The news that senior Israeli figures are working out practical plans for a future division of Jerusalem should interest but, perhaps, not shock us. It is the role of any responsible government continuously to develop scenarios, however distant and unlikely they may seem. But what is of particular note is that this most recent project on the future of Jerusalem appears to be unusually detailed and advanced. It takes in the strategic, legal, economic and demographic implications of what would need to be a most delicate dissection. This suggests that senior government figures are taking the idea of Jerusalem as the future capital of both Israel and a Palestinian state very seriously. But if its fate is to be divided, preparations will have to go far beyond the level of mere city planning and administrative function. Building a consensus among both Israeli and diaspora Jewish opinion will also be crucial. When Israeli leaders talk about their willingness to make painful sacrifices for peace, Jerusalem is a particularly excruciating issue. And thus far, there do not seem to be any special committees to take on that emotional challenge.