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December 30, 2013

LA Times' Temple Mount Provocation, II

For the second time in just over a year, a Los Angeles Times headline about increasing Jewish visits and attempts to circumvent the ban on Jewish prayer at the Temple Mount misleads and inflames.

In October 2012, we flagged this front-page headline on the LA Times site:

Los Angeles Times - oct 28 front pag.jpg

At the time, we noted:

The headline is provocative and misleading given that the site in question, the Temple Mount, is not simply a "site sacred to Muslims," but is also Judaism's holiest site, as the article itself makes clear.

Furthermore, the front-page blurb does nothing to clarify the fact that the site where Jews are seeking to pray is Judaism's holiest site. It says: "Israeli police and Muslim officials say prayers at the Temple Mount-Al Aqsa mosque site are a provocation. One rabbi responds: 'What is provocative about a person wanting to pray?'"

Those readers who bother to click on the headline in order to read the story will come to a page with a more balanced headline. It states "More Jews praying on site also sacred to Muslims" (emphasis added). The "also" makes clear that the site is holy to Jews, an essential point that the majority of Los Angeles Times Web visitors would miss.

The Times does it again, with a page 3 headline yesterday (only in print) stating:

Israeli Jews defy ban on prayer

Increasing visits to a Muslim holy site could lead to violence, some warn

The accompanying article is by AP's Daniel Estrin, and the original AP headline was accurate and not misleading:

Support mounts for Jewish prayer at key holy site - Yahoo News.jpg

While Estrin does not spell out that the Temple Mount is Judaism's holiest site, he reports:

Jews believe the rock may be where the holiest part of the two ancient temples stood about 2,000 years ago -- and where religious Jews pray a third temple will one day be built.

The site is so holy that Jews have traditionally refrained from praying on the hilltop, congregating instead at the adjacent Western Wall.

Posted by TS at December 30, 2013 06:50 AM


The name itself says it all: �The Temple Mount�-
which Temple? It's the Temple that the Jewish people built twice at the same location, because it's the holiest place on earth for the Jewish people. The first Holy Temple and then the second Holy Temple were there centuries before Islam even came to exist. So to say that Jews have no right to pray, whenever they want, at their holiest place, is outrages.
Moreover, when East Jerusalem was illegally occupied by Jordan, Jews could never pray at their holy places there, but since Israel unified Jerusalem, all religions are free to practice their believes in Jerusalem, and that's how it should be.

Posted by: Hannah Shaffin at January 2, 2014 02:37 PM

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