A group of mostly highly competent members of the Executive Board of UNESCO has been meeting daily in Paris. The reason for this marathon of meetings and festivities is not only the 200th meeting of this elitist sub-organization of the UN.
This time it is also an essentially different matter, something completely new. Something unprecedented. What is at stake is Israel’s definitive delegitimization.
Here you find the he present member states convening time after time in special sessions . On the evening of October 13, they published the result of a vote.
In favor: Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Chad, China, the Dominican Republic, Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Malaysia, Morocco, Mauritius, Mexico, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Senegal, South Africa, Sudan and Vietnam. (24)
Against: Estonia, Germany, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Great-Britain and the USA (6)
Abstained: Albania, Argentina, Cameroon, El Salvador, France, Ghana, Greece, Guinea, Haiti, India, the Ivory Coast, Japan, Kenya, Nepal, Paraguay, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Slovenia, the Republic of Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda and Ukraine (26)
Absent: Serbia and Turkmenistan (2)
The vote’s subject matter is incredible and unthinkable. If the document that presently exists „only“ as a draft is adopted in this form next week, history would have to be rewritten, Christian catechism would have to be redesigned. The Vatican would have to self-abolish as an institution.
In brief, in the historic-theological world of the Jewish-Christian Occident, chaos would erupt that might lead to anarchy.
Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan – at the suggestion of the Palestinians (assuming that all Palestinians rallied behind their „government“ in this matter) – had made a motion to UNESCO to establish that there is no connection whatever between Israel and the temple area, including the Wailing Wall and the adjoining square.
They required that a delegation of UNESCO experts should immediately be present in Jerusalem in order to supervise that Israel would not undertake any additional steps to further destroy their „historical heritage“, as has occurred again and again until now. As examples they brought the building and routing of the Light Train, as well as excavations at the southern end of the Old City in the area of the City of David.
And UNESCO reared up on its hind legs and nodded thankfully. Rather deceitfully the whole draft does not include any passage expressly condemning Israel. Which is not necessary, as such condemnations abound in resolutions of the UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council, as well as in earlier resolutions of UNESCO itself.
The draft resolution states:
(3) Affirming the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions, also affirming that nothing in the current decision, which aims, inter alia, at the
safeguarding of the cultural heritage of Palestine and the distinctive character of East Jerusalem, shall in any way affect the relevant Security Council and United Nations resolutions and decisions on the legal status of Palestine and Jerusalem.
(4) Deeply regrets the Israeli refusal to implement UNESCO previous Decisions concerning Jerusalem (…), and notes that its request to the Director-General Irina Bukowa to appoint a permanent representative to be stationed in East Jerusalem to report on a regular basis about all the aspects covering the fields of competence of UNESCO in East Jerusalem.
(5) Deeply deplores the failure of Israel, the Occupying Power, to cease the persistent excavations and works in East Jerusalem particularly in and around the Old City, and reiterates its request to
Israel, the Occupying Power, to prohibit all such works in conformity with its obligations under the provisions of the relevant conventions, resolutions and decisions;
(8) Strongly condemns the Israeli escalating aggressions and illegal measures against the Awqaf , its department and its personnel, and against the freedom of worship and Muslims’ access to their Holy Site Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al Sharif, and requests Israel, the Occupying Power, to respect the historic Status Quo and to immediately stop these measures;
(9) Firmly deplores the continuous storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif by the Israeli right-wing extremists and uniformed forces, and urges Israel, the Occupying Power, to take necessary measures to prevent provocative abuses that violate the sanctity and integrity of Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif;
(10) Deeply decries the continuous Israeli aggressions against civilians including Islamic religious figures and priests, further decries the forceful entering into the different Mosques and historic
buildings inside Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif by different Israeli employees including the so-called „Israeli Antiquities“ officials, and arrests and injuries among Muslim worshippers and
Jordanian Awqaf guards in Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif by the Israeli forces and also urges Israel, the Occupying Power, to end these aggressions and abuses which inflame the tension on the ground and between faiths;
This goes on along 25 paragraphs. Additional locations are mentioned, demands, condemnations, regrets are expressed. The information about local circumstances that the Palestinians fed the supporters of the Resolution are perfect, nothing was left out. That would be fine, but one thing was completely disregarded: the truth.
Besides, they forget that Israel is no Occupying Power. The same old and miserable historical misrepresentation is sprouting again. Until 1967 Judea and Samaria were under Jordanian occupation, while Gaza was occupied by Egypt. The annexing of Judea and Samaria by Jordan in 1950 was not recognized by the Arab League and other States, Jordan was even threatened with exclusion from the Arab League. In 1988 Jordan waived its rights to the territories and recognized the PLO as the „sole legitimate representation of the Palestinian People“. During the period from 1949 to 1967 Jews had been banned from visiting the Old City and the Wailing Wall. Extensive devastations took place. The stones from the demolition of the Hurva Synagogue and the tombstones from the Jewish Cemetery on the Mount of Olives were used to build the latrines for the occupying soldiers.
In the 1967 Six Days War Israel conquered both territories. There never was any occupation.
In the eyes of the UN and of Israel haters, Israel remains the Occupying Power of a genuine Palestinian Territory that never existed. There never was a Palestinian Nation before Yasser Arafat first used this appellation in 1964. This occurred on the occasion of the constitutive meeting of the Palestinian National Council in Jerusalem.
How then does the Executive Committee of UNESCO justify ignoring any connection between Judaism and Jerusalem?
The true fact that Jewish life has taken place in Jerusalem for over 3000 years is proven by the recurring daily finds. Jewish history in the whole of Israel, but in Gaza, Judea and Samaria as well, has increasingly become more graphic. There a coin is discovered, here a seal, an inscribed stone. Lately a little bell was found that can definitely be attributed to the high priest’s garments. How do we know that? The clothes worn by those high officials is described in detail in several instances in the Torah, the Torah where we read about our history, year in year out, time and again. Also in the other scriptures in which we are prodded, admonished and sometimes, though much too seldom, even praised.
All those scriptures were created in Israel, or whatever name the country was called at the time. Is there need for more?
We are proud of each piece of land we reclaimed, transforming it into blooming cultivated land. Proud of each historic site we have maintained and have been proudly and fondly caring for. We are proud of our history and proud to live here.
Those who would like to be our partners in sharing this pride are sincerely invited to do so. But those who only feel hate towards us should withdraw.
Even if the UN and its well paid employees are surely pained when they have to acknowledge the fact, their resolutions, decisions, recommendations, etc. are not legally binding. Those are costly documents expressing the Moslem sensitivities in this machinery that has long lost its justification.
The UN is a toothless tiger.
Although the UNESCO Director General, Irina Bukowa, and even the outgoing UN chief Ban Ki-Moon expressed criticism on Sunday and strongly rejected the proposal, what was said was said.
© esther scheiner, israel
Translated from the German original by Translations International, Herzliya, Israel