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Media ignores Christian, Muslim rights in UNESCO assault
The failure of the Arab and Islamic Worlds to engage in professional communications has allowed Israel and the biased mainstream American news media to twist and shout falsely against Christian and Muslim rights in Israel, occupied Palestine and in occupied Jerusalem. The accusations against UNESCO are false.
By Ray Hanania
Last week, UNESCO (The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) voted to denounce Israel’s continued erosion and damage to religious sites of Christians and Muslims.
The resolution is very specific and reads like a legal indictment of Israel which is not only damaging Christian and Muslim religious sites but is also discriminating against Christians and Muslims living in Israeli occupied Jerusalem.
But the mainstream news media, responding to the hundred millions of dollars Israel’s government invests in Public Relations and media spin, is reporting that UNESCO is an “anti-Semitic” organization that is “denying” theJewish identity in Jerusalem.
And that is absolutely not true at all.
But when does truth have to do with the Western news media’s coverage of Israel and its oppression of Christians and Muslims in Palestine and especially in Jerusalem?
Media outlets like the racist Huffington Post, the biased Washington Post and New York Times, Politico and so many other mainstream news organizations, are ignoring facts to pimp for Israel, and that’s a shame.
But anyone who reads the resolution can see for themselves what is really happening, which is why the same biased, racist media doesn’t quote from the UNESCO resolution nor do they publish the UNESCO resolution.
They don’t want you to read the resolution because it lists a series of civil rights and human rights violations that Israel is engaged in against Christians and Muslims who live in occupied Jerusalem as oppressed victims of Israeli military and settler brutality.
The fact that the Arab and Islamic World is pathetic when it comes to communications, public relations and media strategy is not an excuse.
Read the resolution yourself and speak out for human rights.
You can visit my personal website at
The Daily Hookah to read
the full text of the resolution.
Here is the statement from UNESCO Director General Ignacio Marin-Irina Bokova:
Paris, 14 October—“As I have stated on many occasions, and most recently during the 40th session of the World Heritage Committee, Jerusalem is the sacred city of the three monotheistic religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam. It is in recognition of this exceptional diversity, and this cultural and religious coexistence, that it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
“The heritage of Jerusalem is indivisible, and each of its communities has a right to the explicit recognition of their history and relationship with the city. To deny, conceal or erase any of the Jewish, Christian or Muslim traditions undermines the integrity of the site, and runs counter to the reasons that justified its inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
“Nowhere more than in Jerusalem do Jewish, Christian and Muslim heritage and traditions share space and interweave to the point that they support each other. These cultural and spiritual traditions build on texts and references, known by all, that are an intrinsic part of the identities and history of peoples. In the Torah, Jerusalem is the capital of King David, where Solomon built the Temple and placed the Ark of the Covenant. In the Bible, Jerusalem is the city of the passion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In the Quran, Jerusalem is the third holiest site in Islam, where Muhammad arrived after his night journey from Al Haram Mosq (Mecca) to Al Aqsa.
“In this microcosm of humanity’s spiritual diversity, different peoples worship the same places, sometimes under different names. The recognition, use of and respect for these names is paramount. The Al Aqsa Mosque / Al-Haram al-Sharif, the sacred shrine of Muslims, is also the Har HaBayit – or Temple Mount – whose Western Wall is the holiest place in Judaism, a few steps away from the Saint Sepulcher and the Mount of Olives revered by Christians.
“The outstanding universal value of the City, and the reason why it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list, lies in this synthesis, which is an appeal for dialogue, not confrontation. We have a collective responsibility to strengthen this cultural and religious coexistence, by the power of acts and also by the power of words. This requirement is stronger than ever, to bridge the divisions that harm the multi-faith character of the Old City.
“When these divisions carry over into UNESCO, an Organization dedicated to dialogue and peace, they prevent us from carrying out our mission. UNESCO’s responsibility is to foster this spirit of tolerance and respect for history, and this is my absolute daily determination as Director-General, with all Member States. I am committed to this under all circumstances, because this is our raison d’être — to recall that we are one single humanity and that tolerance is the only way forward in a world of diversity.”
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Ray Hanania is an award winning political columnist and author. He covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, and for TheArabDailyNews.com, and TheDailyHookah.com.
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com
Visit this link to read Ray's column archive at the ArabNews,com www.arabnews.com/taxonomy/term/10906