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Op-ed in PA daily criticizes terror attack at Temple Mount as not serving Palestinian interests, but claims Israel has plan to “Judaize” the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Jerusalem

Excerpt of op-ed by Bassem Barhoum, regular columnist for the official PA daily

Headline: "Who benefits from the Al-Aqsa operation?"
        "Nobody disputes the fact that the Israeli occupation is the main problem, and that it is the root of the violence and terror. Why is this occupation, its soldiers, its police, and its intelligence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque and around it? And why are they in all of the occupied Palestinian territories at all?[…] The word 'resistance' must not prevent us from thinking of the tragedy that this operation (i.e., terror attack, 2 murdered; see note below) is likely to bring down upon the Al-Aqsa Mosque and us, especially considering the fact that we know the Israeli-Zionist plans which target [the Al-Aqsa Mosque] with the false claim that it is the 'Temple Mount.' The word 'resistance' must not scare us or prevent us from criticizing it when this 'resistance' serves the enemy or any regional side that is not the Palestinian side, to whom the cause and the land belong.
Also, the wonder at the timing [of the operation] must be tied to its general context, [and] to the fact that the occupation state believes that in the shadow of the growing crises of the Arab nation and the hated [Fatah-Hamas] rift, it has a golden opportunity to complete the plan to Judaize Jerusalem, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque in particular. The completion of this [plan] and the division of the Al-Aqsa Mosque [between Jews and Muslims] according to areas and times required a trigger from Israel’s viewpoint – and now they have obtained it through this operation. We must analyze [the operation] and examine it carefully, especially since Palestinian history is full of such operations that were disguised as resistance to the occupation, while in reality they were meant to serve it.
Another [thing] regarding the timing - the operation was indeed carried out while American envoy [Jason Greenblatt] is [in the region], and therefore this operation will be presented to him and the American administration as an excuse to apply additional pressure to the Palestinian side…
The most important question in this context is who is the real beneficiary of this operation? Of course the Palestinian people and its cause are the biggest losers, and afterwards the Arab nation and the Islamic nation. We understand and remember, for example, the ways and methods that Zionism and its terrorist organizations used to excuse the ethnic cleansing policy against the Palestinian people in 1948, which led to the Nakba (i.e., “the catastrophe,” the Palestinian term for the establishment of the State of Israel) and the uprooting of nearly a million Palestinians from their land…
At the moment, before is too late, it is necessary to distinguish between the legitimate resistance to the occupation, which is tied to the Palestinian national goals and interests, and the 'resistance at a price,' which serves regional agendas that have no purpose other than to use the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian people’s blood as a bargaining chip that serves their interests and goals…
The most important thing in this matter is that the warning bells of the Arab and Islamic nations and all of humanity will ring – the Al-Aqsa Mosque is in real danger today, and Jerusalem is also in unprecedented danger. Will someone respond?"

Muhammad Ahmad Muhammad Jabarin, Muhammad Hamed Abd Al-Latif Jabarin, and Muhammad Ahmad Mufaddal Jabarin - Israeli Arab terrorists aged 29, 19, and 19, who shot from the Temple Mount at Israeli policemen, murdering 2 Israeli Druze border policemen - Haiel Stawi and Kamil Shnaan, on July 14, 2017. Two of the terrorists were shot and killed by other policemen during the attack. The third terrorist was shot and killed while trying to flee.

"Division according to areas and times" refers to a proposed law (May 2013) being reviewed in Israeli Parliament that would allow for both Jews and Muslims to pray on the Temple Mount, what the Palestinians call the Al-Aqsa Mosque plaza. The law seeks to designate separate prayer times and areas of the site for Muslims and Jews. However, Israeli PM Netanyahu has stated on many occasions that the Israeli government has no intention of ‎changing the status quo on the Temple Mount, which means Jews are allowed to enter the Temple Mount, but cannot pray there or engage in any type of worship.

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