The United States Embassy moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem where it officially opened today. The decision to move our embassy was made by declaration of Congress in 1995 but was delayed by three previous administrations. Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama deferred the move throughout their presidencies due to international opposition and fear of violence in the region. Israel is our greatest ally in the Middle East and until recently, was our only ally in the region. Since the reign of King David some 3000 years ago, the Jewish people believed Jerusalem to be their capital. Jerusalem is unique in its religious importance to the world’s three major religions: Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Arabs in the area who refer to themselves as Palestinians also claim Jerusalem as their capital. Inaction on America’s part was out of fear for Palestinian violence. Why does the international community feel it is within their authority to tell the Jewish people where to place their own capital? Jerusalem is already the seat of Israel’s Parliament and Judiciary. Our founding fathers would not have been pleased had foreign powers dictated the location of America’s capital. Jews and Arabs have occupied the region known as Palestine for centuries. The Balfour Declaration at the end of WW I recognized the right for a Jewish Homeland, but it was not until 1947 that the United Nations partitioned Palestine into Jewish and Arab sectors. During WW II Jews migrated to the area in large numbers, fleeing German persecution. With increasing numbers it was clear that the Jewish people deserved their own nation.
Arabs who were displaced by the creation of Israel have never accepted their Jewish neighbors. The avowed destruction of Israel has resulted in several regional wars between Israel and their surrounding Arab neighbors. Although several U.S. presidents have attempted to broker a peace treaty between the Israelis and the Palestinian Arabs, hostilities have never ceased. Threats and violence are a part of everyday life for Israelis. Moving our embassy to Jerusalem is the latest excuse for further violence. You will never have peace if both parties do not genuinely want peace. We finally have a president who stands by his promises regardless of the consequences. Once again America is leading the way and it is incumbent on the rest of the world to follow.