Israel digs under the Al-Aqsa Mosque
like "rats burrow under the ground"
Hamas: Sunday's murder was in defense of Al-Aqsa
- Fatah repeats libel: Israel is carrying out "plan to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque"
- Fatah: Temple Mount is "a completely Islamic site to which the Jews have no right"
- Hamas justified murder of Israeli with Al-Aqsa libel: "While blessing this heroic operation, we emphasize that harming the Al-Aqsa Mosque is a red line, and that this operation is a response to warnings regarding the danger of what the occupation is currently doing, and what it intends to do at the Al-Aqsa Mosque."
By Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
A Palestinian cleric compared Israelis to rats, claiming Israel is excavating under the Al-Aqsa Mosque like "rats burrow under the ground only for evil and destruction." He also stated, in the interview on official Palestinian Authority TV, that due to Israel's digs the mosque has "no foundations now":
Sheikh Raed Da'na from the Religious Source of Authority in Jerusalem: "The blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque has no foundations now... Al-Aqsa is now empty of the rocks and that which supports it, due to the Israeli machine that is excavating under it (sic., Israel does not excavate under the Temple Mount), as rats burrow under the ground only for evil and destruction."
[Official PA TV, Topic of the Day, July 23, 2018]
This statement is just one in an endless stream of false accusations by Palestinian leaders that the Al-Aqsa Mosque is "in danger" and that Israel is carrying out a deliberate plan to destroy it. At times, PA leaders have intensified the repetition of this libel in order to ignite fury among Palestinians and urge them to use violence and carry out terror attacks against Israelis. This was the case before and during the terror waves in 2014 and 2015/16 in which dozens of Israelis were murdered and hundreds wounded.
Therefore it is not surprising that Hamas was quick to justify this week's murder of Israeli Ari Fuld by a Palestinian teenager with the alleged "danger" to Al-Aqsa. Hamas presented "the heroic operation" as a reaction to Israel's "harming Al-Aqsa":
"While blessing this heroic operation, we emphasize that harming the Al-Aqsa Mosque is a red line, and that this operation is a response to warnings regarding the danger of what the occupation is currently doing, and what it intends to do at the Al-Aqsa Mosque."
[Donia Al-Watan, independent Palestinian news agency, Sept. 16, 2018]
For decades, Palestinian leaders have alleged that Israel is destroying the mosque, and it is not the first time Palestinians have referred to Israel as rats or mice eating away at the foundations of the mosque.
|Text: "Where is the Muslim nation?"
|Fatah's Information and Culture Commission's website
|Nov. 16, 2014
||Text on wall: "Foundations of Al-Aqsa Mosque"
Text on cat: "The Islamic nation"
al-fateh.net (Hamas website for children) Nov. 1, 2009
Similarly, Palestinian Media Watch reported that PA Chief Religious Justice Tayseer Tamimi claimed that Al-Aqsa was "hanging in midair" because Israel had removed its foundations by injecting chemicals into the rocks:
Tayseer Tamimi, PA Chief Religious Justice: "The [Israeli] excavations' purpose is to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque. In fact, its foundations have been removed. Chemical acids were injected into the rocks to dissolve them. The soil and the pillars [were moved] so the mosque is hanging in midair. There is an Israeli plan to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque and to build the Temple."
[Official PA TV, June 9, 2009]
Earlier this month, Abbas' advisor and Supreme Shari'ah Judge of Palestine Mahmoud Al-Habbash "emphasized the need to stop the ongoing crime against the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is bowing under the yoke of the occupation and is being subjected to criminal attempts to divide, destroy, and Judaize it." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 8, 2018]
Likewise, the official PA daily described the visits of Jews to the Temple Mount as "invasions of the [Al-Aqsa] Mosque." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 11, 2018]
The PA, Fatah, and their leaders claim all of the Temple Mount and the Western Wall are integral parts of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and have repeatedly emphasized that "Jews have no right to it."
Recently, Abbas' Fatah Movement reiterated this in an official announcement:
Official PA TV newsreader 1: "The Fatah Movement emphasized that Israel has prepared a plan - and began carrying it out a while ago - to destroy the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque through the ongoing excavations underneath the mosque (sic.)"
Official PA TV newsreader 2: "Official [Fatah] Movement Spokesman Osama Al-Qawasmi said in a press release... that the Al-Aqsa Mosque - [and everything] aboveground, under it, and around it - is a completely Islamic site to which the Jews have no right."
