09 June '15..
Yiddish speech is peppered with the phrase "Hat er gazant." David Ben-Gurion tended to use it, and later translated it into a somewhat weaker Hebrew version: "So, he said it!"
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that American citizens who are born in Jerusalem cannot have Israel listed as their country of birth on their U.S. passports. We can and should revisit our birthright to Jerusalem; the historic Palestinian fraud; the hypocrisy of U.S. President Barack Obama (whose policy the Supreme Court upheld). We can prove that the ruling is ridiculous, but it looks like the most appropriate response in this case is actually the sarcastic, "So, he said it!"
Because Jerusalem is one of the cases in which the State of Israel has an obligation to do what is good for the Jews and think less about what the goyim say. To be committed to the dream and try a little harder to make it come true, and care less about the reality.
We must continue building Jerusalem, even if the world objects, and its Arab residents must be treated generously and firmly, in the spirit of Zionist activist and educator Professor Ben-Zion Dinur's statement that Arabs have every right in the land of Israel, but only Jews have the right to the land of Israel. The same goes for Jerusalem.
Obama won't ever get it. He might be committed to the position that the fate of Jerusalem will be determined only through negotiations with the Palestinians. We, even before the debate about sovereignty, are committed to something else that has been present in our lives for many generations. We refer to Jerusalem at nearly every holiday and religious ceremony we perform as Jews -- in weekday and Sabbath prayers, at circumcision ceremonies, at the blessing over a meal, and at weddings we swear: "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, may my right hand forget its skill."
In Jerusalem, which was never a capital of politics or consciousness of any Arab entity, it's time to launch a discussion about rights. It can always be filled out with "security" and "demography" and "urban composition," etc., but Jerusalem is first and foremost the fulfillment of justice and the Jewish historic memory, the glue that has kept us together for over 2,000 years. Ben-Gurion defined Jerusalem as the soul of the land of Israel and said that the oath "On the Rivers of Babylon" is "as binding today as it was in bygone days." And my grandfather, who served as mayor of Jerusalem after the state was founded, would remind his children and grandchildren that "Jerusalem followed us in the desert in the wasteland, and waited for its sons to return."
This is the vision that guided the State of Israel to stand up against the entire world to unite Jerusalem. Let the boycotters make threats, and the judges hand down worthless rulings -- we will do our part and answer them once and for all in the words of Ben-Gurion: "Hat er gezant."
Because Jerusalem is a special case, and we won't let the diplomatic reality -- however difficult -- confuse us.