Friday, December 21, 2018

Is Jerusalem's Tomb of the Kings a holy site?

THEOLOGICAL POLITICS: The Battle Brewing Between the French and ultra-Orthodox Over a Jerusalem Archaeological Site Ultra-Orthodox demands to pray at the Tomb of the Kings – the grandest burial compound in Jerusalem – have kindled fears among the French of an Israeli land grab under their flag in East Jerusalem (Nir Hasson, Haaretz premium).
These protests are yet another round in a long-standing historic struggle over control of one of the most beautiful archaeological sites in Jerusalem, which has been closed to the public for years. On the one side stands the government of France and on the other, Haredi and right-wing Israeli factions. Israel’s Antiquities Authority is in favor of opening the site to the public, but does share the French concerns that the site might befall the same fate of many other archaeological sites in the city, which were transformed from mere archaeology and tourism sites into holy sites and then appropriated from the public’s domain.
I won't try to excerpt any more. The situation is complicated and has a long history. But you should read this article, because you will learn a lot about what makes a "holy site" in Israel and what this means.

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