Saturday, July 29, 2017

PCG on the Al Aqsa Protests

Since 2005 PCG's leaders have continuously scare mongered that a third intifada would soon occur in the Holy Land. Following the tragic and terrible events that have occurred regarding the proposed metal detectors that were placed around the Al Aqsa Mosque recently PCG's Brent Nagtegaal has released an article discussing those terrible days. (Brent Nagtegaal, Palestinians Are Preparing for Another Intifada, July 25, 2017.)

The article serves to insist that PCG's teachings regarding supposed future events in the Holy Land are true and will soon be fulfilled. It also promotes a misconception common within the COGs, namely that tensions between the State of Israel and the Palestinians are all about the Al Aqsa Mosque.
Palestinian society is always one minor event away from reigniting a holy war over al-Aqsa.
It is casually assumed that the grievances of Palestinians in this matter are minor. How could peace ever be made if one side's concerns are belittled in such a way?
On Friday, July 14, two Israeli-Arab police officers were killed at the hands of Arab terrorists bearing machine guns and knives who came from the sacred Temple Mount complex. In response, Israel set up metal detectors at the entrance to the 35-acre compound to ensure such an attack will not take place again.
No mention is made that the perpetrators of that terrible and deadly attack were killed in the armed attack. The murderers were Palestinian citizens of Israel. Describing them as simply Arab obscures that detail.

The two police officers who were tragically were robbed of their lives by this terrible act of murder were Druze. Since its founding the State of Israel has favored the Druze community.

While the Israeli government justified the metal detectors as a security measure they seem to have failed to note that this move would inflame tensions with the Palestinians who did not ask for this measure. Tragically this measure would cause more loss of life.
Even though the metal detectors have been taken down, the fact remains that any Israeli movement around the Temple Mount, however minor, will be interpreted as justification for holy war.
It is assumed that the problem is mainly about the Temple Mount. While it is certainly true that from time to time tensions have been particularly acute and deadly over that particular site that is only a symptom of larger problems.

The territory seized by the State of Israel in 1967, including East Jerusalem, is viewed by the international community as occupied land under the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949. The international community recognizes the State of Israel as only having the right to rule the land it had in its 1949-67 borders. This is why the US Embassy and the embassies of many other nations, such as the embassies of Britain, France, Canada, Mexico, Australia, China, India, and others, are located in Tel Aviv and not Jerusalem. As far as the 161 nation states that recognize the State of Israel are concerned East Jerusalem does not belong to the State of Israel but, rather, is occupied by it.

The author then describes at length the murder of three Israeli Jews by a 19 year old Palestinian. There is no such detailed description given for the three Palestinians who were killed by Israeli personnel in protests against the metal detectors. On the Friday after the publication of this article two more Palestinians have died violently. One of them was a 16 year old Palestinian named Abdelrahman Abu Hmeisa, who was shot to death in the Gaza Strip during a protest.

Palestinian parents, brothers, sisters, husbands and wives love their families and friends as much as any other people. No doubt the lives of those who knew those three Palestinians killed in the protests have been shattered by the loss of their loved ones. But somehow that pain and suffering is overlooked in this article.

While describing the mass murder the author makes the following statement.
One such person is 19-year-old [name of murderer] from the Arab village of Kobar. On Friday night, he took a knife and entered a nearby Jewish village in the West Bank.
Kobar is a Palestinian village in the West Bank. The scene of the terrible mass murder was Halamish, an Israeli settlement in the West Bank. It was built on land captured in 1967 which is viewed by the 161 nation states that recognize the State of Israel as not belonging to the State of Israel but instead is occupied by it. Palestinians are not allowed to live in these Israeli settlements even though many of these settlements are built by Palestinian laborers hired by Israeli authorities. Furthermore Palestinians are even hired to work in these settlements despite not being allowed to live there.

The author then criticizes the Palestinian protesters' objections to the metal detectors by saying that many other places in Israel and lands controlled by it have metal detectors. He also brings up Mecca and Medina.
Living in Israel, it seems that the only place that metal detectors haven’t historically been used is where Muslims gain access to the Temple Mount. Of course, if you are a tourist or a Jew wanting to visit the Temple Mount, you have had to go through a metal detector for years to gain access. Even then, you can only reach the Mount at very limited times during the week. Installing simple metal detectors at the Arab gates would simply raise the Temple Mount to the standard of public safety afforded other locations where public gatherings take place. Furthermore, Mecca and Medina, the first two sites most sacred to Islam, have far more stringent security measures in place (including metal detectors and security cameras) compared with the Temple Mount.
The difference between Mecca and Medina on the one hand and East Jerusalem on the other is that no one questions the Saudi government's sovereignty over Mecca and Medina however no nation state recognize the State of Israel as having the right to rule East Jerusalem because the State of Israel acquired it by armed force during the Six Day War of 1967. Consequently the 161 nation states recognizing the State of Israel view East Jerusalem as occupied land.
But this isn’t about metal detectors. It is about the long-standing Palestinian goal to wrest complete control of the Temple Mount from Israel. These security measures are just the latest excuse.
He is right to say that it is not only about the metal detectors. Many Palestinians, including some in Jerusalem, have had their homes demolished or have lived in fear that their homes would be demolished. Events like these are certain to make Palestinians weary of living under Israeli rule. The author makes no attempt to try and view these events from the perspective of one who had seen his or her home demolished by an Israeli bulldozer by order of Israeli authorities.
In 2000, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon visited the Temple Mount. The Palestinians’ reaction to that should have been little more than a verbal debate. Instead, their reaction was the second intifada.
No mention is made that Sharon visited it with about 1,500 security personnel. It is insisted that Palestinians should have only had "a verbal debate" about it without trying to understand the Palestinians' perspective. Furthermore Palestinians were frustrated that their hopes for the Oslo Peace Process had not been fulfilled seven years after the PLO signed the Camp David Accord. In those seven years many more Israeli settlers moved into the settlements in East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The Palestinians had hoped that the peace process would stop the settlements from expending. It was not just about Sharon's visit.
That “al-Aqsa intifada” also used the narrative that Israel was trying to take over the Temple Mount in order to motivate its Palestinians to blow themselves up on buses and in cafés throughout Israel. 
It was not just about al-Aqsa. Alas, as stability gradually collapsed the use of armed force gradually escalated. It was six months before the Palestinian militants began to use suicide bombers against the civilians of the State of Israel. Of course none of that justifies the horror that is suicide bombing. Today even the Palestinian armed groups that used suicide bombers back in the Second Intifada have for the most part quietly stopped employing that ghastly act. A pertinent detail which is also left unstated in this article.
In the end, over 1,000 Israelis were killed, not to mention thousands of Palestinians who died believing a narrative that was as untrue then as it is today.
The author obscures how high the death toll was for Palestinians in the Second Intifada. The author also criticizes the Palestinians who died, people unable to defend themselves, as believing in untrue rumors. This negative statement is made only about Palestinians. Many of the Palestinians who died violently in the Second Intifada were civilians.

