Israeli Attempt to Liquidate the Issue of Jerusalem
- 25 February 2009
As part of its campaign to defeat the Palestinian cause and impose an unjust reality on the Occupied Territories, Israel is specifically targeting Jerusalem, by rapidly “Judaizing” the city and by destroying its Arab and Islamic landmarks. Israel is aware of the religious significance of these historical sites for all Arabs and Muslims around the world. It is also aware that Muslims want the city to be named the capital of the Palestinian state.
Despite the many calls made by Arabs and international community on Israel to stop the “Judaization” of Jerusalem—as it is considered one of the major issues in Palestinian-Israeli negotiations—Israel has continued with its “judaization” plans against the Holy City. Its latest program seeks to demolish 88 Palestinian houses in Jerusalem and displace 1,500 Palestinians on the pretext that the houses were built without authorization, even though they were built before 1967. On the other hand, the huge expansion of Jewish settlements in Jerusalem and other occupied Palestinian Territories are not historically, morally or legally justified.
Israel is taking its aim at Jerusalem, not only by evicting its Arab citizens and destroying their homes, but also by targeting the Holy Al-Aqsa Mosque and by carrying out dangerous excavations under the compound. The most dangerous plans for demolishing Palestinian homes in Jerusalem and evicting their residents are taking place as Israeli leadership is taking up an extreme orientation with Benyamin Netanyahu preparing to lead Israel. Recently, a rabbi sent Netanyahu a message to strengthen Israeli control over Jerusalem, and not to give up on expanding its Judaization.
With its aggressive campaign against the Arab half of Jerusalem, Israel intends to provoke the feelings of all Arabs and Muslims, especially as Jerusalem was recently chosen the “Arab Cultural Capital” for 2009, and has a revered status for each and every Arab and Muslim. It is important that the world and its powerful leaders would respond to Arab demands that were recently made at different levels to resist Israel and prohibit it from inflaming the entire region against Arab sanctuaries and citizens. The religious dimension of this issue and the Holy City’s revered status for millions of Arabs and Muslims could provoke against Israeli actions which could then threaten the stability of the entire Middle East. Al-Aqsa Intifada in 2000, which was provoked by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s entry into the compound of the Holy Al-Aqsa Mosque lasted for many years. This proves that the outcome that could result from Israel’s assault on Jerusalem and its sanctuaries.