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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Western Wall good enough for the Pope, but too 'controversial' for Bush

Haaretz is reporting that US President George Bush will visit Masada during his visit here next month, rather than visiting the Western Wall or the Cave of the Patriarchs, both of which are deemed 'too controversial.' Pope John Paul II visited the Western Wall during a visit here in 2000.
Organizers of Bush's planned two-and-a-half-day stay said they had been searching for a symbolic location for the president to visit, but wanted to avoid one that might stir controversy like the Western Wall, Golan Heights or Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron.

Bush, accompanied by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, would visit the ancient mountaintop fortress where Jewish rebels made their last stand against Roman legionnaires [after which they committed collective suicide. How appropriate. CiJ].

During his stay, Bush will address the Knesset and give a speech detailing the history of U.S.-Israeli relations and his vision of its future.

White House staff said they were interested in organizing a meeting between Bush, his wife Laura and a group of recent immigrants to Israel. [I've been here nearly 17 years, but I would love to get into that meeting. CiJ].

Bush will hold meetings with Olmert, President Shimon Peres, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Defense Minister Ehud Barak. He will take part in a conference organized by Peres that will include presidents and heads of state from around the world.

U.S. sources added, however, that the itinerary is in its initial stages and could change.

"A lot depends on security arrangements," one of them said.
I wonder if anyone has told these 'planners' that unless he's going to go at sunrise, it could be 110 degrees at Masada in May. Heh. They'll take the cable car up anyway.

Aaron Lerner has a great comment on this situation:
OK.

Repeat after me.

"Thanks to Israel's uprooting of the Jewish communities in the Gaza Strip and northern Samaria Israel enjoys unprecedented support and understanding from the Bush administration. The relationship between Prime Minister Olmert and President Bush is second to none - so much so that it would be dangerous for the Jewish State to replace Olmert at this critical time. Thanks to this unprecedented support, Israel is in a position today to rapidly complete final status negotiations with the Palestinians under favorable terms that it won't get in the future."

Oops.

Things are so screwed up that while the Pope can visit the Western Wall in what was clearly the "Israeli" portion of his visit, President Bush can't make the same photo op as part of his historic trip marking Israel's 60th anniversary.

And now an example of the incredible lack of thinking on the part of whoever is working on this trip: instead of visiting places associated with Israel's rebirth or ancient life - the idea is a photo op at a place remembered in history for the group of Jews who committed suicide rather than fall captive to the Romans.

Then again. How appropriate. PM Olmert, who critics warn is following a suicidal path with the Palestinians, will visit Masada with Bush.
If the Western Wall wasn't included in Bush's 'changing realities' speech in April 2004, what was included? Forgive me for forgetting: He still had to run for re-election then.

3 Comments:

At 4:55 PM, Blogger Orde said...

"...clearly the "Israeli" portion..."

One would think, but no there are several fatwas specifically not only saying this isn't so, but even the wording suggests to me severe consequences, being labeled an apostate - death!?!, for disagreeing!:

"...Calling 'Al-Buraq wall' wailing wall is improper and it BEARS INDICATIONS AGAINST BELIEF. Hence, all Muslims and mass media should abide by the Islamic term, 'Al-Buraq Wall' and drop the false calling." -- Sheikh Ekrima Sabry

Fatwa by Dr. Nasr Farid Wasil:
"...there could be no recognition of Israeli control of the wall...Al-Buraq Wall is part of Al-Aqsa's western wall and the walls of Al-Aqsa are Islamic endowments...Hence Al-Buraq Wall belongs to Muslims alone in the four corners of the earth and will remain so till Judment Day...there is no stone there dating back to Hebrew history..."

(Seeing as how Condi herself has said they're discussing final status matters already, this has probably come up.)

 
At 7:22 PM, Blogger David Ben-Ariel said...

President Bush should make pilgrimage to the Temple Mount, as it is the holiest site in biblical Christianity where Yeshua (Jesus) taught and prayed, as well as the Jewish apostles - oh, but Bush isn't a Bible-believing Christian or he wouldn't aid and abet those who would dismember the Promised Land of Israel - the Jewish Homeland - and pervert parts of it into an accursed "Palestine" or reward terrorism by arming Israel's enemies.

Furthermore, the godless Israeli government enables Muslim occupiers to trample the religious rights of Christians and Jews upon the Temple Mount daily and wouldn't permit Bush to pray or read the Bible there. Thankfully, despite the failings of men, the Temple Mount will soon host the House of Prayer for all Peoples.

 
At 7:47 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

I guess the Western Wall, which is remaining site of the last Temple, is "too controversial" for President Bush to pay his respects to Israel.

Whoever chose Masada in its place had a sense of the ironic - and a macabre humor. The ancient Jews committed suicide. I think its a metaphor of what Israel is being asked to do in helping to establish a Palestinian reichlet on its own soil.

Dead Jews please the world. But those who pray at the Kotel testify to the fact the Jews just refuse to disappear no matter what their enemies plans for them have been. Legend says G-d promised to spare at least one remnant of the Temple from destruction just as despite, all their sins, He promised to safeguard the Jews from destruction.

Only G-d can protect Israel. Not the President Of the United States or any mortal man.

 

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