Israelis support rebuilding 2nd Temple

Arab News:

A news survey conducted by the Israeli Ynet news service and the Gesher organization found that about two thirds of the Israeli public want the Second Temple rebuilt. Gesher claims a 4.6 margin of error on a survey of 516 Israelis.

The Temple Mount, which is the foundation of the First and Second temples is today home to Islam’s third-holiest mosque, Al-Aqsa. The Second Temple, built by Herod the Great, was destroyed in 70 A.D. when the Romans sacked Jerusalem.

Sixty-four percent responded favorably to the question of rebuilding the temple commissioned by Herod the Great, while 36 percent responded negatively.

Among the practicing and orthodox Jewish Israelis, virtually all respondents wanted to see the Second Temple rebuilt.

Just under half of secular Israelis — 47 percent — also said they would like to see Herod’s Temple rebuilt.

Eighty percent of respondents said it was “justified” to mark what many Jews consider the saddest day of their history (the destruction of the temple) by rebuilding the temple.

The deputy chief of the Islamic Movement inside Israel Sheikh Kamal Al-Khatib asserted that the temple would never be rebuilt.

“If the Jews think that their mourning will end and they will rejoice by destroying Al-Aqsa Mosque and building their temple, we say to them that their dream will not be fulfilled and they will continue to mourn,” he told Arab News yesterday. “Al-Aqsa is for Muslims only.”

Control over Jerusalem, which Israel captured during the June 1967 War, has been seen as the most sensitive and thorniest issue of Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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This seems to be a pretty fair presentation of the facts from what is usually a pretty hostile source for news about Israel. I have felt that the construction of the mosque in that location was an attempt to destroy Jewish claims to what was a holy site. The Muslims did similar construction on Hindu sites in India.

Since the location has come under Jewish control, people of all faiths have had access to it. That would be unlikely if the Palestinians took control.

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