Jerusalem’s Walls, Breached Again
UNESCO V Josephus Flavius
Jerusalem’s Walls, Breached Again
In a saner era, the latest archeological discovery in Jerusalem would be the sort of thing only academics or ancient history buffs would care about. But in a month when UNESCO has voted repeatedly to treat Jerusalem’s holiest spots as if they were solely Muslim, the dig that located the site where the Romans breached the capital’s walls during the great Jewish revolt in 70 C.E. is of more than academic interest. It is not only yet another reminder of the insidious nature of the war still being waged to extinguish the rebirth of Jewish sovereignty in the Jewish homeland.
The details of the discovery are exciting to those who care about this chapter of history during which the second Jewish commonwealth ended. Archeologists have uncovered the remains of the “Third Wall” that protected the northern extremity of the capital during the Roman siege that ended in the city’s destruction as well as the burning of the Second Temple. The dig, which was supervised by the Israel Antiquities Authority, also found the remains of one of the guard towers that dotted the defensive structure as well as stones that were the ammunition for catapults the Romans used to pummel and ultimately break through the wall, as the historian Josephus attested. The defeat of the defenders at this spot gave the Romans the chance to get inside the city. It would take them another two and a half months to get through the other two inner walls and begin the orgy of murder and destruction that ended Jewish independence for two millennia.
It is hardly surprising that such fascinating artifacts could be found in the heart of Jerusalem. And that is the problem for the Palestinians and their supporters in institutions like UNESCO. All you have to do to prove the existence of historic Jewish ties to Jerusalem is to start digging virtually anywhere in the city or, for that matter, anywhere in the country. That’s why Palestinians and their supporters are so quick to resist archeological work in and around the Old City such as the separate dig at the City of David—a site that points to an even more ancient Jewish kingdom a thousand years before the Romans laid waste to the city.
Pretending, as the Palestinians and now the majority at the UN agency that claims to be its educational, scientific and cultural organization do, that the Temple Mount and the Western Wall—the heart of the Jewish city that the Third Wall was built to protect—is Muslim a statement of astonishing ignorance. The stones of the Temple Mount and the remains of part of its outer enclosure that make up the Wall are living evidence of 3,000 years of Jewish history as well as the events and places that are integral to the beginnings of Christianity. But it’s far more than that. This revisionism is at the center of a century-old effort to deny Jewish history and the rights of the Jewish people to their homeland and its capital.
UNESCO V Josephus Flavius
The controversy was less over what the resolution said so much as the way they said it, an analysis by Nir Hasson (also in Haaretz) says the following;The perfect response to UNESCO: Succot
The term Western Wall appears in quotes throughout the document, while the Arabic term for the site, Al-Burak, does not. The document refers to the Temple Mount by its Arabic names, Haram Al-Sharif and Al-Aqsa, while making no mention of its Jewish names.
The BBC provided an excellent all around analysis also though it strikes me that not much of an analysis is needed. The bottom line is that a UN body just crapped all over Jewish history.
This is why I take more pleasure than usual at the announcement that Israeli archaeologists located the site where the Romans breached the wall to Jerusalem sometime around AD 70.According to the Times of Israel;
The discovery, made last winter during an excavation of a construction site for the new campus of the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design outside the Old City, also finally confirmed the description of the wall that was breached provided by the historian Josephus Flavius.
I guess no one at UNESCO has bothered to read The Jewish War. It doesn’t matter so much now anyway as Israeli archaeologists (nor the country as a whole) are no longer cooperating with UNESCO.
If anyone ever wondered why an American veto was so necessary in the UN Security Council this kind of nonsense is the demonstrable reason.
Walking the streets of Jerusalem during these festive days, it suddenly struck me just how perfectly timed was the absurd UNESCO decision disconnecting Judaism from the Temple Mount – because no holiday exposes the idiocy of the UNESCO vote better than Succot.
We begin with the commandment in the Bible - written over 3,000 years ago, before Islam’s inception - that the people of Israel were to celebrate on the Temple Mount for the entire duration of the Succot holiday: “For seven days you shall celebrate for the Lord your God, in the place that the Lord will choose.” (Deuteronomy 16:15) This is the only holiday which has a specific command for the Jewish people to celebrate in the Temple for an extended period of time.
The special relationship between the Jewish people and the Temple Mount was cemented when King Solomon dedicated the First Temple on Succot (Kings I 8:2), and when the Second Temple was dedicated on Succot (Ezra 3:4). Both Jewish Temples - which sat right there on the Temple Mount - were dedicated during these days of a Succot! This, no doubt, is a major reason for our national rejoicing during these days.
Lest anyone think that the Temples were built only to benefit the Jewish people, King Solomon offered the following prayer on that first Succot in the Temple: “Also a gentile who is not of Your people Israel, but will come from a distant land, for Your Name’s sake; For they will hear of Your great Name and Your strong hand and Your outstretched Arm – and will come and pray towards this Temple; May You hear from Heaven, the foundation of Your abode, and act according to all that the Gentile calls out to You, so that all peoples of the world may know your Name, to fear You as Your people Israel and to know that Your Name is proclaimed upon this Temple that I have built.”