Professor Gabriel Barkay, a respected Israeli archaeologist, was lecturing a group of American university students on the Temple Mount on Sunday when he was confronted by a Waqf guard who ordered him to stop using the term “Temple Mount”.
The Waqf guard was apparently outraged that the Jewish guide did not refer to the site by its Arabic name, ‘Haram al-Sharif’, following a series of UN resolutions that refer to the Temple Mount and Western Wall as solely Muslim sites.
Despite this warning, the professor continued his lecture about the pre-Islamic history of the site and when he again used the word “Temple Mount” he was ordered to follow the guard to Israeli police. The guard reported Dr. Barkay to the police officers and ordered him to be removed from the holy site. However, Israeli police refused, saying that it was not illegal to use the term.
The police advised the professor to continue his talk but to refrain from using the words “Temple Mount”. He instead used the term “T.M.” to describe it.
In an interview with Breaking Israel News, Dr. Barkay said that it had never happened before, although Waqf guards had previously shown their displeasure at certain aspects of his lectures.
Labelling the incident “outrageous” and “very strange”, he said, “denying history for political reasons is intolerable. I think they are making themselves look ridiculous. There are so many references to the Jewish Temple in Islamic literature that it is stupid for the Waqf to deny it existed. In any case, by denying history, the Waqf is actually helping the Israeli cause by emphasising how inaccurate their claim is.”
According to the group he was leading, the incident was “troubling” with one member saying how aggressive the Waqf guard was when confronting the professor.
However, this kind of aggression is common against Jewish visitors and is not only reserved for Jews. In August 2015 a French Christian man was left bleeding from his head after a Muslim mob attacked him with rocks after they saw he was carrying a small Israeli flag on the Temple Mount. The group he was leading was also removed by Waqf guards from the holy site after they acknowledged the site as being significant to Judaism.
This most recent incident is likely to have come about due to a number of absurd resolutions passed at the UN (including ones supported by the United Kingdom) that labelled Jerusalem’s holy sites using only their Islamic names and completely removed the English and Hebrew names from the sites, including the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.
The moral of this story: UN resolutions have consequences.