Thursday, October 22, 2015

Holiness To Jews In Hebron Taken By UNESCO

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                          
Housing Cave holding Jewish Patriarchs and Matriarchs in Hebron, Judea.

The most holy site in Jerusalem to Jews is the Temple Mount in Jerusalem where the 1st and then the 2nd Temple had been built.  The 2nd most holy site is the Cave of Machpelah-the Tomb of the Patriarchs, which UNESCO took from Israeli protection and gave to the rioting Palestinians.  Why?  Well, it happens to be situated in Hebron, now a Palestinian town.  The Palestinians call it "Sanctuary of Abraham or the Ibrahimi Mosque (Arabicالحرم الإبراهيمي‎, "  This was a legal transaction and is cited in the Torah.  

UNESCO Declares Tomb of Patriarchs and Rachel's Tomb Muslim Sites
The vote in Paris was 26 in favor, six against and 15 abstentions. The US, Germany, United Kingdom, Estonia and Netherlands, Czech Republic voted against the resolution while a number of other European countries such as Albania, Austria, Ethiopia, Angola, France, Spain, and Italy were among those that abstained.
This means they will be in the hands of the Jordanians.  What religious leader could there be from the Palestinians?  
View of Cave of Patriarchs and the Tel Rumeida neighborhood in Hebron
Hebron, also called in Hebrew, Kiriath-Arba, is a very ancient city in Judah, 18 miles south of Jerusalem.  Before Abraham's time, it was controlled by the Hittites.
Abraham, the father of Ishmael and Isaac, had bought the plot of land 3,700 years ago with this cave from from a Hittite when he needed a plot to bury his wife and niece, Sarah. Ishmael's mother was Hagar, the handmaiden of Sarah and daughter of the Pharaoh.  The Bible connects the Hittites with the Canaanites being some lived in Eretz Yisrael at an early period.  They were one of the 7 different people from whom the Israelites conquered Canaan.  Later, they joined up with King David and were warriors in his army. King  Solomon, David's son,  married some Hittite women.

  Today, a mosque stands on this very site.  This became the family burial place and holds not only Sarah but also Abraham, son Isaac, grandson Jacob and his mother,  Rebecca and her sister, Leah.  Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Rebecca and Leah are our Jewish Patriarchs and Matriarchs.  Rachel, Jacob's wife, is buried near Bethlehem where she died in childbirth with Benjamin.
Grandson of Abraham is Jacob and his family, standing with Rachel and baby Joseph, Leah with  6 children, and their handmaidens, Zilpah and Bilhah and their children by Jacob
Both the Tomb of the Patriarchs and Rachel's Tomb have just been handed over to the Palestinians who have no connection to Rachel and only to Abraham by UNESCO, an arm of the United Nations.  They have given in to demands of the Palestinians because they are now living in Hebron and Bethlehem and hate Jews, showing it and their decision not to be peaceful by rioting and knifing  Jews in Jerusalem at this very time of this decision.

Abraham (2nd millenniuim BCE)  had bought a double cave.  A massive building covers it in which many artifacts from the Early Israelite Period of the past 30 centuries have been uncovered from the days of Herod.  It has been a place for gatherings and Jews come to pray at the graves of their Patriarchs.

Moses (1391- 1271 BCE)  had died outside of Canaan and Joshua took over as leader of the Exodus from Egypt.  He assigned this very piece of land to be Hebron to Caleb, one of the leaders of the tribe of Judah and a member of the Kenizzite family,  and it became a levitical city and a city of refuge.  David reigned there for 7 1/2 years before making his capital in Jerusalem.                  
Jews lived in Hebron during the Byzantine Period and under Arab rule.  The modern city of today is somewhat to the east of the historical location and was one of the 4 sacred towns to Jews; Hebron, Jerusalem, Tiberias and Safed.  Jews lived in Hebron throughout recent centuries and in 1890 had a population of 1,500 with a yeshivot and other religious schools.  The great Lithuanian yeshivah of Slobodka was transferred there in 1925.

In  1929, while the USA suffered from the worst stockmarket crash of all time, the Arabs massacred 67 Jews in Hebron, instigated and encouraged by the hateful Haj Amain al-Husseini, the Sherif of Jerusalem.  At that time, 700 Jews were living in Hebron.  Survivors fled from Hebron in order to continue living.  About 30 Jewish families returned 2 years later in 1931.  The Arabs rioted again in 1936, chasing any Jews living there away.

We know that May 14, 1948 was the birth of modern-day Israel, verified and legalized through both the League of Nations and the United Nations, a birth that was voted on and accepted by the majority of the world's nations. Hebron's population in 1967 was 38,310.  After the Six-Day War of 1967, a number of Jews had returned to Hebron and established the Kiryat Arba quarter east of the city.  This section held 3,700 Jews in 1988. 
 It was then that the Chief Rabbi of Israel's Defense Forces, Major-General Rabbi Shlomo Goren, was the 1st Jew to enter the Cave of Machpelah.  "Many restrictions are imposed on Jewish prayers and customs at the Tomb of the Patriarchs" because it was still controlled "by the Muslim Waqf (Religious Trust) that took control during the Arab conquest." 

 Moshe Dayan had allowed this Jordanian control over the Temple Mount as well because of the Dome of the Rock mosque there, too.   It was his step towards having peaceful relations with the Jordanians. He was Israel's Minister of Defense during Six Day War. Before that, he was in the army and was chief of general staff of the Israeli army from 1953 to 58.  He joined the Knesset in 1959.  Today 700 Jews are living in Hebron and 250,000 Arabs.  

Throughout history, Jews have seen foreign conquerors and invaders come and use the site for their own purposes depending on their religion.  The Byzantines and Crusaders turned the spot into a church.  Muslims built a mosque here when they conquered Hebron 700 years ago.  They then forbid Jews entry to the Tomb.  They were not even allowed past the 7th step on the staircase outside the building.

With Jerusalem's liberation in 1967, 300,000 people have come yearly to visit the Tomb of the Patriarchs.  It is divided into 3 rooms:  Ohel (tent) Avraham, Ohel Yitzhak (Isaac), and Ohel Ya'akov (Jacob).  Jews have not been given access to Ohel Yitzhak, the largest room, with the exception of 10 days a year.  Why this room is a mystery to me.
Abbas, Chairman of Palestine Authority
Now, with this ruling, will Jews be allowed to visit their holy sites?  We know that Palestinians have already said that they will not allow any Jews to live in their Palestine, once they have it.  Under Israeli law, all religions have been free to visit their holy sites.  There is no comparison between the 2 people.  When under Muslim ruling, this is how they treated Jewish sites.

"Upon its capture by the Arab Legion, the Jewish Quarter of the Old City was destroyed and its residents expelled. Fifty-eight synagogues—some hundreds of years old—were destroyed, their contents looted and desecrated. Some Jewish religious sites were turned into chicken coops or animal stalls. The Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, where Jews had been burying their dead for over 2500 years, was ransacked; graves were desecrated; thousands of tombstones were smashed and used as building material, paving stones or for latrines in Arab Legion army camps. The Intercontinental Hotel was built on top of the cemetery and graves were demolished to make way for a highway to the hotel. The Western Wall became a slum area."  

The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
Victor Sharpe, writer

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