Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Not All The News

From Isabel Kershner's New York Times' story on the Hurvah Synagogue rededication, several observations of mine:

1. This following bit confirms what I had heard on TV yesterday when Abu Ala lied about the synagogue being "higher" than ther Dome of the Rock:

The synagogue’s new white dome blends in with the city’s ancient monuments holy to Christians, Muslims and Jews. Because of the topography, seen from certain points around the city, it rises above the Islamic shrines of the compound revered by Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary, and by Jews as the Temple Mount, including Al Aksa Mosque.


How does this element in her piece

In Damascus, Khaled Meshal, the exiled leader of the Islamic militant group Hamas, said the synagogue’s dedication signified “the destruction of the Al Aksa Mosque and the building of the temple,” according to Agence France-Presse.

jive with what actually happened when the Chief Rabbi Metzger said "Talk about new temple a lie" -

"Chief Rabbi of Israel Yona Metzger sent a calming message to the Muslim world Monday, amid tensions over the inauguration of the Hurva Synagogue in Jerusalem. "Pay no attention to malicious slander. All we are doing is resurrecting the 'Hurva,' which was destroyed 60 years ago. We have no intention of rebuilding the temple, not this week – unless the Almighty God descends it from the heavens," said the chief rabbi during the inauguration ceremony. "All the rumors that suggest we will later march on Temple Mount are just that – rumors. A media spin by anti-Semites that wish us harm."

The aspect of not rebuilding the Temple was rather unfortunate. I can understand that most Jews do not themselves wish to rebuild the Temple but surely pray three times daily that it should be rebuilt. But at this moment, to run with his tail between his legs as Metzger has done, is quite an annoying cop-out.

She couldn't work that in?


And cannot she get historical facts correct instead of this -

The Hurva Synagogue, Hebrew for “ruin,” was originally built in the 1860s on a site where smaller synagogues had been erected and destroyed over the centuries, Jewish tradition says.

From the Wiki source:

Excavations carried out at the site between July and August 2003 revealed...Three bedrock-hewn mikvahs (ritual baths)...dating from the 1st century...The earliest tradition regarding the site is of a synagogue existing there at the time of the 2nd century...In 1488, Obadiah ben Abraham described a large courtyard containing many houses for exclusive use of the Ashkenazim, adjacent to a "synagogue built on pillars," referring to the Ramban Synagogue...In the winter of 1700, a group of around 500 Ashkenazim led by Rabbi Judah he-Hasid arrived from Europe [and] managed to build forty dwellings and a small synagogue in the Ashkenazic Compoun...In late 1720, with the debts still outstanding, the Arab lenders lost patience and set the synagogue and its contents alight...in late 1815, leader of the Safed Perushim, Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Shklov, arrived in Jerusalem with a group of followers. They directed their main efforts to rebuilding he-Hasid's synagogue...Rebuilding one of Jerusalem's ruins would also have symbolic kabbalistic significance. The "repairing" of an earlier destruction would represent the first step of rebuilding the entire city, a prerequisite for the arrival of the Messiah...five months after the earthquake of May 1834, Ali...allowed the Sephardim to carry out repair works to their existing synagogues...On 13 July 1854, James Finn of the British consulate in Jerusalem wrote to the British ambassador in Constantinople describing the wishes of the 2,000 strong Ashkenazic community to build a new synagogue...In July 1855, while in Constantinople, Montefiore was handed the firman, which he hand-delivered during his fourth visit to Jerusalem in 1857...the groundbreaking ceremony took place on the last day of Hanukah of 1855...On April 22, 1856, the cornerstone was laid...In 1862 the domed ceiling was completed...in 1864, the new synagogue was dedicated...The edifice was officially named Beis Yaakov – "House of Jacob" – in memory of Jacob Mayer de Rothschild...

And the last destroyers were the Jordanians, conveniently left out.


And I am not sure that one can separate the political/national from the religious/historical as this guy tries to do:

Gura Berger, spokeswoman for the Company for the Reconstruction and Development of the Jewish Quarter, the government body that oversaw the restoration, was trying to divorce the dedication from politics. The Hurva is not the national religious symbol it once was, she said. Today, she said, it stands for “continuity” and “repair.”

As Aryeh Morgenstern has proven in his Hastening Redemption 2006, the beginning of the rebuilding of the synagogue, when the Ottoman firman prohibiting Jews from working on it was rescinded through the efforts of the immigrants among the students of the Vilna Gaon in the 1830s, was seen as a stage in the Messianic process so much so that they even altered the L'Cha Dodi prayer, dropping the vers of "Arise, get up out of the dust".

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dahlan: the status quo in Jerusalem and detonated an explosive Voice of Palestine:

Central Committee member of the Fatah movement of Culture and Information, Mohammed Dahlan, today, the Israeli actions in Jerusalem, aimed to control the Al Aqsa Mosque and build a synagogue 'Hurva Synagogue' on the ruins of the Mosque of Omar...Netanyahu wants to detonate the violence in the region to condemn the situation Palestinian, reminding Sharon visited Al-Aqsa Mosque, which sparked the second intifada.

...The Issa Musleh to meet the Orthodox Church settlement campaign aimed at their property, saying ':' We are paying a heavy price to repel the attack, especially in the Jaffa Gate, we will give more in defense of our rights and the rights of our brothers in the face of attempts Iqsaena, and will not relent in part to defend the Islamic holy sites and to meet the call to be
the city of Jerusalem for the convergence of religions and civilizations, a city of hate and rape the other's right '.

The stand the test of mighty Jerusalem, and stresses the sanctity, an example of fraternity and Christian-Muslim Unity, which became a symbol of Jerusalem, and Jerusalem as its symbol