inbow over the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives
inbow over the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives Yonadev Horowitz

As I sit to write this, Passover and the attached Shabbat have just ended here in Jerusalem.

The atmosphere is tense because the stakes are high.

The Temple Mount, the holiest place on earth for the Jewish people is being overrun by hoodlums who
want to make sure that their “case” will be center stage, particularly at this time.

The convergence of Ramadan, Easter and Passover have all eyes on Jerusalem now.

What better time to capture all the world’s press to denigrate the Jews and the Jewish State? As usual we arecalled the aggressors. Our provocation? Visiting and praying on our holiest site. Forbidden by the Jordanian wakf who control the Temple Mount.

Given to them on a silver platter after the six day war, as a gesture for peace with Jordan!! Our holiest site!

Even Motte Gur, the first to reach the Mount in 1967...reported in...Har HaBayit b’yadenu! The Temple Mount is in our hands. Incredulous that it was ever negotiable.

Motte Gur, not an obviously religious man, understood the miracle immediately.

And yet...we gave it up. Had we kept it...things might have been very different!

But then as now, our concern with what the world will say or do, holds us back from the truth! The truth being this is G-d’s Land, He gave it to us, His people and it is NOT NEGOTIABLE! Not any of it! Nada!

A little reminder...we the Jews living in this Land, are still reeling from the barbaric murder of more than a dozen Jews in cold blood, in several unsuspecting cities throughout Israel, in the last few weeks.

Ramadan seems to be a good time for murderous martyrdom, and Jews are always an easy target.

Arabs roam freely here, because we naively believe, that somehow, peace will prevail. I say naively because clearly there is no basis for such an assumption. None. And watching the “proud” parents of the martyr given press time is revolting, as is the distribution of candies, to those who feel glee when Jewish lives are mowed down.

The world press is anything but balanced so the real story is actually never told. As we respect the rights of all people to pray here, our very rights are compromised.

We must beg and plead to be allowed to visit and pray at our most holy site!

How can that be? How can we agree? Our agreement comes from our lack of self respect as a “free nation in our own Land.”

Hearing the media speak about “occupied” Jerusalem is infuriating! There was a war, initiated by 3 Arab nations against us and they lost! And the lost territories are “occupied lands”? No, I don’t think so.

As a nation we must speak in one voice unequivocally and tell the world that the Land of Israel is our birthright. That this is the Promised Land!

But first, WE must believe it! And that is why we celebrated Passover!

To teach our children that we WERE slaves and we are now a Free people.

The telling has never been so relevant.

And as we read the concluding line of this story...our pledge is...Next year in Jerusalem! May it be so. May these words turn into actions!

As truth is G-d’s signature, and as we are His people, we are entrusted to speak our truth too and to move forward with determination and strength to make His word known.

I will conclude with one last thought...Yosef’s tomb was recently desecrated, again by a group of Arab hoodlums. Nobody was there to stop them. And needless to say... this was not news! Hardly here, and certainly not globally!

We must ask ourselves why this is tolerated, and what can we do about it... in the merit of righteous women our people merited the Exodus. And now?

Chaya Gross moved to Israel from Montreal over 35 years ago. After working in real estate in Israel for most of those years she has taken time off to pursue her passion for writing.

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