Trump, Netanyahu and Israel’s Capital

When considering United States President Donald Trump’s decision to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, we learn many things about him:

+ He is desperate to hold onto his base, which includes so-called Christian fundamentalists, who unquestioningly support Israel;

+ His interest in ‘the ultimate deal’ between Palestine and Israel is non-existent;

+ He has no regard for the opinions of the U.S.’s closest allies;

+ His knowledge of international law is limited, at best;

+ He holds the safety of U.S. personnel abroad in disdain;

+ His understanding of the complexities of the Middle East are far beyond his interest or ability to comprehend, and

+ His belief in human rights is selective.

The list of nations whose leaders expressed their extreme displeasure prior to Trump’s announcement includes both important allies, and countries the U.S considers ‘enemies’. Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Syria, Russia, the Vatican, Turkey, Germany, France and the European Union all have condemned the move. Even U.S. government experts have cautioned of the potential of increased violence around the world, especially in the Middle East, as a result.

What, one might ask, is the advantage to anyone other than Israel of making this change? Without exception, experts say this decision will only exasperate current tensions, increase the risk of violence, make the goal of a two-state solution even more difficult, recruit anti-U.S. terrorists, alienate allies and reduce the U.S.’s already tattered reputation on the world stage. Only in Israel is this seen as good news.

And what of international law? Israel declared Jerusalem the capital of Israel in 1980, which the United Nations Security Council condemned, calling it a violation of international law. That resolution has never been revoked or changed. So Trump, by agreeing with Israel’s 1980 declaration, is putting the U.S. firmly in violation of international law.

Bowing to pressure from the various Israeli lobbies, the U.S. Congress in 1995 voted to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, but included in that legislation the ability of the president to sign a waiver every six months, delaying the move. Every president since then – George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama – have signed the waiver every time, citing security concerns. Trump has not said anything to indicate that those concerns are no longer valid, yet he is proceeding with this ill-advised move.

Trump, like his Israeli counterpart, Prime Murderer Benjamin Netanyahu, is not in an enviable position. A special prosecutor has indicted some of Trump’s former campaign officials, and his former National Security Advisor pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Netanyahu is under investigation for a variety of potential crimes. Trump’s approval rating is consistently below 40%. For both of these corrupt, egotistical men, this move serves as a temporary distraction, one that will excite and motivate their base. For Netanyahu, this is the rabid, racist Zionist population of Israel. For Trump, it’s the racist fundamental Christians who believe God is a real estate agent, granting certain properties to Jews.

This embassy move has long been sought by Israel’s leaders; Netanyahu may see it as his crowning achievement. Since it had such importance to Israel, why did Trump not demand major concessions in exchange? An immediate cessation of all settlement construction for a period of five years; the end of the blockade of the Gaza Strip; removal of all checkpoints in the West Bank are all demands the U.S. could have made, but didn’t. Trump has repeated, ad nauseam, that he is the ultimate deal-maker. When, one wonders, will he ever realize that Netanyahu has made a complete fool of him?

What happens next is anyone’s guess. It’s unfortunately possible that other nations may decide to please the U.S. by moving their embassies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Their leaders may feel that, with the U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, it’s to their advantage to do the same. This would be a new tragedy for the Palestinians. Yet other countries’ respect for international law may preclude this action.

But other moves may not be so disadvantageous. It is also possible that some Arab nations that are currently working with Israel on business ventures and anti-Iran intelligence will eliminate these connections, or greatly reduce them. These initiatives are vitally important to Israel, not only for military and financial purposes, but also for public relations reasons. These advantages to Israel could be lost.

Violence against U.S. personnel and facilities may erupt, which would cause Trump to once more condemn Muslims, but would also be a public relations nightmare for the U.S. The source of these potential incidents would be traced directly to the U.S. president; they would have been caused solely because of his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

This decision only underscores not only Trump’s gross, innate incompetence, but also his belief that, despite all evidence to the contrary, he knows best. His own advisors, and the opinions of allies throughout the world, mean nothing to him.

The United States was never an honest broker between Palestine and its brutal occupier, Israel. Perhaps now other nations will step forward to bring justice to the Palestinians. Doing so doesn’t require negotiations; it simply requires Israel to abide by international law, which means removing all Israelis from lands stolen any time after 1948, dismantling all checkpoints, ending the blockade of the Gaza Strip, granting all Palestinian refugees the right of return, and opening the border between Egypt and Palestine. There are many nations whose leaders could step forward and accomplish what the U.S. has never wanted: justice for the Palestinians. Now is the time for those leaders to act, and assure their place in history.


