16 O Hashem, as befits Your abundant benevolence, let Your wrathful fury turn back from Your city Yerushalayim, Your holy mountain; for because of our sins and the iniquities of our fathers, Yerushalayim and Your people have become a mockery among all who are around us.
a-do-NAI k’-khol tzid-ko-TE-kha ya-shov NA a-p’-KHA va-kha-ma-t’-KHA may-ee-r’-KHA y’-ru-sha-LA-im har kod-SHE-kha KEE va-kha-ta-AY-nu u-va-a-vo-NOT a-vo-TAY-nu y’-ru-sha-LA-im v’-a-m’-KHA l’-kher-PAH l-khol s’-vee-vo-TAY-nu
טז אֲדֹנָי כְּכָל־צִדְקֹתֶךָ יָשָׁב־נָא אַפְּךָ וַחֲמָתְךָ מֵעִירְךָ יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם הַר־קָדְשֶׁךָ כִּי בַחֲטָאֵינוּ וּבַעֲוׂנוֹת אֲבֹתֵינוּ יְרוּשָׁלַ ִם וְעַמְּךָ לְחֶרְפָּה לְכָל־סְבִיבֹתֵינוּ׃
9:16 Yerushalayim and Your people have become a mockery
In his prayer, Daniel lists three compelling reasons for Hashem to accept his prayer and redeem the people from Babylonia: For the sake of Yerushalayim, of the Beit Hamikdash and of the Jewish people. Rabbi Yitzchak Abrabanel elaborates on these points. Regarding Yerushalayim, Daniel points out that it is an embarrassment to God when His beautiful city lies in ruins. He further questions how Hashem can ignore the Temple Mount where His presence was manifest most clearly on earth. Lastly, it is a desecration of God’s name when His chosen people are despised. Daniel groups Yerushalayim and the Jewish people together, “Yerushalayim and Your people have become a mockery among all who are around us,” since the Jews and Yerushalayim are one. Without their holy city, how can they succeed in exile, and how can Yerushalayim flourish without her children? Daniel’s sentiments were echoed by Teddy Kollek, who served as mayor of Yerushalayim from 1967-1993: “For three thousand years, Jerusalem has been the center of Jewish hope and longing. No other city has played such a dominant role in the history, culture, religion and consciousness of a people as has Jerusalem in the life of Jewry and Judaism. Throughout centuries of exile, Jerusalem remained alive in the hearts of Jews everywhere as the focal point of Jewish history, the symbol of ancient glory, spiritual fulfillment and modern renewal. This heart and soul of the Jewish people engenders the thought that if you want one simple word to symbolize all of Jewish history, that word would be ‘Jerusalem.’”