About a week ago, Jordanian King Abdullah made a sensible suggestion to reduce tension over the Temple Mount. He suggested putting cameras there to monitor the activities of the Palestinian youths who periodically riot and attack Jewish worshipers praying at the Western Wall below. The cameras would also show if the Israelis were indeed making changes to the arrangements on the Temple Mount (also known as Mount Zion, or the Haram al Sharif, the Nobel Sanctuary, in Arabic). This is supposed to be one of the main causes of the Palestinian disturbances, the rioting, attacking the Israeli police and knifing and killing Israelis, that has been going on for several weeks. This is an ancient excuse for attacking and killing Jews, used for example in the massacre of Jews in Hebron in 1929.
Both American Secty. of State Kerry and Israeli PM Netanyahu quickly agreed to the idea, as a means of trying to pacify the Palestinians and stabilize the situation. But, then PA PM Mahmud Abbas came out against the idea of cameras on the Temple Mount. And guess what, the Jordanian Government then reversed itself and they too are now against it. What are they afraid of? Isn’t it obvious, first they are afraid that there will be footage showing the Palestinian youths initiating violence there, rioting and throwing stones and firebombs down on the Jewish worshipers. But also it will confirm the Israeli claim that they are not changing in any way the current arrangements there and certainly disprove that the “Jews are taking over the Al Aksa Mosque” as the Islamic religious authorities keep claiming.
So why can’t the Israeli Government install cameras there anyway? Because that might be interpreted as changing the status quo and cause strong resentment among Muslims. And certainly the Israeli authorities cannot install cameras inside the Al Aksa Mosque since that would be considered sacrilege. On the other hand, it is well known that the Palestinians use the Mosque for storing stones and firebombs to use in their attacks, that is not considered sacrilege! It is routine for Muslims to do this, to store weapons in mosques, because in Islam there is no distinction between religious belief and the political interests of Islam. So it is common, for example, for rival gangs of Muslims to blow up each other’s mosques, as in the Shia-Sunni conflict in Iraq, Syria and elsewhere. During the Gaza wars the Hamas terrorists regularly use mosques as weapons storage depots and to shoot from.
I favor the Israeli Government installing cameras around the Temple Mount. They will be destroyed and sabotaged by the Palestinians, but those that do work may show the lies that the Arabs tell and the violence that they initiate. It would also be a statement of Israeli sovereignty over the Temple Mount, the supposedly holiest site in Judaism, that until now has been sadly lacking.