Posts tagged palestine
Israeli warplanes, self-propelled artillery and short-range missiles attacked Hamas and Jihad Islami positions and command posts in the Gaza Strip early Monday, Oct. 8, shortly after Palestinians loosed a barrage of 55 missiles and mortar shells on the Eshkol district.
Both terrorist organizations claimed they were responsible for the barrage, which caused no casualties only heavy damage to property. Israelis living within range of the Gaza Strip are warned to stay 15 seconds away from protected shelters.
Casualties from the Israeli reprisal are reported in the Gaza Strip.
DEBKAfile: Israel’s response was major because for the first time the two dominant organizations in Gaza, the radical Hamas and Iran-sponsored Jihad Islami, assumed responsibility for avenging an an Israeli attack on radical Salafist terrorists affiliated with al Qaeda. This attests to the comprehensive ties of operational collaboration forged between the diverse terrorist organizations fighting Israel from the Gaza Strip.
Sunday, Oct. 7, a targeted Israeli air strike critically injured two motorcyclists, members of al Qaeda-linked groups in the Rafah district of southern Gaza. Palestinian sources reported 11 people injured including five children.
Israel also suspects that the pilotless helicopter sent by Iran to breach Israeli air space Saturday, Oct. 6, which flew in from the Mediterranean over the Gaza Strip, was jointly orchestrated by Tehran, Hizballah and Hamas as part of a war exercise Hamas conducted in the Gaza Strip on that day.
Abu Obeida, commander of the Hamas military arm Ezz e-din al-Qassam responded to the Israeli assault with a warning: “The resistance” would not permit “Israeli aggression” continue, he said, and went on to laud Hamas’ partnership with Jihad Islami and the high level of operational cooperation between the various parts of the movement. Any more Israeli attacks, he warned, would bring forth an even more powerful and extensive Palestinian reprisal.
DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources report that Hamas draws its bravado from the military protocols its leaders secretly signed with Hizballah Sept. 13 under the Iranian aegis, which obliges signatory to come to the aid of the other when it is attacked. Jihad Islami, Iran’s Palestinian surrogate in the Gaza Strip comes under this umbrella too. The signing was first disclosed on this page on Sept. 23. Confirming this, JIhad Islami spokesmen have just threatened that the next round of attacks on Israel will come from Lebanon. source – DEBKA
God has plans for a One State Solution
“For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.” Joel 3:2
From Jerusalem Post: US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney plans to declare his commitment to the notion of “a democratic, prosperous Palestinian state living side by side in peace and security with the Jewish state of Israel,” according to advance excerpts of his remarks provided by his campaign released on Sunday.
“In this old conflict, as in every challenge we face in the Middle East, only a new president will bring the chance to begin anew,” Romney is billed to say. “It is time to change course in the Middle East.”
The speech marks an attempt to soften his stance on the peace process following leaked video footage last month where the presidential candidate questioned the feasibility of the establishment of a Palestinian state in the West Bank.
“I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway, for political purposes, committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel, and these thorny issues, and I say, “There’s just no way.”” Romney said last month.
Romney is to make the renewed commitment in a major foreign policy speech, titled “The Mantle of Leadership”, in Lexington, Virginia late Monday evening where he intends to lay out his vision for American foreign policy. According to reports, he hopes to draw “great contrast” with that of President Barack Obama, notably on Syria, Libya and Egypt. He is also billed to talk on the Iranian nuclear threat, where he is to warn Iran not to pursue nuclear weapon capability and said the US had to back this up “through actions, not just words.” source – JPost
There is more to the story of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula than what we are told by the media
Walid Shoebat: Court documents reveal that Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, producer of the movie Innocence of Muslims, partnered in a scheme with Eiad Salameh, my first cousin, a Palestinian Muslim from Beit Sahour in the Palestinian district of Bethlehem.
Now do I have your attention?
The narrative that circulates the media fails to answer crucial questions behind the mystery of this film.
For example, to date, no one has stepped forward or can confirm for certain that whoever holds an identity by the name of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula is that man’s true identity. In the Middle East, if a man by the name of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula indeed exists while being blamed for creating a mess of international proportions—which included the anger of over one billion Muslims—it would not be that difficult to find the entire family in Egypt, including brothers, cousins, aunts, siblings wife, wives, ex-wives, mistresses, pets and all.
