US AMBASSADOR to Israel David Friedman speaks at the opening of the US Embassy in Jerusalem last year. Israel and America share common values and common interests, but the need for the US to be involved in the Middle East does not hinge on what is right or wrong for Israel; it is needed for America.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
One year has passed since the US administration officially recognized what the Jewish people have known for 3,000 years: Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel. The Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 was passed almost unanimously with bipartisan support. However, political fearmongers paralyzed a succession of presidents with doomsday prophecies that violence would erupt across the Arab world if a president uttered the words Jerusalem and Israel in the same sentence.
That was until December 6, 2017, when President Donald Trump and his administration set the record straight. The next day, the sun still rose in the east and most of the Arab world was silent.
Today, one year since the announcement, Israel’s economy is booming, tourism figures are at an all-time high and the American flag flies freely over her Jerusalem embassy.
The State of Israel is experiencing a diplomatic renaissance, with new friendships being forged globally, including across the Arab world. Many other countries have expressed their willingness to recognize Jerusalem, while others have already moved their embassies. This all began with a few words of truth from the White House.
Even the archaeology found in Jerusalem over the last year has given credence to the United States claim. Just last week a half-shekel beka weight, dated from the First Temple period and as described in Exodus, was unveiled at the City of David – inscribed with ancient Hebrew letters.
Before Israel liberated eastern Jerusalem in 1967, there was massive willful destruction of archaeological artifacts, and Jews were banned from entering the Old City. Today all layers of Jerusalem archaeology are cherished and preserved for generations to come, while a tapestry of faiths worships freely in the Holy City.
Throughout history, legendary foreign leaders have linked their good fortune with Jerusalem, from the Queen of Sheba to King Hiram of Tyre and Cyrus the Great. The monumental American recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and subsequent embassy move to Jerusalem will define this presidency as one that paid homage to the past and put America on a new road towards future prosperity.The writer is the vice president of the City of David Foundation, which is responsible for the City of David National Park, the country’s largest archaeology site and one of her most popular tourist attractions, situated upon the site of ancient Jerusalem.
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