Oy.Â So the Simon Wiesenthal Center is hoping to build a Museum of Tolerance in Jerusalem.
According to the Washington Post:
The Wiesenthal Center says the museum was conceived to promote coexistence in a city that is holy to Muslims, Jews and Christians and is claimed by both Israelis and Palestinians as a capital.
Plans call for a conference center, a theater and museums for adults and children with exhibits covering Jewish history and Israel’s relations with its Arab neighbors. The center was designed by the renowned architect Frank Gehry.
Well that sounds pretty nice, right?
Oh, except that Museum of Tolerance is going to be builtâ€¦wait for itâ€¦on ancient Islamic cemetery.Â Which some Muslims are not too happy about.Â They filed an appeal with the Israeli Supreme Court, but it was struck down today, so construction will continue on the project after a two year hiatus.
“All citizens of Israel, Jews and non-Jews, are the real beneficiaries of this decision,” Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Wiesenthal Center the center, said in a statement.
But Zahi Nujidat, a spokesman for the Israeli Islamic movement, condemned the court for what he called “clear religious and ethnic oppression.”
The court sought to address religious demands for respecting the dead by giving the project 60 days to agree with the state-run Antiquities Authority on a plan for either removing human remains for reburial or installing a barrier between the museum’s foundation and the ground below to avoid disturbing graves.
Man. A Museum of Tolerance whose foundation, literally, it’s foundation is inherently intolerant.Â Only in Israel.Â There is a very tiny silver lining of tolerance, though:
The museum’s Muslim opponents found unexpected allies among ultra-Orthodox Jews, who aren’t known for sympathizing with Arab causes but who care about preserving graves. Orthodox Jews often disrupt construction when graves are uncovered. Typically the problem is solved by slightly altering a project.
Well, that’s nice, at least.Â ::Sigh::