When I saw that reported on front of some newspaper somewhere, I wanted to throw up.
What?! That’s the best argument the Israeli government can come up with?! Are you kidding me?!
If I was a non-Jew, or even an ignorant Jew, and I read that statement, it wouldn’t move me, convince me or sway me in the least.
But what can you do? Bibi is a secular politician, running an anti-religious government, and he doesn’t want any hint of ‘religious extremism’ - i.e., accepting the validity of the Torah, or the omniscience of God - getting in the way of trying to run the country.
The problem is, things don’t work that way. Israeli is a completely holy, completely spiritual, enterprise from beginning to end. The reason UNESCO is making the statements its making is because it’s simply mirroring the inner dimension of the secular people running the country (and the misguided people who continue to vote them into office...)
By contrast, this is how Israel’s first Chief Rabbi, Avraham Yitzhak HaKohen Kook, tackled the subject of who the Kotel ‘belonged to’, when the British were ruling the country and siding with Arab claims that Har HaBayit, and the whole of Jerusalem, and the whole of Eretz Yisrael, was really theirs:
When the Rav appeared before the Kotel Commission, he asked the chairman in an impassioned voice:
“What do you mean ‘the commission will decide who the Kotel belongs to?’ Does the commission of League of Nations [forerunner to the UN] own the Kotel? Who gave you permission to decide to whom it belongs?
“The entire world belongs to the Creator, blessed be He, and He transferred ownership of the entire land of Israel - including the Kotel - to the Jewish people. No power in the world, not the League of Nations, nor this commission, can take this God-given right away from us.”
[- taken from ‘An Angel Amongst Men’.]
Compare and contrast Rav Kook’s amazing words to the peanut butter and jelly argument made by our current leadership, and you can clearly see the problem. But, that also clearly suggests the solution, too: We need leadership in Israel that will stand up and tell the UN what Rav Kook told them, more than 80 years’ ago: God is running the world, not UNESCO!
God gave the Jewish people the land of Israel, and the Kotel, and Har Habayit. The trouble is, our secular leaders don’t believe in God, so they can’t make that argument.
Which is why when the secular Jews in Israel (and elsewhere…) make Teshuva, our problems with the Arabs, and with UNESCO, and with the international media will finally disappear for good.