Haaretz: Israel Approves Plan to Let Advertisers Beam Messages Onto Kosel Hamaarovi


koselA Haaretz Purim Report: Most people go to the Kosel to pray, but now some will also head there to pay. The Israeli cabinet has approved a plan that would allow for sponsorship messages to be beamed onto the Kosel, sources in the Prime Minister’s Office told Haaretz this week.

According to the plan, any company will be able to project the image, logo or slogan of its choice on the ancient stones, for a price.

The proposal, drawn up by MK Mordechai Hidud, will take advantage of technology being developed by Kfar Sava-based start-up Kotelad. The company – the brainchild of U.S.-born Joe King – has come up with an innovative laser projector capable of beaming high-quality images onto walls, domes, minarets and steeples.

“After thousands of years of just being there, the Kotel will finally be able to fulfill its commercial potential,” King said. “The religious and spiritual center of the Jewish people should reflect Jewish heritage – and thus be dedicated to bringing in a healthy profit.”

Kotelad held a trial run of the system last week, beaming the Coca-Cola logo onto the Kosel, much to the bemusement of mispallelim gathered below. And it seems that the trial was not only a technological success, with local vendors reporting a 14 percent increase in the sale of soft drinks.

The Western Wall Heritage Center plans to open an ad sales division, and sell wall space on a per-stone basis. Prices are expected to be upward of NIS 1,000 per stone per day. When no advertising is running, the wall will have the message “What are you waiting for? The Third Temple? Advertise now!” a source in the Heritage Center said.

Some companies that have already expressed an interest in the project, including Bank Discount (“Feel like you’re talking to a brick wall? Talk to us instead”), Netvision (“If God didn’t get your note, why not send an e-mail?”) and Ytong (“If it’s not Ytong, I’m not praying”). G. Yafit is reportedly also in talks to have her likeness beamed onto the wall 24 hours a day.

According to Hidud, the money raised will be used to replace the paper yarmulkas that are taken by the thousands by visitors to the site, to set up a searchable online database of the kvitlach that people place between the stones of the Wall, and to build a 14-foot high partition between sections reserved for men and women.

{Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel/Haaretz}


  1. Is that for real? I find it hard to believe that anyone could be so insensitive.

    (Yeah, I know, I’m a hopelessly naive)

    The Wolf

  2. Did anyone bother to look at the date this was published and realize what holiday on our calendar was approaching?

  3. Terrible I am sitting here with tears in my eyes is this what we davened for so many years I guess this is the oinish we are getting from Hashem he says you are mizalzel the koisel by talking dvurim bitailim there and allowing pirutzim and prutzois and tourists guides there well i’ll get am haeratzim to wake you up with advertisements I just dont understand where are the frum chakim in all this and even the traditional jews should be screaming chai vikayim I tell you if it chas vishulom materialises then maybe it will be a bruchu if the arabs take it from us or are they worse because they limaise turned into a garbage dump when they had it hundred of years ago?

  4. Forget the paper yarlmukas! This is terrible! Even the holiest place in the world can’t hide from the corrupt advertisment society!

  5. Before any readers get worked up over this (and rightfully so) this is just a Purim shtick from Haaretz. We have not yet sunk so low as for this to actually occur but give it another 10-20 years and who knows

  6. This was a Purim Joke but it highlights how sick and twisted the chiloni dogs are! They are truly filled with the most vile and putrid bile of hate for our Torah and HKBH! May they make teshuva and repent of their ways! May zionism cease from the face of the earth!

  7. Kollel Shomrei Hachomos has taken out the first ad, l’iluy nishmas Hagaon Habuki Hamuflag Rashkabahag Reb Martin Grossman.

  8. this is a shanda to the holiest place in the word and it’s a big bizayon!! I am very upset with the israeli government for approvig this!They should be ashamed of themselves!!

  9. I hope its only a joke, but its not even funny. Its disrespectful to the kotel to even bring it into the realm of thought.

  10. I found the comments to be even funnier than the article itself. If an article bothers you so much, read it more carefully before yelling about it!

  11. Boruch HaShem, it looks like all this was just an elaborate Purim joke — nothing to get scared or excited at!

    It is obvious that this was piece of fiction, for the story relates that last week, they made a test of the system with projecting the Coke Cola symbol, and the worshipers there who saw it were just delighted! First of all, if this really had happened, the worshipers there would NOT have been delighted! Second of all, such a sacrilige would have exploded in the news immediately, and we would have for sure well known about it!

  12. It is hard though, to know what was the intention of the people who made up this little joke story. Whatever their intention was though, in all seriousness, this fictional news narrative does give us some pretty good Mussar.

    In general, it is really warning us about which direction we could very easily be headed in with our over worship of money. Of course, the acquisition of money, the acquisition of very large amounts of money, is extremely, extremely important and crucial to human functioning. Money, very large amounts of it, is a vital ingredient of human life.

    At the same time though, it is well understood in the world that the worth of money is not in the money ITSELF, but rather in how it is used. For example, a person can have in his possession a billion dollars; however, if he were to just keep it in his pocket, he is still going to be a homeless bum lying on the street! Obviously, what he has to do is to take a good part of that billion dollars and use it TO BUY a nice big house that he can comfortably live in.

    Furthermore, while having large amounts of money is vital to being able to buy many of the items that are vital for life, there are still quite a number of OTHER items that are also vital for life that money DOES NOT buy and that money CANNOT buy.

    One of these is good health. Of course, money does buy good food and pay for good doctors and good medical treatments, which are all needed for good health. Yet, even with the good food and good doctors and good treatments, whether the person will have actual good functioning health is totally up to HaShem.

