We’re All Temple Mount Agonistes Now


The news out of Jerusalem just gets worse, already on a boil after the abduction-murder of the 4 boys last summer. Now rightwing Jewish zealots supported by parliamentarians from the governing coalition seek to change the status quo on the Temple Mount. If anything happens to the mosques, if another intifada or worse starts over this, the war will be a religious one between Jews and Muslims. None of us will be safe –not in Israel, not in New York, London, or Paris, not us and not our children. Contemporary Jewish life is globalized and interconnected, whether you are Zionist or anti-Zionist doesn’t matter one way or the other. Jewish life in the Diaspora and Israel are now so thoroughly enmeshed that there’s no real way to disentangle. The religious far-right in Israel endangers all of us together. Before it’s too late, American Jews must speak out to end the occupation and make peace, to respect human dignity and accommodate Palestinian rights as part of a political solution based on the principle of mutual recognition.


About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
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4 Responses to We’re All Temple Mount Agonistes Now

  1. Neil says:

    I do not think you have this quite right. All involved should take a step back from the brink.

    Also, what makes you think there is a peace to be had in this period of the Middle East? I think your comment assumes things about the dispute that are simply not true. Look all around Israel. Things, at this time, just don’t get settled in that part of the world. Israel does not have a way to make the world it is situated in calm down. Israel does not have a way to deal with Hamas. It is not even remotely clear that Israel has a way to make peace with the PA. So, pointing at Israel, as if it were the only party that decides things, is misleading.

    • Michael says:

      Excellent point – how degrading it must be to the Arabs when everyone assumes they don’t have a will or say in their lives, as if they are just puppets of Israel.

  2. Michael says:

    I think its OK to seek to change the status quo on the Temple Mount by peaceful means. I think its not OK to physically assault with a deadly weapon those who peacefully pursue their goals. And the blame for the “flames” or “if anything happening to the mosques” is on those who use violence for their political goals, and use the mosques as weapons caches and throw Molotov cocktails on the Temple Mount.

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