There is nothing new under the sun

Nobody outside can force anyone in this sensitive region to be right.

Security personnel walk in front of the barrier with the West Bank near Havat Ella, 20 km. southwest of Hebron. (photo credit: REUTERS)
Security personnel walk in front of the barrier with the West Bank near Havat Ella, 20 km. southwest of Hebron.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
When King Solomon some 3,000 years ago wrote “what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun,” he was as sure that people do not learn from the past as he was that morning follows night. The more some insist history must never be repeated, the more it repeats itself in front of our eyes, with nobody even feeling any shame.
When the Nazis took over Germany, there was a general silence not only in Europe but in many other parts of the globe, even on the other side of the Atlantic. Governments either did not understand the signs or deliberately stayed silent. Even when the extermination of the Jews was officially determined by the Nazi regime, officials in London, Washington and elsewhere did not believe that by the end of 1945 some 6,000,000 would have been killed just because they were Jews.
When the Allies eventually freed Europe from the curse of the Nazis, nobody would have believed that after a short period, with the exception of a single nation all the others would have left the Jews again struggling for survival. All the promises, such as “the security of the State of Israel is part of the German Reason of State” proved not even worth the lousy paper they were written on.
Since Israel reconquered Jerusalem in 1967, this city became the symbol of the nonnegotiable. Because it became again what it had been in the heart of every Jew anyway – the eternal capital of Eretz Israel. Not only because there is a dream, or a wish or an expectation or even a promise in this regard. But because this is such an intrinsic part of the Jewish nation. Jerusalem is the heart of it.
Even so, bold offers have been made to the defeated over the past 50 years. To let the eastern part of Jerusalem be the capital of a state called Palestine. Three of these offers were made during the past 20 years alone. All have been refused by the Arabs. Israel didn’t have any reason to make such concessions. Jerusalem is Israel’s. Period. But Israelis want to live in peace with their neighbors and so they tried it over and over again. They got nothing but refusals, shortly after which the Arabs again demanded east Jerusalem as their capital.
The world has tried over and over again mediations, a two-state-solution. Without success. And time has shown that all these engagements have not led to anything but even worse mistrust and tension.
It is definitely time to try something new, something which has never been tried before. And which some bold members of the US Congress in Washington decided to do more than 20 years ago: to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel.
US President Donald Trump saw the signs, and so he did. Period.
The world needs to adapt to a new reality, but humans don’t learn from the past. Turks and Yemenites think they are called to bring the world back to the old track. Two countries which massacred nations and their own population for years have elevated themselves to be the moral guides in a world which has lost all common sense.
However, the truly shameful aspect of this is not that these two countries brought a resolution to the UN to decry Trump’s decision, but that 128 other countries jumped on this deplorable decision.
Of course, all Muslim countries, including Iran, voted in favor. Among these 128 nations are countries which are definitely not at their best right now. Many of them are drowning in corruption (e.g Brazil, South Africa), their economic status is poor (most of the African and Latin American states and many in Europe are struggling with debt and insecurity) or their internal safety and security is compromised (almost all Muslim countries). One does not need to be a prophet or expert to understand that this could be the result of a missing blessing.
Even Germany – notwithstanding Chancellor Merkel’s declaration that Israel’s security is a German “Reason of State” – voted for the deplorable text. In an act of shameful cowardice, the country which murdered more than 6 million Jews bowed down to agitators like Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Yemen – a country in ruins.
The WWII Allies, that once freed Europe from Hitler, with the exception of the United States were too weak to stand up in unison after 72 years. No lessons learned whatsoever.
When I married again 10 years ago, I did not want to repeat history again in my own life. Nor did my lovely bride. Together we chose for the strongest available translation of Ruth 1:17 we found, the blessing for our life: “May the Lord’s worst punishment come upon me if I let anything but death separate me from you!”
Unfortunately, with regard to Israel, history is repeating itself. I hope that the strongest translation I ever found for Genesis 12:3 could be reverted to: “I will bless those who bless you, but those who do not bless you are already cursed! And through you I will bless all the nations.” I hope nations will have their eyes opened to see that one can make a difference, if one is willing to be bold.
No country in the world left its embassy in Rio de Janeiro when Brasilia became capital of Brazil in the ‘60s of last century. Nobody stayed in Bonn after the reunification of Berlin in 1989 – Israel, however, would have had all reason to do so. Nor has anyone their embassy in Nanjing, China, as Beijing is its capital.
What is going to happen with Israel and the Palestinians is an issue these two peoples will eventually solve among themselves, as they know each other best. Nobody outside can force anyone in this sensitive region to be right. It needs to be built on trust and on the mutual interest to live in peace, not only today, but tomorrow and for future generations. Even with a capital in which both could dwell side by side. I wish the day will never come when Jerusalem needs to fight again for its unity, but rather that brothers walk in its gates and streets hand in hand.
The author was born in Brazil and has been living in Finland since 2001. He is the CEO of Amaronia Ltd.