He made the most farsighted decision. He is a visionary. Why do we continue on with a policy that has failed for over 50 years? What is wrong with attempting to make a change and see how it works out? Thank God he is our president.
That is what the Left would say if Obama had followed through with his commitment to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. In fact, that is pretty much what they said about his highly-questionable decision to change our policy toward Cuba, which has been our enemy since the early 1960s and particularly since the Bay of Pigs incident.
Trump follows through with the same commitment that George W. Bush and Obama made as president particularly after Congress passed legislation to have the embassy moved to the actual capital of Israel and the Left is beside themselves.
To be clear upfront – I was ecstatic. I believe that the single biggest error in Israeli history was when Moshe Dayan walked into East Jerusalem during the Six Day War in 1967 and did not declare that this is part of Israel now and forever, and Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Regrettably he did not, and the matter was left for an official commitment from the United States and President Trump finally made that commitment.
We all know it was not the decision to formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital and move our embassy that was the problem. It was the fact that Trump did it. So, the Left must trudge up every tired argument as to why this is a bad decision.
Here are a few:
1. It makes no sense at this time; it is a “final status” agenda item – This is a favorite. When is a good time? If we did not do this, now let me assure you there will be no deal in 10 years. There will be none in 20 years. There will probably be none in 50 years. In my opinion, the Palestinians have adopted the status of victimhood and they have found sucker sponsors like Qatar who are willing to continue underwriting the Palestinian folly.
Israel left Gaza in 2005. Not much has changed there. If a toilet doesn’t flush, it is the Israelis’ fault.
It is always, always, always better to negotiate from a position of strength. Now the Palestinians will realize they cannot pull our chain forever and either come to the table ready to negotiate or continue in a sordid existence.
2. The second part of the statement above is the harm it is doing to the peace process negotiations as determined by members of the Left who never negotiated anything beyond the acquisition of a cookie from their grandmother when they were children. Jerusalem is the linchpin to negotiated peace says who? The likes of Thomas Friedman in the NYT. This is a man who does not even negotiate his own book deals, yet he is telling others what strategy to use to accomplish peace in the Middle East. There are others guilty of this, but Friedman is a prime example.
3. Trump is just doing this for political reasons – It serves Trump’s agenda which is distraction. Of course, he is trying to distract from the Russian investigation which has produced nothing except press overreach and embarrassment. They believe everything Trump does is a distraction from the only thing these people think of -- Russia, Russia, Russia.
4. It is going to cause the next Intifada – Really? So doing the right thing in the Middle East will always be subject to the idea some lawless leaders will call out a bunch of hooligans to destroy and good people should never move forward in fear of the criminals? That is bad public policy. And so far, the resistance has been muted at best and closer to non-existent.
I have always been baffled by two very strange concepts in how to deal with Israel and their neighbors in Gaza and the West Bank. The first being that a contiguous state should be formed between the two areas that will become Palestine. This means there will be an easement down the center of Israel that is Palestinian territory connecting the two areas. That was proposed during the Bush era and I stated it was stupid then. The only solution is a three-state solution. There is Gaza, Israel and the West Bank. Gaza and the West Bank will never be a connected country. How they work that out is between them, but they need to realize that.
Second is that Jerusalem is going to be the capital of both Israel and Palestine. First, it will not work and who would want it? Certainly not Jews, Christians, most Muslims or probably most of the rest of the world. Let’s see, would you rather have the holiest sites for most of the people in the world controlled by a country that is free, has a free press and is a modern society? Or would we rather revert to how East Jerusalem was controlled before the freest country in the Middle East took back control of it in 1967?
Please remember when President Truman announced the recognition for the State of Israel in 1948 many in his government were against it and the rest of the world did not jump on the bandwagon. Acceptance on an international basis of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel will come. It will just take time and patience.
Jerusalem is a united city. It is part of Israel. It is better for everybody involved except for a few whiners. So deal with it. Accept it. Let’s move on to the next subject. Thank you, Mr. Trump, for doing what your predecessors, both Republican and Democrat, were unwilling to do.