al-Aqsa

Female Palestinian protesters are seen during clashes at the entrance of the Israeli Ofer military prison in Ramallah, West Bank on October 21, 2014, following a protest against the entry of settlers to the al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem. (Issam Rimawi/Getty Images)

I’m seeing a great deal of misunderstanding regarding the protests in Jerusalem right now.

People are oversimplifying it into simply a matter of “metal detectors”, and while they certainly are at the center of the issue, it’s much deeper than that.

If the metal detectors were a matter of “security”, why are they being installed at the entrance to Masjid al-Aqsa, where only Muslims will enter to pray at the Aqsa mosque, and not at the Dung Gate where the gunmen stormed through, or the Damascus gate, the main entrance to the Old City? If this was about “security”, why allow the entrance through which the two men stormed through to remain “insecure”?

If Palestinians are out to attack Israeli soldiers & police……..they’re going to do it outside of al-Aqsa grounds, as they have before….so it makes -zero- sense to only install the detectors there, other than to further control and limit Palestinian movement.

Further, the Old City in Hebron used to be a thriving district, full of tourists, shops and people. After an Israeli stormed the Ibrahimi Mosque/Cave of the Patriarchs and massacred 30 innocent Palestinian worshippers….metal detectors were placed in the PALESTINIAN quarters. People protested, but ultimately they remained and that became the new status quo. Little by little, expanding outwards from those first few metal detectors at the Palestinian entrances, Israel installed more and more checkpoints, “security measures”, and queue lanes.

Today, the Old City of Hebron which was once thriving, full of people and businesses, and a major tourist attraction, now looks like this:

Israeli “security measures” continuously encroached more and more on the Palestinian areas, until they were shuttered and taken over by Israeli settlers.

Now it’s a ghost town, Palestinians can barely move around as we are stuck behind massive gates, checkpoints, and fences, while Israelis roam freely on what was once Palestinian land, living in homes stolen from Palestinians, something that all started with a couple of measly metal detectors meant for “security”.

If there’s one thing Israel is good at, it’s downplaying the severity of a situation they’re responsible for, and exaggerating incidents against them.

These “few metal detectors” in Jerusalem aren’t about security, they’re about giving Israel a foothold to expand their absolute control and domination of Palestinian movement and eventually take over the Palestinian district of the Old City as they have in Hebron.

Israelis have long desired to take over the area of Al-Aqsa Mosque/Temple Mount, and if history in Hebron and elsewhere is anything to go by, Palestinians are absolutely right to be outraged at Israel’s attempt to get their foot in the door with these metal detectors.

A Palestinian lawyer wearing his official robes kicks a tear gas canister back toward Israeli soldiers during a demonstration by scores of Palestinian lawyers called for by the Palestinian Bar Association in solidarity with protesters at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City. Ramallah, West Bank

لَن يُقفَلَ بابُ مَدينَتِنا فَأنا ذاهِبَةٌ لأُصّلي
—  فيروز، زهرة المدائن
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Adhan from Masjid Al-Aqsa

Jerusalem, Palestine

This is the most beautiful Adhan i’ve ever heard, mashaAllah

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Beautiful maghrib Adhan 💓