“Trump and Jerusalem: right or wrong?”

David French: Move is one of the best, most moral of his ad­min­is­tra­tion

The Dallas Morning News - - Front Page - David French is a se­nior writer for Na­tional Re­view. Twit­ter: @Davidafrench

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s de­ci­sion to for­mally rec­og­nize that Jerusalem is the cap­i­tal of Is­rael and to an­nounce plans to move Amer­ica’s em­bassy to the seat of Is­rael’s gov­ern­ment is one of the best, most moral and im­por­tant de­ci­sions of his young ad­min­is­tra­tion. On this is­sue, he is demon­strat­ing greater re­solve than Repub­li­can and Demo­cratic pres­i­dents be­fore him, and he is de­fy­ing some of the worst peo­ple in the world.

Think I’m over­stat­ing this? Think I’m too en­thu­si­as­tic about an iso­lated diplo­matic ma­neu­ver — es­pe­cially when that ma­neu­ver, to quote The New York Times, “iso­lates the U.S.” and “has drawn a storm of crit­i­cism from Arab and Euro­pean lead­ers”? Let’s con­sider law, his­tory and con­text.

First, a sov­er­eign na­tion is en­ti­tled to name its cap­i­tal, and it is the near-uni­ver­sal prac­tice of other na­tions to lo­cate their em­bassies in that same cap­i­tal. I say “near-uni­ver­sal” be­cause the na­tions of the world have stead­fastly re­fused to rec­og­nize Is­rael’s cap­i­tal and placed their em­bassies out­side of Jerusalem. They do so in spite of the Jewish peo­ple’s an­cient con­nec­tion to the City of David and the fact that no con­ceiv­able peace set­tle­ment would turn over the seat of Is­rael’s gov­ern­ment to Pales­tinian con­trol — even if parts of East Jerusalem are re­served for a Pales­tinian cap­i­tal.

Yet the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity con­demns the United States for rec­og­niz­ing re­al­ity, for treat­ing Is­rael the way the world treats ev­ery other na­tion. Why?

From the birth of the mod­ern na­tion-state of Is­rael, an un­holy mix­ture of anti-semites and elim­i­na­tion­ists has sought to drive the Jewish peo­ple into the sea and, when mil­i­tary mea­sures failed, to isolate the Jewish na­tion diplo­mat­i­cally, mil­i­tar­ily and cul­tur­ally. Work­ing through the U.N. and en­abled by Soviet-bloc and later Euro­pean al­lies, these anti-semites and elim­i­na­tion­ists have waged un­re­lent­ing “law­fare” against Is­rael. (Law­fare is the abuse of in­ter­na­tional law and le­gal pro­cesses to ac­com­plish mil­i­tary ob­jec­tives that can’t be achieved on the bat­tle­field.)

The scam works like this: The U.N. and other in­ter­na­tional bod­ies es­tab­lish rules that ap­ply only to Is­rael or they hold Is­rael to higher stan­dards than any other na­tion on earth; then, when Is­rael (or its pri­mary ally, the U.S.) ob­jects to those un­just rules and dou­ble stan­dards, the Arab world threat­ens un­rest, ri­ots, or re­newed ji­had. A cow­ardly Euro­pean com­mu­nity goes along, per­pet­u­at­ing in­jus­tice in the name of “sta­bil­ity.”

The ex­am­ples are le­gion. The U.N. Hu­man Rights Coun­cil and the U.N. Gen­eral Assem­bly ded­i­cate more res­o­lu­tions to con­demn­ing Is­rael than the rest of the world’s na­tions com­bined. The world’s Is­lamic coun­tries vote in uni­fied lock­step against Is­rael, though many of these coun­tries are thou­sands of miles from the Mid­dle East. They’re of­ten mo­ti­vated by vile an­ti­semitic bias. Ac­cord­ing to a 2013 Anti-defama­tion League sur­vey, a whop­ping 74 per­cent of North African and Mid­dle East­ern res­i­dents reg­is­tered anti-semitic be­liefs. Even 61 per­cent of far­away Malaysians have anti-semitic at­ti­tudes.

If “sta­bil­ity” means the per­pet­u­a­tion of dou­ble stan­dards, the iso­la­tion of Is­rael, and con­tin­ued kow­tow­ing to threats of vi­o­lence, then it’s time to call the Arabs’ bluff. If the most pow­er­ful na­tion in the his­tory of the world doesn’t have the moral strength to prop­erly rec­og­nize Is­rael’s cap­i­tal, it gives aid and com­fort to those who im­pose unique bur­dens on the Jewish state. Will Amer­ica’s Arab al­lies — na­tions that de­pend on our al­liances to con­front a grow­ing Ira­nian threat — for­sake their own na­tional se­cu­rity to protest an em­bassy location? It’s time to find out.

The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion made the right move. Now let’s see how the big­ots re­spond.

The As­so­ci­ated Press

A poster in Jerusalem praises Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s recog­ni­tion of the city as Is­rael’s cap­i­tal.

The As­so­ci­ated Press

Stu­dents in Si­don, Le­banon, burn a poster of Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump as they protest his Jerusalem de­ci­sion.

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