Monday, April 12, 2010

Ayatollah slams Islamisation of Ezekiel's shrine

The Jewish Chronicle reports that one of Iraq’s leading clerics, Ayatollah Shaykh Ayad al-Rikabi, has denounced the proposed conversion of the ancient tomb of the Prophet Ezekiel into an Islamic site. This latest welcome development in the ongoing saga of Ezekiel's tomb suggests that the Shi'i religious establishment does not speak with one voice. But those of us who wish to see the Jewish character of the shrine preserved must keep up the pressure: please sign our petition calling for intervention by UNESCO and others.

One of Iraq’s leading clerics, Ayatollah Shaykh Ayad al-Rikabi, has denounced the proposed conversion of the ancient tomb of the Prophet Ezekiel into an Islamic site.

Iraq’s Department of Antiquities and the Iraqi Shi’i “waqf”, which controls religious heritage sites in the country, has stated that the historic tomb does not belong to Iraq’s dwindling Jewish community.

It asserted that since Ezekiel is described in the Koran as a Muslim, the tomb should be declared an Islamic site. Plans are now under way to turn the site into a mosque.

Ayatollah al-Rikabi, whose own tribe came from the area close to the tomb, has written to the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Iraq’s foremost religious Shi’a leader, to request that the plans be overturned and that the tomb be kept as a Jewish holy site.

He wrote: “It is my view that this is imperative that you stand against this deviation, and work in order to repair the damage and confront anyone that has ill intents towards Iraq and its people. “

He added: “I am confident that you will not keep silent in the face of unjust treatment and oppression.

Professor Shmuel Moreh of the Hebrew University, who was born in Baghdad, has been campaigning against the plan, calling the tomb “the holiest site for the Jews of Babylon”.

In January this year, Israeli media reported that Iraqi renovation workers had damaged an ancient Hebrew inscription on the tomb, something which Professor Moreh claimed was not accidental. The Iraqi government now reportedly plans to erase all the Hebrew inscriptions from the tomb.

Read article in full

3 comments:

Stuart said...

You know what I want to ask :)

bataween said...

And you know my answer..with pleasure!

txlady706 said...

They want to claim all the land for Islam. This is the tactic of history redefining. Propaganda, simply. The issue is that if one doesn't know the true history, then the new generation is easily overcome. The new "history" is redefined based on the current "winner". These change hands, at will.
Such a shame that the looser (america) folds without even ONE raise of an arm. Such a shame to a once GREAT people.
OUT with the OLD and in with the NEW.
America has always had a disdain for the elders of it's society and so this is just a furthering of this disdain for history.