Official Israeli archaeology is legitimating the ethnic cleansing of East Jerusalem in defiance of basic precepts of international law, writes Vacy Vlazna
"De-Arabising the history of Palestine is another crucial element of the ethnic cleansing. 1,500 years of Arab and Muslim rule and culture in Palestine are trivialised, evidence of its existence is being destroyed, and all this is done to make the absurd connection between the ancient Hebrew civilization and today's Israel. The most glaring example of this today is in Silwan, (Wadi Hilwe) a town adjacent to the Old City of Jerusalem with some 50,000 residents. Israel is expelling families from Silwan and destroying their homes because it claims that king David built a city there some 3,000 years ago.
"Thousands of families will be made homeless so that Israel can build a park to commemorate a king that may or may not have lived 3,000 years ago. Not a shred of historical evidence exists that can prove king David ever lived, yet Palestinian men, women, children and the elderly along with their schools and mosques, churches and ancient cemeteries and any evidence of their existence must be destroyed and then denied so that Zionist claims to exclusive rights to the land may be substantiated." -- Miko Peled, Israeli dissident.
Indeed, Israeli archaeology has become a state apparatus for the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in the Zionist fairyland, aka the "City of David Archaeological Park" located in the Palestinian village of Silwan in East Jerusalem.
East Jerusalem is the capital of the proposed Palestine state. It was illegally annexed by Israel in the 1967 War. Prohibiting the annexation of territories gained by military conquest is one of the major principles of international law. The international community does not recognise Israel's annexation of East Jerusalem, but nevertheless over 50,000 illegal premises have been built for 250,000 illegal Israeli colonists in the city.
Nazi Germany/Zionist Palestine
The goal of the archaeological judaisation of Jerusalem is to transform Jerusalem into the "City of David", the capital of Greater Israel, by eradicating the mixed ethnic composition of the Palestinian and Jewish population of East Jerusalem to make the city have a solely Jewish identity and unify East and West Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty.
The judaising in Silwan is being executed by the Israeli government, the municipality of Jerusalem, and the right-wing Israeli colonist (settler) organisation Elad through the revocation of residency rights, absentee property laws, discriminatory taxation policies, home demolitions, transfer of Palestinian residents, replacement of Arabic place names with Hebrew names, and the expansion of settlements, which Richard Falk, UN Special Rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories, has describes "as a form of ethnic cleansing" and therefore a crime against humanity under the statutes of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Article 53 of the Geneva Convention also states that "any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons is prohibited."
Financial support for this and other judaising programmes comes from hundreds of moneyed Zionist organisations and foundations worldwide. In 2005, Israeli archaeologist Eilat Mazar announced that she had discovered the palace of king David, supposedly built in c 10 century BCE. The excavations in Silwan have been funded by the Shalem Centre, whose Zionist neo-cons have invested heavily in the judaisation efforts to give historicity to the David myth.
Shalem's founder, Ron Lauder of the Estee Lauder cosmetics empire, is an uncompromising Zionist extremist, a Likudnik and a major shareholder in Israeli TV Channel 10, as well as the current chair of the Jewish National Fund (JNF) and president of the World Jewish Congress (JWC), which acts to normalise the Israeli occupation. Curiously, in January 2012, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and chief negotiator Saab Ereikat had a closed meeting with Lauder in London, even though the Palestinian team refused to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
The Shalem Centre also has associations with Sheldon Adelson, a casino billionaire who is a Likud supporter and a key financial backer of the Newt Gingrich campaign in the US and Gingrich's "Palestinians are an invented people" idiocy. From 2007 to 2009, the eponymous Adelson Institute for Strategic Studies at the Shalem Centre was directed by Natan Sharansky, who is now chair of the Jewish Agency for Israel, a quasi-governmental organisation advancing Jewish immigration to Israel, including to the illegal colonies.
The Jewish Agency's 2008 core budget was $314,760,000. Established by the World Zionist Organisation (WZO) in 1929, it has always had the commitment to promote "the unity of the Jewish people, its bond to its historic homeland Eretz Yisrael, and the centrality of the State of Israel and Jerusalem, its capital." The Jewish Agency acts as the agent of the Israeli government in assigning land to Jewish colonists in the Israeli-occupied territories. Its new chair is religious Zionist Avraham Duvdevani, who has served as head of the WZO's Settlement Division, co-chair of the board of the Jewish National Fund, and a member of the Jewish Agency's executive board. Over a quarter of WZO delegates are orthodox Zionists, attesting to their sinister and rising influence.
