President Trump finally enacted the Jerusalem Embassy Act passed in 1995 by the 104th Congress authorizing the relocation of the U.S. Embassy in Israel. Under this act Jerusalem was declared the “capital” of Israel and our Embassy was to be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The law was never enacted, however, by any U.S. president since its passage. The reason cited for that inaction was “national security” concerns surrounding such a move. The Executive Branch of our government was granted authority in the area of national security and international policy. Beginning with Bill Clinton presidents delayed the move based on such concerns. Section 7 of the bill grants waiver authority to suspend enactment of the bill for a period of six months to protect U.S. national security interests. Clinton, Bush and Obama promised to make good on the Embassy move, but all three used presidential waivers to delay action. In his presidential campaign Donald Trump, as did his predecessors, promised to move the Embassy. Unlike the others, however, he is fulfilling that promise. Jerusalem is an important center for the world’s three major religions: Christianity, Judaism and Islam. In 1947 the UN passed Resolution 181 dividing Jerusalem so as not to give any single state control over the city. On December 5, 1949 the Israeli Cabinet declared Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel. Modern day Jerusalem is already the seat of Israel’s President, Parliament and Supreme Court. It has always been the spiritual and cultural center of Judaism. The conclusion of the Six Day War in 1967 unified Jerusalem, but the Israelis guaranteed religious freedom and access to all faiths.
President Trump’s actions have led to protests from the Palestinians and other Arab states. Opponents of his actions proclaim that it will hurt the peace process. Past efforts at peace have not led to any lasting changes. You will never have peace when only one party is truly interested in peaceful coexistence. Hamas and the Palestinians will probably never recognize the right of Israel to exist. We needn’t fool ourselves any longer and make concessions to a group with evil intent. Israelis have lived under a cloud of missile attacks and terrorist knifings on a daily basis. Jerusalem is the heart and soul of Israel; we should recognize that fact and support our closest ally and beacon of Democracy in the Middle East