Trump + Jerusalem = Nothing Much & Nothing Good


The Forward posted a little something under my name,  “Trump Declared Jerusalem Israel’s Capital — So What Happens Next?”. You can read the whole thing here. I tried to cover all the bases. What happens next is most likely nothing. The municipal borders of the city are never defined in the declaration and no mention is made regarding Israeli sovereign control over the Old City and holy sites. The Jewish right will discover that Trump’s statement is not a “serious” one because it defines and does nothing, even as it seems to define and do something. I might be wrong, but the idea that the United States might use this statement to leverage Israeli concessions for peace is risible, and no one on the left should have any great expectation about “the Kushner plan.” In fact, Trump has made U.S. support of a two state solution conditional upon the agreement of both parties. By recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel with no mention of East Jerusalem as the future capital of Palestine, what the United States has now done is to harden and formalize the identity of Israel as a bi-national regime with apartheid features in the West Bank. As if on a silver platter, this is the gift of the Jewish right and Donald Trump to the conclusion of the Zionist dream, namely the Jewish and Democratic State Idea, and to the future of a “single secular state” in historic Palestine.


About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics.
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2 Responses to Trump + Jerusalem = Nothing Much & Nothing Good

  1. dmf says:

    “You are right about one thing. In sheer human terms, what we are doing to these Palestinian people is inhuman. However, if you think about it, you will see that it follows inevitably from the fact that God promised the whole land to the Jews, as the Bible tells us. So it’s not just that we don’t want these shepherds to be here on these lands. We don’t want them to be anywhere, on any lands. We want them not to be.”

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