Jerusalem, Partition, Justice and Peace 

Donald Trump has made his outrageous statement that the US views Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish State of Israel.  As a further recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the whole city he has, for the first time, not renewed the waiver concerning the removal of the US embassy to Jerusalem.  Sweeping, overwhelming and nearly unanimous worldly condemnations of Trump’s potential moves have been quick: Mahmud Abbas warns of the catastrophic consequences to the precarious stability in the region as well as to the so-called ‘peace process’.  Nearly all nations in the world voiced their outrage, with Turkey even threatening to sever diplomatic connections with Israel if these moves were implemented.  There is worldwide solidarity against the US position and on a simple reading, this could be seen as a welcome sign of growing world affiliation with the Palestinian cause of national ‘self’ determination.

But is this the case? Are we not in fact witnessing a nearly unanimous and mature symptomatic concealment of the real core of the outrageousness of the proposed American move?

The question of Jerusalem is a serious and thorny one for justice and peace in Palestine.  We might stand back at this point, though, and ask what is that which makes the issue of Jerusalem – a city so sacred to so many people in a way that infinitely challenges any partition – such a serious one politically?   What exactly is the ethical and political challenge posed, indeed…

Read more