Secretary of State James Baker said he didn't have the facts before he said that "Israel needs to be better prepared and able to exercise restraint" following the attack on Jewish worshipers at the Western Wall {news story, Oct. 9}. Here are some relevant facts for him and your paper:

1. Temple Mount has no loose rocks. Palestinians would have had to bring them up. The barrage of projectiles indicated that this was not a spontaneous gesture.

2. The Israeli government sponsored ads in Arabic newspapers announcing that the Temple Mount Faithful had been barred from the site. The Palestinians knew that police would be keeping the Temple Mount group away -- as they have done before.

3. Your article cited the Temple Mount as the third holiest site in Islam. But it also is the single holiest physical site of Judaism, and the holiday of Succot (mentioned only as a "source of trouble") is one of the three times mandated in the Bible for Jews to go up to Jerusalem. There was no religious mandate for thousands of Moslems to be at the Dome of the Rock or Al-Aksa mosques early on Oct. 8. They came at the urging of people calling for jihad against the Jews. Your reporter quotes an Arab as saying, "While we are praying, they came." That is backward; it was the Jews who came to pray.

4. The article also referred to Israel as having "seized" Jerusalem in 1967. In fact, in 1948 Jordan drove the Jewish population out of east Jerusalem and illegally occupied that section of the city as part of its illegal annexation of the West Bank. In 1967, during the Six-Day War, Jordanian forces started shelling West Jerusalem. Israel reunified the city as a result of a successful self-defense.

5. The intifada began in December of 1987 immediately after the Reagan-Gorbachev summit, which ignored the Palestinian Arabs, and the Arab summit in Amman, which did likewise. Palestinian Arabs in the territories used violence to regain center stage. The PLO jumped on the bandwagon. Now with much of the Arab world united against Saddam Hussein (and by association against Yasser Arafat and the PLO), some Palestinian leaders apparently have decided to incite their way back into the spotlight. -- Shoshana Bryen -- Eric Rozenman