July 27th, 2008
12:54 PM ET
15 years ago

Rabbi: Removal of Obama's purported prayer note 'sacrilegious'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/27/art.obama.ap.jpg
caption="Sen. Barack Obama places a prayer note in Jerusalem's Western Wall."]

JERUSALEM (CNN) - The rabbi who supervises Jerusalem's Western Wall condemned the removal of a prayer note purportedly written by Sen. Barack Obama, saying the action was "sacrilegious."

The U.S. presidential candidate visited the holy site early Thursday and placed a note in the cracks of the wall - a custom of visitors.

It was subsequently removed from the wall, according to the Israeli newspaper, Ma'ariv, which printed what it said were the contents of the note.

Ma'ariv said a seminary student gave the note to the paper.

Obama's senior strategist Robert Gibbs told CNN, "We haven't confirmed nor denied" that the note is from the Illinois senator.

"This sacrilegious action deserves sharp condemnation and represents a desecration of the holy site," said Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz, who supervises the Western Wall, in a statement.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (407 Responses)
  1. Liz

    I'm glad someone was paying attention. Prayers inserted in the Western Wall are for God's eyes only. Whoever removed Obama's prayer note should be ashamed. CNN should be ashamed for printing it.

    July 27, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  2. Bobbie. LA

    Obama with a Yomulka on? The guy will do anything for a vote including selling his original supporters down the drain which he has done in the case of FISA.

    Also the idea of the Messiah being "Mr. Peace" is out the window as he's now pushing an escalation of the war in Afghanistan.

    When he said he was the agent of change, he meant change of venue only. He'll keep the war machine going.

    July 27, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  3. Chappy in Jacksonville, FL

    This Rabbi deserves our thanks for keeping the wall Sacred.
    May He be praised by all who come to the wall for Prayer.
    May God Bless him for his efforts.

    July 27, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  4. Sam

    Todays Gallup Poll:

    – Obama 49%

    – Mccain 40%

    July 27, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  5. People come on

    How dare people think that Obama would stage such an incident this man said a prayer to God and someone took it and used it for their own personal gain. this is indeed a disgrace and that person along with the media (CNN you're the head of this) should feel ashamed!!!!

    July 27, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  6. lambert

    Why does CNN's Lou Dobbs hates Obama? I know you will not post my comment again but I will keep writing.

    July 27, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  7. Unity for Issues

    The media stooped to an eye-opening new low by printing this very private prayer.

    July 27, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  8. ANGIE

    this is terrible the man cant even have a prayer this is nothing to do with politicts this is a man and his relationship with god, the media has resorted to an all time low i know with obama being the first african american presidential nomoniee is historical and the media wanting to be involved but they have gone to far sad sad sad!!!!!!!!! obama it was a beautiful prayer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! obama08

    July 27, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  9. judy, Wisconsin

    I don't understand that the media has printed the prayer, which is supposed to be personal, however, serveral of the posts accuse the Obama campaign of staging this. How ridiculous–did they come to that conclusion by some ignorant thinking or did they hear it on Fox Faux noise?

    July 27, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  10. Mark Webb

    McCain and his supporters should avoid manipulating such things. Let's stay focused on the issues.

    July 27, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  11. Karen

    The removal of Mr. Obama's private prayer from the Western Wall is not only sacrilegious but also a breach of privacy. I'm not a supporter of Mr. Obama in any way and I decry his trip as nothing more than a huge publicity stunt but the person who removed the prayer from the Wall ought to be ashamed of his actions, especially since once the prayer was removed from the Wall, it was then turned over to a branch of the media.

    July 27, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  12. DS

    Butch Dillon: "Sadly, this has to be expected from the zionists among the Jews."

    Keep your hate to yourself. This was the act of one person. I suspect it has more to do with celebrity fascination than any political motive– there is nothing in the note that reflects badly on Senator Obama. On the other hand, some people such at Butch Dillon use this disgraceful incident to advance their own agendas of defamation.

    July 27, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  13. hitobito

    Obama will eat McCain alive in a debate. McCain is not exactly the brightest individual who graduated from the Naval Academy. In fact, he is among the lowest 1%. Debate...bring it on, America will see the difference between a Harvard trained lawyer and a senile fool with limited intellectual capacity.

