Friday, May 14, 2010
As Israel's Capital, Jerusalem Has Been Open and Prospered
Wednesday was the 28th of Iyar on the Hebrew calendar and marked Yom Yerushalayim, the anniversary of the day in 1967 when Jerusalem was reunited after 19 years.
When Vice President Biden was a senator, he sponsored the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, stating it was the policy of the United States that "Jerusalem should remain an undivided city" and "Jerusalem should be recognized as Israel's capital."
In 2007, when Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was a senator, she issued a position paper in which she asserted "Israel's right to exist in safety as a Jewish state, with defensible borders and an undivided Jerusalem as its capital, must never be questioned." In 2008, when President Obama was a senator, he insisted Jerusalem will remain Israel's capital, "and it must remain undivided."
From 1948 to 1967 when parts of Jerusalem were occupied by Jordan, Judaism's holiest places were closed to Jews. Since then, the holy sites have been open to all, with the exception of Jews being barred from pray ing on the Temple Mount, which the Israeli government has allowed the Muslim Waqf to administer.
On Yom Yerushalayim, we celebrated the way Jerusalem has prospered and been open to all as Israel's capital, and call upon our country's leaders to adhere to the policies they so wisely advocated as senators and incorporated into law in the Jerusalem Embassy Act.
Alan H. Stein
The writer is president of PRIMER-Connecticut (Promoting Responsibility in Middle East Reporting; www.primerct.org).