The President’s Incendiary Policy on Israel
President Trump’s decision to move our embassy to Jerusalem will make the resolution of the conflict more difficult. This unnecessary recognition of Israeli claims will further inflame the Arab and Moslem world, weaken respect for America, and weaken our national security.
In 1967, contrary to international law, Israel took East Jerusalem by force. It is considered holy by Christians, Jews and Muslims. Instead of ending its expansion into Palestinian territory, Israel has expanded so rapidly that it puts the two-state solution at risk.
I first visited Israel and the West Bank for two months in 1973. I returned in 1989 with the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee to monitor human rights during the first Intifada in Jenin, Bethlehem, and Gaza City. I spoke with women who lost their children to teargas. I saw the wounds from the beatings inflicted by the Israeli police and heard stories about the Israeli prisons. I saw the humiliation at the checkpoints. I felt the fear, the pain, and the fury. I returned in 2015 to again assess human rights and to see if a two-state solution was still possible.
Lost in the current media coverage is that the situation in Gaza has also deteriorated. Most of Gaza does not have access to clean water and they frequently face power shortages. In the West Bank, Israel is still expanding illegal settlements. Uncritical US support for Israel is seen throughout the region as condoning colonialism.
President Trump has already further destabilized the Middle East by supporting Saudi Arabia with weapons to bomb Yemen, as well as supporting their blockade to shut down Al Jazeera in Qatar. We are reaping what we have sown.
Please join me in signing my petition to the President, where I ask him to:
- Work to end Israeli expansion in West Bank and Gaza
- End the Humanitarian Crisis in Gaza by providing them with food and water
- Abandon the plan to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem
While we appeal to the President to reconsider his approach, we must also develop a new foreign policy that is geared towards valuing human rights and dignity. We shouldn’t let lobbyists dictate our foreign policy, as it frequently happens in Congress.