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      250 Rabbis Sign Letter to Obama: Hands off Jerusalem

      250 Israeli rabbis (so far) have signed a letter to U.S. President Obama demanding: “hands off the Holy City!”
      By Gil Ronen
      First Publish: 7/21/2009, 4:08 PM / Last Update: 7/21/2009, 8:07 PM

      Israel news photo

      Heads of the Pikuach Nefesh rabbinical committee have begun collecting the signatures of rabbis in Israel on a letter to United States President Barack Obama. The letter demands that Obama cease talking about ending Jewish construction in Jerusalem and stop pressuring Israel in that direction.

      In a reference to the upcoming “nine days” which culminate in Tisha B’Av, the rabbis tell Obama that “during these days, in which the Jewish people mourns the destruction of Jerusalem and marks the disgraceful memory of its destroyers, we are certain that you, Mr. Barack Obama, do not want to enter that disreputable list of those who raise their hand to strike Jerusalem and those who live in it.”
      We are certain that you, Mr. Barack Obama, do not want to enter that disreputable list of those who raise their hand to strike Jerusalem and those who live in it.

      The rabbis note that during his visit to the Middle East, Obama showed “impressive erudition” in the Koran. “As one who is familiar with the Koran, you surely know that the city of Jerusalem is not even mentioned in it once,” they said.

      Jews pray towards one place
      “The Arab and Muslim world never recognized Jerusalem as belonging to it,” the letter went on. “On the other hand, all of the world’s nations knew for thousands of years that the Jews pray towards one place only – the holy city of Jerusalem.”

      The rabbis added that even putting aside the city’s enormous sanctity and importance for the Jewish people, there is no realpolitik logic behind any concession to the PA. “Since Israel began negotiations, withdrawals and concessions to the Palestinians, the entire world is witness to the justice of the Jewish Law (Halacha) which determines that any such concession will entail another round of bloodshed and deepen mistrust and dangers,” they agreed.

      The rabbinical letter ends with a clear request: “If you, Mr. Obama. Wish to leave any chance at all for peace and quiet in the Middle East, take your hands off the Holy City of Jerusalem right now!”

      Two hundred and fifty rabbis have signed the appeal, and efforts are being made to collect the signatures of almost every single rabbi in Israel before the letter is sent to Washington.