18 December, Monday


Why Trump decided to transfer the US Embassy to Jerusalem? - EXCLUSIVE

Specialist view

A- A A+
The status of Jerusalem is one of the most painful issues for the Middle East. In Israel, Jerusalem is considered as the capital of the country. On the contrary, the Palestinians say that the Eastern Jerusalem should be the capital of the Palestine. 
 
In 1980 the Knesset declared Jerusalem to be Israel's “eternal and indivisible capital”, including the territory of the 1967 occupied East Jerusalem.
 
However, in response to this, the U.N. Security Council has passed a total of six Security Council resolutions on Israel on the matter, including UNSC resolution 478 which affirmed that the enactment of the 1980 Basic Jerusalem Law declaring unified Jerusalem as Israel’s “eternal and indivisible capital” was a violation of international law. 
 
Nevertheless, the United States, as a close ally of Israel, abstained from the vote.
 
In 1995, the US Congress adopted a law on the transfer of the US embassy to Jerusalem. But this document could not enter into force. All the presidents postponed the execution of the law due to fears of causing another political storm in the Middle East. And now, Trump decided to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and begin preparing the physical transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Why did he do this?
 
First of all, it is worth noting that the proximity of President Trump to the right-wing faction of Jewish business and politics is not secret. Trump's daughter Ivanka is married to one of the richest American Jews, Jared Kushner. The latter is a confidant of the president and has a strong influence on his policy. 
 
Ivanka herself, who also influences Trump's policy, converted to Judaism and took a new name - Yael. 
 
A close friend of this family Sheldon Adelson is one of the richest people in US and one of the richest Jews in the world, the owner of the casino empire, one of the main sponsors of the Republican Party of the United States.
Simultaneously, Adelson connected with the family of the Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu. 
 
The families of Trump and Netanyahu are close, too. 
 
It is a friendly clan which takes a tough stance against the Arabs and in particular Iran. At first glance it seems that the decision is connected with this circumstance.
 
But there are more important reasons. The fact is that despite the anti-Iranian statements of Trump (in particular, he sought to abolish the nuclear deal and impose sanctions against this country) the US has not yet taken any action against Iran. And this is not an accident.
 
The United States considers that the main problem is ISIS and aspires to finish it as soon as possible and put its head on a platter. But Israel considers Iran as its main enemy.
 
Perhaps Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to transfer the US embassy there is an attempt to appease Israel and prevent or postpone its war against the Iranians and Assad.
 
At the same time, the decision made by Trump most likely is not strategically beneficial for the US. American influence in the Middle East has already been significantly undermined, and Iran is gaining strength where the US has previously dominated. This is an ideal situation for Iran to strengthen its position.
 
It is no coincidence that, “Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis opposed the move from Tel Aviv,” Reuters said in its report, citing US officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
 
They believe that such a step could threaten American diplomats and military personnel in the Middle East and in countries with a predominantly Muslim population.
 
The University of Maryland Critical Issues Poll found that 59% of Americans said they preferred that Trump lean toward neither side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In contrast, 57% of Americans, including most Republicans, said he is in fact leaning toward Israel. 
 
According to the Brookings Institution, 63% of all Americans oppose moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, including 44% of Republicans.
 
So, if Trump wanted to strengthen his position in the United States with such a step and to turn his attention away from Russiagate, he is unlikely to succeed.
 
Mikhail Magid,
Political analyst for the Middle East

Eurasia Diary

EurasiaDiary © Must be hyperlinked when used.

Follow us:
Twitter: @Eurasia_Eng
Facebook: EurasiaEng


loading...