Archaeology in the Shadow of Governments “Holy Land”. An analysis of the stories of what happens to Israeli-Palestinian cultural heritage during conflicts
From the Temple Mount to the Israelite tower to the convent, the significance of excavations in Jerusalem is unmatched. Layer by layer reveals the history of mankind in the holy land. But these excavations are more than just an archaeological striving used to fortify a national identity for Israel and Palestine. One artifact at a time will be the one that separates Palestinian and Israeli Jerusalem. Archaeology plays a fundamental role in the conflict between Israel and Palestine. Nationalism and archaeology often go hand in hand – some even claim that the two are inseparable. In Israel however these nationalist impulses have caused archaeology to transcend its academic sphere and become a political tool. The practice of archaeology in Israel is embedded in the national discourse of identity construction and has serious repercussions on domestic policy. From archaeological remains evidence of precedence and justified claims over land is required. The relationship between nationalism and archaeology is a topic that has become increasingly popular in the scientific works over the past 20 years. The full UNESCO membership of Palestine projects the Israeli-Palestinian conflict into a globalized dimension, but at the same time reinforces the legacy of humanity’s policy of the nation state concept and can pave the way for new political scenarios.