Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Hassan II mosque in Casablanca



Maariv has an op-ed by Sam Ben Sheetrit, president of the World Federation of Moroccan Jewry, which is getting attention in Arab media.

It says:

The Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca is one of the largest and most magnificent mosques in the world. This mosque was built half on the sea and half on land. Unlike Al-Aqsa Mosque, there is no restriction on visiting and praying there by Muslims, Jews and Christians. The concept is generous and broad: a house of prayer is meant for everyone. That's why Jews also visit the mosque and pray with their neighbors, out of closeness to others and love of people.

The financing of the construction of this mosque, which lasted eight years, was imposed on all Moroccan residents regardless of religion. During Ramadan, the King of Morocco, his son and his government ministers pray at the Hassan II Mosque, and the event is broadcast on Moroccan television networks and other media. 80,000 believers can enter and pray in the prayer hall. Usually, it is an impressive event that is covered by the media and is also appreciated by people of culture.

During one of my visits to this mosque, during the MIncha prayer, a Jewish Israeli stood next to me, who put a kippa on his head and prayed quietly. At the end of his prayer, a Muslim Arab approached him and greeted him in Arabic: "God will accept your prayer."

This is the face of tolerance in Morocco. In Morocco I have often been asked why there are Muslim Arabs who oppose the visit and prayer of Jews at the Temple Mount: after all we are all monotheists, believe and pray to one God. I answered that I perceived everything to be the fault of Moshe Dayan, who did not establish arrangements for the visits of Jews, but gave the keys of al-Aqsa to the people of the Waqf, and here they are the ones who determine almost everything that happens on the Temple Mount.

Since then we have been witness to the cries of "Al-Aqsa is in danger" and come across documents of the Waqf trying to erase every archaeological trace that confirms the Temple. Today, there are archaeologists whose job it is to sort the debris from the Temple Mount sites, and there are archaeological finds that have been discovered in this debris. 

He isn't wrong, although it is interesting that he blames Moshe Dayan for the intolerance of Palestinian Muslims - as if one cannot possibly expect tolerance from them.




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