Thursday, May 15, 2014

  • Thursday, May 15, 2014
  • Elder of Ziyon
After this blog (with the help of Bob Knot) had already exposed and debunked the Arab rumor that Israeli authorities had demanded a Christian group remove a large banner welcoming the Pope to Jerusalem in order to avoid Jewish anger, Mondoweiss naturally reported the story without the context:

Here is some disturbing news from Israel, which calls itself the only democracy in the Middle East. Authorities in Jerusalem have asked Catholics to take down a banner featuring the Pope, lest it spur attacks ahead of the Pope’s visit May 25-26.
In the comments section (a technical glitch removed most of the comments but I have them cached) there was this exchange:

Zach S says:
Actually the Israeli police asked the church to take it down because there are laws against hanging banners on archaeological sites:
Leave it Phil and Annie to immediately assume the worst.
  • tree says:
    According to your link, as well as Phil and Annie’s news link, unnamed “informed sources” are saying that the request was made by police because of fear of hate crimes. Your link goes on to say that, after the fact, an unnamed police source says that the request was made because of a legal ban on signs on “archaeological sites” and not because of fears of violence. (Is the Franciscan Christian Information Center even considered an “archaeological site”?) According to your link, the Catholic Church refused to remove the banner, something that seems unlikely if the banner was really a violation of municipal or state law. I suspect the “legal reasons” were concocted as an explanation for the request after the request became public. Note of course that it was a request, not a demand, which again, seems unlikely if the banner was in fact a violation of law.
    The assumptions here are all yours, Zach. Phil and Annie were simply reporting on actual news.
    • Shmuel says:
      The assumptions here are all yours, Zach. Phil and Annie were simply reporting on actual news.
      More like Elder of Ziyon’s assumptions (almost word for word, including the link to Roya News).
(A later commenter showed that the building is, in fact, of historical importance.)

So who is right - the Mondos or me? Is Israel trying to play down the Pope's visit to Jerusalem to avoid supposed friction with Jews?

Do you really have to ask?

Last month, during Easter week, this banner was put up in Jerusalem, with no reports of any issues:



Throughout Jerusalem, today, one can see signs like this:



And not only in English:



So if Israeli authorities are trying to pacify these alleged gangs of ultra-Orthodox Jews by removing posters welcoming the Pope,  why are they putting up signs welcoming the pontiff themselves?

I'm sure the Mondo crowd will find some pilpul reason to keep themselves secure in the knowledge of unrestricted Israeli hate for all things non-Jewish.

(h/t RealJerusalemStreets for the photos)



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