Following the tour we conducted yesterday for journalists, Melanie Lidman from the Jerusalem Post published an extensive article about the debris removal from last week. In this article, the police spokesmen is quoted saying:
“Antiquities from 3,000 years ago or 1,500 years ago aren’t going to be in the first 30 cm. [of dirt pulled up with the bushes].”
This quote just proves our point regarding the ignorance of the police about how to preserve the antiquities at the site. These debris heaps are not stratified as like in a regular archaeological site, in which the top 30 cm topsoil represents the recent periods. These heaps are dirt that has already been excavated from the depth of up to 12m near Solomon’s Stables during the 1999 creation of an entrance for the new Al-Marwani Mosque. In addition, the topsoil itself in every archeological site contains a mixture of archaeological artifacts from all periods there was activity at the site.
In the article the Adnan Huseini, former head of the Waqf, is also interviewed. This is the first comment we hear from a Waqf personnel about this issue. He admits that this was the first time in the last 8 years they got permission to remove debris from the site.