increased presence of both Israeli policemen and Jewish visitors, an extremely important development in light of successive Israeli governments’ willingness to discuss relinquishing sovereignty of the Mount to the Palestinians, (G-d forbid), but the official Police tabulation of more than 70,000 Jewish visitors to the Mount over the previous twelve months even more importantly, testified to the eternal Jewish attachment to the site of the Holy Temple, as well as to a reawakening and renewal of the yearning among Jews to visit the site in order to fufill a religious obligation as well  as a manifestation of their longing to see the Holy Temple rebuilt.

Although restrictions were still being imposed on religious Jews, they were considerably more relaxed than they had been prior to the Mount’s being closed to all non-Moslems in October 2000, when the Arabs began their murderous campaign against the Jews and the Jewish state. Some months after the re-opening, while in the midst of the relentless Arab violence, the Chief of the Jerusalem Police, Mikki Levi made a surprise visit one morning to greet a group of Jews on the Mount. He informed those present that the police viewed very positively the ever increasing numbers of Jews who were visiting the Mount. He implied that, although it would take time, and would require patience, all efforts would be made to continually ease the restrictions. When asked specifically about the constant tailing of Jewish visitors by Wakf observers, Police Chief Levi answered that as the number of Jewish visitors increased, the Wakf wouldn’t be able to maintain this practise. In short, things were promising.

Minister Hanegbi was subsequently replaced by a new Internal Security Minister, Gideon Ezra. On December 28, 2004, Rabbi Chaim Richman of The Temple Institute, and five American visitors he was accompanying, were startled to be greeted by a sharp deterioration in police attitudes to Jewish visitors to the Mount, and a blatant violation of their rights and dignity. Rabbi Richman proceeded to write a complaint and an inquiry into official police policy concerning religious Jewish visitors to the Mount. Below is a fascimile of the original query, as written to the Office of the Auditor General of the Ministry of Internal Security, Public Complaint Department. The details of this particular incident are described in the letter. (The highlights have been added for readers on the site):

 
 
Below is the English translation of the above query:
 
             
       

December 28, 2004

To the Auditor General & Ombudsman Israel Public Security Forces

Re.: The Policy of the Israel Police Regarding Jewish Visitors to the Temple Mount

Sir,

For over 13 years, I have been visiting the Temple Mount, in the areas permitted according to Jewish law. As a director at the Temple Institute in Jerusalem, I am also accustomed to guiding various groups of both Jews and non-Jewish tourists from abroad at the site. I am known personally to the police officers who serve on the Mount.

Since the Mount was re-opened to Jewish visitors in June, 2003, I have been visiting the site at least once a week, and upon occasion I have the opportunity to lead large and influential groups of tourists from other countries.

This morning I arrived at the Mugrabi Gate at 8:30 AM with 5 American Jews, all wearing kippot. These are older men, and they happen to be the heads of an esteemed congregation in the United States. I was shocked when the policeman at the gate (whose name is Motti), whose is assigned to receive and check the visitors, made radio contact with an officer on the Mount, and upon relaying to this officer that a number of religious Jews had arrived and were requesting to ascend, received instructions not to allow us to ascend without first presenting ID. This, despite the fact that since the Mount was re-opened, we have not been required to present ID’s.

My group disbanded in order for everyone to go and fetch their documentation, in order to regroup and return to the gate with the same so that we could proceed with our visit. This we did, and when we returned, the policeman reported each name to the officer, and recorded our names in a notebook. All the while, large numbers of foreign tourists were ascending the Temple Mount and not one was required to present any sort of identification. This is reminiscent of those years when the policemen on the Mount used to record the names of the kippa-wearing visitors on an official police form whose title read “List of Suspects.”

It would be superfluous to mention the feeling of oppression and degradation that we, religious Jews, are made to feel upon realizing that we are considered to be dangerous and even suspicious – simply because the holiest spot in the world for the Jewish people is indeed important to us, and we desire to visit it and exercise our basic rights as citizens of the State of Israel and as Jews. And all the while, any foreign tourist may ascend the Mount, unhindered.

Finally we were permitted to ascend. Only 2 minutes passed, and we managed to proceed no more than 15 meters along our route, when a policeman carrying a video camera approached us. He asked us who was the leader of the group, and I identified myself. He then proceeded to film me, and also instructed each member of my group to stand still for a moment while he filmed each one, separately.

