Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Palestinian Rioters Vandalize Joseph’s Tomb in Pre-Passover Attack

'The vandalism of Joseph’s Tomb is a serious event and a grave violation of freedom of worship in one of the holiest places for every Jew...'

(Jacob Bruns, Headline USA) Joseph’s tomb in the West Bank was twice damaged by rioters during clashes with Israeli forces in the leadup to the Jewish celebration of Passover, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The burial site is not that of St. Joseph, the venerated stepfather of Jesus Christ, but rather of the Old Testament prophet Joseph, known for his coat of many colors, who was sold into slavery, resulting in the future Israelites’ years of trial and tribulation in Egypt, according to the book of Genesis.

The site has been acknowledged as Joseph’s resting place since the 2nd Century A.D., although the current “burial-chamber” structure dates from 1868, according to the Madain Project.

Palestinian vandals from the nearby city of Jenin set fire to the site while damaging Joseph’s gravestone and doing further damage to the building.

According to the Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, the Palestinian state will not allow further attacks on holy sites, and promised that authorities would find and punish the rioters.

“We will not accept this kind of an attack on a place that is holy to us, particularly on the eve of Passover,” the Prime Minister said. “We will reach the rioters. Of course, we will make sure to rebuild what they destroyed, as we always do,”

Benny Gantz, the Israeli Defense Minister, also noted that the attacks would be met with a vigorous response.

He said that he and his department were “extremely serious,” and in addition “sent a ‘sharp message’ to the Palestinian Authority about it.”

Gantz emphasized the ways in which this attack and those like it affect Jews, and suggested that such terrorism does little to mend the poor religious relations that have long defined the Israel-Palestine conflict.

“The vandalism of Joseph’s Tomb is a serious event and a grave violation of freedom of worship in one of the holiest places for every Jew,” Gantz said. “It violates the feelings of the entire Jewish nation, especially when it occurs during the Muslim holy month.”

He concluded by noting that he would exercise all the powers of the state in order to restore the monument and in order to crack down on future acts of vandalism.

“The State of Israel will take action to ensure that the site will be refurbished and quickly returned to its original condition,” Gantz said. “In addition, we will take all the measures necessary to prevent such incidents.”

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