Israel withdrew its envoy to UNESCO, the United Nations’ cultural body, after the organization’s World Heritage Committee approved an anti-Israel resolution on Wednesday, the second such resolution approved this month. The resolution refers to the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site, only by its Muslim names of Al-Haram Al-Sharif and Al-Aqsa Mosque, and only as “a Muslim holy site of worship,” with no mention or Judaism or Christianity. It was passed with 10 votes in favor, two against, and eight abstentions.
After the vote, Israel’s ambassador, Carmel Shama-Hacohen recalled the infamous resolution of 1975 that equated Zionism with racism, and how the Israeli Ambassador to the UN at the time, Chaim Herzog, had tor a copy of the resolution in half on the floor of the United Nations General Assembly. He said, “I have no intention of doing this today – not because of our dignity, or the dignity of this organization, but because it is not even worthy of the energy needed for tearing it up.” Shama-Hacohen proceeded to place a copy of the resolution into a waste basket with the word “History” taped onto it.
Shama-Hacohen told UNESCO’s Director-General, Irina Bokova, on Tuesday night, “Israel respects Muslim and other faiths and their presence in our holiest of places, and it is tragic that the other side doesn’t have a leadership that will do the same, but rather one that is engaged only in going the exact opposite.” Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett said that the resolution “is history denial and history will render this embarrassing decision as meaningless as previous ones.”
The ambassador said of his withdrawal, “The motive [for the recall] is the need to rethink and reevaluate our relations with UNESCO given the persistent persecution of Israel and the Jewish people.”
The Palestinian Authority is naming a school after the mastermind of the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre, Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) reported Tuesday.
A school in the West Bank city of Tulkarem has been named “the Martyr Salah Khalaf School” in memory of the leader of the Black September terrorist group. Khalaf, who was also known as Abu Iyad, planned the attack on the Israeli Olympic compound during the 1972 Munich Olympics, which led to the deaths of 11 Israeli athletes and coaches. Khalaf also had a role in the 1973 takeover of the American embassy in Khartoum, Sudan, which ended in the killing of two American diplomats.
This is the fourth school dedicated to the memory of Khalaf; the three others are in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.
PMW wrote a letter to the European Union calling on the group to stop funding the PA’s education budget as long as the Authority is “presenting terrorist murderers of Israeli civilians as role models for Palestinian children.”
The EU said in response to another PMW letter earlier this year that it would not stop its financial support of the Palestinian Authority, despite revelations that the PA was paying salaries to imprisoned terrorists. The United Kingdom suspended $30 million in aid payments earlier this month for that reason.
At least 26 people, mostly children, were killed in airstrikes carried out either by Russian or Syrian regime warplanes on Monday, rescue workers and a human rights monitoring group reported. The airstrikes targeted the village of Haas, in rebel-held Idlib province. The White Helmets civil defense group said that 20 of the dead were children while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that there were 15 dead children. The White Helmets tweeted that a “complex of 3 schools was targeted…including a double tap.” A double tap refers to the Syrian government and Russian planes’ tactic of dropping their payload, flying off, and then circling back to bomb first responders on the scene.
BBC News explained the significance of Idlib to both the Syrian opposition and the Bashar al-Assad regime: “Idlib is where civilians from other parts of Syria have been evacuated after being forced to surrender by years of siege and bombardment by government forces.”
The Assad regime, which has perpetrated countless atrocities against Syrian civilians, is staunchly backed in its brutality by Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah, as well as a variety of Iranian-backed, -trained, and –funded Shiite militias. The Syrian government has carried out the systematic torture and indiscriminate murder of civilians through the use of barrel bombs, massacres, intentional starvation, and chemical weapon attacks, leading to the death of over 400,000 people and the world’s largest refugee crisis since the Second World War.
The document is from the 7th century BCE, according to radiocarbon dating, making it one of three existing Hebrew papyri from that time period, The Times of Israel reported. It is the first non-biblical source to mention Jerusalem from that time, and predates the Dead Sea Scrolls by several centuries.
The papyrus measures 4.3 inches by 1 inch and describes the shipment of two wineskins to Jerusalem. “From the female servant of the king, from Naharata [a place near Jericho] two wineskins to Jerusalem,” the text reads. According to the IAA, the Naharata mentioned in the text is the same location “that is referred to in the description of the border between Ephraim and Benjamin in Joshua 16:7: ‘And it went down from Janohah to Ataroth, and to Naʽarat, and came to Jericho, and went out at Jordan.’”
The fact that the shipment was recorded on papyrus rather than cheaper pottery shards suggests that it was sent to someone prominent. Israel Prize-winning biblical scholar Shmuel Ahituv said that the term “female servant of the king” indicates that an important woman sent the wineskins to Jerusalem, the capital of the Judean Kingdom.