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Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Some Lamentations 

Haaretz: Jews banned from Temple Mount on Tisha B'Av

Iran's Spiritual Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Tuesday he believed the United States and Israel, rather than Muslims, were responsible for the kidnappings and killings of foreigners in Iraq, Reuters reported.

"We seriously suspect the Americans and Israelis in conducting such horrendous terrorist moves," the official IRNA news agency quoted Khamenei as saying in a meeting with visiting Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong of Singapore.

"(We) cannot believe that the people who kidnap Philippine nationals, for instance, or beheaded US nationals are Muslims."

AFP: Iran threatens to wipe Israel "off the face of the earth."

The Telegraph: Iran starts atom tests in defiance of EU and UN

Boston Globe: IRAQ refuses to normalize relations with Israel

IHT:  Spain considering plan to subsidize mosques

Sheik Yousef al Qaradhawi, banned from entering the US since 1999, visited London this month to convene the European Council for Fatwa and Research and announce the establishment of the International Council of Clerics. On his weekly al Jazeera TV show, "Sharia and Life," he said July 13: 
"There is no dialogue between us and the Jews except by the sword and the rifle." --



Amir Taheri via Melanie Phillips

'This enemy does not want to give and take, to compromise, or to triangulate. He wants you to obey him in every detail or he will kill you...

He will not be happy even if, in the spirit of liberal generosity, you gave him half of your power and wealth. Nor would he settle for a total American withdrawal from the world. Nor would he be satisfied if you helped wipe Israel off the map.

This enemy's conflict with the United States, and alongside it other democracies, not to mention those Muslims who also aspire after democracy, is not political but existential.

He wants to rule you because he thinks he is the holder of a "the highest form of truth." This enemy wants you, the whole world in fact, to convert to Islam because he believes the advent of Islam abrogated all other religions. Anyone who is not a Muslim is not a full human being.

"Our struggle is not about land or water," the late Ayatollah Ruhallah Khomeini said in 1980. "It is about bringing, by force if necessary, the whole of mankind onto the right path."

* * * *

Rev. David van Horne, D.D. in Tent and Saddle Life in the Holy Land, 1885:

 On the Friday afternoon during our stay in Jerusalem we went to what is known as the "Wailing-place of the Jews." This place is on the west side of Mount Moriah, in the Tyropoeon Valley, where the large bevelled-edge stones in the ancient wall indicate the substructions of the temple of Solomon. Thirty men and twenty women were present on that occasion to lament over the loss of their temple and kiss the stones in the wall. The men read aloud in Hebrew from a service-book, in a kind of chanting tone, while waving the body to and fro, and indulging in loud lamentations.   

According to our sages, many tragic events occurred on this, the ninth day of the Jewish month of Av. 

  • The sin of the spies caused Hashem to decree that the Children of Israel who left Egypt would not be permitted to enter the land of Israel;
  • The first Temple was destroyed;
  • The second Temple was destroyed;
  • Betar, the last fortress to hold out against the Romans during the Bar Kochba revolt in the year 135, fell, sealing the fate of the Jewish people.
  • One year after the fall of Betar, the Temple area was plowed.
  • In 1492, King Ferdinand of Spain issued the expulsion decree, setting Tisha B'Av as the final date by which not a single Jew would be allowed to walk on Spanish soil.
  • World War I – which began the downward slide to the Holocaust – began on Tisha B’av.

We are taught that those who mourn over Jerusalem will merit the future vision of her joy.

 On the day that the Holy Temple was destroyed, a Jew was plowing his field when his cow suddenly called out. An Arab was passing by and heard the call of the cow. Said the Arab to the Jew: "Son of Judah! Unyoke your cow, free the stake of your plow, for your Holy Temple has now been destroyed.''

The cow then called a second time. Said the Arab to the Jew: "Son of Judah! Yoke your cow, reset the stake of your plow, for Moshiach has now been born.''  â€” Jerusalem Talmud, Berachot 2;4


Read Eichah, the lamentations of Jeremiah.