Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East.
(From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Sunday 24 June 2012

The Kotel: For UNESCO, just a separation wall

This is how UNESCO in its World Wonders Project describes Jerusalem, the holiest of Judaism's four holy cities, and the Western Wall, Judaism's sacred site there, to which throughout the centuries (except when put out of bounds to them) Jews have flocked to pray:
"As a holy city for Judaism, Christianity and Islam, Jerusalem has always been of great symbolic importance. Among its 220 historic monuments, the Dome of the Rock stands out: built in the 7th century, it is decorated with beautiful geometric and floral motifs. It is recognized by all three religions as the site of Abraham's sacrifice. The Wailing Wall delimits the quarters of the different religious communities, while the Resurrection rotunda in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre houses Christ's tomb."
Notice the silence regarding the biblical significance of Jerusalem, the City of David.

Notice the use of the old term "Wailing Wall", which is usually avoided nowadays.  No doubt mention of the "Western Wall" would have had to have been followed  by something like "which is all that remains of the Second Temple, built about 19 BCE on the site of the very much earlier one built by King Solomon."

That would have been a reminder of its antiquity, and of the ancient Jewish presence in the Land, and that would never do.

For, needless to say, this terse, inadequate description is hardly an accident, hardly an innocent error by some bumbling, ignorant clerical assistant on UNESCO's staff.

The entire passage constitutes an exercise in politically motivated historical revisionism, an ignoble and deliberate censorship regarding Jerusalem: its pivotal importance in Jewish history, in Judaism, and in the Jewish psyche.

(There's an excellent video which succinctly sums uo the importance of Jerusalem to the Zionist movement itself, its centrality to Israel, something of which Palestinian rejectionists are only too aware aware; originally in Hebrew only, the video with English subtitles by Elder of Ziyon, is available here, and another excellent video, longer and more detailed, which argues that, in the interests of Muslims and Christians as well as of Jews, Jerusalem should not be divided can be seen on the Israel Thrives blog here)

When Bibi Netanyahu declared recently that "Israel without Jerusalem is like a body without a heart" he was articulating what Jews have felt down the ages; indeed, the celebrated Australian rabbi Jacob Danglow (notoriously, being a British super-patriot, a Johnny-come-lately to the concept of political Zionism, but from 1948 a proud supporter of Israel, used the same phrase almost word for word).

UNESCO's  obfuscation of the core connection between Jerusalem, Judaism, and the Jewish People is yet another instance of the Arabs' war against Israel by non-military means.  Wreaking of the influence of the  Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the World Wonders Project passage promotes a deliberate agenda of Muslim supremacy.

A petition, addressed to UNESCO, has been opened to protest this outrageous  anti-Zionist sleight of hand.. Originally in French, and perhaps a little dodgy in places, its translation is given as follows on its website:
'After having tried to erase the Jewish nature of Rachel’s and the Patriarchs’ graves, the latter being presented as a mere mosque, UNESCO aims now at the only [sic; "unique" in the French version] holy city of Judaism: Jerusalem.... [W]e find out that UNESCO presents the holiest place of Judaism, the "Kotel"... as a mere ‘separation’ between communities.
 Hiding the fact that:
The "Kotel" is the western wall of the second Jewish temple, only remnant of the masterpiece built 25 centuries ago, on the very site of the first temple, dated at least 30 centuries ago. By far the most ancient monument in town, much older than all its Christian and Muslim buildings.
The name "Wailing Wall" [sic; Mur des Lamentations in the French version] is due to the Jewish tradition during 2000 years to weep facing it, crying over the loss of their country and their temple.
On the other hand, UNESCO dares to rewrite history, transforming the "Dome of the Rock" into a sacred Islamic site; which it has never been in the past....'
See the petition here
(Hat tip: reader Rita)

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