From its website:
In 2016, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages, based on a recommendation by the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
At the time, the Forum said that 40 per cent of the estimated 6,700 languages spoken around the world were in danger of disappearing. The fact that most of these are indigenous languages puts the cultures and knowledge systems to which they belong at risk.
In addition, indigenous peoples are often isolated both politically and socially in the countries they live in, by the geographical location of their communities, their separate histories, cultures, languages and traditions.
And yet, they are not only leaders in protecting the environment, but their languages represent complex systems of knowledge and communication and should be recognized as a strategic national resource for development, peace building and reconciliation.
They also foster and promote unique local cultures, customs and values which have endured for thousands of years. Indigenous languages add to the rich tapestry of global cultural diversity. Without them, the world would be a poorer place.
In a world that isn’t antisemitic, Hebrew would be featured as the one and only success story in reviving a language to everyday use. If you want to learn how to preserve and revitalize an indigenous language, you should be sending all your experts to Israel.
But Hebrew isn’t mentioned as an indigenous language by the UN.
Everything this site says about indigenous peoples apply to the Jews throughout most of the past two millennia – “often isolated both politically and socially in the countries they live in, by the geographical location of their communities, their separate histories, cultures, languages and traditions.”
Hebrew is indeed the language of the indigenous people of Israel and Judah. But the UN and UNESCO will never acknowledge that, because that would show that it it the Jewish people, not the Arabs, who are the original (or oldest remaining) inhabitants of the area later to be known as Palestine.
Sometimes, antisemitism isn’t seen in what is said, but in what is studiously avoided. Ignoring Jews and Hebrew in this initiative is not only an indication of deep hatred, but it is also counterproductive to the entire point of the celebration – because the Jewish people are probably the only success story of an indigenous people who were reborn with their own political entity, using their own original (but modernized) language.
Jews and Hebrew and Israel are the models that should be emulated, and they would be if the UN wasn’t so incredibly filled with hate.
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