If Trump moves US Embassy to Jerusalem, all Hell will Break Loose

By Phyllis Bennis | (Institute for Policy Studies) | – –

If the U.S. goes ahead with the GOP plan, says Phyllis Bennis, “all bets are off.”

In of the very first moves as the U.S. Senate began its term in 2017, three Republican senators — including former presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio — introduced legislation designed to force the U.S. State Department to move its Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to the contested city of Jerusalem.

Moving US Embassy to Jerusalem a Dangerous Provocation

That would be a significant and unprecedented provocation to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, explains IPS Middle East expert Phyllis Bennis.

“There is no country in the world that has its embassy in Jerusalem,” she told the Real News Network recently. According to several UN Security Council resolutions, the city is supposed to remain “a separate body” managed by “an international agency, presumably the United Nations itself,” until final borders between Israel and a future Palestinian state are negotiated.

Yet those talks “are far from finished,” Bennis said. “They are, in fact, not even underway.”

Jerusalem, Bennis told the network, is significant not only as a global religious landmark, but as “a living city with real people whose lives are completely circumscribed by the reality of Israeli occupation.” The gradual Israeli settlement of majority-Palestinian East Jerusalem, she added, “goes to the core of what Israeli occupation looks like.”

Congress has made similar moves with respect to the U.S. embassy before, Bennis explained, but past presidents have always bypassed them. With Donald Trump coming into office, however, that could change.

Trump, Bennis said, “says not only that he supports this, but he has, in fact, appointed David Friedman as his ambassador to Israel.” Friedman — who is Trump’s “bankruptcy lawyer, not a diplomat” — is “known for being a financial supporter of the settlements” and “has gone on to say he looks forward to carrying out his work in the eternal, undivided capital of Israel in Jerusalem.”

Bennis speculated that the move could prompt the UN General Assembly to “pass an overwhelmingly popular resolution that would condemn the United States’ action,” along with protests at U.S. embassies around the world. “Hopefully, those would not become violent, but they may well,” she worried.

She allowed that the latest moves may be “nothing more” than typical “pro-Israel” posturing by right-wing members of Congress. “But with this administration in the White House,” she concluded, “we can’t assume that the usual practice will be underway this time. All bets are off now.”

Middle East expert Phyllis Bennis directs the New Internationalism project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

Via The Institute for Policy Studies

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12 Responses

  1. Israel has been provoking hell to break loose for years. What has become pertinent is the way European attitudes towards Israel have been deteriorating. I remember when left wing intellectuals were all eager for what they anticipated could be a template for a 20th century postwar nation. Those attitudes prevailed until around 1967 when they began to evaporate in a sense of bewildered disappointment to the point they have now become as negative as they once were positive, and it requires extraordinary legislation to keep them in control. The level of spontaneous applause that accompanied the recent adoption of UNSC 2334 should worry Israel more than the contents of the resolution itself. Since all else appears to have failed, and Trump bodes no good, maybe the only remaining solution is to keep our own heads down and let all hell break loose.

    • The USA and Israel should also be concerned about . . .

      UN General Assembly Resolution 377

      Where the UNGA essentially over-rules the UNSC and the USA has no ability to veto. If 377 is invoked, there is zero chance that the USA and Israel would get very many votes, meaning a binding resolution would easily pass making life for Israel even more tenuous. The USA could rant and rage all it wanted, but the damage would be done.

      The ironic thing about 377 is that it was the USA that designed it and got it passed because the Soviet Union was vetoing stuff in the UNSC that the USA (and the world) wanted passed.

      Israel should also be concerned that trump and the conservative congress critters could get angry enough at the UN to pull the USA out of the UN and maybe even force the UN to move to another city (to “punish” democratic NYC and the UN – Note that just about every city on earth would welcome the UN and the money it would bring). If the USA pulls out of the UN, then Israel would have no protection in the UNSC.

      Every time I think about the situation in the ME, I wonder if Israel is purposely doing everything possible to make their future very bad or if they are so delusional they can not see what the most likely result of their actions will be. Humans have been very consistent over the last 10,000+ years and everything Israel has done appears to be designed to lead to a bad ending for Israel.

    • Hell includes nukes. And only two likely players here have usable nuclear weapons, Israel and the USA. Will these countries threaten nuclear strikes against countries that support Palestine? And if they get away with such threats, what message does that send to nuclear proliferators who have their own blackmail wishlists?

