Why does UNESCO Insist On Rewriting Israel’s History?

“UNESCO ignores the unique Jewish connection to the Temple Mount, the site of two temples for 1,000 years, and the place to which Jews prayed for thousands of years,” Netanyahu said in a statement last month.

No one should be surprised by UNESCO’s resolution, passed April 11th, yet politicians across the spectrum in Israel have reacted angrily towards a UN organization that has catapulted itself into the complicated political quagmire that is the Middle East.  After all, Yair Lapid expressed the outrage by explaining how the most recent decision goes against UNESCO’s charter.

“This resolution was an utterly irresponsible intervention in one of the most complex places in the Middle East. UNESCO prides itself on promoting tolerance, interfaith and intercultural dialogue, yet it passes resolutions which erase the Jewish people from the historical narrative,” Lapid said.

The resolution in question takes Israel to task for preventing Muslim access to the Temple Mount and even the Kotel. These two sites, holy to Jews around the world are named as Muslim/Palestinian holy sites Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif and Buraq Plaza.

The resolution at one point says:

Further deplores the Israeli decision to approve a plan to build a two-line cable car system in East Jerusalem and the so called ‘Liba House’ project in the Old City of Jerusalem as well as the construction of the so called ‘Kedem Center’, a visitor centre near the southern wall of the Mosque, the construction of the Strauss Building and the project of the elevator in Al Buraq Plaza ‘Western Wall Plaza’ and urges Israel, the Occupying Power, to renounce the above-mentioned projects and to stop the construction works in conformity with its obligations under the relevant UNESCO conventions, resolutions and decisions.”

Another paragraph states:

Calls on Israel, the Occupying Power, to stop violations against the Waqf properties east and south of Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif, such as the recent confiscations of parts of Al Youssefeyah cemetery and Al-Sawanah area by banning Muslims from burying their dead in some spaces and by planting Jewish fake graves in other spaces of the Muslim cemeteries, in addition to the dramatic change of the status and distinctive character of the Umayyad Palaces, in particular the violation of the continued conversion of many Islamic and Byzantine remains into the so-called Jewish ritual baths or into Jewish prayer places.”

With this sort of language, the government has essentially lost control of a process that began a long time ago.  The process of international delegitimization began by an Arab world seeking the help of other UN member states, has systematically attempted to erase Jewish history in Israel for the sole purpose of rendering Israel’s existence just one long occupation based on historical fabrications.

The question isn’t why the Arab world is engaging in such profuse insanity, but rather why is the rest of the Western world going along with it?  After all, by supporting UNESCO’s denial the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount or even most of the Land of Israel, many countries in the Christian world have in fact undermined the roots to their own history. So why the rush to support such erroneous claims by the Islamic countries pushing these sorts of resolution?

In his book 1984 George Orwell penned what has now become one of his most famous quotes: “Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.” The UN and its associated organizations like UNESCO understand full well that history supports Jewish claims in their entirety to all of the Land of Israel.  More than this, history shows that is was not only the Roman Empire and later the Byzantines that contributed to the injustices of the Jewish people in their historic homeland, but the Arab world by and large finished off through forced colonizationwhatever fledgling community of Jews remained in the Land of Israel.

Dr. Harry Mandelbaum noted the following in an article he wrote for Think Israel:

  • The historian James Parker wrote: “During the first century after the Arab conquest [670-740 CE], the caliph and governors of Syria and the Holy Land ruled entirely over Christian and Jewish subjects. Apart from the Bedouin in the earliest days, the only Arabs west of the Jordan were the garrisons.”
  • In year 985 the Arab writer Muqaddasi complained: “the mosque is empty of worshipers… The Jews constitute the majority of Jerusalem’s population” (The entire city of Jerusalem had only one mosque?).
  • In 1377, Ibn Khaldun, one of the most creditable Arab historians, wrote: “Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel extended over 1400 years… It was the Jews who implanted the culture and customs of the permanent settlement”

These are uncomfortable facts if you are trying to paint the opposite picture.

In order to perpetrate a future dismantling of the 3rd Jewish Commonwealth in its historic boundaries, the claims of the Jewish people must be returned to the realm of myth.  Does this in fact cut away at the roots of Christianity?  It does, but Constantine through the Council of Nicea in 325 showed that he and the Church were perfectly comfortable in doing away with Christianity’s roots by reworking history and projecting that rebuilt history back onto the past.

UNESCO is in a sense doing what the Council of Nicea did centuries ago; attempting to permanently control the future by controlling the past.  The irony is that today’s Church has by and large made peace with the idea that the Judaism serves as their religion’s roots.  Despite this acceptance, their overtures to the Jewish people came about precisely because of the Jewish Nation’s return to its historic homeland, which destroyed one of the major tenets of early Church philosophy known as the wandering Jew.

The assumption by the Church, was the exile of the Jewish Nation came about due to a rejection of Jesus, proving covenant between the Jews and the Almighty to be null and void.  According to the Church this exile would continue forever.  Aurelius Prudentius Clemens said as far back as 400 CE: “From place to place the homeless Jew wanders in ever-shifting exile, since the time when he was torn from the abode of his fathers and has been suffering the penalty for murder, and having stained his hands with the blood of Christ whom he denied, paying the price of sin.” The Church was forced to dismantle this tenet upon the Jewish people’s return.  By reversing this sort of doctrine, the Church is essentially accepting the veracity of the Mosaic covenant.

Supporting UNESCO or at least remaining silent stems from the inherent need to deny a national connection the Holy Land for the Jewish people. For the world, this history, the history of the Nation of Israel and its connection to its land has become a burden. After all, it is far easier to deal with the Jewish burden than the Muslim one and perhaps, just perhaps that tenet of the wandering Jew, so vital to the Church and many Christian theologians, will be reinstated in a very careful way.

The nefariousness of all of this is of course obvious, but what is perhaps more telling is that the Israeli government has assumed this is just some sort of mistake or lack of knowledge. It isn’t, and the faster it understands this, the faster it can start pushing back successfully.

David Mark is founder of www.IsraelRising.com. He is a land of Israel activist and an advocate for the indigenous right of the Jewish people in their ancestral homeland, which includes reclaiming Jewish property in historically Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem. He lives south of Hebron,