EXACTLY WHAT IS THE
“HISTORIC CHARACTER OF SILWAN?
“In 1938, after the devastating Arab riots and pogroms, the British Authorities evicted the last remaining Jewish families from their homes in the once thriving Jewish neighbourhood of Kfar HaShiloach (Kfar HaTeimanim), that was first established by the Yemenite Jews in 1882.”
Silwan was once a thriving neighborhood of Yemenite Jews before Arab rioting displaced the Jews living there, Ateret Cohanim’s executive director, Daniel Luria, said (cleared for publication) on Tuesday that the PLO’s claim of ethnic cleansing is nonsensical.
The Arabs decimated the character of the Yemenite area. (see WinstonIsraelNews some of which is posted further below).
“The return and/or establishment of Jewish life in the heart of Jerusalem – whether it be to the City of David, to the old Yemenite Village of Shiloah, or to any neighborhood in Jerusalem – is the natural, moral and historical right of the Jewish people,”
“The left-wing NGOs Ir Amim and Emek Shaveh unsuccessfully attempted to block the center in a joint High Court petition, claiming that it would result in “destruction and damage to the fabric of ancient Jerusalem.”
“The Israeli courts have effectively recognized the historical Jewish character of the area, and the Jewish title to many of the properties in the area. It was a thriving Yemenite community of 144-150 Yemenite families, before it was decimated and destroyed by Arabs in the riots and pogroms of 1929 and 1936-37.”
THERE IS NO
In fact, “In June and July this year, a total of 580 terror attacks [perpetrated by Arabs against Jews] were documented. That is Ten Terror Attacks Per Day in Old Jerusalem Alone … The area includes the Old City quarters inside the city's ancient walls, as well as the Mount of Olives, the Silwan (Shiloah) neigborhood and the City of David….”
“Peace in Silwan will only take root when
the Arab community renounces anti-Semitic doctrine.”
“When they stop encouraging their children to throw Molotov cocktails and stones at Jews, when they educate to ‘love, not hate, thy neighbor,’ and when they finally accept that the true son of Abraham has returned home to Jerusalem and to the land of Israel, then and only then, we will have taken a big step towards true peace in this holy city of Jerusalem,”
“Even the British authorities at the time recognized the Jewish character of the area, and after removing the last remaining Yemenite Jews from the village after the riots of 1937 due to their inability to protect the Jewish residents, the British promised in writing that the Jewish refugees should be able to ‘shortly’ return to their homes.”
“If Arabs can purchase homes in Ramot Eshkol, French Hill or in East Talpiot, and can live side-by-side with Jewish residents in predominantly Jewish neighborhoods, then surely the rightful heirs to this land, the Jewish people, have the right to purchase and live in old Jewish neighborhoods in what may be predominantly Arab neighborhoods in the heart of historical Jerusalem,“ (Daniel Luria)
Picture Looking at Silwan from the vantage point of Kind David’s Palace in the Old City of David overlooking the Kidron Valley (Photo by Robert Mock)
I HAVE A SOFT SPOT FOR THE YEMENITES (to me they are the closest to the both Temple eras, and so include here) Much of the following is from winstonisraelnews.com and wikipedia and from various photos from a google search of old Yemenite Village of Shiloach.
SOME OF THE HISTORY
OF KFAR HASHILOACH
“In 1938-39, The British reneged on their written promises, and the Yemenite Village was effectively decimated, and Arab squatters took over many Jewish owned buildings. The neighborhood became known as Silwan.
“In the year 1938, following the fleeing and eviction of Yemenite Jews, the Synagogue itself (Ohel Shlomo) was desecrated, holy books were destroyed, and the place was initially turned into public conveniences for the local Arabs. (See more at Village of Shiloach 1930-38)
“This was in fact recorded and seen by Rechavam Ze’evi’s father and by British officials, who visited the site in 1939. Ever since, Arab families have illegally squatted and built illegal structures in and around the Beit Knesset. WinstonIsraelNews
Zeevi standing over destroyed holy books in Beit Knesset 1938
“Over the years, Israeli courts have ruled that the Synagogue is ‘recognized’ as an official Synagogue and that it must be returned to the rightful Jewish owners – Hekdesh Benvenisti. (This ruling was in addition to previous court rulings against the Arabs for illegal building on the religious and historic site)
“By the grace of G-d, Baruch Hashem, this morning – 17th Iyar 5775 (6th May 2015) Jewish life returned to the Beit Knesset, and it was returned to Hekdesh Benvenisti, its rightful heirs after 77 years..
“Although only part of the original Synagogue has been returned to its owner (As some of the Arab families who have illegally squatted in the old Synagogue are no longer in the premises, while others remain)…..it’s still the amazing realization of a dream.
“The Beit Knesset and its adjoining buildings is located adjacent to Beit HaDvash and in close proximity to Beit Yehonatan (named for Jonathan Pollard), both buildings with Yeshiva students, and Jewish families.
“It has been redeemed and after some future serious restoration and renovation work, the sweet sounds of daily prayers, Jewish learning and Jewish life in general, will once again be heard from the Synagogue-Beit Knesset complex (www.yemenitesynagogue.com)
“The old Yemenite Synagogue will G-d willing service the Yeshiva students in the area (Kolel Yehoshua Rohr-Ometz Yishecha) and also the Jewish families and Yeshiva students, currently living nearby, in the Shiloach neighbourhood. (Beit Yehonatan, Beit HaDvash, Beit Frumkin and Beit Ovadia). YemeniteSynagogue.
“(*Note: Needy Jewish families may also move into part of the complex, as this is one of the aims of the original Yemenite Hekdesh- Sanctified Communal Property, which is known as Hekdesh Benvinisti.”
The most famous Jewish Yemenite migration to the Land of Israel took place in 1949 and 1950 when almost 50,000 Jews were airlifted to Israel in "Operation On Eagles Wings -- על כנפי נשרים" also known as "Operation Magic Carpet."
The earlier Yemenite migration took place 70 years earlier in 1881-1882 when a group of Jews of Yemen arrived by foot to Jerusalem. They belonged to no "Zionist movement." They returned out of an age-old religious fervor to return to Zion.
The new immigrants settled on Jewish-owned property in the Shiloach village outside of the Old City walls of Jerusalem.
YEMENITE EARLY HISTORY (Wikipedia)
There are numerous accounts and legends concerning the arrival of Jews in various regions in Southern Arabia. One legend suggests that King Solomon sent Jewish merchant marines to Yemen to prospect for gold and silver with which to adorn his Temple in Jerusalem.
In 1881, the French vice consulate in Yemen wrote to the leaders of the Alliance (the Alliance Israelite Universelle) in France, that he read in a book by the Arab historian Abu-Alfada that the Jews of Yemen settled in the area in 1451 BCE.
The Sanaite Jews have a legend that their ancestors settled in Yemen forty-two years before the destruction of the First Temple. It is said that under the prophet Jeremiah some 75,000 Jews, including priests and Levites, traveled to Yemen.
Another legend states that when Ezra commanded the Jews to return to Jerusalem they disobeyed, whereupon he pronounced a ban upon them. According to this legend, as a punishment for this hasty action Ezra was denied burial in Israel.
As a result of this local tradition, which can not be validated historically, it is said that no Jew of Yemen gives the name of Ezra to a child, although all other Biblical appellatives are used. The Yemenite Jews claim that Ezra cursed them to be a poor people for not heeding his call. This seems to have come true in the eyes of some Yemenites, as Yemen is extremely poor. However, some Yemenite sages in Israel today emphatically reject this story as myth, if not outright blasphemy.
Historical City of David