12/07/2017

Trump’s Recognition Of Jerusalem Makes ‘Peace’ More Likely

David Harsanyi, The Federalist

Later today Donald Trump is expected to make a largely symbolic but important gesture, recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel — not as an international capital or shared capital or capital in flux or as any of the other fantasies anti-Israel types have harbored since 1967. The most consequential long-term benefit of the move is that it begins to undercut a myth that’s stood for years.

Palestinian leadership might have deluded their own people for decades, but there is no conceivable peace deal that includes a truly divided Jerusalem. Like the Right of Return, the notion that a part of Jerusalem proper will be handed over to an antagonistic government, much less the remnants of the PLO and their on-and-off political partners Hamas, is a fantasy. This is not a radical Likud position, it’s one of the few issues that all major political parties, left and right, agree on in Israel.

Jerusalem, after all, is not some concocted modern capital. The place itself is the affirmation of the Jewish claim on Israel. Consequently, the coming protests over Trump’s move are not merely about a city, they are about challenging the right of Israel to exist — a self-destructive position that most Palestinians still embrace. This isn’t new. There has been a destructive effort within the Muslim world — although it has been taken up by others, including the United Nations — to deny the religious and historic connection between the city and the Jews. Moving the embassy, even if it entails nothing more than hanging a sign on a new building, is a pushback against attack on an ally.

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