Muslims claim to consider the Temple Mount a holy site – but they have been caught doing some very unholy things there. From soccer games to picnics to vandalism, Muslims have historically shown little respect for the site.
But a Jewish group that ascended the Mount in recent days observed what may be the most egregious example of Temple Mount desecration yet – the dumping of trash right on the mount, just meters from the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which Muslims claim as their third-holiest site.
The group observed a dump truck about to release its contents, and called police over to intervene. Instead of stopping the truck driver, police filmed the Jewish group, and demanded that they identify themselves. The Jewish group demanded to know the identity of the dumpers, who they said were committing a crime – but to no avail.
Tensions rose and shouting ensued between the police and the Jewish group, while Arabs stood by and observed. Police made no move to stop the Arabs, but began pushing members of the Jewish group off the Mount. Police also refused to identify themselves. Eventually, police detained members of the Jewish group and ushered them off the Mount.
Watch: Dumping trash on the Temple Mount
The Temple Mount is Judaism's holiest site. It is the location of the two Holy Temples of Jerusalem - the latter of which was destroyed by the Romans in 70CE - and according to some Jewish traditions it is the point from which the creation of the world began.
In a recent Knesset debate, MK Moshe Feiglin demanded that Israel act more aggressively to prevent the destruction of Jewish artifacts on the site by the Jordanian Waqf (Islamic trust) on the Mount. "If you will go up with me to the Mount, I'll show you how the remnants of Solomon's Temple and the Temple of the Jews who returned from Babylon are wallowing in ashes," said Feiglin in the debate.
Feiglin called on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to immediately apply Israeli sovereignty over the Temple Mount, and to halt the destruction of antiquities at the site by the Waqf.
"I call on the government of Israel to stop the discrimination and embarrassment of Jews in entering the Mount and on the site," declared Feiglin. He further called on the government "to allow free access to all Jews to the Temple Mount from every gate, and prayer on the Mount, as required by it being part of the state of Israel, the Jewish state," which stipulates freedom of worship.