Originally published on 2017-12-08

Author: Robert Fantina

Source: Counter Punch

Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!

Donate to Support Us

We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.

READ MORE!
The 1967 Obsession, Trump and Trivia
I arrived in Jerusalem last night and as always during the weeks between mid-May and mid-June the media is full of romanticized memories. Within these weeks are the two most siginicfant dates in modern Palestinian history: May 1948 when Palestine was conquered and renamed Israel, and June, 1967 when the Israeli army completed the conquest of Palestine by taking East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. For Palestinians these dates bring back bitter memories, but for Israelis the memories are sweet – those were the days when we were young and brave and innocent.  Vintage photos of soldiers at the newly conquered ...
READ MORE
The Illegitimacy Of Israel’s Colonisation Of Land In Arab East Jerusalem, The Palestinian West Bank And The Syrian Golan Heights
‘If you buy fruit from Israel you deprive another human being of water and life’ Israel’s comparative economic success is essentially based on water stolen, since 1967, from Syria’s eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee – that provides Israel’s current primary source of fresh water. Rainwater from the Golan’s catchment area feeds into the River Jordan to provide about 30% of Israel’s current water supply. Without this stolen water there would be no citrus fruit, melons, avocados or dates available for export under the label of ‘Produce of Israel’. And that is why the Netanyahu government is determined – with help ...
READ MORE
Parallels Between Israel and 1930s Germany
"Please don’t write about Ya’ir Golan!" a friend begged me, “Anything a leftist like you writes will only harm him!" So I abstained for some weeks. But I can’t keep quiet any longer. General Ya’ir Golan, the deputy Chief of Staff of the Israeli army, made a speech on Holocaust Memorial Day. Wearing his uniform, he read a prepared, well-considered text that triggered an uproar which has not yet died down. Dozens of articles have been published in its wake, some condemning him, some lauding him. Seems that nobody could stay indifferent. The main sentence was: "If there is something that frightens me about ...
READ MORE
September 11, 2001: The Crimes of War Committed “In the Name of 9/11″
The following text was presented at the International Conference on “9/11 Revisited – Seeking the Truth”, Perdana Global Peace Foundation (PGPF), Kuala Lumpur, November 2012 Introduction The tragic events of September 11, 2001 constitute a fundamental landmark in American history, a decisive watershed, a breaking point. Millions of people have been misled regarding the causes and consequences of 9/11. September 11 2001 opens up an era of crisis, upheaval and militarization of American society. The post September 11, 2001 era is marked by the outright criminalization of the US State, including its judicial, foreign policy, national security and intelligence apparatus. 9/11 marks the onslaught of ...
READ MORE
Renaming the 1948 War against Palestine: Partition, Dispossession, and Fragmentation
Controlling the Discourse Israel has been brilliant over the years in shaping and misdirecting the public discourse on the future of Palestine. Among its earliest achievement along these lines was the crucial propaganda victory by having the 1948 War known internationally as the ‘War of Independence.’ Such a designation erases the Palestinians from political consciousness, and distorts the deeper human and political consequences of the war. Language matters, especially in vital circumstances where there are winners and losers, a reality that applies above all to a war of displacement. It took decades for the Palestinians to elevate their experience of the 1948 ...
READ MORE
Why America Needs War
GR Editor’s Note: This incisive article was written on April 30, 2003, by historian and political scientist Jacques Pauwels. A timely question: Why Does Hillary Want War… ? And why do people support her?  *     *     * Wars are a terrible waste of lives and resources, and for that reason most people are in principle opposed to wars. The American President, on the other hand, seems to love war. Why? Many commentators have sought the answer in psychological factors. Some opined that George W. Bush considered it his duty to finish the job started, but for some obscure reason ...
READ MORE
‘Barbarism by an Educated and Cultured People’ — Dawayima Massacre was Worse than Deir Yassin
“There was no battle and no resistance (and no Egyptians). The first conquerors killed from eighty to a hundred Arabs [including] women and children. The children were killed by smashing of their skulls with sticks. Is it possible to shout about Deir Yassin and be silent about something much worse?” For the first time ever, a letter quoting one of the Israeli soldiers who were part of the Al-Dawayima massacre in October 1948 is published in full. On Friday, February 5th 2016, Haaretz published an article in Hebrew by Israeli historian Yair Auron, which covers one of the biggest massacres of 1948. The ...