In the Middle East, no one can hide. Egypt is where the demonstrations that have taken place all over the Middle East and Asia were sparked. Yet, it cannot produce this man’s background?
Besides, why would Nakoula, who claims to be a religious Coptic activist, have extensive connections with Eiad? My cousin hated Copts with a passion and is well-known in the Middle East as a master schemer,probably one of the best the Middle East has produced. He also has multiple contacts with terror networks.
Eiad is from Beit Sahour, Bethlehem. He is a dubious individual who was well known in the Arab community as the main contact for obtaining authentic, legitimate identifications from passports to credit cards, under many nationalities. He then places these identifications into the hands of dubious characters whose names are not the names written on the passports.
Eiad is a Muslim terror supporter and is not an Egyptian Copt. Both my cousin Eiad and whoever this man is who pretends to be Nakoula, had multiple, fraudulent identifications and the two connected for a decade in multiple scheming operations—the type that usually links to terrorism.
The Daily Beast reported regarding Nakoula’s bust:
The bust came around the time the feds were launching Operation Mountain Express, which would become a huge investigation into pseudoephedrine-dealing involving numerous people of a Middle Eastern background. The authorities initially insisted there were no links to terrorism, but suddenly switched and decided that a chunk of the money was going to Hizbullah.
Eiad, like Nakoula, portrayed and identified himself as an Israeli Jew, a thing Eiad did for years. He even fraudulently holds an authentic Israeli passport.
No one knows for certain that Nakoula is even who he claims to be, but we are 100% certain that both my cousin Eiad and Nakoula had multiple fraudulent identifications and what has never been disclosed until now is that the two were linked for at least a decade.
First of all, clan Nakoula also exists in Eiad’s village Beit Sahour Bethlehem. It is still the little town of Bethlehem, just as it was in Biblical times.
The feds are also silent and have kept much of this issue away from public view. Despite Nakoula’s previous offenses, the Justice Department lawyers and federal agents defended him, giving several excuses to Judge Snyder and pushed for leniency, all because of him supposedly promising to help them catch Eiad.
Via the sentencing transcript:
…he [Nakoula] has implicated Mr. Salamay [aka Salameh] there is no question that Mr. Salamay at some point is gonna be indicted if he hasn’t already been… we all know what’s gonna happen. Salamay is gonna get arrested some day and based on the debriefing information turned over he is gonna enter a guilty plea, or if he doesn’t, then Mr. Nakoula is going to be called in to testify…
This claim by the Feds is false.
If the feds were indeed interested in catching Eiad, he was in fact doing his shenanigans for three decades without a single arrest and despite several arrest warrants issued.
He was in fact finally locked up in January 2011 in Canada as we were told by our contact out of the Intelligence Bureau in Canada (IBC) who wrote us by email (which we have the evidence).
While the Canadians wanted to keep Eiad in custody as long as it took and were working with the Feds to extradite him to the United States, the U.S. preferred not to bring Eiad in to face justice. Instead, they asked the Canadians to fly him to freedom in Palestine.
I received my last email from my contact on July 15th, 2011, which stated: “He is awaiting deportation to Palestine, unless the US hurry up and indict him…” The feds never responded to the Canadian’s last appeal and within a few days, Eiad was put on a plane, courtesy of the Canadian taxpayers.
Where did he go?
The Palestinian terror connection to this film increases once we learned that Nakoula used Eiad’s last name “Erwin Salameh” portraying himself as his brother. As we also obtained from our contact in the IBC, Eiad was also involved with someone having the last name “Tanas” as late as 2011 and Nakoula had used the name “Thomas J. Tanas”.
In addition, the naming convention used by Nakoula in 2009 looks remarkably similar to one of Eiad’s embezzlement operations in 2000.
Nakoula used a fictitious company called M & A Trading in 2009, which he simply switched from Eiad’s A & M Trading as revealed in the U.S. Trustee report in 2001.
I can provide much evidence privately to reliable media, on the condition that the names of the agents remain anonymous (as per their request) but I have disclosed Eiad in all of my seminars to hundreds of FBI agents and police force.
So who is this man behind the film Innocence of Muslims?
To identify his motives, I then obtained a radio interview in Arabic that this supposed Nakoula gave in which he stated that he is not Christian but a secular liberal. He was asked, “What is your position on the Jewish and the Christian faith?” Nakoula responded, “I have no calling for these religions.”
