For the second year in a row, the Jewish community is being urged to attend a mass asifa to rally behind the security of Har Hazeism. The asifa is being organized by the International Committee for the Preservation of Har Hazeitim (www.saveharhazeitim.org), under the leadership of Avrohom Lubinsky, chairman, and Harav Moshe Tuvia Lieff, the moroh de’asrah of Agudas Yisroel Bais Binyomin of Avenue L on Sunday May 17th at 10:30 a.m. Members of the Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah as well as many other rabbonim from the community are expected to attend and address the asifa.
According to Mr. Lubinsky, the security situation on Har Hazeism has improved significantly since the Committee was founded five years ago but recent desecrations in the Ger and Afghanistan chelkas show that much more needs to be done. “We are entering a crucial stage in our efforts to secure Har Hazeisim,” said Mr. Lubinsky. “With a new government, it is imperative that we send a strong message that Har Hazeisim is the national cemetery of the Jewish people and nothing short of compete security will be acceptable. No Jew who comes to daven or mourn should be subject to the fear of being stoned or harassed.” The Committee is pushing for additional cameras, a more robust and permanent police presence, a new high wall, tough new legislation to punish rock throwers and many other security and development projects.
In 2014, the Asifa was held at the home of Harav Lieff but because of the anticipated large attendance, this year’s event is being moved to the Agudah of Avenue L so that larger number of attendees can be accommodated. Last year, in addition to Harav Lieff, the large crowd heard addresses from the Novominsker Rebbe, Harav Dovid Lau, Chief Rabbi of Israel, Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Americvan Jewish OLrganziationms, Menachem Lubinsky, co-Chair of the ICPHH and Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel, Executive Vice President of Agudath Israel of America. Mr. Hoenlein and Rabbi Lubinsky will once again give an updated report of the situation on Har Hazeisim. Rabbi Zwiebel will serve as chairman.
For the past five years, a group of dedicated activists in the US, Canada, Europe and Eretz Yisroel have been working hard to secure and develop the 3000-year old ancient cemetery on Har Hazeisim in Yerushalayim following years of abuse, neglect, and desecration. Working closely with the Israeli government and the Jerusalem Municipality, the International Committee for the Preservation of Har Hazeisim has made enormous progress in securing the 2.2 square kilometer cemetery where 150,000 Jews are buried.