Key to the Sacred Pattern

05 March 2008

Latest News from the Temple Mount

The Temple Mount area of Jerusalem has been in the news again over the past two weeks. Yesterday, The Jerusalem Post reported that, “Police on Tuesday stopped Wakf Muslim trust officials from performing unauthorized construction work on the Temple Mount.” Over the last year, there has been tension between Wakf officials and the Israeli government over Muslim restoration work damage to artifacts on the Temple Mount.

The situation is as complicated as they get in the world of religious politics of the Middle East. The Wakf is the body that administrates the Temple Mount’s daily operations, while the Israeli government is charged with the site’s security. The Wakf maintains that the Temple Mount was not really the site of any Jewish Temples. The Israeli government has a vested interest in preserving the evidence of this being the site of any of the Temples to strengthen their claim on the Mount. The Wakf, has the opposite interest to suppress anything that might prove their claim is wrong.

Tuesday’s police action comes on the heels of a small earthquake that opened a six foot hole by the Dome of the Rock on 17 Feb 2008. The Wakf claims that the Israeli government is secretly tunneling under the Temple Mount. The Muslim Trust says that these secret tunnels weakened the Mount and the hole is a propaganda stunt. Israeli officials deny the claims of tunneling past the Western Wall.

This is a situation that makes me wonder what is really going on with the Temple Mount. If the Israelis are tunneling under the Mount, why are they doing so now? It’s a given that any excavations under the Dome of the Rock would at least revel something of the history of the Temple Mount. For the moment, it seems that the world might never know what lies beneath the one of the most contested spots on Earth.

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