Bradley Burston wrote in Ha’aretz that the American embassy should stay in Tel Aviv. Stripped to the bone, here’s the heart of his argument:
True, Israel needs recognition. But Israel and its western half of Jerusalem have survived, and thrived, without it for nearly 60 years. Recognition can wait.
What cannot wait is the possibility of diplomacy between Israel and the Palestinians…
West Jerusalem will not be recognized as the capital of the Jewish state, until East Jerusalem becomes the capital of an independent Palestine.
There will not be a solution without a Palestinian state. There will be no Palestinian state without a share of Jerusalem as a recognized capital.
It may be true that there will not be a solution until there is a Palestinian state. It may also be true that there will not be a solution.
However, it is certainly true that there will not be a solution until the Jewish state receives the same treatment as every other state. There is no other state in the world which has been in existence for almost 60 years whose legitimacy (or that of its capital) is considered tenuous.
Burston says that moving the embassy would be “kicking the Palestinans while they’re down”. Why? Do the Palestinians have a legitimate claim on West Jerusalem? Does anyone who wants a fair two-state solution think that it will require Israel to move the Knesset to Tel Aviv?
Burston talks about Morton Klein’s ambitions and the Republicans’ desire for pro-Israel votes. But he doesn’t mention the influence of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on successive US administrations.
The US embassy should be moved to Jerusalem regardless of what the antisemitic supporters of terrorism in Riyadh say.