Tuesday, July 2, 2019

No, a sledgehammer blow didn’t ‘Judaize’ Jerusalem or kill the peace process - by Jonathan S. Tobin

The real problem is the Palestinian denial of Jewish history, not the presence of America’s ambassador at the unveiling of a biblical archaeological site.

Jonathan S. Tobin..
01 July '19..

The critics are right about U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman’s presence at the ceremonial opening of Jerusalem’s “Pilgrimage Road” being unprecedented. None of his predecessors would have been caught dead at a Jewish site on the wrong side of the “Green Line.” Up until last year, the United States had stubbornly refused to recognize that any part of the ancient capital of the Jews belonged to the Jewish state.

But even if we concede that the participation of Friedman and U.S. Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt was a departure from past policies—and that the ambassador’s swinging of a sledgehammer to break down the symbolic wall that completed the opening of the biblical route provided a metaphor for the critics of the Trump administration—that doesn’t mean it was wrong or a mistake.

If we have to use the imagery of the Americans smashing anything, it was not—as critics of President Donald Trump and Friedman contend—a symbol of their destruction of the already dead-in-the-water peace process. Rather it was yet another reaffirmation of the administration’s correct determination to emphasize the absurdity of the Palestinians’ willingness to go on denying Jewish history.

(Continue to Full Column)

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