web analytics
January 30, 2015 / 10 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


UNESCO: Postponing ‘Jewish Connection to Israel’ Exhibit to June

You'd never know from UNESCO's "postponement" announcement that the exhibition was called off because of Arab pressure, rather than because the exhibition wasn't ready.
UNESCO poster announcing its jointly sponsored exhibition with the Simon Wiesenthal Center

UNESCO poster announcing its jointly sponsored exhibition with the Simon Wiesenthal Center
Photo Credit: Simon Weisenthal Center

A brouhaha broke out last week after UNESCO summarily canceled the opening of an exhibit it had long-promised to co-sponsor with the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

UNESCO’s reason for the last-minute cancellation was that it had been told by the Arab League that the exhibition might adversely impact the ongoing “peace process” negotiations intended to achieve peace between the Palestinian Arabs and Israel.

On Tuesday, Jan. 21 – the day after the scheduled opening – UNESCO posted a notice on its website:

Following numerous requests for information regarding the Exhibition, “People, Book, Land – The 3,500 Year Relationship of the Jewish People to the Holy Land,” UNESCO wishes to reaffirm that the exhibition has not been cancelled but postponed.

UNESCO is in discussions with the Simon Wiesenthal Center to finalize the last points and inaugurate the exhibition in the month of June.

Really?

This announcement might lead one to think that the exhibit wasn’t quite ready.  You certainly would not know, although it is true, that at the time of the original “postponement,” the exhibition materials had already been hung on the walls, thousands of invitations had been sent out, and people were already arriving in Paris in anticipation of the opening event at UNESCO’s headquarters.

This is what actually went down:

Last Tuesday, Jan. 14, the director-general of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) sent a letter to the Simon Wiesenthal Center that despite having agreed two years ago to co-sponsor an educational exhibition, which was vetted by UNESCO-sponsored academics, about the relationship between the Jews and the Holy Land, UNESCO was summarily cancelling the exhibition opening, scheduled for the following Monday, Jan. 20.

Two years in the planning? Two years of paying academics, gathering materials, flying internationally acclaimed historians and other experts in and out, restoring the materials so that they could be displayed. But on the very day that the very first peep was heard from the Arab League, and on the basis of the League’s position – without any room for discussion, negotiation or representation – the exhibit was cancelled.

The leaders of the Wiesenthal Center, dean and founder Rabbi Marvin Hier, and associate dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper, immediately dashed off a letter to Irina Bokova, UNESCO’s director-general.

They started out reminding the good madam that the SWC had followed every request and condition laid down by UNESCO in order to ensure a smooth process and a successful event. Then they reminded her that she was the one who put her own signature on the agreement to launch the joint undertaking. And then they told her what they expected of her:

we insist that you live up to your responsibilities and commitments as the co-organizer of this exhibition by overturning this naked political move that has no place in an institution whose mandate is defined by education, science, and culture — not politics. Failure to do so would confirm to the world that UNESCO is the official address of the Arab narrative of the Middle East.

Rabbi Cooper spoke with The Jewish Press on Thursday, Jan. 16. In Cooper’s view, the exhibition was not pulled because of the content. It is a purely historical body of work. And if there are critics out there who cannot believe the SWC could be trusted to ensure absolute honesty and partiality about the topic, surely the UNESCO-appointed academics made sure that was the case.

“No, pulling the exhibition had nothing to do with the content, it was simply the very idea – truth or not – that Jews have had a 3,500 years long relationship with the Holy Land” that the Arab League could not permit and the League’s displeasure was not something UNESCO could abide for even a single day.

About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

5 Responses to “UNESCO: Postponing ‘Jewish Connection to Israel’ Exhibit to June”

  1. UNESCO – united escape cowards!!! What a bunch of phonies, “I have worked hard for this blind fold, I earned it in denial, I owe it to myself and nobody, but nobody is going to deprive me of my willful blindness! I even know in my heart it’s wrong but I will indulge this senseless maneuver,”
    Signed UNESCO, THE SPINELESS DISORGANIZATION!!!

  2. Alan Kardon says:

    Why June???????????

  3. Cody Flecker says:

    Every six months the US is planning to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. How many years has this nonsense been going on? By June, something else will crop up and the date will be moved to September, etc.etc.etc.

  4. Alan Kardon says:

    Cody Flecker What does that have to do with the exhibit? Maybe the next President will realize that Israel is on our side.

  5. Rick Punkris says:

    The U.S. should curtail their support to the U.N, that bends to the wishes of those opposed to Israel. 3500 year history of Jews and the land of Canaan? I am sure there are those that want to suppress that kind of exhibition.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Jeremy Bird, working for Israeli campaign outfit V15, shown at Ted Talk, May 20, 2014.
V15 US Political Operative Marinated in Hate-Israel Activism
Latest News Stories
Jeremy Bird, working for Israeli campaign outfit V15, shown at Ted Talk, May 20, 2014.

V15′s Bird was marinated in his former boss’s hatred of and blame-only Israel mindset.

Palestinian Child Soldiers

Palestinian Authority child soldiers – a crime against humanity.

Children learn how to shoot rifles to kill Jews.

Maybe, just maybe, the new generation of terrorists will one day turn their guns on their oppressors in Gaza.

You are looking at an "armed insurgent" and not a terrorist, according to the White House.

The White House explains that Taliban is not a terrorist group — it is an “armed insurgency.”

The US in November stopped funding a left-wing group that is helping to campaign against Netanyahu

Super Bowl viewers will have to get along with Scarlett Johansson this year.

Cruz and New York Rep. Zeldin complained to Kerry of Obama’s “relentless harassment.”

A Shin Bet sting nabs Arab Israelis after returning from Syria where they join Al Qaeda and ISIS-linked terror groups — a whole group this month.

That’s it. If you didn’t register your party by now, you’re not running for the upcoming Knesset elections.

Simultaneous explosions in Egypt killed and wounded dozens Thursday night.

National religious voters favoring the new Yachad party headed by Eli Yishai may be wasting their votes.

ISIS threatens to behead Obama, turn the U.S. into a Muslim province, and destroy France and Belgium.

Locked in Auschwitz, their cries for assistance were not heard, so they escaped through an open window, setting off an alarm.

Hezbollah is a terrorist group and terrorist party, but most and worst of all, it is a huge and powerful army.

Lieberman’s issues a disproportionate response to polls that show his party will barely squeeze into the Knesset.

Boehner criticized President Obama for failing to take the threat of terrorism and the Iranian nuclear threat seriously.

More Articles from Lori Lowenthal Marcus
Jeremy Bird, working for Israeli campaign outfit V15, shown at Ted Talk, May 20, 2014.

V15′s Bird was marinated in his former boss’s hatred of and blame-only Israel mindset.

Explosion in El-Arish, in the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula, Jan. 29, 2015.

Simultaneous explosions in Egypt killed and wounded dozens Thursday night.

ISIS threatens to behead Obama, turn the U.S. into a Muslim province, and destroy France and Belgium.

One American, a former Marine, dead in ISIS-affiliate’s terrorist attack on Libyan luxury hotel.

Chicago-style campaigning lands in Israel. Who and what is running this “non-partisan” campaign? Paging Lois Lerner!

Reports that Bowe Bergdahl to be charged with desertion. Five Gitmo prisoners released for his freedom.

Ari Ne’eman, a pioneer in autism self-advocacy, awarded the Ruderman Prize in Inclusion.

French far-rightist politician Jean-Marie Le Pen suffered a facial injury.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/unesco-postponing-jewish-connection-to-israel-exhibit-to-june/2014/01/22/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: