by Nidra Poller
In October 2016 UNESCO plunged to new depths, adopting a resolution that, identifying Israel as the Occupying Power, obliterates the 3,000 year bond between Judaism and Jerusalem and splices the Christian connection to its Judaic source. As if naming the Temple Mount "Al-Haram al-sharif" could succeed where a century of Islamic violence has failed to annihilate Israeli sovereignty. Pitiful UNESCO. The resolution is a pornographic scrawl on a bathroom wall
The intrepid, dashing filmmaker Pierre Rehov has composed a crushing riposte to UNESCO negationists. Unveiling Jerusalem is a concise, incisive, supremely cinematographic demonstration of the reality of Jerusalem "the rebellious, the prophetic, the conquered..." Visually striking, energetically paced, graphically insightful, the film goes beyond a compelling argument for Israeli sovereignty and approaches the broader question of coexistence between Israel and the Palestinians, between Islam and the Other. How do you share a religious site, a city, a region with people that utter outlandish claims in support of outworn hopes of conquest?
Smartly captured by Rehov's camera, Shakh Omar Awadallah Kiswami, director of Al Aqsa mosque; Yussuf Natseh, Director of Islamic archeology; Mahmud Al Habbash, PA Minister of Religious Affairs; and an Al Aqsa mosque imam, betraying their albeit limited intelligence, outdo each other in preposterous statements. They praise the UNESCO decision confirming the Muslims' divine right to Haram al-Sharif, granted in the Quran and affirmed by Allah for 1400 years. Haram al Sharif and the Buraq wall [Kotel or Western Wall] are all purely Islamic assets. There is no sign of any Jewish temple on the so-called Temple Mount, no sign of any Christian presence. The whole area [Temple Mount] is al Aqsa, it is holy only for Muslims. "Others can choose their own places of worship without competing or trying to take this place which God and UNESCO both agree that it belongs only to Muslims." Since 1967 Jews have been excavating...they haven't found a shred of evidence of the "alleged temple." Al Aqsa Director Kiswami, standing straight and tall in his robes of dignity, his mind coiffed with a two-tone turban, spills out the ultimate truth: When Mohamed came, the mosques were already there. The first mosque (in Mecca) was built by Adam. The second (al Aqsa) came 40 years later, so it was built either by Adam or one of his sons. The PA Minister of religious affairs declares "they are purely Islamic and Palestinian assets." And the allegedly moderate PA president for life, Mahmoud Abbas splatters and blusters blessings on every drop of blood shed for Jerusalem. Jerusalem is ours, Al Aqsa is ours, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher is ours...they [Jews] must not defile al Aqsa with their filthy feet.
These grotesque claims pronounced with guttural spitfire are skillfully interwoven with elements of archeological, historical, and theological evidence of the existence of the first and second temples. Genocidal temple denial is juxtaposed with passages from Flavius Josephus, excerpts from Islamic documents attesting to the existence of the temples, 3-D animations of the temples accompanied by words of praise for their sumptuous beauty, and artefacts from small shekels to huge vessels and cornices with Hebrew inscriptions that speak for themselves. Patient, painstaking labor, honest unbiased study, tireless devotion and exceptional skills compose, from beginning to end of this captivating film, the reality of Jerusalem based on concrete evidence, as rational human beings can perceive it.
Is Jerusalem the subject of a knotty debate between equally valid though conflicting interests? How can you debate with an "authority" who says the mosque was built by Adam? How can you negotiate with a political leader that declares "it is all ours and always has been"? We are reminded that then President Clinton was dumbfounded when Yasser Arafat claimed, at the July 2000 Camp David talks, that there never was a Jewish temple on the Temple Mount. The peacemaking American president had naively, perhaps stubbornly, believed that his role was to hash out competing real estate claims!
Unveiling Jerusalem exposes, by the sum greater than the whole of its parts, the fatal error of peace talks, peace process, two-state solution, and a two-faced Jerusalem capital. Rational pragmatic solutions cannot come from the minds of these authorities that make up the story as they go along, tell bald-faced lies, deny the evidence of history, artefacts, and the writings of their own people. Exterminationist Jew-hater Haj Amin Husseini nevertheless wrote that the existence of Solomon's temple is beyond dispute. The Temple Mount is labeled "Mount Moriah" on maps drafted by Jordanian authorities during their illegal occupation of Jerusalem. Tacitus cautioned Titus against destroying Herod's magnificent temple renowned throughout the civilized world.
Unveiling Jerusalem is punctuated by 3-D animations of Solomon's and Herod's temples, while treasures of that ancient past re-emerge in the foreground as patient archeologists sift through tons of dirt dumped when the Waqf excavated the foundations of Al Aqsa to build a hug underground mosque- a concrete action of replacement theology. MK Avi Dichter smiles: "From this criminal disaster we are making a treasure."
The rich and varied iconography -Persian miniatures, illuminated manuscripts, period documents, archive photos- is astutely incrusted in footage of interviews, interwoven with scenes of archeological digs, a film about Jesus, shabab violence at Al Aqsa mosque, the beauties of modern day Jerusalem... Words become images. Mordechai Kedar, with his jovial good sense and thorough knowledge of Arabic and Islam, restores geographical accuracy to tales of Mohamed's journey from the closer mosque to the further mosque... in the Arabian Peninsula... nowhere near 1erusalem. Later, in a period of internecine conflict, the Umayyads made Jerusalem a temporary substitute for pilgrims from Damascus forbidden to enter Mecca. Using the same technique we observe today, of making up the story as they go along, they gave Jerusalem a veneer of sanctity by situating the prophet's (dreamed) night journey there. From the Caliph Umar, led to the Temple Mount by a Jewish convert, to the present day purveyors of temple denial, the mechanism of mimetic jealousy works its destructive curse.
Reverend Dr. Petra Heldt pinpoints flare ups of incendiary Temple denial: in the 7th century Muslim conquest of Jerusalem, in 1948 with the establishment of the State of Israel, in the 1990s to the present day. These periods of infatuation alternate with centuries of neglect. Black & white photos from 1966 show the Dome of the Rock plaza overgrown with weeds. Reverend Heldt and the Greek Orthodox priest Gabriel Naddaf embrace the ties that bind Judaism to Jerusalem and Christianity to Judaism. They, along with all of the experts that appear in the film, acknowledge multiple connections to Jerusalem, from paganism through successive conquests, not excluding Islam, without diluting Jewish preeminence. Only under Jewish sovereignty can other religions enjoy their share of Jerusalem's sanctity. Avi Dichter concludes: They want to make it like Mecca, forbidden to non-Muslims. Jerusalem will remain under Israeli sovereignty. To think Israel will give it over to be labelled al Aqsa... No, that's not going to work.
By its talented visual composition, Unveiling Jerusalem goes beyond the qualities of the elegant filmed essay. Astute use of graphic material, skillful cutting and editing, and a sustained rhythm give a high concentration of information in a short time span, with great clarity that makes it possible to assimilate on first viewing, but invites repeated passages that yield even greater comprehension. This is definitely a film to buy, to own, to offer as a gift. And to place, somehow, in the hands of the foolish officials and opinion-makers that stumble blindly through veils of darkness.
Unveiling Jerusalem is a stunning rebuke to UNESCO and to all nations that voted for or did not vote against the shameful resolution. We often hear that it's no use presenting the facts to people who do not base their opinions on facts. Pierre Rehov's film is a brilliant demonstration of how it can be done effectively. By giving voice to the forces that contradict the facts, Unveiling Jerusalem shows that UNESCO is siding with the evil clownery of enemies of the civilization the organization purports to defend. The logical next step would be a resolution declaring that the Al Aqsa Mosque was built by Adam... or one of his sons.
For information on Pierre Rehov's films, trailers, etc.: http://www.unveilingjerusalem.com/
Nidra Poller is an American novelist and journalist living in Paris since 1972. She has published in the Wall Street Journal Europe, New English Review, and other outlets. Ms. Poller is the author of Troubled Dawn and "The Black Flag of Jihad Stalks the Republique "
Read more: Family Security Matters http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/detail/unveiling-jerusalem-a-film-by-pierre-rehov?f=must_reads#ixzz53mfdMn77