By Theodore Shoebat
Trump has just declared Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel, and said that the US embassy will be moved to Jerusalem. As we read in one report from the New York Times:
President Trump on Wednesday formally recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, reversing nearly seven decades of American foreign policy and setting in motion a plan to move the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to the fiercely contested Holy City.
“Today we finally acknowledge the obvious: that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital,” Mr. Trump said from the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House. “This is nothing more or less than a recognition of reality. It is also the right thing to do. It’s something that has to be done.”
The president cast his decision as a break with decades of failed policy on Jerusalem, which the United States, along with virtually every other nation in the world, has declined to recognize as the capital since Israel’s founding in 1948. That policy, he said, brought us “no closer to a lasting peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.”
“It would be folly to assume that repeating the exact same formula would now produce a different or better result,” Mr. Trump declared.
Recognizing Jerusalem, he added, was “a long overdue step to advance the peace process.”
Hours before Trump made this announcement, Pope Francis expressed his worry that such a move will only further enflame the situation in the Middle East. As a report from the New York Post recounts:
Pope Francis, speaking hours before U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement on Jerusalem, called on Wednesday for the city’s “status quo” to be respected, saying new tension in the Middle East would further inflame world conflicts.
Trump is due on Wednesday to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and set in motion the relocation of the U.S. Embassy to the ancient city, senior U.S. officials said, a decision that upends decades of U.S. policy and risks fueling further violence in the Middle East.
In an appeal at the end of his weekly general audience, Francis called for all to honor United Nations resolutions on the city, which is sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims.
“I make a heartfelt appeal so that all commit themselves to respecting the status quo of the city, in conformity with the pertinent resolutions of the United Nations,” he said.
The Vatican backs a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, with both sides agreeing on the status of Jerusalem as part of the peace process.
Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of their future independent state, whereas Israel has declared the whole city to be its “united and eternal” capital.
The pope told thousands of people at his general audience: “I cannot keep quiet about my deep worry about the situation that has been created in the last few days.”
He said he hoped “wisdom and prudence prevail, in order to avoid adding new elements of tension to a global panorama that is already convulsed and marked by so many and cruel conflicts.”