READ MORE
Remember The Golan Heights?
During the 1973 Arab-Israeli War, Syrian forces had surprised Israel and were fast approaching the edge of the steep Golan Heights, captured by Israel during the 1967 war. It seemed as if Syrian armor and infantry would retake Golan, then pour down into Israeli Galilee. Soviet recon satellites observed Israel moving its nuclear-armed, 500km-range Jericho missiles out of protective caves and onto their launch pads. At the same time, Israel was seen loading nuclear bombs on their US-supplied F-4 fighter-bombers at Tel Nof airbase. Believing Israel was about to use nuclear weapons against Syria and Egypt, Moscow put huge pressure on both ...
READ MORE
Terrorism: How the Israeli State was Won
On December 14, Tom Suárez spoke at The House of Lords, London, at the invitation of Baroness Jenny Tonge. Drawing from his recently published book State of Terror, he addressed the centennial of the Balfour Declaration and his views on the way toward ending today’s Israel-Palestine “conflict”. The following are Suárez’s remarks. The book was reviewed here by David Gerald Fincham. Good evening, thank you so much for taking time out of what I know are your busy schedules to be here now. My thanks to Jenny Tonge for making this meeting possible; and I would like to thank three people without ...
READ MORE
Ken Livingstone: Creation of Israel was a ‘Great Catastrophe’
In Arabic TV interview, Labour’s ex-London mayor blames Israel for IS attacks in Europe and mass expulsion of Jews from Arab world, again claims Hitler supported Zionism Former London mayor Ken Livingstone on Wednesday called the creation of Israel “fundamentally wrong,” and “a great catastrophe.” The existence of the Jewish state in the Middle East, he said, could ultimately lead to nuclear war. “The creation of the state of Israel was fundamentally wrong, because there had been a Palestinian community there for 2,000 years,” Livingstone told an Arabic language TV station based in London, in a clip posted and translated by the ...
READ MORE
Is “Jewish Supremacy” a Form of Racism? The Zionist Exception
Today, we hear a lot about White supremacy but very little about Jewish supremacy, as if the former stands for the latter. It is true there are more similarities than differences between Jewish supremacy and White supremacy. Both are based on ethnic/nationalist bias and racism. They are both “historically based, institutionally perpetuated system[s] of exploitation and oppression … a web of interlocking, reinforcing institutions: economic, military, legal, educational, religious, and cultural. As a system, racism affects every aspect of life in a country.” Within Israel and militarily occupied Palestinian lands, Jewish supremacy is sometimes described as White supremacy, as in this headline: “Israel’s White Supremacy Agenda ...
READ MORE
Israeli Military General Compares Israel to Nazi Germany at Holocaust Remembrance Day Event
Israel is in a class all by itself when it comes to perpetuating some of the worst human rights violations of any country on earth today. For decades, Israel has had a policy of ethnically cleansing and robbing the indigenous Palestinian population of its lands and resources and killing them when they resist the atrocities committed against them under the guise of self-defense. Now, an Israeli military general, someone who is one of the leaders of Israel’s killing machine, has come out and admitted that Israel today shares many of the same elements as Nazi Germany. Addressing an audience at Tel ...
READ MORE
Back To The 1930s: Hitler, Da’esh And The West
Whilst Da’esh are constantly being compared to the Nazis, the real parallel – the West’s willingness to build up fascism in order to cripple Russia – is often forgotten. The recent debate in the British House of Commons on bombing Syria saw the comparisons coming thick and fast. “Daesh are the fascists of our time”, said Labour MP Dan Jarvis; “this is the fascist war of our generation” opined Sarah Wollaston; whilst Hillary Benn rounded off the debate by explaining that “we are faced by fascists” and “what we know about fascists is that they need to be defeated”. The parallels are ...
READ MORE
Why Israel is Blocking Access to its Archives
Israel is concealing vital records to prevent darkest periods in its history from coming to light, academics say Al-Jazeera – 9 June 2016 Israel is locking away millions of official documents to prevent the darkest episodes in its history from coming to light, civil rights activists and academics have warned as the country’s state archives move online. They claim government officials are concealing vital records needed for historical research, often in violation of Israeli law, in an effort to avoid damaging Israel’s image. The Israeli army has long claimed to be the “most moral” in the world. Accusations of increased secrecy come as Israel marks ...
READ MORE
ISIS is a US-Israeli Creation: Top Ten “Indications”
