MK Glick slams PM's Temple Mount ban: 'Illegal and dishonest'

After long wait, Yehuda Glick told he would not ascend Temple Mount on Sukkot; now turns to Supreme Court. 'PM threw us a bone like dogs'

Contact Editor
Mordechai Sones,

Glick praying Selichot at Likud event
Glick praying Selichot at Likud event
Flash 90

MK Yehuda Glick makes weighty remarks about the Prime Minister "I feel cheated and hurt, after it turns out that the "pilot" was only "throwing a bone" as if members of the Knesset were dogs.

Glick's words refer a pilot arrangement implemented a few weeks ago that allowed Knesset members to ascend the Mount on a one-time basis. Glick also petitioned the Supreme Court to order the Prime Minister not to prevent MKs from entering the Temple Mount on Sukkot.

In an interview with Arutz Sheva, Glick spoke about what led him to initiate the petition and the sharp words he directed at the Prime Minister. At the outset however he expressed his great appreciation for the Prime Minister as a leader. "I very much value the Prime Minister. The State of Israel has merited an excellent prime minister, but I have no choice; the Sukkot holiday is approaching, every Jew is commanded to make a pilgrimage, every Jew or non-Jew may ascend the mountain, except for the 'lepers' - the Members of the Knesset. This is contrary to the immunity law that allows Knesset members more movement than other citizens. All security officials support the Members of Knesset ascending the Temple Mount. There's no alternative but to view this as a political decision.

"I sat two months ago with the Prime Minister in preparation for the pilot and I asked, 'Is this one-time or permanent?' He said he wanted to open it up permanently. The pilot happened and the police issued a very positive opinion that it passed smoothly and without any problem and now we expect the bill to be paid. The ascent was clearly warranted during the Ten Days of Repentance, and it is perfectly clear to me that during the festival of Sukkot a Jew should be able to fulfill the mitzvah of Aliyah. To prevent me from ascending the Mount is tantamount to preventing me from observing the mitzvah of Sukkah, preventing me from the mitzvah of Tefillin."

Glick adds: "For me personally it's a very difficult time; my wife is in a critical situation and I want to pour out my heart before the Master of the Universe, and the place to do it is the Temple Mount. Another three weeks will mark the third anniversary of the attempt on my life; I want to go up to express my gratitude. My son is getting married on that day too, and I want to go up with my son as customary to ascend the mountain with the bridegroom, yet the mountain is closed to me with no reason or logic. So I petitioned the Supreme Court to issue an interim order to allow us, the Knesset Members, to ascend the Temple Mount. It seems to me the most obvious course of action."

MK Glick was asked if nevertheless he lacked more accessible approaches to the Prime Minister and his staff, to the extent that he needed the help of the Supreme Court and to issue such sharp remarks. Today, Likud members are expected to meet with the Prime Minister at a faction meeting in Maale Adumim, but "since the pilot, I have been in almost daily contact with the head of the PMs bureau and the Military Adjutant; I call every day and they have no answer. A week ago, the Adjutant's assistant got back to me and said to me that until November, Knesset Members would not enter. I do not understand this issue or this attitude. I'm not here tp argue about it. I want to fulfill the mitzvah as every human and as every Jew."

On the possibility that the Prime Minister knows unpublished information about the possible danger of Knesset Members' ascent to the Mount? MK Glick responds in kind with a question: "Something that the Police Commissioner and the Shin Bet head don't know? He knows there's some political issue here, but the immunity law of Knesset members does not allow restricting movement for political reasons. It allows for restricting movement only because of disclosure of state secrets or a significant breach of state security. No one thinks that going up to the Temple Mount respectfully and quietly will be a significant blow to Israel's security.

"It's illegal, unfair and dishonest, I really feel cheated; I feel that they did us a favor and throw us a dog's bone for one day, but do not understand the intensity of my thirst and desire to go up to the Temple Mount."

Another possibility raised before Glick: Perhaps this is a personal settling of accounts? Maybe MK Glick acted in a way that angered the Prime Minister, who decided to teach a lesson to the redheaded upstart in his faction?

"I don't want to imagine that the Prime Minister is acting petty. We have an excellent Prime Minister, a statesman of the highest caliber, and I don't think he's acting out of personal accounting, so I'm appealing to the High Court to allow me to uphold the law."

When asked if in order to gain an aliyah to the Mount he might possibly decide on an unusual course, to resign from the Knesset and then return two months later: "A Knesset Member can't resign temporarily. If I retire, it would be permanent, and this also could happen. I act as a public emissary, not as Yehuda Glick. The fact that over 22,000 people ascended the Mount, I hope I have a small part in this. I work as a public mission in matters of Jerusalem, the Land of Israel, strengthening marriage relationships, fighting smoking, and more, and I do not think I have to pay a price in order to maintain the obvious."

Glick concludes with the hope that Netanyahu will understand what stands behind the petition, and will order a change in his decision so that Glick will be able to withdraw it.



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