Nakoula, who stated that he was an author of several books on Islam (written in Arabic) refused to give his name to the interviewer. Yet, if court documents give his legal name as Nakoula Bacile/Bassele Nakoula, I found no books under that name. Nothing. And neither did anyone produce them.
Nakoula was lying again and is no Coptic author.
A court document refers to a letter from a friend who referred to Nakoula as “a God-fearing man whose first priority is his family.”
This contradicts what he said in Arabic; he is not interested in Christianity or Judaism and is possibly a Muslim.
Nakoula claimed that he produced the film with his son, Abanob Basseley, and the money for it (between $50,000 and $60,000) came from his wife’s family in Egypt.
None of this has been proven.
What has been proven is that he embezzled millions with Eiad and the money must have come from these scandalous operations, which are usually linked to terrorist activity.
Why would any anti-Islam Christian or even Jewish activist want the destruction of his own? It makes zero sense, unless of course this person intends to do harm to his real enemies—Israel and the Copts.
Both are Eiad’s ardent enemies.
How is it possible that these two would snuggle up together for a decade?
On one hand, we have a Meth-dealer-Egyptian-Coptic-anti-Muslim-activist-fundamentalist-Christian. Then on the other hand, we have a Muslim-fundamentalist-Palestinian-scam-artist-terrorist.
The results of this entire fiasco will not be the apprehension of terrorists, but the continual chipping away at the First-Amendment, since Americans by and large are still practicing the art of self-blame while they ignore the real culprits who enter our country with the intent of doing it much harm. source – Walid Shoebat
JERICHO, West Bank (Reuters) – The Palestinians will ask the United Nations to upgrade their status in the world body by year’s end, enabling them to pursue Israel through the international courts, a senior Palestinian official said on Thursday.
The request to become a non-member “observer state” rather than just an “observer entity”, would give the Palestinians the same U.N. rank as the Vatican, enhancing their legal rights at a time when peace negotiations with Israel have hit a wall.
Such a motion would only need majority backing in the 193-nation U.N. General Assembly, where the Palestinians can rely on substantial support and resolutions cannot be vetoed by Israel’s most powerful ally, the United States.
“The day after (we get) non-member statehood, life will not be the same,” said the veteran Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, speaking in his office in the West Bank city of Jericho.
“Yes, the occupation will continue, the settlements will continue, the crimes of the settlers may continue, but there will be consequences,” he told reporters.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas sought full statehood recognition at the United Nations last year. This ambitious drive had to pass through the U.N. Security Council, but failed to gather enough votes in the face of fierce U.S. lobbying.
Abbas will address the General Assembly on September 27, after which his aides will consult other nations before presenting the watered-down request to become an observer state, claiming as Palestinian territory the lands that Israel seized in the 1967 war, with East Jerusalem as their capital.
Israel has annexed East Jerusalem and built 120 settlements across the occupied West Bank, with some 500,000 Israelis living beyond the so-called 1967 green line, originally an armistice line rather than the legal boundaries of a Palestinian state.
“After the U.N. vote … Palestine will become a country under occupation. Israel will not be able to say that this is a disputed area,” Erekat said. “The terms of reference for any negotiations will be about withdrawal, not over what the Israelis say is legal or not legal.”
GOING TO COURT
Israel says Palestinians can gain independence only through direct negotiations, and has lobbied hard behind the scenes against their latest U.N. gambit, fearful of the consequences. Face-to-face talks brokered by the United States collapsed in 2010 over the issue of continued settlement building.
As an observer state, Palestine could not only participate in assembly debates, but also join various U.N. agencies, such as the Law of the Sea Treaty and the International Criminal Court (ICC), which is based in the Hague.
The ICC rejected in April a Palestinian request to look into alleged crimes in the Palestinian Territories, because they were not full U.N. members. Erekat indicated that Palestinians would turn again to the ICC after the forthcoming assembly vote.
“Those who don’t want to appear before the international tribunals must stop their crimes and it is time for them to become accountable,” he said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has indicated in private he fears Palestinians might accuse his government of violating the Geneva Conventions’ prohibition on forced displacement of populations by establishing settlements.
Looking to dissuade Abbas and head off a U.N. showdown, Israel has threatened to withhold tax revenues that are vital to the well-being of the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority.
