O Jerusalem

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Indy Lifestyle Online
No peace, no concession, no abomination against the word of the Lord. This picture, taken at a demonstration in Jerusalem in September shows the immutable face of Jewish fundamentalism. The boy is perhaps 12, but he feels with a bone-bred passion that the biblical boundaries of Israel are not for compromise. The Peace Accord which much of the world has applauded as a historic achievement, its architect who was lauded, and has since been mourned as a hero, have no currency here. The people on these pages are not the gun-toting crazies of the occupied territories but you can read in their faces a vision of Zion, untouched by secret negotiations in Oslo or handshakes on the White House lawn

Foundations of conflict: from the Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, an awe-inspiring view of the Old City. Visible is the Al Aqsa mosque (right). High in the ranks of Islam's holy places, a light to the faithful, it stands on the site where the first, then the second, Jewish temple stood (until its destruction in ad70). According to orthodox belief, when Judaism's Messianic Age comes there will be a third temple here At the Western Wall, all that remains of the Temple, a Jew prays. An orthodox man in a secular state whose government makes agreements at odds with the fundamentalist view of Israel Friday afternoon in a divided city; it is just before Sabbath in the Ben Yehuda Mall where orthodox men in philacteries are oblivious of less religious types passing by. Jews of different temper live in sometimes uneasy proximity - the orthodox disapprov ing of the secular, the secular resenting the pressures of orthodoxy. At the 'Peace Gate' at the Al Aqsa in February, on the first Friday in Ramadan, Palestinians are checked by Israeli forces 'Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; they shall prosper that love thee' read the full quotation from Psalm 122. But in East Jerusalem in this September of putative peace, such thoughts do not go unmolested. In the Arab quarter nearby, palpable tension in the form of armed soldiers keeping watch at the top of Damascus Gate Road

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