Back in 2009, the Palestinian Arabs were jubilant that they managed to get Jerusalem declared to be the “capital of Arab culture” for the year, in between Damascus and Doha.
It looks like this UNESCO/Arab League initiative has ended, as the last capital of Arab culture was Sfax, Tunisia in 2016.
So the Palestinians got the Arab League to declare Jerusalem to be the permanent capital of Arab culture!
At a meeting in Cairo, the Palestinians made it clear yet again that their interest in Jerusalem has nothing to do with culture and everything to do with Israel. Their representative said, “The identity of Jerusalem is well established and the attempts of the occupation will collapse in the face of the steadfastness of Palestinians and Jerusalemites in particular.” He “reviewed the Israeli attempts to obliterate the Arab identity of the city.”
The Palestinian delegation also presented two films, the first about the destruction of the Mughrabi Gate and the second about the theft of the Palestinian heritage by Israel.
Nothing about how important Jerusalem is to them. Only about how awful it is that Jews claim it to be theirs.
Richard Landes, in his talk during my symposium in Jerusalem on Sunday, described the Palestinian desire for the city as “mimetic envy” – a desire that is wholly driven by someone else possessing something you don’t have, even though you showed no interest when you did have it.
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