By Gershom Gorenberg
During this provocative paintings, professional journalist Gershom Gorenberg portrays a dangerous mixture of non secular extremism, violence, and Mideast politics, as expressed within the fight for the sacred heart of Jerusalem. recognized to Jews and Christians because the Temple Mount and to Muslims because the Noble Sanctuary, this thirty-five-acre enclosure on the southeast nook of Jerusalem's outdated urban is the main contested piece of actual property on the earth. right here nationalism combines with fundamentalist religion in a risky brew. contributors of the world's 3 significant monotheistic faiths--Judaism, Christianity, and Islam--hold this spot to be the foremost to salvation as they look ahead to the tip of the area, and fight to meet conflicting non secular prophecies with risky political outcomes. Adroitly portraying American radio evangelists of the top, radical Palestinian sheikhs, and Israeli ex-terrorists, Gorenberg explains why believers desire for the top, and why favorite American fundamentalists offer hard-line help for Israel whereas waiting for the apocalypse. He is sensible of the messianic fervor that has pushed a few Israeli settlers to oppose peace. And he describes the Islamic apocalyptic visions that solid Israel's activities in Jerusalem as diabolic plots. The finish of Days indicates how clash over Jerusalem and the fiery trust in apocalypse proceed to have a effective effect on global politics and why a long-lasting peace within the heart East maintains to turn out elusive.
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Extra resources for The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount
Brought by way of blasts of rams’ horns, subsidized by way of a band of keyboards, electrical guitar, and drums, a singer belts out, “Let’s pass as much as the mountain of the Lord,” amplified through a gigawatt sound approach and audio system. the gang of a few thousand stands swaying, making a song, swept away—the spiritual adventure that typically hides a centimeter below the skin of a rock live performance right here bold to talk its right identify. The foreign Christian Zionist heart used to be all started via Jan Willem van der Hoeven, a tall, jowly minister who speaks in a relentless hurricane of enthusiasm and enraged protest. Van der Hoeven grew up within the Netherlands; his hero used to be a Dutch lady who concealed Jews in the course of the Holocaust. In his booklet, Babylon or Jerusalem? , he assaults Christian anti-Semitism over the a long time. yet he additionally argues that the Nazi genocide was once the Lord’s method of convincing the recalcitrant Jews to come to their land—a justification of God that blames Jews for his or her personal destruction. Van der Hoeven moved to Jerusalem in 1967. while the Knesset’s passage of the Jerusalem Law—a restatement of Israeli rule over the united city—sparked an exodus of international embassies to Tel Aviv, he helped discovered the overseas Christian Embassy, then served for years as its spokesman. The Dutch minister takes a stridently right-wing view of Israeli politics. “As lengthy because the Bible doesn’t say, ‘I will convey My humans from worldwide to part the land in their fathers,’ ” he says, he’ll oppose territorial compromise. He’s such a lot passionate whilst speaking in regards to the Temple Mount, sputtering approximately Jews who're chuffed “with a silly Jewish Wailing Wall,” who look forward to the messiah to construct the Temple. “The messiah will do it! ” he says in mocking falsetto, then drops to bass: “Don’t provide me that crap. that's the crap that led six million Jews into the fuel chambers. ” In the US, he says, “You have many Christians, many hold forth- 24640 Ch07 9/19/00 10:38 AM web page 162 162 the tip of days ers who say Jesus can come any time. i will be able to inform you he’s no longer coming in 2000. . . . What, he comes [through] the jap gate of the Mosque of Omar and is greeted by way of the gay Yasser Arafat? ” Even prior to the flip of the millennium, he has supplied factors in the event you count on the Rapture and may be disillusioned: It didn’t occur a result of Muslim presence at the Mount, and thanks to the Jews’ refusal to rebuild the sanctuary. Van der Hoeven’s outspokenness is a key reason behind his 1997 break up with the Christian Embassy, the place staffers recognize a choice for the Israeli correct yet publicly proclaim love for Israel irrespective of who’s in strength. each year the Embassy asks Israel’s best minister to handle its Tabernacles accumulating; Netanyahu received the wildest applause, yet Yitzhak Rabin additionally got here. on the finish of September 1999, a couple of months after Ehud Barak’s landslide victory over Benjamin Netanyahu, the hot chief has damaged culture and became down the Embassy’s invitation. As for Van der Hoeven, his opening-night visitor lower than the previous urban partitions is the fellow he regards because the as soon as and destiny top minister.