The United States might also impose financial penalties, while some European nations are urging Palestinian caution.
“We have invested heavily in the Palestinian Authority and we do not want to see that investment jeopardised,” said a European Union diplomat, suggesting that a number of European states might vote against the Palestinian U.N. resolution.
Some 120 countries have already granted the Palestinians the rank of a sovereign state, but Erekat said they hoped to win the votes of between 150 and 170 nations at the United Nations to hammer home U.S. and Israeli isolation on the issue.
However, the Palestinians are undecided whether to push for a vote ahead of the U.S. election in November – timing which might anger President Barack Obama – or just after. ”Whatever, it will happen well before the end of the year,” Erekat told Reuters. source – Yahoo News
Stealing Jerusalem from the Jews
“And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6:16-18
Let me just say right off the bat that if you are a bible-believing Christian, this story will make you mad. Very mad. Let me also say that the so-called “christian” groups mentioned in this alliance of devils – mainly the Greek Orthodox, Anglican and Catholic churches – are not Christian churches by the bible’s definition, and in NO WAY speak for the hundreds of millions of actual bible-believing Christians across the globe. These groups are the ENEMY of Christ, the enemy of bible believers, and the absolute enemy of the state of Israel and every Jew that resides in it. The World Council of Churches is a pit of devils and they speak for no bible-believing Christian church that we know of. These groups are christian in name only, and are rejected by actual, bible-believing Christians around the world.
We stand in complete and total solidarity with our Jewish brothers and sisters in Israel when we declare that Jerusalem is the now-and-forever-capital of Israel, declared to be so by God Almighty, and this is a covenant that shall never be broken.
From Arutz Sheva Op-Ed: The Temple Mount, the place where Avraham came to sacrifice his son to God, the site of the first and second Jewish Temples, where the Jewish people worshiped for hundreds of years and the focal point of every practicing Jew’s prayers, is under assault from the Islamic-Christian Committee.
This relatively new Palestinian institution has been able to win the support not only of the entire regional Christian leadership, but also of leading Christian personalities from abroad.
The Islamic-Christian Commission has just warned that the Israeli authorities are working to impose “a false Jewish history” in Jerusalem, “the occupied city”, especially “on the area known to Jews as the Temple Mount”. The Commission warned of new “Judaization”. Such fabricated lies help the Palestinians to conquer a seat in theinternational agencies like Unesco and to excite the Muslims against the Jews.
The Vatican’s former archbishop in Jerusalem, Michel Sabbah, who is involved in advancing Islamic-Christian alliance, promoted an appeal to the European Union and United States to “stop the Hebraization of Jerusalem”. The new Latin Patriarch, Fouad Twal, took part in a meeting in London with Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, in which the Vatican envoy denounced the “more than 550.000 Israelis living in East Jerusalem and the West Bank” and “the demography of Jerusalem changing rapidly with the sacred space being threatened”.
The Islamic-Christian Committee was founded by the former Greek Orthodox Archbishop Atallah Hanna and enjoys the participation of Catholic leaders like Claudette Habesch, Secretary General of Caritas Jerusalem for the last 25 years, which is the most important Vatican humanitarian arm in the world. Hanna called for the creation of an Islamic-Christian union that would “release Palestine from the river to the sea”.
He also supported the suicide attacks against the Israeli civilians: “The suicide bombers who carry out their activities in the name of religion are national heroes and we’re proud of them”, Hanna said.
Along with Hassan Khater, who wrote the Al Quds and Al Aqsa Encyclopedia, the Christian-Islamic Committee also enjoys the participation of Sheikh Tamimi, the most high profile Islamic judge of the Palestinian Authority, deported by Israel temporarily in 1980 after terrorists killed six Jewish students in Hevron and a self-professed anti-Semite.
“Perhaps one day the world will awake and realize that these Zionist elements are the bloodletters who hang on the peoples, sucking their blood and consuming their resources”, Tamimi has said.
This Islamic-Christian Committee was pivotal during the Second Intifada in raising the false alarm on the “holy sites” endangered by Israel. In May 2000, Yasser Arafat met Islamic and Christian clergymen, led by Tamimi and Archimandrite Hanna, at the presidential offices in Ramallah. A few weeks later, before the Camp David summit, Jerusalem’s Christian patriarchs backed Palestinian sovereignty over Jerusalem.