    Another item that money cannot buy is — totally contrary to a lot of the mean wicked shtick that is being done now with Shidduchim — marriage relationships. Of course, money, very large amounts of money are needed to pay for good food and good clothing and a good house and a good automobile and good schools that are needed by a wife and children. However, even if he has a good billion dollars, if the man is a jerk of a person, a woman will not want to be married to him.

    Above all, is the realization that all the money and all the items that money does buy all come from HaShem and are thus to be acquired and used only according to the dictates of HaShem.

    Especially in our modern times though, countless people have grossly distorted the meaning of money. They have made its acquisition into a sacred goal all in itself; they have made its acquisition into a sacred task that IS ABOVE everything else. And thus, in their minds, there is absolutely nothing that is more holy than what brings in money. And thus, in their minds, there is absolutely nothing that is not permitted for the job of getting money. Lies, deception, trickery, bribery, extortion, embezzlement, stealing, even outright murder are what is done for the $$$$.

    Already in the 1960’s the masterpiece of comic books, “MAD Magazine,” had an excellent, totally fitting cartoon. It showed a man and his wife walking pass the building of a local bank. They point out to each other that it is remarkable that the building of the bank looks very similar to the building of a church! Like the building of a church, it is a large imposing edifice, with exquisite architecture and beautifully colored stained glass windows. Then, they readily admit to each other that, with what they each do, there really is not much of a difference between them!!

  13. (Continuation of previous comment #36)

    Of this realm of the money Avoda Zara, probably one of the worst areas is that of ADVERTISING. Now, if, for example, a man opens up a little store that sells, for example, men’s shoes. So it is probably a good idea for him to each week put — we won’t even use the word “advertisement” — for him to each week put a notice like this in the local newspaper to let people in that part of the town know that he is there offering this service:

    4321 Main Street
    Anytown, NY 12345
    (845) 765-4321

    Full line of dress shoes, casual shoes,
    hiking boots, and sport shoes
    Top name brands: Florsheim, Clarks of
    England, Walk Over, Stacy Adams,
    Weinberg Messagic, Keds, Nike, Adidas

    Major credit cards accepted

    However, the world of advertising is totally different. An advertisement is not a notice to let people know someone offers a particular service; rather, it is a ploy to CONVINCE and COMPELL people to buy a company’s product. It is a device that makes people think that when they buy a certain product, then they are doing what they are supposed to do in life!

    That they are Miskaved B’Kilyon Chaveiro (like, for example, in the feature for a paper towel, they show their paper towel, which, of course, wipes up the mess, against a paper towel of the “other leading brand,” which, of course, just gets soaked up by the mess) is probably the least of their twisted antics.

    In the electronic media of radio, Internet, and television, an advertisement is really a little mini skit with professional actors — who are obviously getting paid big $$$$ for doing this — extolling the unequalled virtues of the holy product.

    This is probably the biggest problem with watching the Hellevision. The programs themselves, as extremely terrible as most of them are, may sometimes also have some good points; however, almost every eight minutes, the programs are interrupted for advertising! Each advertising break can last from two to even three or four minutes! So a person watching an hour long feature does not realize that A GOOD THIRD of that time was for the advertising!

    The advertising skits employ the most sick, stupid, repulsive antics; they are often accompanied by intensive music, sometimes taking popular classic songs and twisting the lyrics into totally dumb pitches for the product. Countless ones have outright themes of immoral filth.

  14. (Continuation of previous comment #37)

    And WHAT they are pushing! From the beginning of time, when a person was sick, he went to a doctor; the doctor examined him, tried to figure out what was wrong, and then recommended an appropriate treatment. But now, on and on and on are the endless whole intense shows of “the purple pill” “Nexium: the purple ‘healing’ pill” ” . . . heal the damage . . . ” “Paxel: your life is waiting for you!” “Ask your doctor if Prevised is right for you!” “Have a heart to heart talk with your doctor about . . . ”

    The master comic book, “MAD Magazine,” put it bluntly: a college course titled: “How to become a doctor by watching television drug commercials”!

    Probably the very sickest of all were the cigarette ads:

    The picture of a man with a hole in the sole of his shoe: “I’D WALK A MILE FOR A CAMEL!”

    “US TERRYTON SMOKERS WOULD RATHER FIGHT THAN SWITCH!” and then show a picture of a man with a fake smile and some black shoe polish smeared above his eye.

    The picture of a man with his horse after sunset – Bein Hashmashos – in the low hills before the mountains: “COME OUT TO MARLBORO COUNTRY!!”

    And, of course, of course, of course, my generation was raised and reared on this most meaningful song:


    Boruch HaShem though, at one point, the increased government laws against smoking finally put a complete stop to all of this.

    So now, the real sick of sickest ones are, like I related above, the drug ads and, of course, the CAR ads.

    A scene of a middle aged woman, a psychiatrist, standing in her office, playing back her answering machine. She is listening to the message of one of her patients, who is informing her that he has now found a new endeavor by which he is truly finding himself . . . She disappointedly stares through her window out into the evening sky; she thus takes a marking pen and crosses off this man’s name in her appointment book.

    Interspersed with these scenes is the scene of a youngish man, with a contented smile, driving swiftly along the winding forested mountain roads in his new Acura . . .

    This one is only a few inches under the holy “Kosel projections”; I was really greatly enraged, for I myself had heard it on the radio just a short while after my own father, Alav HaShalom, had been Niftar. Yep, we will say it now, for we always save the best one for last:

    A recently bereaved family goes to their meeting with the sorcerer. The sorcerer successfully makes contact with and brings up the soul of the family’s father. As the man comes into the conference room, he happily exclaims to his family: