Forgotten history

Recent controversies shed light on an interesting background of conflicts over prayer at Judaism’s holy site.

May 23, 2013 13:38
JEWISH WOMEN and men at the kotel, circa 1917.

Jews praying at Kotel 1917 black and white 370. (photo credit: Library of Congress)

The British government of Palestine wrote in 1930 that “on the 15th August, 1929, some hundreds of young Jews organised a demonstration at the Wailing Wall, in the course of which the Zionist flag was raised and the Zionist anthem sung. Incensed by this, the Muslims held a counter-demonstration at the same spot on the following day.” The Muslims then “tore up a Torah scroll and burned Jewish religious documents.”

In early May of this year, MK Rabbi Dov Lipman noted in a discussion in the Knesset that “it is very interesting, relating to the Kotel, that in our history we see old photos of women and men praying together. It isn’t an Orthodox synagogue, it is a place we all value and does not have the Halacha of a synagogue.”


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