Among the clergymen, Diodoros I, patriarch of the Greek Orthodox Church, Torkom II, patriarch of the Armenian Orthodox Church and Catholic Patriarch Michel Sabbah. Officials from the Custody of the Holy Land, a Franciscan-Vatican order with special authority over Christian sites, were also present at the meeting.
PA’s President Mahmoud Abbas is now following in Arafat’s path. Speaking at theInternational Conference for Defense of Jerusalem in Doha, Qatar, Abbas recently said that “the Israeli occupation authorities are using the ugliest and most dangerous means to implement plans to erase and remove the Arab-Islamic and the Christian character of east Jerusalem”. The conference’s purpose, under the auspices of the Islamic-Christian Committee, is to combat the “Judaization of Jerusalem”.
There were many Christian figures attending the event, like Elias Awad of the Catholic Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Patriarch Gabi Hachem of the Liqa Center and Bishop Georgi Panossian, Primate of the Armenian Orthodox Church.
The United Nations also sent several high profile officials, Robert Serry, UN Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, and Filippo Grandi, Commissioner General of Unrwa.
Abbas denied Jewish history on the Temple Mount and stated that Israel plans to destroy the Al Aqsa Mosque, a lie designed to incite Muslims to rise up against Jews.
Recently, the World Council of Churches also incited against the “occupation”, “settlements” and Jewish rights in Jerusalem.
As historian Bat Ye’or explained, in a large number of documents going back to the 1970s, the Organization of the Islamic Conference recommended “cooperation with Churches in the fight against Israel”. This emerged from a conference held in Amman in 2004 as part of the Muslim-Christian dialogue. The official theme was the protection against Israel of Muslim and Christian holy places in Jerusalem. At the Amman conference, the speakers emphasized the importance of “Muslim-Christian solidarity” in the fight to seize al Quds and to drive Israel out of it.
Their proposals included the adoption of the Muslim and Christian sites in Jerusalem by mosques, churches and monasteries, and by Muslim and Christian institutions worldwide. “Promoting al Quds would be done through films, television, songs, and festivals, under the supervision of a special Muslim and Christian cell that would be working with all the appropriate means”.
23 December, 1995, is the date of the turning point for the Islamic-Christian alliance against the Jews in Jerusalem. The Greek Orthodox patriarch of the holy land, Deodorus I, handed over the custody of Churches in Jerusalem to PLO leader Arafat. This was done in the presence of the Catholic, Anglican and Greek Orthodox archbishops.
The patriarch declared: “I am the heir of Sophronius and I am handing the keys (to Christian holy sites in Jerusalem) to the heir of Omar Ibn al-Khattab”. Omar, the caliph who claimed Jerusalem from Byzantine rule in 638, gave then Patriarch Sophronius custody of Churches and a pledge to safeguard them. The move was meant to put Christian holy places under the custody of Arafat, a Muslim, and strengthening the Arab-Islamic claim to Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state.
Why did Arafat desire the mention of this 1,300-year-old story? He saw himself as conquering Jerusalem a second time in history for the Muslims.
Any reference to Omar simply means, “Jerusalem must be Judenrein”.
The final goal of this Muslim-Christian dialogue is to erase any Jewish presence in the so called “holy basin”, an alliance of the mosques and the sepulcher which will exclude the Jews from the Temple Mount.
As the early Christians had left the Temple deliberately in ruins, it’s now the turn of the Islamicized Mount to keep it that way. Will this new Islamic-Christian alliance able to convince the European Union, the UN and the US to baptize Jerusalem “Al Quds”? source – Arutz Sheva
Daring God to do something
The bible WARNS us that, in the end of time, forces come against the Jews and against Israel, with the sole purpose of dividing it for gain. And while all of us have had our eyes on the Muslim in the Oval Office, now it seems that Mitt Romney is interested in helping to fulfill the third chapter of the book of Joel:
“I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and [for] my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and PARTED MY LAND.” Joel 3:2
In case you didn’t know it, parting the land of Israel is, in God’s eyes, a declaration of WAR. Good luck with that, Mitt. Better wear extra magic underwear…
WASHINGTON (JTA) – The Republican Party’s platform is expected to include support for a two-state solution in the Middle East.
The platform committee, meeting in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, rejected three amendments that would have removed language supportive of a two-state solution, according to a delegate who put forward two of the amendments.
