Nytt

Hykleri er en del av Midtøstens politikk, og kong Abdullah av Jordan kan kunsten når han sender ut en erklæring som advarer mot Israels bokstavelige undergraving av Al Aqsa-moskeen. Kreftene som ønsker en tredje intifada sprer rykter om at israelerne driver utgravinger som skader moskeen.

Den andre intifadaen tilskrives som kjent Ariel Sharons besøk på Tempelhøyden. Få ting opphisser palestinerne mer. Men det er det rene sprøyt, skriver Sarah Honig. Derimot er vanlige turister blitt angrepet fordi palestinerne tok feil og trodde det var jøder som kom av religiøse grunner.

Når kongen av Jordan sender ut en erklæring som bekrefter at Al Aqsa-moskeen er truet, heller han bensin på bålet. Han viser til respekten for hellige steder, men hvordan var det jordanerne oppførte seg da de kontrollerte Øst-Jerusalem i 1948-1968?

TO BEGIN with, Jordan (then Transjordan, limited to the Jordan’s east bank) entered and occupied Jerusalem illegally. According to the UN Partition Plan, Jerusalem and Bethlehem were to comprise a «corpus separatum,» an international zone, this despite the fact that Jerusalem boasted an undeniable Jewish majority going back at least to the beginning of the 19th century (there were no censuses beforehand). But organized Christianity couldn’t abide the affront of Jewish dominion in the Holy City.

The Arabs, with the Hashemites liberally at the vanguard, couldn’t even abide the notion of «neutral governance» of Jerusalem, just as the very idea of Jewish sovereignty – even in an untenable hodge-podge miniature toehold – was abhorrent to them. Seven Arab armies invaded newborn Israel in unison to eradicate it. That was the context in which the Jordanian Legion occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, expelled its ancient Jewish community and lay siege to West Jerusalem with an eye to starving it into surrender.

None of this elicited audible squawks from the international community. Nor did what ensued under subsequent Hashemite custody. Holier-than-thou Hashemites defied the UN demand for a demilitarized Jerusalem and turned it into an armed camp, bristling with artillery, mines and sniper positions.

The armistice agreement, which ended the 1948-49 Arab aggression (Israel’s War of Independence), obliged Jordan to allow Jewish access to Jerusalem’s sacred sites. The Jordanians, who now shed crocodile tears about nonexistent restrictions on Muslims in Jerusalem, callously breached their solemn undertakings. The international community again maintained unanimous composure, without a murmur of protest about Hashemite duplicity.

During 19 years of brutal Hashemite occupation in Jerusalem, no Jewish worship was possible at the Western Wall or elsewhere, formal international commitments notwithstanding. Foreign visa applicants even had to prove they weren’t Jewish lest a forbidden Jewish foot reach Judaism’s holiest site.

But that was the least of Hashemite transgressions. Even by the worst medieval precedents, Jordan’s deliberate devastation of Jewish sites was unpardonable. Fifty-eight synagogues in Jerusalem’s historic Jewish Quarter – made judenrein by the Hashemites – were destroyed or defiled, some used as cowsheds, stables or public latrines. Many were razed to the ground.

The ancient incomparable Jewish pantheon that is the 3,000-year-old Mount of Olives cemetery was sadistically despoiled. Over 75% of its tombstones were ripped out and used to construct anything from pavements to army barracks and even communal urinals – the ultimate humiliation and desecration.

This wasn’t mere vandalism, nor even just an outpouring of unbridled hate. This was maximal ethnic cleansing, purposely calculated to purge Jerusalem of its Jewish past and pretend it was never anything but Arab.

Særlig skjendingen av gravsteder er bemerkelsesverdig. Det er den ultimate fornedrelsen. Tyrkerne gjorde det samme med armenske gravsteder. Det holdt ikke å rasere gravstedene. Man måtte også ydmyke de døde. Også tyrkerne brukte gravstener til veibygging og latriner.

Hvordan ville reaksjonen i den muslimske verden vært om Israel/vestlige land hadde gjort noe tilsvarende? Det ville garantert blitt omtalt i vestlige skolebøker som det ultimate eksempel på vestlig arroganse.

Kong Abdullah har et annet «nummer» han liker å foredra: at Jordan beskytter de kristne, mens Israel utgjør en trussel mot dem. Det er nok en løgn. Historien viser noe helt annet, skriver Honig.

Their numbers plummeted from 25,000 in 1948 to some 10,000 in 1967. Christian institutions were forbidden to expand and prohibited from real estate purchases in greater Jerusalem. Christian schools were coerced to teach the Koran alongside the New Testament. There could be no Christian instruction without Islamic indoctrination.


Another Tack: Look who’s talking