With Minister of Defense Moshe "Bogie" Ya'alon's resignation from the Knesset, his replacement will be the right-wing activist Rabbi Yehuda Glick. Glick, the man most identified with the fight for Jews to access the Temple Mount and who survived a 2014 assassination attempt, was number 33 in Likud's party list.
"I'm very sad about Bogie Ya'alon's leaving," said 50-year-old Glick to Ynet on Friday morning after he was informed that he would be entering the parliament. "He's an important man who gave much for the Israel's security and for Judea and Samaria's security. I hope that he will continue to contribute outside of politics. I think that Likud lost a very important political asset today. Regardless, I wish the best of luck to the incoming minister of defense with all my heart."
Regarding his new position, Glick said, "I welcome the moment. It’s a moment of nervousness, because I'm going to be the emissary of the people of Israel, and I hope that I will bring light and that the Almighty will aid me in this mission."
Glick may run into problems, as MKs are forbidden from visiting the Temple Mount because of the matter's sensitivity with Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world. He said on this matter, "With my entrance to politics, I am a team player and not an individual one, so I'll respect the Knesset's decisions. I also think that this decision was the right one, because several Arab MKs went to the Temple Mount, and it caused unrest. I currently do not intend to make declarations about whether or not I'll work to change the law.
The incoming parliamentarian was previously an envoy to CIS countries and later was promoted to various positions in the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption. He made a career change in response to the withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, when he left civil service. "I can't serve the public as the representative of the state and the government," he wrote at the time to his friends, and he began public and political activities of a different nature.
The Otniel (a settlement south of Hebron) resident became a public activist for the Jewish right to visit and pray on the Temple Mount. He first worked as the CEO of the Temple Institute, which seeks to prepare for the erection of a third Jewish temple on the site. Glick then went on to become a central activist and the head of movements and coalitions of organizations committed to the Temple Mount and the third temple.
In his various roles, Glick acted in different ways for freedom of religion and worship on the Mount. He used to visit the site daily and lead Jewish group tours there. He fought for the expansion of visiting hours for non-Muslim tourists and for the right to prayer, even if only as a whisper.
He found ways, together with colleagues, to get around the prohibition on Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount: they made as though they were speaking amongst themselves over mundane matters, or as a guide to a tourist, when they were actually mumbling prayers. In addition, he petitioned the High Court of Justice each year to permit him to slaughter a sacrificial paschal lamb at the holy site.
In 2014, Glick was shot during an annual Temple Mount event in Jerusalem and critically wounded. After several months of rehabilitation, he managed to heal and return to his activities. In March of this year, he returned to the Temple Mount for the first time since the attempt on his life.