Here Is Why If You Are Against Occupation, You Must Demand The Dome of The Rock Be Taken Down

For many of you, when you hear the name Jerusalem, you might think of the Gold Dome building that stands on what is known as the Temple Mount. It's called the Temple Mount because long before Islam ever existed the Jews were ruling the area and that is where the Jewish Temple stood.

The sad thing is, the Gold Dome is not even the infamous Al-Aqsa mosque. The actual mosque is the grey-domed building that is situated to the far right of the gold dome.

See the disputed ramp on the lower right side of the wall?
That was the ramp Israel renovated that triggered an uproar in the Islamic world and resulted in months of terrorism against Israel. The Muslims claimed that Israel was trying to conquer the Temple Mount (can see hear the irony).

They claimed the ramp is going to cause the mosque to collapse. Too bad the ramp is on the other side of the wall and nowhere near the mosque!

If the grey dome is Al-Aqsa mosque, what is the gold one? 

So happy you asked! 
The small grey-dome mosque was originally a small insignificant mosque built by Umar ibn Al-Khattāb sometime after 637 CE. He never intended to use the entire Temple Mount and even invited Jews to clean up the area that was left in ruins since the temple had been destroyed.  

Jerusalem, as a city, is not mentioned in the Quran even once and the name Al-Aqsa simply means the farthest mosque from Mecca. Jerusalem in no way is a holy city to Islam and never served as a center of religious practice. While the Temple Mount is the holiest place for the Jewish religion, the Al-Aqsa mosque (only the mosque, not the city) is considered the 3rd holiest mosque in Islam. 

It was not till 691 CE that Umayyad Caliph gave an order to erect a building on the site of the Jewish Temple. This monstrosity that was built to completely destroy Jewish roots was built after bloody battles that were fought between Muslim factions at the time. The folklore goes that Mohammed was brought up to heaven in a dream (!!!) and the story goes that he went up from Al-Aqsa. Without getting into my non-belief in the Quran, if Mohammed would have actually gone up from Al-Aqsa, don't you think the original builder of the mosque would have mentioned something?!

Generally, Muslims had no problem keeping the original names of the places they conquered and destroyed and the Temple Mount is no different. The Al-Aqsa building was originally called Bayt al-Muqaddas, which in English means the house on top of the Jewish temple! There is no historical dispute over the fact that the Muslims built a dome over Judaism's holiest site. The only debate that exists is if the Jews have a right to demand back what is rightfully theirs.

Below is the sketch of the Jewish Temple and the Dome of the Rock that was built on top of the area.

So the next time you hear a Jew who wants to take down the Dome of the Rock to reclaim and rebuild the Temple, understand that he is not being fanatic or radical, but is just reclaiming what even Muslims admit was ours. 

May the 3rd Temple be built speedily in our day!

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