Prince William, Jerusalem is not 'occupied Palestinian territory'
Prince William, Jerusalem is not 'occupied Palestinian territory'

It is hard to believe that although Israel is celebrating 70 years of independence, Prince William will be the first member of the constantly travelling British royal family to make an official visit to the Jewish State. Even Pope Paul VI visited back in 1964, although he began on the Arab side, entering the Jewish state at Megiddo where Israeli dignitaries welcomed him - all but Sephardi Chief Rabbi Nissim who refused to wait upon the Pope after the pontiff refused to come to Jerusalem to greet Israel's Chief Rabbis. The Pope visited Christian holy sites in Israel, but the Vatican did not recognize Israel until 1993, after which three more popes visited Israel.

The UK recognized the Jewish state in 1948, but prior to that, it blocked Jewish immigration that could have saved Holocaust victims and then closed the doors to survivors. In 1948, when the state was established and attacked from all sides, it went further. British General Glubb Pasha (later knighted by the Queen) led the Jordanian Arab Legion to expel all the Jews from Hevron, East Jerusalem and the 'West Bank.' Not only did they do ethnic cleansing, they destroyed dozens of ancient synagogues and thousands of ancient Jewish tombstones in the sacred ancient Jewish Cemetery on the Mount of Olives in an attempt to erase all evidence of Jewish History.

The first thing Prince William should do, as a British subject, is apologize for banning Jews entry to the British Mandate for Palestine and for British General Glubb's ethnic cleansing of Jews from Jerusalem in 1948.

That seems to be far from his thoughts, however. As the official itinerary puts it: “[The] programme in the Occupied Palestinian Territories will begin with a short briefing on the history and geography of Jerusalem’s Old City from a viewing point at the Mount of Olives. From here His Royal Highness will travel a short distance to the Church of St Mary Magdalene where he will pay his respects at the tomb of his great-grandmother, Princess Alice." That tomb was once visited on an unofficial visit by his grandfather and Prince Charles did attend the funerals of both Yitzchak Rabin and Shimon Peres.. Princess Alice, married to Prince Andrew of Greece and living in Athens, was named a Righteous Among the Gentiles by Yad Vashem for hiding three members of Jewish family at great risk during the Holocaust.

“The historic nature of this tour is of course important and The Duke considers it a great privilege to be undertaking the first ever official Royal tour of Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories and to be able to help further strengthen the friendship between Jordan and the United Kingdom. More importantly, however, The Duke is looking forward to building a real and enduring relationship with the people of the region.”

In other words, the prince sees Jerusalem as occupied land.

After Trump's declaration that he recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the move of the American Embassy to Jerusalem, the Palestinian Arabs are trying to find countries that are wiling to declare that Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine. On June 18, 2018 Ido ben Porat reported on Arutz 7 that "Jerusalem district police commander Yoram Halevy on Monday evening prevented a conference at the Russian embassy in eastern Jerusalem, during which it was planned to declare Jerusalem as the capital of 'Palestine'."

The Palestinian Arabs not only planned a conference at the Russian Embassy, they are also trying to use the visit of Prince William on June 25, 2018 to have the British declare that Jerusalem is Palestinian. 

Jerusalem has always been the only spiritual capital of Judaism, the spiritual capital of Islam is Mecca in Saudi Arabia. Jews face Jerusalem when they pray, the Arabs face Mecca.

Jerusalem’s Old City cannot be “Occupied Palestinian Land” because it was never part of a non-existent Palestine. It was occupied by Jordan between 1948-67 and before then was part of the Ottoman Empire. The British invented the Kingdom of Jordan on territory that was to be part of the Jewish homeland, cutting it from the British Mandate for Palestine (formerly part of the Ottoman Empire). They then helped Jordan conquer and occupy the city in 1948.

On June 12, 2018 Caroline Glick wrote in Breitbart that

"Kensington Palace has insisted that William’s visit to Jerusalem is part of his official visit to the Palestinian Authority (and what it calls the Occupied Palestinian Territories'). That is, rather than finesse Britain’s position on the most explosive issue in the Arab conflict with Israel, Britain deci'ded to use Prince William’s visit to do what no government, other than Pakistan, ever did: claim, in an official act, that these sections of Jerusalem belong to the Arabs, not the Jews."

By declaring that Prince William's visit to Jerusalem's Old City is part of his itinerary in Palestine and not in Israel the British, responsible for the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Jerusalem's Old City in 1948, are now trying to declare that Jerusalem's Old City (including the Temple Mount and the Western Wall) does not belong to the Jews but to the Arabs. 

Until 1948 Jews were a majority of the population in Jerusalem. On December 11, 2017 Amb. Dore Gold wrote in the Jerusalem Center of Public Affairs "By the mid-19th century, the British Consulate in Jerusalem made the following determination, according to this report, which I found in the Public Record Office in Kew, it states that Jews were a majority in Jerusalem, when? already in 1863 – that’s long before Theodor Herzl, before the Brits arrived, or Lord Balfour. See the guy on the right, William Seward, he was Secretary of State of the United States during the American civil war, under President Abraham Lincoln."

When Seward’s term ended, he visited the holy land, he visited Jerusalem. And he wrote a memoir. And in his memoir, he wrote, “There is a Jewish majority in Jerusalem.” - see William Seward, Travels Around the World (1873).

Will Prince William salute the Palestinian Authority flag at Jerusalem's Temple Mount? Israel should place Israeli flags at the Western Wall during Prince William's visit to Jerusalem's Old City to affirm its sovereignty over the site. The Knesset should pass legislation that all foreign leaders who visit Israel can only visit Jerusalem's Old City accompanied by Israeli officials and salute the Israeli flag at the Kotel. Perhaps Israel should block Prince William's entry into Jerusalem's Old City if he is going to use his visit as a statement of support for Palestinian sovereignty. After all, Prime Minister Netanyahu does not want to be seen as surrendering the Old City of Jerusalem.

Ezequiel Doiny is author of "Obama's assault on Jerusalem's Western Wall