Yerushalayim.....I learned today from a CNN RSS feed that stones quarried for the Herodian Temple have been discovered. The source of the huge stones used 2,000 years ago to reconstruct the compound in Jerusalem's Old City was discovered on the site of a proposed school in a Jerusalem suburb. Today, the compound Herod renovated using slave labour houses the most explosive religious site in the Land, known as the Temple Mount to Jews and the Noble Sanctuary to Muslims. I read once that there are more cameras per square metre there than anywhere else on the planet. The Wall, with the mighty stones, prayers jammed by the faithful in its interstices, is a quiet place some of the time where people can simply come and soak up the atmosphere. I did, often, living only five minutes away. The Al-Aqsa and Dome over the hill is forbidding, almost austere by comparison - like visiting a foreign country where one is not quite welcome, despite Palestinian boys playing football (how very irreverent of them) under its shadow. And, someone please tell me, why has the Al-Aqsa had scaffolding up since God's dog was a puppy and there seems no evidence at all of construction. How very strange.
It's quite ironic, really, since Ehud Olmert has been investigated concerning alleged irregularities related to building purchases. The investigation is to clarify suspicions of criminal action after a complaint was filed saying Olmert received a significant reduction in the price in return for expediting building permits. I really can't imagine Herod having the same problems. The image shows an Orthodox Jew walking the quarry where a tool used to split the ancient limestone was found. How very appropriate.