This is disturbing and most distressing. My question is this: Is this practice, which is employed solely in the case of religious Jews, the State’s official policy? Is it legal? And if so, on the basis of what law are innocent Jews treated in such a discriminatory and degrading manner?

I thank you for your reply.

Sincerely,

Rabbi Chaim Richman Director, International Department THE TEMPLE INSTITUTE

 

     
             
 
The following response from the Office of the Auditor General of the Ministry of Internal Security, Public Complaint Department, was faxed to The Temple Institute on February 28, 2005. (The highlights have been added for readers on the site):
 
 
Below is the English translation of the above Police response:
 
             
       

STATE OF ISRAEL Ministry of Internal Security

— Non-Classified —

 

     
      Office of the Auditor General of the Ministry of Internal Security Public Complaint Department

Jerusalem, 19 Adar 1 5765 28/02/2005

Ref. No. 00039033

Rabbi Chaim Richman Director, International Department Fax. 02-6274529

Sir,

Re.: Visitors to the Temple Mount

1. On August 20, 2003, the Temple Mount was re-opened to visitors in a unilateral move by the Israel Police, after having been closed to visitors for approximately 3 years, on.1 account of the Al Aksa Intifada.

2. The re-opening of the Mount was marked by the introduction of new, unprecedented measures taken by the Israel Police which are to the benefit of visitors.

These measures include:

     A. The admittance of groups without size limitation.      B. The admittance of Jewish groups without police  escort.      C. The admittance of groups without Wakf escort.

3. In light of repeated threats regarding the Temple Mount, the police conduct spot checks of those entering the Temple  Mount. These checks include examination of documentation, body searches, preventative photography, etc.

4. The Israel Police makes considerable efforts to enable Jews to exercise their rights to visit the Temple  Mount without limitations or prohibitions.

5. I regret the aggravation that you and the other visitors experienced. We will do our utmost in order to provide the best possible service to those who visit.

With blessings,

Sharon Michael

Public Complaints Department

 

     
             
 
  Two months after we faxed our inquiry, we received the official police answer. Or did we? Did we receive answers to our questions, or did we, in fact, receive a whitewash?

Let’s have a second look:

 

 
  In our letter we reported the following incidents:

 

 
 

    1. the policeman at the gate whose is assigned to receive and check the visitors, made radio contact with an officer on the Mount, and upon relaying to this officer that a number of religious Jews had arrived and were requesting to ascend, received instructions not to allow us to ascend without first presenting ID. [This was a departure from previous practice.]
    2. upon returning with our identifying documentation, [for Rabbi Richman his Israeli ID card; for the five American guests, their U.S. passports] the policeman reported each name to the officer, and recorded our names in a notebook. All the while, large numbers of foreign tourists were ascending the Temple Mount and not one was required to present any sort of identification.
  • Finally we were permitted to ascend. Only 2 minutes passed, and we managed to proceed no more than 15 meters along our route, when a policeman carrying a video camera approached us. He asked us who was the leader of the group, and I identified myself. He then proceeded to film me, and also instructed each member of my group to stand still for a moment while he filmed each one, separately.

To these three specific complaints, and to our inquiry as to whether this discriminatory and degrading practice was in fact official police policy, or merely the whim of the officer assigned to the Temple Mount, we received the following. Let’s examine each aspect of the response carefully:

The re-opening of the Mount was marked by the introduction of new, unprecedented measures taken by the Israel Police which are to the benefit of visitors.

These measures include:

     A. The admittance of groups without size limitation.      B. The admittance of Jewish groups without police  escort.      C. The admittance of groups without Wakf escort.

In light of repeated threats regarding the Temple Mount, the police conduct spot checks of those entering the Temple  Mount. These checks include examination of documentation, body searches, preventative photography, etc.   

 
  Let’s examine this one step at a time. The investigator assigned to answering our questions has reported that no group wishing to enter the Temple Mount is restricted in size:

     A. The admittance of groups without size limitation.

Is this true or is this false?

  FALSE!

 

 
  As the picture shows, religious Jews are detained at the Mougrabhi Gate entrance to the Temple Mount, and must wait for the small number of religious Jews who are already on the mount to exit, before they are allowed in. “Size limitation” for religious Jews is the reality since the mount was reopened on August 20, 2003. Religious Jews are not allowed to enter the mount freely as are all other individuals or groups that visit. A group of religious Jews desiring to go up, always require a head-count, and if their numbers exceed what the police deem acceptable, (sometimes five Jews, sometimes 45), they are split into groups and can only enter the mount one group at a time.  
  But what about our police investigator’s next claim?

     B. The admittance of Jewish groups without police  escort.

What do we say to this? True or false?

  FALSE!

 

 
  A religious Jew is never allowed on the Temple Mount without at least two policemen accompanying him. One would like to assume that this is for the protection of the Jews. But if so, why would the police investigator deny it? And why would it not be offical police policy if the true concern is for the safety of the Jews? Or is the real reason behind the escort the enforcement of Wakf demands that Jews not be allowed to pray or sing, or carry or read from their holy books, while visiting this holiest of sites?

 

 
    But what about our police investigator’s third claim?

     C. The admittance of groups without Wakf escort.

Again, we ask: True or false?

  FALSE!

 

 
  Every visit by a religious Jew, whether an individual, or in a small group, is shadowed by Wakf “officials”. Otherwise, the Wakf would not allow the Jews to enter. Their job is to observe the religious Jews for any suspected sign of religious activity, such as standing still for “too long a time”, moving one’s lips, or swaying back and forth. Praying or reciting verse from the scriptures in Hebrew are not tolerated. (Should a police or a Wakf “official” suspect the Jew of any of these activites, he will be rushed, and physically removed from the Mount. In many cases he will be brought to the local precinct where he will be interrogated and may be forced to sign a  document forbidding him to return to the Mount.) Needless to say, Jews are not allowed up to the mount while wearing or carrying any religious paraphenalia, such as a tallit, tefillin or Tanach, (Bible). It should be added that the same restriction on any expression of religious faith is also applied to Christian visitors to the Mount.

 

 
    Now for our police investigator’s final assurance:

In light of repeated threats regarding the Temple Mount, the police conduct spot checks of those entering the Temple  Mount. These checks include examination of documentation, body searches, preventative photography, etc.

Again: True or false?

  FALSE!

 

 
  Absolutely false, again! While random spot checks may be official policy concerning other groups and individuals entering the Temple Mount, religious Jews, regardless of their age, appearance, sex, or nationality, must pass a security check each and every time they enter the mount, without exception.  
   

 

     …FALSE!

 

 
   

 

     … and FALSE!

 

 
     
 
Where do we go from here? The above police response to our inquiry was insufficient, inaccurate, insulting… and false. Our specific questions were not addressed, and what we received instead were policy platitudes that may exist in a book on a desk in an office, but bear no resemblance to the reality as it transpires every day. Six days a week Religious Jews visit the Temple Mount as an act of devotion and a religious obligation. (Non-Moslems are not allowed on the mount on Friday.) And six days a week religious Jews are subjected to discriminatory and humiliating treatment.

We are pursuing our correspondence with the police, as we are not satisfied with the non-answers that we have received. Following is the text of our response, dated and sent on March 3, 2005:

 
 
Below is the English translation:
 
             
     

  March 03, 2005

To the Auditor General & Ombudsman Israel Public Security Forces

Sir,

I address myself to the answer to my previous inquiry that I received from Michael Sharon of the Public Complaint Department (see attached).

I do not see anything in this letter which specifically relates to my question regarding the policy of the Israel Police with regards to Jewish visitors to the Temple Mount.

Unfortunately, the “measures” which are mentioned in this letter simply do not reflect the real truth. Any kippa-wearing individual who ascends the Temple  Mount knows full well that the groups of religious Jews are indeed subject to size limitation, that at least two policemen closely accompany them, and that their every step is shadowed by at least one member of the Wakf, who works in tandem with the police.

As far as your claim that the police conduct “spot checks:” These are not “spot checks” at all. Rather, the fact is that every single religious Jew is checked. On the other hand, non-Jewish tourists do go through a routine security check, however they are not subject to any interrogation, and .neither are they photographed. Absolutely no questions are posed to them, and (unlike the Jews) their names are not recorded in any list whatsoever.

In the light of the facts on the ground, I once again request that you relate to my inquiry – in earnest, and truthfully.

