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“Jerusalem” is mentioned 669 times in the Jewish Bible (Tanach). It does not appear at all in the Koran or in Islamic prayers. Islam’s founder and prophet Mohammad never visited Jerusalem, and no mosque was built there until 682 CE, when the Umayyad Caliph Suleiman Abd al-Malik built the mosque on the Temple Mount to create from scratch an alternative holy site after Abd Allah ibn al-Zubayr rebelled against the Islamic rulers in Damascus, conquered Mecca and prevented pilgrims from reaching Mecca for the hajj. And even then, Jerusalem never served as the seat of any Islamic political entity. In fact, after the Arab/Islamic conquest of the region, the aforementioned Umayyad Caliph subsequently built the city of Ramla in 705 CE and his appointees ruled the region from there, not Jerusalem.
While the Caliph called the mosque “al-Aqsa,” claiming after the fact that this was the “al-Aqsa mosque” referred to in the Koran, as “the further mosque” where Mohammad prayed, this was merely a political contrivance due to the rebellion of al-Zubayr who then controlled Mecca. As Dr. Mordechai Kedar noted in a 2008 article in Yediot Ahronot, Islamic tradition in fact tells us that the aforementioned “al-Aqsa mosque” referred to in the Koran is actually near Mecca on the Arabian Peninsula.
“Islamic tradition tells us that al-Aqsa mosque is near Mecca on the Arabian Peninsula. This was unequivocally stated in ‘Kitab al-Maghazi,’ a book by the Muslim historian and geographer al-Waqidi,” Dr. Kedar writes. “According to al-Waqidi, there were two ‘masjeds’ (places of prayer) in al-Gi’irranah, a village between Mecca and Ta’if – one was ‘the closer mosque’ (al-masjid al-adna) and the other was ‘the further mosque’ (al-masjid al-aqsa,) and Muhammad would pray there when he went out of town.”
Dr. Kedar further points out: “This description by al-Waqidi which is supported by a chain of authorities (isnad) was not ‘convenient’ for the Islamic propaganda of the 7th Century. In order to establish a basis for the awareness of the ‘holiness’ of Jerusalem in Islam, the Caliphs of the Ummayad dynasty invented many ‘traditions’ upholding the value of Jerusalem, which would justify pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the faithful Muslims. Thus was al-Masjid al-Aqsa ‘transported’ to Jerusalem. It should be noted,” Dr. Kedar reminds us, “that Saladin also adopted the myth of al-Aqsa and those ‘traditions’ in order to recruit and inflame the Muslim warriors against the Crusaders in the 12th Century.”
Hence, Islamic propaganda continues. The only new wrinkle is the “invented history” of the Muslim Palestinian Arabs, which is predicated on negating the true and documented history of the Jews. The method continues; the lie is still a lie. Unfortunately, today too many in the West have volunteered to become obsequious espousers of the Islamic falsehoods regarding the Land of Israel in general and Jerusalem in particular – including certain politicians in Washington, DC.
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