Jerusalem Doesn’t Need UNESCO
The Fellowship | May 4, 2017
As we’ve told you this week, the latest anti-Israel resolution at the U.N. has been both a blessing and a curse – again denying Jewish ties to Jerusalem while also highlighting a growing support for the Jewish state among the international community. Israel Hayom’s Ariel Bolstein picks up on this, writing that Jerusalem is the “bedrock of Jewish nationhood,” a fact that Israel – and not the United Nations – must continue to communicate to the rest of the world:
With or without UNESCO, Jerusalem is the bedrock of Jewish nationhood, the capital of Israel. Everyone else is only a guest. There is no Jerusalem without Israel and there is no Israel without Jerusalem. We, the Jews, will try to welcome any and all guests with open arms, but we will make an even greater effort to establish our ownership — to tighten our grip on all parts of the city and erase any attempt to cast doubt over its future, whether the attempt is made by an unimportant and useless international organization like UNESCO or by anyone else. We have returned to the cisterns and the marketplace and the square, and no person can stop the return of the Jewish people to their rightful home…
There is still room for Israel to improve its efforts in the international arena. A sizeable portion of the countries in the world are astoundingly ignorant about the Jewish state, its past and its current situation. Israeli UNESCO Ambassador Carmel Shama Hacohen’s powerful speech in response to this week’s decision may just have been strong enough to penetrate this wall of ignorance. But sophisticated and effective tools are required to disseminate the material to the relevant audiences. Establishing a network of Israeli cultural centers in capitals around the world could be this tool. France, Italy, Germany, Great Britain and even smaller countries have operated similar centers for decades. In our interconnected global village, a network such as this would allow Israel to speak directly to the people of London, Paris or Rome without the information middlemen in the media or international organizations. If we want them to learn about Jerusalem from us, rather than from UNESCO, we will have to keep making strides in this field.