The Western Wall agreement must be implemented – opinion

Even when it seems that things can no longer escalate for Women of the Wall, recent events at the Western Wall and in the Knesset once again teach us otherwise.

Last month’s Rosh Hodesh service was filled with violence against the Women of the Wall, as well as against MK Rabbi Gilad Kariv, who carried a Torah scroll that women could read on.

The result was pushing, pinching, cursing and spitting, hissing, damaging property. For Mujeres del Muro, this “greeting” is normal. A woman arrives at the Western Wall in the morning and does not know in what conditions she will leave. Will they push her and drop her to the ground? Will someone try to break her purse? Perhaps you will be lucky to be served a cup of boiling coffee, as happened to Anat Hoffman, president of the organization, just a few months ago?

It is a well-known secret that any violence directed against Mujeres del Muro is ignored. The Kotel Heritage Foundation security guards, taking their orders from Kotel Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, literally step aside. Aside from physically blocking any attempt by anyone to bring a Torah scroll to the women’s section, they do nothing. They witness the severe violence that the Women of the Wall face, choosing to ignore and turn their backs.

These incidents join a recent investigation by the Kotel Rabbi, which reveals how the most sacred site for the Jewish people is being managed. Connections with wealthy people, discrimination among Kotel visitors on an economic and ideological basis, ignoring and closing our eyes when violence occurs and, of course, discrimination and exclusion towards women and liberal Jews.

PRAYING AT the Wailing Wall: Five years after its first approval, the Kotel Accord remains suspended but not forgotten. (credit: courtesy)

Recently, when MPs Alon Tal (blue and white), Mossi Raz (Meretz) and Kariv (Labor) raised the issue in the Knesset plenum, MPs from the ultra-Orthodox parties and the Religious Zionist Party presented a united front and supported Next to the Kotel rabbi. The ultra-Orthodox MPs have also announced that they will block the entrance to the Western Wall if Kariv tries to bring a Torah scroll to the Western Wall on Rosh Hodesh Kislev. In fact, in doing so, ultra-Orthodox MPs continue to set the area ablaze and incite violence among their supporters.

In recent weeks we have heard more and more promises and statements about the government’s intention to implement the Kotel deal. This agreement, in practice, renews the southern extension of the Western Wall, Ezrat Yisrael, so that it can be used for prayer by Women of the Wall, liberal Jews and the general public who prefer not to be forced to pray ultra-fast. Orthodox synagogue. Haredi and Haredim organizations will do anything to prevent this from happening.

Rosh Hodesh Kislev is Friday and we fear that the violence will be stronger than ever. Ads calling to come and “rescue” the Kotel are seen all over Jerusalem, ultra-Orthodox MPs threaten to “set the streets on fire” (you never know if they mean it literally or metaphorically), and flyers from various demonstrations call for fight the Kotel deal.

In protest of the fact that women do not have access to a Torah at the Western Wall, on this Rosh Hodesh Kislev we will hold a special march with 70 empty Torah mantles. In deep fear for our safety, we turned to the Jerusalem police district region and the minister of public security to demand greater security.

Recent and upcoming events demonstrate once again the need to implement the Kotel deal – the sooner the better. The current administration of the Western Wall does nothing to control the violence at the Kotel and even goes so far as to make many Jews feel unwanted and unsafe in the holy site.

The writer is the executive director of Women of the Wall.

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