Sincerely,

Rabbi Chaim Richman Director, International Dept. The Temple Institute

 

     
             
 
We await the response of the Ministry of Internal Security, and will be posting it here when we receive it. We will not rest until our questions have been answered “earnestly and truthfully.” Nor will we come to terms with the police policy towards devout Jews attempting to visit the site of the Holy Temple, until our right and dignity have been recognized: “Let My people go, that they may worship Me

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His leadership and television interviews have gone trough out the world. Luden Centeno of Converso Marano Jewish background from Spain resides permanently in Jerusalem. His analysis of Middle Eastern events as they relate to Israel is regularly broadcast through internet radio and television through out the world, especially the USA. Luden has given close to 500 television interviews in Israel Jerusalem and broadcasts live from Jerusalem Israel on the radio. On our last 6 radio programs we have had over 500,00 listeners listening in. Our main goal is to educate the world about Israel and its right to protect herself from any form of terrorism that comes out of Ramallah and the occupied territories that belong to Israel. Israel faces many challenges and dangers since a very long time. There is an unprecedented propaganda campaign initiated by the Arab League to demonize, discredit and delegitimize the Jewish people and their state, within their own land! The efforts of the Arab League were recently seen in the UN Resolution 2334 text as follows, adopted by the UN Security Council at its 7853rd meeting, on 23 December 2016. Reaffirming its relevant resolutions, including resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 446 (1979), 452 (1979), 465 (1980), 476 (1980), 478 (1980), 1397 (2002), 1515 (2003), and 1850 (2008), guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and reaffirming, inter alia, the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by force, reaffirming the obligation of Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949, and recalling the advisory opinion rendered on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice, condemning all measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, including, inter alia, the construction and expansion of settlements, transfer of Israeli settlers, confiscation of land, demolition of homes and displacement of Palestinian civilians, in violation of international humanitarian law and relevant resolutions. In order to achieve their goals, the Arabs have for more than 30 years resorted to a deliberate misinformation campaign. This propaganda campaign by the Arab League – both in their own countries and for the last three decades exported to Europe and North America has caused Israel what would seem irreparable damage and indeed, it was the main culprit in the reawakening of dormant European anti-Semitism. Israel continues to suffer many attacks from terrorists and should not bow down under the pressure imposed by the USA, the EU. the Quartet, nor the UN. The former Obama administration was working behind the scenes to get UN Resolution 2334 to pass. even while allowing Iran to continue to develop their nuclear facilities by using John Kerry and others to fulfill their hidden agenda. On December 23rd 2016 the US abstained from exercising its veto to UN resolution 2334 which allowed it to pass. Then John Kerry immediately blasted Israel over the presence of Israeli settlements within Israel's own land. The Obama Administration's hidden agenda came to light. The former Obama administration was trying to force Israel to give up more land for false peace as we have seen in the past. Judea and Samaria and possibly the Jordan Valley were on the negotiating table. For perspective, if the so-called Palestinians obtained Judea and Samaria and possibly the Jordan Valley, Givat HaRoe’eh in the Samaria community of Eli, Ramat Gilad and Giv’at Assaf (also in Samaria), and Mitzpeh Lachish, near Nehogot outside Hebron. they could easily rain down rockets towards any city within Israel, leaving without defensible borders. We say no to land for false peace as we have seen in the past. By former President Barrack Hussein Obama who had a hidden agenda against Israel who will face many difficult challenges ahead (see Tehillim / See Psalms 83) As we have seen what happened with Gush Katif where almost 9,000 Jews were forced out of their own Jewish land due to US pressure, now Bet El Almuna and Migron and Judea and Samaria face the same threat. More than 17,000 rockets have been fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel since Israel uprooted 9,000 Jewish families. Over 11,000 were fired from Gaza towards the southern Israeli city of Sderot by Islamist extremist whose end-game is the total destruction of my people Israel. Hamas terrorists are supported by Iran and now Hamas has joined hands with Fatah. The Iranian Lebanese proxy Hezbollah who also operate in Syria are committed to the total destruction of Israel