    July 27, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  14. fafa

    why did CNN post the prayer in the first place. CNN you could have just REPORTED. Or is this Wolf's Blitzer " pictures say a thousand words"

    July 27, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  15. kim hussein smith

    people, dont let the repugs control your mind anymore, it's a GOOD thing that we have a presidential candidate who is WELL-SPOKEN, INTELLIGENT, and already travelling to europe and the middle east. bush/mccain have NO interest in stability, peace and prosperity for all-there's NO MONEY for them to make in that kind of world!

    it's a very simple decision: do you want continued foreign debt for the u.s., continued divisiveness in our great country and the world, continued dependence on oil. PLEASE read something LEGITIMATE to see how unworkable offshore drilling is. and look at our own DOE stats that show the u.s. EXPORTS 1.4 MILLION barrels of oil PER DAY!! ask yourself WHO benefits from an "oil shortage"? who made history-making profits in the BILLIONS? and WHY are they exporting so much US OIL-um, did you see the part about "PROFITS IN THE BILLIONS"?!?!?

    dont let the repugs/FOX control your minds any longer, these are desperate times and we need everyone voting based on FACTS!

    July 27, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  16. Ed

    McCain will probably come out with "Mr. Obama wasn't careful enough with his note, how can he be trusted to with the care of the U.S.". Poor McCain, you've got to feel for the guy, when the negative and cheap shots come out, that's when you know you're desperate!

    July 27, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  17. Eddy

    Wot, no PUMAs? Gone to the beach?

    July 27, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  18. Dan, TX

    How can people support McCain when McCain proposes they pay more taxes than Obama? I don't get it. Why do republicans want to pay more taxes and give more of their money to the government. I thought republicans were against big government?

    Everyone posting that this was a set-up are clearly republicans, since they know that's the strategy they would have used. That's not the way Obama works. He represents me. He cuts taxes more than McCain, he lowers the national debt more than McCain, and he provides access to health care more than McCain.

    Republicans for Obama.

    July 27, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  19. sam


    The who trip was wonderful, so shut your pie hole and keep your nasty remarks to yourself!.

    July 27, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  20. PUMA

    PUMAs for Clinton!

    July 27, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  21. Willis, Texas

    This was a terrible thing to do! How sad that some people can justify their actions and the actions of their party as acceptable - in GOD's eyes or yours?!

    Obama is comfortable negotiating with world leaders, he is confidant that he can solve domestic and international problems. So how his confidence translated into arrogance is a mystery to the majority of us. As I see it, if you have an I.Q. the size of your shoe size, then and only then can you misconstrue confidence with arrogance.

    I saw McShame on CNC this morning with Wolf - what a moron! Answering questions: "I know, and the people I know, know that I know, they know I know how to solve that problem"! The man is more stupid than George Bush!!!!

    He also said he knows how to win wars! What war has he won - he spent 5-1/2 years as a prisoner of war! He has never lead men, he has never developed a military strategy, he has never negotiated with foreign governments! SO HOW DOES HE KNOW HOW TO WIN WARS? Oh, then this takes us back to: "I know, and the people I know, know that I know, they know I know how to solve that problem"!


    His support is coming from people who are voting because he is WHITE! There is nothing substance - JUST WHITE

    July 27, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  22. Lizzy

    To: JohnBoy

    Not only are you misguided in your vote, but you are disoriented. What does your comment have to do with this blog? MORON.

    July 27, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  23. sheila

    Jealousy is ignorance! also a sin. Keep your Bigot self in your own home or move to anoher country!

    July 27, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  24. Johnny

    I love people who say Obama is anti-debate, when the full story indicates that McCain will not debate except in limited settings which favor his campaign.

    Obama is pro-debate, McCain is pro-politics.

    McCain's double talk is despicable. If he doesn't criticize Obama for not visiting troops in the hospital, he criticizes him for staging a political event in visiting those same troops.

    McCain is just a bitter man with no substance. Due to this lack of substance, the only thing he can do on the campaign is try to rip apart Obama for stupid paradoxical reasons.

    July 27, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  25. Lorna, NY

    Americans should be proud that they have an intelligent person (Barak Obama) running for the President of the United States. When was the last time we had an intelligent person representing America - George Bush???

    July 27, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
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