Naturally, this situation continues to be a contentious flashpoint for both Jews and Muslims. Security for the Temple Mount, indeed, for all of Jerusalem, is controlled by the Israelis. As you can imagine, the presence of Israeli soldiers patrolling the grounds of the Temple Mount infuriates Muslims.
The day I visited the Temple Mount, I heard someone shouting angrily in Arabic. I walked toward the commotion and saw one of the Palestinian groundskeepers cursing and gesturing at a group of Israeli soldiers gathered near an entrance.
Jews, of course, have a different grievance concerning the Temple Mount. To them, the presence of the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque on the sacred site where Solomon’s Temple once stood is an abomination.
None of this is likely to be resolved any time soon, and that shouldn’t keep anyone from visiting Israel. I’m a firm believer in travel as a way to promote the exchange of ideas and viewpoints. Maybe these photos will inspire you to make your own visit here. And perhaps, you will add your voice to the growing chorus around the world who seek a lasting peace in the Holy Lands.