and has over 100,00 rockets aimed at Israel .Now Al Qaeda and ISIS who are operating in Syria Egypt and the Sinai Desert they will do anything in their power to destroy my people Israel and all Jews. Judea and Samaria (the heartland of Israel also known as the West Bank) face many challenges in the days to come as Abu Mazen will try to pressure the entire world and former US President Barrack Hussein Obama the UN the EU and the Quartet into giving more land for false peace. We saw what happened after the Oslo Accords were signed, dramatically increasing Islamic terror against Israel. Abu Mazen the fake Palestinian Authority leader approached the United Nations many times and has petitioned to be declared as a recognized nation within Israel's known borders. The time has come to tell the entire world the real truth about the enemies of Israel. We speak on the Quran using a Power Point video presentation. We have been aired on CNN, German TV, Finland TV, CCTV, China Al Jazera, Al Arabiya Turk TV and many radio stations on the current issues of Israel. Luden Centeno has a heart for his people Israel and will continue to inform the entire world the real truth as many News Media outlets throughout the world hold anti-Semitic views and won’t tell you the real truth. Centeno, a former police officer who studied Political Science at Temple University USA was born in the USA and currently lives in Jerusalem Israel, knowing karate and boxing having played semi-pro baseball. He has two children, a girl and a son, both born in Jerusalem. Centeno discovered in 2004 that there were possible Converso Marrano Jews from Spain whose ancestors were forced to convert to Catholicism during the time of the Inquisition in 1492. The family names Centeno and Perez are registered in El Libro Verde De Aragon in Spain. The Roman Catholic Inquisitors maintained all the names of all Jewish families who were forced to convert to Catholicism during that horrible time period in Spain. Since 2004 Centeno has been flying intercontinentally to the USA speaking to the nations on the current issues of the the state of Israel (see Psalms 83′ as the nations gather against Israel.) He has spoken on Al Arabiya TV, Dubai TV, Holland TV, German TV and also on American Family Radio which links up with 700 radio stations. His goal is to educate the entire world that Israel has the right to self-determination and the right to defend itself from terrorism. The Moslem Arabs in that area started calling themselves “Palestinians” merely only 40 years ago. “Palestinian” refers to people who live in Palestine: Arabs (“Arabic speaking peoples”), Bedouins, Druze, Christians, and Jews lived in then the British Mandate of Palestine. No people or nation called Palestine ever ruled as a sovereign national entity on this land. There is no Palestinian language or culture in past history. Palestine, as a country does not presently exist. No Arab nation has their historical roots on the land and no one had laid claim to this territory other than the Jews. The Jewish rule of this land extended over a period of over 2000 years. Israel became a nation in the land in 1312 BC. God gave them the land in a covenant (Deuteronomy 29:1-30:20) and they lived there. See the following Quote from the Quran, "Death to the enemies of Allah! Those that make war against Allah and His apostle and spread disorder in the land shall be slain or crucified or have their hands and feet cut off on alternate sides, or be banished from the land. They shall be held up to shame in this world and sternly punished in the hereafter: except those that repent before you reduce them. For you must know that Allah is..." This is what radical Islam says about us Jews’ “The Day of Judgement will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Muslims, O Abdullah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews.” (related by al-Bukhari and Muslim) Psalms Chapter 83 תְּהִלִּים א שִׁיר מִזְמוֹר לְאָסָף. 1 A Song, a Psalm of Asaph. ב אֱלֹהִים אַל-דֳּמִי-לָךְ; אַל-תֶּחֱרַשׁ וְאַל-תִּשְׁקֹט אֵל. 2 O God, keep not Thou silence; hold not Thy peace, and be not still, O God. ג כִּי-הִנֵּה אוֹיְבֶיךָ, יֶהֱמָיוּן; וּמְשַׂנְאֶיךָ, נָשְׂאוּ רֹאשׁ. 3 For, lo, Thine enemies are in an uproar; and they that hate Thee have lifted up the head. ד עַל-עַמְּךָ, יַעֲרִימוּ סוֹד; וְיִתְיָעֲצוּ, עַל-צְפוּנֶיךָ. 4 They hold crafty converse against Thy people, and take counsel against Thy treasured ones. ה אָמְרוּ–לְכוּ, וְנַכְחִידֵם מִגּוֹי; וְלֹא-יִזָּכֵר שֵׁם-יִשְׂרָאֵל עוֹד. 5 They have said: ‘Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.’ ו כִּי נוֹעֲצוּ לֵב יַחְדָּו; עָלֶיךָ, בְּרִית יִכְרֹתוּ. 6 For they have consulted together with one consent; against Thee do they make a covenant; God’s word says in Zechariah 8:23 "Thus saith the LORD of Hosts: In Those days it shall come to pass, That ten men shall take hold, out of all the languages of the nations, shall even take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying: We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you."

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