Israel’s former Foreign Ministry Director-General and confidant of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Dore Gold addressed a special gathering in the US Senate Tuesday evening hosted by Israel’s Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer.
During the event, which was attended by Texas Senator and 2016 Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz, Gold, who now serves as chief of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, hailed President Donald Trump’s declaration recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and plans to move the US embassy to Jerusalem by this coming May as “the greatest gift” to the Jewish state.
At the end of his 45-minute speech focusing on the Jewish connection to Jerusalem and Arab revisionist attempts to erase Jewish history in the city, Gold praised Trump’s historic address, saying that it not only corrected “decades of diplomatic distortions”, but also laid to rest the decades-old plan to removed Jerusalem from Israeli control and declare the city a United Nations-administered entity.
The plan, first proposed in UN General Assembly Resolution 181, called for Jerusalem to be placed under international control as a “corpus separatum”.
While the non-binding recommendation was never adopted, Gold noted that even today, some have pushed the plan as a solution to the Israel-Arab conflict. The plan, he continued, had been kept alive in large part by the refusal of the West to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
"When President Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, he gave backing to Ben-Gurion's declaration, and effectively put to rest the internationalization idea,” said Gold.
Trump “was also correcting decades of diplomatic distortions at the United Nations."
"Finally, he was fulfilling the Jerusalem Embassy Act from 1995, that bipartisan initiative cosponsored by senators Tom Daschle and Bob Dole calling for moving the embassy to Jerusalem. That was the accepted position across the American political spectrum, and across our political spectrum."
Gold said that the declaration, along with the embassy move, tentatively scheduled for May, coinciding with Israel’s 70th Independence Day, was the “greatest gift” the US could give to the Jewish state.
"That was the greatest gift the United States could give Israel on the 70th anniversary of its birth."
But, added, Gold, Israel was not the only beneficiary of its strengthened position as Jerusalem’s sovereign, saying that Israeli control over the city was a boon for all those who live in or visit the city, saying “we will keep Jerusalem free.”
"The fight for Jerusalem is a fight for the respect and preservation of its diverse religious heritage, for all humanity."
Religious freedom in Jerusalem "will only be safeguarded by Israeli sovereignty."