If I forget you, O Jerusalem

Not recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is like not recognizing the sun. So why has it taken this long?

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Tzvi Fishman,

Tzvi Fishman
Tzvi Fishman
INN: TF

"If I forget you, O Jerusalem, may my right hand lose its skill" (Psalm137). 


I live in Jerusalem. I can look out a bedroom window of our home and see the office of Israel’s Prime Minister. A little further down the street, I can see the Israeli flag waving over the roof of the Knesset, the Israeli equivalent to the Senate. When I take a short jog in the morning, in three or four minutes I reach these Israeli Government centers and pass Israel’s Office of Foreign Affairs, Israel’s Supreme Court, the Bank of Israel, the National Library, the Israel Museum, and a campus of Hebrew University.

Everyone knows that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel – the tourists who visit the country, the journalists based here from all over the world, international ambassadors, children in grade school, and the people of the United States.    

King David, whose capital was located in Jerusalem 4000 years ago, almost 3000 years before Islam began, and whose palace stood in the City of David, a few hundred yards from the Western Wall of the Jerusalem Temple, declares in one of his Psalms, “If I forget you, O Jerusalem, withered be my right hand.” For many decades, American Presidents have forgotten Jerusalem, but now, with the Presidency of Mr. Trump, America has the opportunity to heal its weakened right hand.


The Indians have more of a rightful claim to Washington D.C. than the Palestinians have to Jerusalem.
Not recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is like not recognizing that Washington D.C. is the capital of the United States because some Indians threaten the President with an old-fashion Apache uprising. Actually, the Indians have more of a rightful claim to Washington D.C. than the Palestinians have to Jerusalem. Isn’t that a statue of an Indian on top of the Capitol Building? The Indians were the original, indigenous Americans, while the Palestinians, for all of their mythmaking, have lived in Israel for only about two-hundred years and never existed in the time of King David, who established the Jewish capital in Jerusalem.

Not recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is like not recognizing the sun. So why have past American Presidents promised to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and to officially recognize the Holy City as Israel’s capital, and then reneged on their promises?  I can offer a few reasons.

First, as the towering Christmas tree on the White House lawn bears witness, America is a Christian country, and there are still a lot of Gentiles who resent the rise of Israel in the world. Second, while it may be written on the dollar, “In God We Trust,” when push comes to shove and the Arabs complain, it turns out that oil and other economic interests outweigh America’s faith in God. Third, the fantasy still exists that by preserving the status of Jerusalem as an “International City” some kind of peace agreement might be reached. Fourth, for the United Nations, and the vast majority of countries in the world, including the major powers in Europe, anything that suggests that Israel my indeed be God’s “Chosen Nation,” manifested in the prophecies of the Bible which promise that the Jewish People will one day return to the Land of Israel and rebuild Jerusalem – this must not be acknowledged! I am sure there are other reasons, but let these suffice.

This week, Mr. Trump has the opportunity to fulfill his campaign promises and to strengthen America’s weakened hand in the world by doing what every honest person knows is the right thing to do – to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move the United States Embassy to the place it belongs, in the city of King David, the hub of Israel’s Government today, and not leave it surrounded by sand-filled restaurants and bars along the beachfront of Tel Aviv.


American born, Tzvi Fishman, is a novelist and film director who has lived in Israel for 35 years.

   








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