Number of Rock Attacks On Har Hazeisim in 2013 Already Exceeds 300


har-hazeisim“While impressive headway was made in dealing with grave desecrations and overall maintenance on Har Hazeisim, the security situation remains a problem due to ongoing rock attacks on the approaches to the ancient cemetery,” said Avrohom Lubinsky, founding chairman of the International Committee for the Preservation of Har Hazeisim. Mr. Lubinsky made this assessment at the conclusion of a 10-day trip in which he met with leading government officials and members of Knesset.

Since founding the committee in May 2010, more than 137 surveillance cameras were installed in the cemetery. In addition, a police sub-station was established just in front of the Seven Arches Hotel. The Committee includes an impressive cross section of Jewish leaders from across the Jewish spectrum, But Lubinsky says that the sub-station is manned by a skeleton staff and still does not have the full garrison of 24 officers promised to the Committee. Testifying before the Knesset’s Interior Committee, Mr. Lubinsky said that the biggest security issue was the continued violence against visitors in the Ras al Amud Square just in front of one of the main access points to Har Hazeisim and the A-Tor Road which leads from Har Hatzofim to Har Hazeisim.

Police officials testifying at the same Knesset hearing confirmed that there were nearly 300 reported rock attacks in the area since January. Lubinsky called for the installation of surveillance cameras and the deployment of police in both the Square and A-Tor. “For whatever reason, we have not been able to get officials to deal with this problem and so long as the security is not dealt with, all the efforts on Har Hazeisim are for naught,” Mr. Lubinsky told the Knesset. Last week, two Jewish residents of Beit Orot were driving in A-Tur when their vehicle was hit by a barrage of stones.  They were beaten and almost lynched before managing to escape.  It took the Police nearly 40 minutes to arrive after being called. “This should have been dealt with by a more robust presence at the sub-station,” Mr. Lubinsky said.

In addition to testifying in the Knesset, Mr. Lubinsky and members of the Israeli chapter of the ICPHH met with Mayor Nir Barkat, officials of the Prime Minister’s Office, the Police and members of virtually all parties, including the opposition. The Israeli chapter was represented by Harvey Schwartz, its chairman and Jeff Daube, vice chairman.

Also advocating for increased security was Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and a member of the ICPHH. Mr. Hoenlein was in Israel for a series of important meetings and conferences.

Har Hazeisim is the oldest and largest Jewish cemetery in the world – consisting of 150,000 graves and in continuous use for 3,000 years – where several Nevi’im and leaders of Klal Yisroel are interred as well as modern-day Israeli notables, such as the late Prime Minister Menachem Begin have been laid to rest.

A primary focus of the organization, said Mr. Lubinsky, is to end the “perception of fear” amongst Jews worldwide and to significantly increase tourism to Judaism’s second holiest site.

{ Israel News Bureau}


  1. This is absurd. Israel has money to provide infrastructure to settlements but not to protect Har HaZeisim and the people who visit the kevarim there? There should be round-the-clock police patrols, a visible presence in the whole area. We talk about the sanctity of Eretz Yisroel – well, this is a part of the sanctity that’s getting ignored because there are no ideological elements. Let’s get our priorities straight.

  2. Let’s be honest: smashing somebody with a rock on a head, is equivalent to an attempted murder. Don’t expect the tough Israeli law enforcement to step in though – they are busy harassing the Jews that the Israeli political establishment deems disagreeable.