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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 8, 2007 /18 Teves, 5767

Transplanting the Heart of the Matter

By Dan Gordon


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A captain (Res.) in the IDF during the recent Hezballah/Israel war contemplates the single act that would have the most profound effect throughout the entire Moslem world in resolving the Middle East conflict


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It has become an axiomatic belief that solving the Israeli Palestinian conflict is central to resolving numerous other problems in the Middle East. That claim may or may not be an exaggerated one. But there is no doubt that certain aspects of the Israeli Palestinian conflict have become rallying cries to Jihadis throughout the world who proclaim that their armed struggle against Israel and the West must continue until nothing less than the "liberation" of Jerusalem from the hands of the infidel. To be more precise however, Jerusalem per se is not the issue. The heart of the matter is Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omar. Al-Aqsa is claimed by Moslem's world wide to be their third holiest site after Mecca and Medina. This is what they mean to "liberate" with fire and blood.


The problem is this is not an issue that can be solved between Israel and the Palestinians. Israel can quite simply never give up the Temple Mount. I do not believe that any Israeli government could ever seriously entertain such a thing. Thus even if some formulation for acknowledging the so called "right of return" for Palestinians were to be found, even if some accommodation could be reached, as was envisioned by the Barak government, regarding East Jerusalem, the heart of the matter, Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer remain unsolvable through any negotiations that could be envisioned between Israel and whatever suitable partner for peace negations ever emerges amongst the Palestinians. Thus, for the Jihadis world wide there will never be an end to Jihad. There will never be an end to blood and fire aimed at Israel and the West.


There is however a possible solution which has yet to be discussed. The solution lies not between Israel and the Palestinians but between Israel and Saudi Arabia. I believe that Israel should explore the possibility of proposing to the Royal Family of Saudi Arabia that the Protectors of Mecca and Medina become the Protectors of Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer. In practice what would such a thing look like? Israel would have to find some sort of formula which would not violate Jewish law.


I believe that such a formula could be found. The remains of the Temple are believed to be somewhere beneath the surface of the current plaza on the Temple Mount surrounding Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer. As to where that is exactly both archaeologists and theologians hold varying opinions. Indeed there is a Jewish theological prohibition against Jews going up onto the Temple Mount because no one knows where the Holy of Holies might have been and no Jew but the High Priest himself was allowed onto that ground.


But let us imagine a formula which would say that from the surface of the tiles inside Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer, to the top of the ceiling inside both buildings, Saudi Arabia would be granted a kind of quasi counselor status. Thus when a Moslem entered Al-Aqsa or the Mosque of Omer he would no longer be from his point of view in "occupied territory." He would be inside quasi Saudi territory and under the protection of no less than the Saudi Royal Family, the Protectors of Mecca and Medina.


I do not claim to know the exact formula and the devil certainly would be in the details. However if such a formula could be found which would not violate Jewish law, but would place the interior space, from the surface of the tiles to the top of the ceiling, under the symbolic protection of let us say a contingent of a dozen or so Royal Saudi Guards, the single thorniest issue in the Middle East will have been resolved not through blood and fire but negotiation and diplomatic recognition. The main rallying cry of the most extreme Jihadis will have had the rug pulled out from underneath it. The heart of the heart of the Arab/Israeli dispute will have been transplanted.


There is no single other act that would have as profound an effect throughout the entire Moslem world, not just because the interior of the Mosques would be under the protection of the Saudis, but because of the way in which it had been brought about. Nothing would so enhance the Saudis prestige throughout the Islamic world as becoming the Protectors of Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer.


The quid pro quo would have an only slightly less profound effect. Saudi Arabia will have recognized not only the State of Israel but the right of the Jewish State to exist in the Middle East as an integral part of that community. Israel for its part would commit itself to that which it has already repeatedly committed itself; mainly to a two state solution with the Palestinians, to an independent Palestinian state living side by side the Independent State of Israel and to a resolution through negotiations of all outstanding issues between the two states. The Saudis would have to commit themselves to promote such a solution and to fostering an acceptance of Israel's rightful place in the Middle East throughout the Arab world. In addition they would have to commit themselves to keeping the Mosques from being a place where hatred of Israel could be preached (as is now most certainly the case).


No one believed that Anwar Sadat could sign a peace agreement with Israel without a solution for the Israel Palestinian conflict, however a formulation was found. It was also found in the peace agreement that Israel signed with Jordan. I do not believe that it is impossible to find such a formulation that would permit a Saudi/Israeli concordance allowing the Saudis to become the Protectors of Al-Aqsa and the Mosque of Omer.


Currently, the WAQF, an Islamic trust, is in charge of the Temple Mount. Substituting that for the role of Saudis as protectors would do nothing to alter Israel's sovereignty in Jerusalem. No Saudi flag would fly from the top of the Mosques. The area under their protection once again would be limited to the interiors of the Mosque from the surface of the tiles to the top of the ceiling.


I am a believing Jew. I fear the wrath of G-d more than the wrath of men. I believe this question should be put to a conclave of Rabbis presided over by the Chief Ashkenazi and Sephardic Rabbis of Israel. If they can find such a formulation that would not violate Jewish Law than there is a possibility that the rallying cry for Jihad could become a seed of peace.


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JWR contributor Dan Gordon is a screenwriter and the author of numerous articles on the Middle East. He served as a captain (Res.) in the IDF in the recent Hezballah/Israel war.

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© 2007, Dan Gordon