A strange sight powerfully reminiscent of idolatrous practices materialized at a protest near the Knesset in Jerusalem: a young woman climbed on top of a menorah sculpture and removed her shirt.

In a twisted demonstration against the government’s handling of the coronavirus, thousands of Israelis violated social distancing and health ministry restrictions in order to protest on Tuesday night in front of the Prime Minister’s Official Residence in Jerusalem.  A group of restaurant owners protested against the government’s attempts to limit activities in restaurants in an attempt to combat the spread of the coronavirus. Another group demanded the resignation of Netanyahu over charges of breach of trust, accepting bribes and fraud.

A group of residents from the neighborhood where the Prime Minister’s Official Residence is located petitioned the High Court of Justice in a request to prevent the ongoing protests.

“Children, elders, and adults from all sectors and genders have found themselves in the position of hostages, in a protest that has become in part violent, unrestricted and completely ignoring the coronavirus pandemic,” the petition read.

Thirty-four people were arrested for alleged disruption of public order and assaulting police officers. 

The crowds moved on to the Knesset where a young woman climbed on top of a large monument in the shape of the Menorah from Solomon’s Temple, removed her shirt, and proceeded to wave a red flag of the Antifa movement.  The monument, created by David Soussanna was erected on Kaplan Street in 2007.

Knesset Speaker Yariv Levin called for legal action in response to that act, calling it a “desecration.”

“Shame,” he wrote on his official Facebook page. “I stand by every person’s right to protest, to demonstrate, to express his opinion, but there is a difference between legitimate protest and desecration of the state symbol. No state permits the desecration of its symbol in this manner.”

The woman who stood bare-chested on the menorah is a social work student and was interviewed anonymously by radio 103FM.

She defended her actions, saying the menorah she stood upon is not the historic one situated at the Knesset’s plaza. Her actions, she stated were not “shameful.”

“I don’t think the woman’s body is shameful,” she said. “I think a prime minister who is criminally indicted is a very shameful thing.”

It is important to note that the statue was based on the original golden seven-branched Menorah that Israel was commanded to place before the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle and later in the Temple in Jerusalem. As such, it is actually problematic to Jewish law which forbids creating replicas of elements of the Temple. The events on Tuesday night highlighted the wisdom behind this law as the artistic rendering permitted the symbol to be profaned and debased.

Rabbi Mordechai Makover, the former director of the Temple Institute and head of the Mikdash (Temple) Educational Center, emphasized the timing of the lewd display.

“Last night, Jews began observing the nine days of austerity leading up the Ninth of the month Av commemorating the destruction of the Temple,” Rabbi Makover noted, “The protesters claimed they were angry about the coronavirus, about the Prime Minister, about so many things. But nothing they said or did made sense. The flag of Antifa has no place in any of the narratives in Israel. Protesting violently only makes the epidemic worse. These are only excuses.”

“A naked woman dancing on the Menorah is spiritually based in Cozbi. She was a priestess of Peor who was worshipped through acts of sexual impurity.” 

While Yisrael was staying at Shittim, the people profaned themselves by whoring with the Moabite women, who invited the people to the sacrifices for their god. The people partook of them and worshiped that god. Thus Yisrael attached itself to Baal-peor, and Hashem was incensed with Yisrael. Numbers 25:1-3

“It is clear that as we come closer to building the Third Temple, the forces that want to destroy that are going to these absurd extremes to corrupt the purity of the light of Zion the world so desperately needs.”

“These people want anarchy, to turn over the entire world, to connect with the powers that destroyed the First and Second Temple. They don’t care about the coronavirus or any other cause. They want to destroy the world.  That is why this bizarre scene came about at this time just before the Ninth of Av, in Jerusalem, on a Menorah.”