[Official PA TV News, July 26, 2018]
It should be noted that Israel doesn't excavate under the Temple Mount.
PMW reported on a similar statement by PA Minister of Religious Affairs Yusuf Ida'is who said that "the excavations that the occupation institutions are conducting underneath the Al-Aqsa Mosque... threaten its structures, plazas" and that the Israeli "violations" are "advancing in a systematic and planned manner up to the destruction of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the establishment of their alleged Temple." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 18, 2018]
The Palestinians are adamant about denying any Jewish historical ties to Jerusalem in general and in particular to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall, which they refer to as the Al-Buraq Wall, named after a miraculous flying steed on which Islam's Prophet Muhammad is said to have rode during his Night Journey from Mecca to "al aqsa mosque", i.e., "the farthest mosque" (Quran, Sura 17). Therefore the Palestinians refer to the Western Wall of the Temple in Jerusalem as "the Al-Buraq Wall."
The following are longer excerpts of the statements referred to above:
Headline: "Badran: Our Palestinian people knows how to respond to the occupation's arrogance"
"Following the heroic stabbing operation (i.e., terror attack, 1 murdered) that young Khalil Yusuf Jabarin (i.e., terrorist) carried out at the 'Gush Etzion' settlement (sic., at Gush Etzion Junction), which lead to the death of an extremist settler, Hamas political bureau member Husam Badran stated:
'At a time when the Israeli enemy is carrying out its ongoing aggression against the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and in the shadow of its ongoing attempts to impose a new reality on it, our Palestinian people are receiving the news today [Sept. 16, 2018] about the heroic operation that was carried out by young rebel Khalil Yusuf Jabarin at the 'Gush Etzion' settlement south of Jerusalem, which led to the death of a settler who is known for his extremism and his positions of hatred towards our people - and this is in order to reemphasize that our people will not be silent in the face of the ongoing violations against the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
While blessing this heroic operation, we emphasize that harming the Al-Aqsa Mosque is a red line, and that this operation is a response to warnings regarding the danger of what the occupation is currently doing, and what it intends to do at the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Our Palestinian people knows how to respond to the occupation's arrogance and its crimes. This operation reflects its belief in resistance as the only option for deterring this occupier, and thwarting its criminal plans.'"
[Donia Al-Watan, independent Palestinian news agency, Sept. 16, 2018]
Khalil Jabarin - 16-year-old Palestinian terrorist who stabbed and murdered 45-year-old Israeli American civilian Ari Fuld, a father of four, in a supermarket parking lot at Gush Etzion Junction, south of Jerusalem, on Sept. 16, 2018. Before succumbing to his wounds Fuld, together with another civilian at the scene, shot and wounded Jabarin, leading to his capture.
"Supreme Shari'ah Judge of Palestine, [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas'] advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs, [and Chairman of the Supreme Council for Shari'ah Justice] Mahmoud Al-Habbash... gave the Friday sermon yesterday [Sept. 7, 2018] at the great Plateau Mosque in Abidjan, Ivory Coast...
Al-Habbash emphasized the need for the unity of the nation and Muslims throughout the world around the cause of Jerusalem and the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, as it is the central cause of the Muslims, and also emphasized the need to stop the ongoing crime against the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is bowing under the yoke of the occupation and is being subjected to criminal attempts to divide, destroy, and Judaize it."
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 8, 2018]
Headline: "Settlers continued to do as they please with the Al-Aqsa Mosque under increased protection"
"Alleged Temple organizations increased their calls to their supporters and to the settler public through their information websites to broadly participate in invasions of the [Al-Aqsa] Mosque for the Jewish holidays that will continue until the end of this month."
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 11, 2018]
"Alleged Jewish Temple organizations" refer to religious Jewish movements including the Temple Mount Institute, the Temple Mount Heritage Foundation, The Initiative for Jewish Freedom on the Temple Mount and Students for the Temple Mount, which spread awareness of the importance of the Temple Mount in Judaism and encourage people to visit the site.
The PA and its leaders consider all of the Temple Mount an integral part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Therefore they view any presence of Jews on the mount as an "invasion." It should be noted that Jews who visit the Temple Mount only enter some sections of the open areas, and do not enter the Al-Aqsa Mosque or the Dome of the Rock.