Makia Freeman is the editor of alternative news / independent media site The Freedom Articles and senior researcher at Tools For Freedom.com (FaceBook here), writing on many aspects of truth and freedom, from exposing aspects of the worldwide conspiracy to suggesting solutions for how humanity can create a new system of peace and abundance. ISIS is a US-Israeli creation, a fact as clear as the sky is blue. It’s a truth as black and white as the colors on their flag. For many alternative news readers, this may be patently obvious, but this article is written for the large majority of ...
READ MORE
Behind the Balfour Declaration
Acknowledgements To Benjamin H. Freedman, who committed himself to finding and telling the facts about Zionism and Communism. and encouraged others to do the same. The son of one of the founders of the American Jewish Committee, which for many years was anti-Zionist, Ben Freedman founded the League for Peace with Justice in Palestine in 1946. He gave me copies of materials on the Balfour Declaration which I might never have found on my own and encouraged my own research. (He died in April 1984.) The Institute for Historical Review is providing means for the better understanding of the events of our ...
READ MORE
The Roots Of The Current Crisis In The Middle East
It is now fully five years since the greatest upheavals in the modern history of the Arab World started in Tunis. Always impressed by the latest events, we tend to forget the deep roots of the current violent struggle. But unless we confront the causes, there is little chance that the symptoms will be healed. (A partial version of this article in Spanish was published earlier in Free Haifa) The wave of refugees that has reached Europe and the terror attacks in Paris reminded many people in Europe and beyond of the crisis in our region – but at the same time ...
READ MORE
Ten Facts Everyone Needs To Know About Israel
1. Out of the 14.2 million Jewish people in the world, (in 2016), only a minority of 43% reside in Israel. 2. Whilst 75% of Israelis are Jewish, 21% are indigenous Arabs with restricted civil rights. 3. Israel has the highest birth rate in the developed world, with an average of 3 children per woman. 4. The Netanyahu government now receives more than US$6 billion every year from the US congress/ AIPAC lobby i.e. equating to $1000 annually for every Jewish Israeli, courtesy of the American taxpayer. 5. Israel has induced over 500,000 of its citizens to illegally settle in the Occupied Palestinian West ...
READ MORE
“Russiagate” is Actually “Israelgate”: Trump as “Agent of Israel”, not of Russia?
The Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s main evidence thus far in his “Russiagate” probe is not actually about possible Russian collusion with Trump to win the Presidency, but instead about definite Israeli collusion with Trump after Trump had already won the Presidency but before he became inaugurated. As a lawyer explained on the day when Trump’s former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was indicted in a plea-deal: “Mr. Flynn has just become the prosecution’s star witness.” What Flynn had pled to was his trying to obtain Russia’s support for Israel’s Government, against the Palestinians. Russia said no; Putin said no to Flynn’s request, ...
READ MORE
Nazism In Israel
Israel treats Arabs the way Nazis treated Jews – a racist, fascist, white Jewish supremacist (the chosen people nonsense), Arab-hating society systematically ghettoizing and terrorizing people for praying to the wrong God. Palestinians are treated like subhumans, enduring virtually every type indignity and mistreatment under brutalizing militarized rule, civil justice denied. Institutionalized racism worse than South African apartheid denies them fundamental human and civil rights. De-Arabization is official Israeli policy. Occupation harshness facilitates slow-motion genocide. Millions suffer horrifically. Anyone resisting tyranny is eliminated – brutalized, imprisoned or murdered. Muhammad Allan is a Palestinian political prisoner – rearrested at Barzilai hospital before his release to ...
READ MORE
The 1967 Obsession, Trump and Trivia
The Illegitimacy Of Israel’s Colonisation Of Land In Arab East Jerusalem, The Palestinian West Bank And The Syrian Golan Heights
Parallels Between Israel and 1930s Germany
September 11, 2001: The Crimes of War Committed “In the Name of 9/11″
Renaming the 1948 War against Palestine: Partition, Dispossession, and Fragmentation
Why America Needs War
‘Barbarism by an Educated and Cultured People’ — Dawayima Massacre was Worse than Deir Yassin
Remember The Golan Heights?
Terrorism: How the Israeli State was Won
Ken Livingstone: Creation of Israel was a ‘Great Catastrophe’
Is “Jewish Supremacy” a Form of Racism? The Zionist Exception
Israeli Military General Compares Israel to Nazi Germany at Holocaust Remembrance Day Event
Back To The 1930s: Hitler, Da’esh And The West
Why Israel is Blocking Access to its Archives
ISIS is a US-Israeli Creation: Top Ten “Indications”
Behind the Balfour Declaration
The Roots Of The Current Crisis In The Middle East
Ten Facts Everyone Needs To Know About Israel
“Russiagate” is Actually “Israelgate”: Trump as “Agent of Israel”, not of Russia?
Nazism In Israel