The Shalem Centre works closely with Elad, a right-wing colonist organisation and militia that advocates illegal Jewish colonial settlement in East Jerusalem by acquiring, in cahoots with the Jewish National Fund and its subsidiary Hemanuta, Palestinian properties through threats, false depositions, forged documents, posthumous witness signatures and militant house take-overs.
Elad is mainly funded by the tax-exempt "charities" David Incorporated and the Irving Moskowitz Foundation, which illegally funnel monies to Zionist political objectives. Moskowitz, a casino magnate, is a hardcore Zionist and founder of the Friends of Ateret Cohanim organisation, which finances Jews to live in East Jerusalem and owns about 70 properties in the Muslim quarter of the city. Daniel Luria, its chief fund-raiser, has commented that "our [fund-raising] activity in New York goes solely towards land redemption." In 2005, Ateret Cohanim instigated, without license, an archaeological project tunneling 20 metres toward the Al-Aqsa compound, causing damage to Palestinian homes in violation of the law.
Elad has been given, without tender, exclusive control over the City of David Archaeological Park, including a tunnel network that is being dug around and under the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Elad's lucrative tours of the historic sites, although there is no historical evidence of David or Solomon's existence, spout historical fabrications from the Jewish biblical narrative, such as the Byzantine water pit now falsified as "Jeremiah's pit." The 8,000-year-old Palestinian-Canaanite narrative is glossed over.
In December 2011, Australian listeners were treated to a fantasy tour of the so-called Palace of David by ABC television presenter Rachael Kohn and archaeologist Avner Goren, both of whom gushed fairytales about the mythical king, absurdly comparing him to George Washington and sidestepping his dubious authenticity by urging trust in the Bible. However, in archaeological circles there is of course ongoing controversy about whether the Biblical texts can be equated to history. In the 1970s, archaeologist William Dever suggested that rather than "Biblical Archaeology," the term "Syro-Palestinian Archaeology" (not Syro-Israeli) was more appropriate and this is used in academic circles.
Archaeologists who follow the minimalist or Copenhagen School "conclude that the books of the Hebrew Bible were written during the Persian (or Hellenistic) period," archaeologists say. "The historical books actually contain made-up stories (that may have exploited some vague, ancient legends), through which the local organised refugee population provided itself with a mythic cover-(hi)story that linked it to the land and to a religion. This conclusion has two important corollaries: Bible narratives about the political, social, and intellectual world of ancient Israel from Abraham to the temple's destruction lack probative value; any narrative about what actually happened to the real people living in the central mountain areas of ancient Israel during what archaeologists call the Iron Age must, accordingly, be based on archaeological data alone. No other authentic sources for their history are available."
It is now widely accepted that the Bible originated in the seventh century BCE, 300 years after David, and other historical aberrations encompass the palaces officially ascribed to Solomon in Megiddo, which are dated long after Solomon's time. Cities conquered by Joshua in the 14th century BCE were destroyed well before that era. Archaeologist Daniel Gavron comments that "the [biblical] story of Abraham's journey from Ur of the Chaldees, the Patriarchs, the Exodus, Sinai, and the conquest of Canaan, all these were apparently based on legends."
In 2004, archaeologist Yuval Goren admitted that he had examined "a seemingly endless line of fake biblical texts of various kinds. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of such forgeries referring especially to the time of the First Temple. It will not be an exaggeration to say that the disciplines of biblical history and archaeology have been contaminated to such an extent that no unprovenanced written source seems to be reliable anymore."
Proof of David's existence rests on a piece of stone found at Tel Dan in northern Galilee (not Jerusalem) inscribed with the words "Beit David," which could mean "House of David," or "Beloved," but not king David. The same is true of the shard found at Tel Safi with the name "Goliath" inscribed on it. According to archaeologists, this "almost certainly did not belong to David's Goliath. If it does say 'Goliath', then it only shows that there was such a personal name used in the region at approximately the correct chronological period." The first ancient reference to an Israelite king is found in an eighth-century BCE Assyrian document recording that "king Ahab of Israel sent 2,000 chariots and 10,000 soldiers."
Meanwhile, sumud (steadfastness), life and land are synonymous in the Palestinian soul. King David may be a myth, but it is the modern indigenous Palestinians, outcasts in their own land, who stand alone with the stones of sumud in their hands, daily facing off the militant aliyah hordes backed by the Zionist Goliaths of multi-billion-dollar empires, Christian Zionist offerings, the servile US Congress, a depraved UK and EU and a contemptibly inadequate United Nations.
The writer is coordinator of the organisation Justice for Palestine Matters.
This entry was posted on Feb 18, 2012 at 08:08:33 am and is filed under Israel, Boycott, Sanctions, Divestment, Apartheid State. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed, or leave a response (below) , or trackback from your own site .
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