A vote before the full Republican Convention in Tampa is expected next week.
The proposed language as it now stands, written by the Romney campaign and committee aides, states, “We envision two democratic states,” according to BuzzFeed, the political news site that first reported on the amendments.
RELATED STORY: Now Is A Good Time To Learn About Mitt Romney’s Religion…
Three amendments were offered but not adopted following objections from a Romney surrogate, Sen. Jim Talent (R-Mo.). Two of those amendments were put forth by delegate Kevin Erickson, pastor at Cross Hill Church in Virginia, Minn., who wanted to replace the two-state language with tough language on terrorism, BuzzFeed reported.
A former public defender, Erickson told JTA that Israel “is not one of my primary issues.”
He said he was intrigued after listening to a “pretty vigorous” discussion about a two-state solution that ended in “such a close vote.” He proposed alternatives that he said were aimed at satisfying both sides, but these were also defeated. J Street, a liberal pro-Israel group, welcomed the result.
“That such amendments could garner even a modicum of support demonstrates the very real threat to longstanding bipartisan support for the two-state resolution as a central feature of America’s unwavering commitment to Israel’s survival and security as the democratic homeland of the Jewish people,” it said in a statement. source – Times of Israel
From the Washington Post: TAMPA — The Republican party platform will continue to endorse a two-state solution as the path to peace between Israel and its Palestinian neighbors, at the urging of a top Mitt Romney adviser.
The 112-delegates gathering here to draft the party’s platform defeated three separate amendments that would have removed language endorsing two democratic states, a Jewish state of Israel and a Palestinian state, existing side-by-side. Washington Post
“Diplomatic Victory” of PA according to the RCC
“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” Genesis 12:3
The report said the Roman Catholic Church said the UNESCO decision was a “diplomatic victory” for the Palestinian Authority, but it also called on the PA to respect existing arrangements dividing care of the site between the Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Armenian churches.
“There is an internal regulation, the status quo, which regulates the relations between the various Christian communities and their rights and duties in relation to the operation and maintenance of the (Church of the) Nativity,” AFP quoted a statement from the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem. “”It is desirable that UNESCO and the Palestinian Authority respect this and intervene only in exceptional cases.”
On Friday, UNESCO’s World Heritage committee approved a Palestinian Authority bid to place the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem on its list of sites of World Heritage in Danger. The 21-member committee, meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, voted 13-6 to include the church and pilgrimage route on its list of sites. There were two abstentions.
Dangerously mixing politics and culture
Israel angrily denounced the vote. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Ilana Stein said the decision “has turned UNESCO into a theater of the absurd.”
“This is a sad day for the World Heritage Committee,” she said. The move was seen by some nations as dangerously mixing politics and culture.
The drive to get the church quickly recognized as a World Heritage site is part of the PA’s bid to win international recognition.
“The fact that the Palestinian Authority worked for this (UNESCO) declaration represents a diplomatic victory,” the patriarchate said, according to AFP. “Bethlehem is part of the Palestinian territories, so it was for the Palestinian Authority a right and indeed a duty.”
The application cited lack of regular restoration of the church due to the political situation since 1967, when Israel liberated Judea and Samaria (Yehuda and Shomron) during the Six Day War. The application also cited difficulties procuring equipment because of lack of free movement imposed by Israeli forces.
The application to place the Church on the World Heritage list shows the PA plans to put forward other sites for prestigious World Heritage recognition, eventually linking various landmarks to the life of Jesus.
In a controversial decision, UNESCO accepted the PA as a member last October, after 107 members voted in favor of the motion. Only 14 nations voted against the PA, including the United States, Canada, Germany and Israel.
The move prompted the United States to cut off funding to the organization, due to a longstanding law that prohibits U.S. support for any United Nations-affiliated body that accepts Palestinian Authority membership.
The organization was later forced to temporarily suspend new welfare programs in third world countries due to the large hole in its budget created by the loss of U.S. funds, so that much suffering of those whom UNESCO is intended to benefit was caused by the move.
The agency recently claimed that the Matriarch Rachel’s Tomb and the Tomb of the Patriarchs [Me'arat Hamachpela, the Patriarch's Cave] are not exclusively Jewish sites and also belong to Christians and Muslims. – Source – IsraelNationalNews