New York Jews Discuss Arab Threat to Mount of Olives (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Fern Sidman, A7 New York 03/22/12)
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Over 150 people gathered at the Lincoln Park Jewish Center in
Yonkers, New York several days ago, for an evening dedicated to the
future of Har HaZeitim (Mount of Olives). Sponsored by International
Committee for the Preservation of Har HaZeitim, the focus of the
speakers´ addresses was on eliciting a collective response regarding
the escalating dangers to this most holy of burial sites where G-d
fearing Jews from all over the world have traditionally asked to be
Rabbi Jay Schoulson of the Sons of Israel Synagogue in Long Island
City, New York, spoke of the continued Arab desecrations of Har
HaZeitim and the failure of the Israeli government to stop them.
“The Arabs believe that the Jews´ Messiah will come through the Gate
of Mercy (Shaar HaRachamim), leading to the Temple Mount, so they
closed up the gate and have created a cemetery there to prevent
Elijah, who is a Cohen, from entering,” he explained. Cohanim, those
Jews who descend from Moses´ brother Aaron, are prohibited from being
in the same area as the dead, for reasons of ritual purity.
A profoundly shocking video presentation depicting the wanton
desecration of graves on Har HaZeitim was shown. Images of garbage
strewn everywhere drew gasps from audience members as the historical
and religious significance of this ancient cemetery was told.
Dating back thousands of years, Har HaZeitim has over 150,000 graves
and it was noted that an additional 50,000 graves and markers were
destroyed by the Jordanians during the years of 1948 through 1967, in
which head stones were used for latrines and building roads.
Rabbi Rigoberto Vinas of the Lincoln Park Jewish Center displayed
packets of soil from Har HaZeitim that are used to line the coffins
of Jews being buried anywhere in the world.
Menachem Lubinsky, the co-chairman of the International Committee for
the Preservation of Har HaZeitim and co-sponsor of the evening along
with his brother, Abe, spoke of Har HaZeitim as the burial place of
their beloved parents. With palpable emotion, they described Arabs
playing soccer there and being paid to trample on graves.
Calling the State of Israel´s failure to boldly respond to the
destruction of Har HaZeitim a "national shame", Mr. Lubinsky said he
had spoken with Knesset members who were ostensibly unaware of the
In an attempt to arouse public consciousness and to mobilize elected
officials, the ICPHH has organized missions to Har HaZeitim. Led by
Malcolm Hoenlein, chairman of the Conference of Major American Jewish
Organizations, Reps Jerrold Nadler (D) and Eliot Engel (D) of New
York attended the mission and personally experienced being pelted
with stones by Arabs during their visit.
Speaking of Har HaZeitim as the hallowed burial place for our
prophets, rabbis, writers and simple Jews murdered in riots and
buried in mass graves, Helen Freedman, executive director of
Americans For A Safe Israel (AFSI), underscored the paramount
importance of resisting efforts to relinquish holy sites in Israel to
Arab hands. She then spoke directly to Rep. Eliot Engel when she
castigated the Obama administration for "violating and circumventing"
United States legal statutes which prohibit funding of UNESCO, as the
organization has now accorded full recognition to the Palestinian
Condemning UNESCO´s "efforts to erase the history of the Jewish
people in Israel and to Islamicize Israel´s holy sites," Ms. Freedman
said that President Obama "has already requested $79 million for
UNESCO in the 2013 budget, along with an additional $40.5 million
for "contingent requirements."
Abe Lubinsky, Chairman of the ICPHH, took the present leadership in
Israel to task for their indifference towards Har HaZeitim. "Prime
Minister Netanyahu declared at the recent AIPAC conference that
Jerusalem will never be divided again but he must come out of the
closet. He must defend Har HaZeitim if he truly cares about an
indivisible Jerusalem,” he said. Mr. Lubinsky told the gathering that
while at Har HaZeitim he witnessed police chasing the Arab stone
throwers, but, he added, "The Arabs know they won´t be prosecuted and
if they are detained, it´s a revolving door, so they continue their
attacks." (IsraelNationalNews © 2012 03/22/12)
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