      • If the USA and/or Israel start a nuclear war, Russia and China will finish the USA and/or Israel and end the war.

        Remember that Israel is a very small country and if it throws nukes, it will cease to exist.

        While the USA is physically larger, the “republican” parts of the USA can not survive without the rest of the USA which will be gone.

        There are probably enough “sane” people in the USA such that the USA will not use nukes, but the same can NOT be said about Israel.

        Some “fun” nuclear war thoughts . . .

        – The latest climate studies show that as few as five nuclear air bursts over major cities could fill the skies with enough radioactive particles to cause “nuclear winter” where the northern hemisphere (and possibly the whole earth) would enter new “ice age,” where humans have the “interesting” choice of how they die . . .

        – Radioactive poisoning

        – Starving – “Nuclear winter” would stop food production and most transportation would cease.

        – Freezing – Ice ages tend to do that.

        There is a very good reason that there is a nuclear test ban treaty that most nations agree to and even the few nations that still test nukes do it deep underground – nukes in the atmosphere are very deadly for humans.

        • China is not ready to have a nuclear exchange with the US, and I suspect it would rather wait it out and get to repair the planet afterwards. Russia – well, maybe Russia is willing to sacrifice smaller allies to continue a more lucrative alliance with Trump. After all, Russia is basically an armed oil company and anything America does to sabotage efforts against global warming put more money in Putin’s pockets. Iran? Iran is just another annoying competitor in the oil market. No one in the Middle East is worth a nuclear exchange for Putin.

        • @super390 – Based on my long contact with the Chinese culture, I agree that China much prefers to subvert their enemies, BUT . . .

          Do not make the assumption that Chine will avoid all open conflict because as Sun Tzu noted, when conflict can’t be avoided, then strike hard and fast and brutally.

          If the USA and/or Israel throws nukes, it is NOT a valid assumption that China will sit out the exchange. China is “down wind” of the ME and its food sources will be contaminated by any probable Israelis strikes, so it may retaliate..

          China is a “rational actor,” but it has a vast cultural difference from the “west” and a 5000 year history.

          As I noted – anyone throwing nukes will make **ALL** of our lives terrible.

  2. Of course Ted Cruz and company want the embassy moved to Jerusalem. They actually unequivocally believe in The Book of Revelations and The Rapture. US foreign policy is being derailed by the religious far right. Many of these politicians they truly believe they live in a time when the Second Coming in close by. This to most of us is insane thinking and I implore the press and anyone with common sense to please speak up

  3. moving an Embassy costs a lot of money. Better to save it for something useful.

    Of course moving the embassy would make Bennie happy, but he is too stupid to realise that it will only result in more war. Trump won’t be there to help fight that war. But two thugs like those two, who knows what could happen.

    There has to be a solution to the mess in Israel and the settlements need to stop. If they don’t, Israel could be in for a world of pain. I’m a strong supporter of Israel, but not its bad behaviour. Playing move the embassy in Jer. might be Trump’s way of “pissing off Muslims” but that does not make for a peaceful ending. Trump needs to realize terrorists can get on planes and then can travel to the U.S.A and make things very messy over there also.

    • What makes you think Trump doesn’t want another 9/11? Then he can seize the powers he needs to Make America Great Again. Because what right-wingers believe is that the problem with America are the very existence and rights of liberals. Anders Breivik, who shared many beliefs with Steve Bannon, was willing to mass-murder socialist teenagers, not even adults, on the excuse that their liberal contamination was allowing in the Moslem conspiracy. But his butchery shows whom he really considered the threat. A similar reasoning is used against American liberals for their softness against immigrants. That can be parlayed, after a terrorist attack, into a general campaign to disenfranchise and exploit the Blue States so that America will truly become a one-party state, not what we’ve been complaining about, but the full Jim Crow model.

  4. After “Israel conquered the West Bank in 1967, it expanded East Jerusalem’s borders more than tenfold, to seventy square kilometers. In the process, Israel incorporated twenty-eight Palestinian towns and villages that had never been considered part of Jerusalem before, some of which are actually closer to Bethlehem or Ramallah than to the Old City.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  5. Moving the U.S . Embassy to Jerusalem is the same kind of ••••move that brought us the Khobar Towers and 9/11.

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