Jerusalem Streets, Below and from Above

Jerusalem Streets, Below and from Above

It has been a hot and tense week

in Jerusalem, Israel.

On my visit to the Old City

Jerusalem Israel metal detectors

I had to go through metal detectors.

Jerusalem Israel Old City metal detectors

 They are at every entrance to the Western Wall Plaza.

These metal detectors have been in place for years

and they have not been removed.

Millions have passed through metal detectors,

often after waiting for long periods of time in line,

with no riots that I know of.

Last week during a heat wave,

while Muslims were protesting and rioting,

Group of tourists from Africa on Western Wall Plaza

a group of African tourists came to the Kotel,

the Western Wall, as on any other regular day.

Over Jerusalem’s 3,000 year history,

it has been built and destroyed and rebuilt,

which is evident in the multiple layers found underground.

Notice the white fence in background of above photo?

Archaeological excavations behind Western Wall Plaza

Behind it archaeologists have carried out this excavation.

Dig down. You will find more history revealed.

Security in Jerusalem, Israel Old City Western Wall Plaza

While on the streets security was tense,

Model of Building Temple in Jerusalem

below in the Western Wall Tunnels

we saw a model of how the Second Temple

was constructed on a flat base over the foundation stone.

Western Wall tunnels under Jerusalem streets

Thousands of people have come to see the tunnels.

Western Wall tunnel excavations

Constant discoveries are being revealed,

Water of mikvah in Western Wall tunnel excavation

such as a mikvah, ritual bath,

from the time of King Herod.

Jerusalem, Israel Western Wall tunnel large room for public viewing

One large room shows multiple layers of stones

from various conquerors of Jerusalem over the centuries.

Jerusalem has so much history hidden under your feet.

Under what was once a parking lot near the Old City Walls

houses uncovered in excavation by Ir David

is today an excavation revealing what lay beneath the pavement.

Ir David, the City of David,

poster for night show in City of David

has posters for a new night-time show,

Developed City of David in Jerusalem Israel

to be held in its new seating area.

The City of David is located just outside the walls of Old City.

Excavation in City of David

This layer of blackened, destroyed homes

has been carbon dated to the time of the fall of the First Temple.

My friend got down to get a close up,

Idol found in ruins of house collapsed by destruction of Jerusalem

but I was more fascinated by this idol,

perhaps left over from the escape from Egypt,

which was found in the ruins.

So many coins and treasures, and history,

Arab woman walking in Silwan near Ir David

are hidden under these streets.

Excavation of new entrance to Western Wall Plaza

One day this street will be a major attraction.

Important Pilgrim path from Shiloah Pond to Har Habayit and Temple Mount

The “stepped street” has not been open to the public.

It is the route of the ancient pilgrims bringing offerings

to the Holy Temple in Jerusalem,

and one day is to be

Entrance of Old City from Ir David to Temple Mount

the new entrance to the Kotel, the Western Wall.

From the top of the Aish HaTorah building

we see above the Western Wall Plaza.

View of Temple Mount and Western Wall from Aish Hatorah

On the right is the Mughrabi Bridge,

the only entrance for non-Muslims to the Temple Mount,

Jerusalem Israel view of Muraghbi bridge

where you will note,

security cameras are still very much in place.

View of AlAqsa Mosque from roof of Aish Hatorah

Al-Aqsa Mosque was quiet that day,

though the calls to Muslim prayers filled the air.

Jerusalem Israel Old City model to Second Temple on roof of Aish Hatorah overlooking Dome of Rock

Past a model of the Second Temple,

one can see the gold paint of the Dome of the Rock.

You may see photos of rioting on the streets,

but under the streets history is also unfolding.

Sometimes what you can not see is more encouraging

that what is happening above.

From Maalot to Halamish: Jews and Druze Bound Together in Mourning

From Maalot to Halamish: Jews and Druze Bound Together in Mourning

On Friday, July 14, 2017, two Israeli policemen

were shot and killed while on duty at the Lion’s Gate entrance

to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Israel.

