The impossibility of dividing Jerusalem

How (not) to divide Jerusalem

The only country in the world whose municipal construction and zoning plans make international headlines is Israel. The latest manufactured outrage was triggered by a Jerusalem city council planning committee’s announcement of plans to build another 768 housing units in the city.

First in condemnation was the US:

Construction permits for 768 residential units, including some in neighborhoods across the Green Line, were approved by the Jerusalem municipality’s local planning committee on Wednesday. The neighborhoods included Har Homa, Sur Baher, Neve Yaakov, Beit Safafa, Pisgat Ze’ev and Jabel Mukaber.

“The [Jerusalem] municipality opposes all attempts to halt the legitimate right of every resident to get a construction permit and will continue building in all of the city’s neighborhoods for Jews and Arabs alike,” a statement by the municipality read.

The U.S. condemned the approval of construction permits across the Green Line and called for both Israel and the Palestinians to refrain from taking unilateral steps that could hurt the ongoing peace talks.

“Our position on Jerusalem is clear,” U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Wednesday. “We oppose any unilateral actions by either party that attempt to prejudge final status issues, including the status of Jerusalem. We’ve called on both sides to take steps to create a positive atmosphere for the negotiations.”

The EU followed suit:

The Jerusalem Municipality’s decision to green light building in three Jewish neighborhoods in the city beyond the 1967 lines drew sharp international condemnation, with EU foreign policy chief Catherin Ashton calling on Israel to reconsider and reverse the decision.


Ashton, increasingly criticized by government officials for swiftly condemning every building announcement beyond the 1967 lines but not protesting similarly Palestinian incitement or violence, issued a statement saying she was “deeply concerned” by the announcement.

“These plans could put at risk the prospects of Jerusalem becoming the capital of two states and, in particular, the territorial contiguity between east Jerusalem and the southern West Bank,” she said.

“The EU and the international community have repeatedly warned that any unilateral action prejudging the final status of Jerusalem threatens the current peace negotiations and, as a consequence, the two-state solution,” she added. “Any such developments must be avoided at all costs.”

Despite Ashton’s adoption of the Palestinian position that Jerusalem will be the capital of a future Palestinian state, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said repeatedly that he is opposed to dividing the capital.

Considering the low number of houses in question, and against the background of international paralysis in the face of enormous unrest, violence and lethal civil war in the surrounding countries, it is nothing less than absurd, not to say utterly hypocritical, to condemn the construction of civilian housing in a civilian city, planned by a civilian committee.

The following video shows the utter absurdity in the very idea of “dividing Jerusalem” so that it could be a capital for two countries.

If you want to learn more about the impossibility of dividing Jerusalem, both physically and politically, you should read Yaacov Lozowick’s excellent series: Don’t Divide Jerusalem. It contains links to several very enlightening posts of his own, videos, maps and diagrams, all of which are worth a thorough read.

In particular, since it’s relevant to this post, read Lozowick’s Har Homa post, and have a good look at his pictures. It is highly instructive.

And next time you read about “East” Jerusalem and “West”, remember that these terms are inaccurate and politically loaded.

This entry was posted in Incitement, Israel news, Lawfare and Delegitimization and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to The impossibility of dividing Jerusalem

  1. NormanF says:

    Read my reply to Lozowick. My views on the subject have not changed.

    People who breezily speak of redividing Jerusalem are completely unfamiliar with the human geography of the city. Jews and Arabs literally live cheek by jowl and its impossible to completely separate them.

    I don’t think any of Israel’s critics have ever visited eastern Jewish Jerusalem and have never bothered interviewing the people living there. But they all presume to make decisions about their future without once asking them how they see their future.

    Its a complete disconnect from reality. They’d never do that to people living in their own countries but Jews are expected to give up settled lives for a promise of peace on an abstract piece of paper! What international condemnation does is simply illustrate the unfairness and hypocrisy of the Western World.

    No wonder peace in the Middle East is not in the cards any time soon.

    • anneinpt says:

      You nailed it Norman. Furthermore, many of those who want to divide the city don’t really want it divided. They want the Jews out altogether but it’s just politically incorrect (for the moment) to say so.

  2. PeteCA says:

    If Jerusalem was just a normal city – it could be divided or shared.
    But since it symbolizes so much in the hearts of many people … it will always be a source of dispute. Only God can resolve this.

    Pete, USA

    • anneinpt says:

      I understand your sentiments Pete, but I disagree. If Jerusalem were a normal city no one would think of dividing it. It was never the capital of a Palestinian state, it was never the capital of any country at all except of Israel and the Jewish people.

      While the Arabs held Jerusalem, from 1948-1967, they showed no interest in the city at all. They did not make it the capital of Jordan – there was no Palestine then – and did not develop it or improve it. On the contrary they performed ethnic cleansing by expelling every last Jew from Jerusalem and destroyed 58 synagogues, desecrated the Jewish section of the Mount of Olives cemetery, and committed war crimes by sniping at Jewish civilians on the Israeli side of the dividing wall.

      Only when Israel liberated Jerusalem again in 1967, righting a historic wrong that lasted all of 19 years – THEN the Arabs suddenly became interested in their “3rd holiest site in Islam”. It’s the same with Judea and Samaria and the settlements – these were all empty land, desolate and not cultivable. Only when the Israelis came and started to develop the land and build on it – suddenly it becomes “historic Palestine”. What a load of nonsense. Again, why didn’t they build on it themselves when they had the chance?!

      The Arabs – not just the Palestinians – do not want a divided city. They want it all to themselves and without a single Jew in it. Again, they don’t want it because it’s so holy to them. They want it because it’s so holy to US. They want to take away from us everything that is precious to us, even though they are not really interested in it themselves.

  3. JudyPT says:

    The idea of dividing Jerusalem is totallyout of the question for a host of reasons .First off ,remember when Jordan illegally occupied half of the city noJews could visit any holy sites at all .Hundreds of synagogues were wantonly destroyed , gravestones were used as road paving stones and many artifacts smashed ,allto humiliate the Jews. Does anyone think the arabs will behave differently? They are already destroying as much as they can on The Temple Mount ,to try and deny any Jewish connection to the area.Since Israel re united the city all places of worship are open to all so the old canard that the arabs cant get to their mosques is just a lie to rile up the population.Remember the difficulties when Berlin was divided in the Cold War ?It is just crazy to even consider such a scenario!!

  4. Betty says:

    Don’t important national organisations have far greater catastrophes to solve than people BUILDING homes to survive in? Death and destruction all over the Middle East ans Africa and what ” fiddling while Rome burns!” ? How impotent !

    • anneinpt says:

      No no no Betty! Surely you must realize that Jews building in their own homeland is the worst war crime in the world! Honestly, you really must get with the program!

      (/sarcasm in case anyone thinks I’m serious).

  5. Reality says:

    The US & EU immediately begin to scream & shout as soon as the word “building” is mentioned. haven’t they noticed that some o the new buildnig will also be in Arab neighbourhoods? Their automatic reaction also harms the very people they want to help. Just as they want to ban goods produced over the”green line” thereby harming Palestinan livelihoods.
    Just anti semitic/Israel reaction from anti semites

Comments are closed.