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November 26, 2015 / 14 Kislev, 5776
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Whose Jerusalem?


In 1950, Israel proclaimed Western Jerusalem as its capital – the first time in history since Malki Tzedek (Genesis 14) that the city served as a political capital of any nation.

After the 1967 Six-Day War, Israel regained and reunited the entirety of the Holy City – and UN Security Council Resolution 242 authorized Israel to retain all its newly-liberated land until “secure and recognized boundaries” were attained. This resolution, which says nothing about Israel’s presence in and control of Jerusalem, has been the basis for all peace talks ever since.

Demographically, Jerusalem has long unquestioningly belonged to the Jewish people. The city has had a Jewish majority for 150 years. When the late chief rabbi Avraham Shapira met with President George H.W. Bush in 1992, the latter was surprised to hear that his guest was a seventh-generation Jerusalemite, going back to the pioneering students of the Vilna Gaon.

International law expert and jurist Stephen Schwebel, who later became president of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, wrote in 1970 that “Israel has better title in the territory of what was Palestine, including the whole of Jerusalem, than do Jordan and Egypt.”

In conclusion: We can see that Rabin’s statement cited above does not at all belie his secular, dovish orientation; it simply expresses the indestructible, all-embracing attachment of his people to a very special city.

For more information on how to participate in keeping Jerusalem Jewish, via updates, bus tours of critical parts of Jerusalem, and more, send an e-mail to tours@keepjerusalem.org or visit Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech’s website at www.keepjerusalem.org.

About the Author: Chaim Silberstein is president of Keep Jerusalem-Im Eshkachech and the Jerusalem Capital Development Fund. He was formerly a senior adviser to Israel's minister of tourism. Hillel Fendel, past senior editor at Israel National News/Arutz-7, is a veteran writer on Jerusalem affairs. Both have lived in Jerusalem and now reside in Beit El.

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One Response to “Whose Jerusalem?”

  1. Matt McLaughlin says:

    The “Balfour Declaration” was the single most significant political development in the history of Zionism between the First Zionist Conference of 1897 and the United Nations’ vote in 1948 establishing the state of Israel.

    The Balfour Declaration came, as it were, ex cathedra from on high; the coalition cabinet represented all the parties – save the Asquith Liberals – and had a much greater degree of autonomy than any peacetime cabinet. It operated enshrouded in secrecy, gave no reasons for the Declaration, outlined no conditions – other than those in the Declaration itself – and expected no accountability. The Declaration was not debated in either of the Houses of Parliament and like most foreign policy issues, was never approved by the British legislature.


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