The international media already seems to have forgotten.

International headlines are blasting

about the fact that Israel installed metal detectors

while ignoring the reason for them.

The guns to shoot the policeman in the back

were hidden in their supposedly holy sanctuary.

On Wednesday, July 19, I joined a group

organized by OneFamily to visit the grieving families.

New roads outside Jerusalem Israel

We left the hills of Jerusalem,

Israel outside of Jerusalem, flat and green

went past green fields,Israeli countryside bales of hay

 many filled with bales of hay,

View from bus driving north in Israel

and row after row of banana trees.

Driving to northern Israel

Israeli supermarket named Texas

we passed a Texas supermarket and traveled

Galil road on way to Druze village

 on roads that reminded me of the hills of West Virginia.

Along the way we passed the town of Maalot-Tarshiha

Israel Monument Maalot

and this sign which made me think of the

 Maalot Massacre and terrorists killing Jews in their homes,

then murdering 22 more children on a school trip.

Finally,

Israel Memorl at entrance to Norfeish

we arrived at the entrance of Horfeish,

with its large Israeli and Druze flags.

Two black memorial ribbons on photos of two Druze policemen killed by terrorist at Lion's Gate Jerusalem

Next to them were posters with black memorial ribbons

around the faces of the two murdered policemen.

Men mourning Kamil Shnaan in Horfeish who was murdered by terrorist near Temple Mount

On the wall over the male mourners

was a photo of Kamil Shnaan,

Female members of Kamil Shnaan family mourning his murder in Jerusalem Temple Mount

while his mother in the women’s section

clutched her murdered son’s photo.

The Druze women were dressed in black with white scarves,

Family of Kamil Shnaan look at his photo during memorial visit by Jews and others in Horfeish

and received hundreds who came to pay their condolences.

Among the visitors were a group

Zion Riders come to pay respects to family of police officer Kamil Shnaan who was murdered

of senior bikers, the Zion Riders.

Zion Rider came to pay respects to family of Kamil Shnaan

Not sure what the young boys were thinking,

when one of them revved up his Harley-Davidson to leave.

Druze female mourners dressed in black with white scarves

Little was spoken, for what is there to say

to a woman who has just lost her youngest son?

Then back in the bus,

Kinneret view from bus on trip to Sitawe Family

as we drove down the winding road

there was a majestic view of the Kinneret.

Israel has so many beautiful spots,

but we were on our way to next grieving family.

Father of murdered policeman with white mourning scarf

The father of murdered policeman, Haiel Sitawe,

was upstairs with the men and stood to receive his visitors.

The women downstairs wanted no photos taken.

Large wedding portraits of Haiel were placed

along the wall behind the row of grieving women.

His widow was beautiful as any model, though so pale and sad.

Haiel will not get to see his baby son grow up,

Picture of Haiel Sitawe from women's mourning room, one of several located behind where they sat

who will only know his father’s smile from photos.

The world may have a short memory,

but Jewish people have a long memory and will not forget.

Before I could get this blog posted,

we have moved on to a new tragedy.

 Friday night in Halamish,

a terrorist knocked on the door of the Salomon family

who were expecting guests for their Shalom Zachor,

a special party to celebrate the birth of a new baby boy.

Instead the door was opened to a knife-wielding murderer.

No, it has nothing to do with metal detectors,

there were none for Muslims (or most of rest of us)

back in 1974, for Maalot Massacre,

or for the Fogel Family Massacre six years ago.

These are not clashes, but cold-blooded murderers,

mostly young men incited by the hateful, lying Arab media

and egged on in their echo-chamber of hate

to strike and kill innocents.

I hope to share “nice days” from now on,

but do not count on it,

Hamas and Abbas are counting on terror in order to

to distract from their problems,

and so far it is working for them.

The Jerusalem streets are quieter than usual,

it is summer and people are away,

hoping it stays that way. Quiet. but not too quiet.