The fact is that the Palestinians were far more vulnerable to violence than Israelis. While Palestinians had clandestine militia groups with guns and bombs the State of Israel had a powerful and well equipped army, navy, collaborators among the Palestinian peoples and other resources. The Palestinian insurgents could not compete militarily against this armed force. It was inevitable that the armed forces of the State of Israel would gradually wear down the insurgency.
Of course, if Israel wanted to take over the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site (believed to be the location of the first and second temples), it has had the means and, some would say, the justification for doing so for over 50 years. And yet, to this day, there has been no attempt to take over the sanctuary, nor exercise greater control over it.
It seems an unhelpful way of denying that rumor by stating that such a terrible thing could be done.
Again, it’s not about the metal detectors. And even the Muslim Waqf that oversees the daily running of the Temple Mount said on Sunday that it won’t accept any new security measures at the Temple Mount, “even if metal detectors are taken away.” They are not interested in a security compromise to ensure Israel’s legitimate security concerns are mitigated. 
Instead, the Waqf and the Palestinian leadership are looking to use this situation to further erode Israel’s ever shrinking sovereignty over the Temple Mount. This is part of their long-term strategy.
It is not mentioned that the Waqf is Jordanian. This is a hold over from when the West Bank was ruled by Jordan in 1949-67.
It has always been the Palestinian goal to take the Temple Mount completely out of the hands of Israel. Because of the constant lies about Israel’s attempts to block access to Muslims, Palestinian society constantly lives one benign event away from instigating a holy war to “protect al-Aqsa from the Jews.”
The author complains that it is a lie to say that the State of Israel is attempting to block access to Muslims entering the Al Aqsa Mosque. But actually since 2014 Israeli authorities have restricted certain age groups from entering the mosque at certain times. Since 2014 some Muslims have been restricted from entering the mosque by Israeli personnel. The author is wrong regarding this particular claim.

Also if a Palestinian state is be created out of the land acquired by the State of Israel in 1967 those who would build such a state need East Jerusalem. The 161 nation states that recognize the State of Israel do not view East Jerusalem as belonging to the State of Israel but as occupied land that is supposed to be governed by the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949. In addition to the legal status of East Jerusalem as occupied land the religious significance and tourist attraction of East Jerusalem is an invaluable resource. Consequently it is unthinkable for Palestinians to give up East Jerusalem after recognizing the State of Israel as having the right to rule the land in its 1949-67 borders (which constitute 78% of Mandatory Palestine) back in 1993.
We at the Trumpet take no pleasure in the loss of life, whether it’s the Palestinian that is driven by a religious fervor predicated on a pernicious lie or the Jews who are killed as a result.
Even here the author feels compelled to present one side, namely the Palestinians, as being deluded by a lie. He presents one side as good and innocent and the other side as deluded and irrationally fanatical.
But we do watch these events closely because Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry has said for over a decade that the Bible prophesies that East Jerusalem will fall to the Arabs in the near future. ... He also writes more specifically that the Temple Mount itself will fall into Arab hands. As Mr. Flurry relates ... that will only occur after there is a fight with Israel over that territory.
PCG has made at least 52 false prophecies since its founding in 1989. This prophecy is also sure to fail. PCG's 1% are but false prophets.

To say that nothing can be done to solve these problems until Christ returns is of no use. Even if that were true surely we should feel that it would be right to try and solve this problem instead of just giving up and waiting for Christ to return. That advice is not good.

May peace soon come to the Holy Land. May violence soon cease.


  1. Gerald Flurry has said for over a decade that ... in the near future. ...
    Oxymoronic phrases such of these are meant to give a positive emphasis on a group, but in actuality expose them.
    "For over 50 years ... HWA/GTA/RCM/etc ... we have warned ... will occur (in the next 3 to 5 years)!"

    1. In their recreational hours, the members of these churches should be required to wear T-shirts that read "I Believe False Prophecy".


  2. The prophecies taught by Armstrongism are empirically known to be false.