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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Jerusalem is 'on the table'

If any of you had any doubts that the redivision of Jerusalem into a Jewish city and an Arab city is on the table, this ought to dispel them. 'Moderate' 'Palestinian President' Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen has appointed former director of the Islamic Wakf Adnan Husseini as his 'adviser on Jerusalem affairs.' The Wakf is the organization that controls anything the Muslims call a holy site, and that currently controls the Temple Mount; the organization is responsible for multiple, daily violations of Israel's Antiquities Law on the Temple Mount. Husseini is also a cousin of the late Faisal Husseini, who held the position under Yasser Arafat.

The Jerusalem Post spoke with Husseini and his big priority seems to be re-establishing 'Palestinian' institutions in Jerusalem that were established in violation of the 'Oslo accords,' and that were operated out of Orient House (pictured above), a building that is just barely into 'East Jerusalem' that Israel shut down after the Sbarro terror attack in the summer of 2001. Incredibly, the Post article is so politically correct that it does not even mention why Orient House was shut down. Neither does the Wikipedia biography of Faisal Husseini (linked above). If anyone knows how to edit Wikipedia posts, you may want to consider editing that one. I don't know how to do it.
The new adviser told the Post one of his first tasks would be to try to persuade Israel to reopen Palestinian institutions in the city that were closed down by Israel over the past seven years.

One of these institutions, Orient House, served as the unofficial headquarters of the PLO in Jerusalem. Orient House enjoyed the status of an unofficial diplomatic mission - a fact that angered many in Israel, especially as some foreign ministers insisted on holding talks there with leading Palestinian figures.

Israel had argued that the presence of Orient House and other PLO-linked institutions in the city were in violation of the Oslo Accords, which banned the Palestinians from conducting such activities in Israel. The closure of Orient House was followed by similar moves against at least a dozen PLO-affiliated institutions.

"Jerusalem is living without a soul in the absence of Palestinian institutions," Husseini said in an interview with the Post. "The people of Jerusalem have been suffering because of the closure of their institutions. Today, everyone realizes that Jerusalem can't exist without these institutions, which used to provide essential services to the public."

Husseini said he was prepared to meet with Israeli government officials to discuss the issue if the institutions and other matters related to the day-to-day affairs of the Arab residents.

"We are prepared to open even small windows with Israel," he said. "We are prepared to do anything to serve the interests of our people in Jerusalem and end their suffering." [End their suffering? With the construction of the 'security fence,' 'Palestinians' have been moving in droves from Judea and Samaria into neighborhoods like French Hill and Pisgat Zev because they would rather be under Israeli control than 'Palestinian' control. CiJ]

Husseini appealed to Israel not to waste time with regards to discussing the issue of Jerusalem.

"We believe that we can reach a solution to the issue of Jerusalem," he said. "We hope the Israelis will wake up and realize the importance of the city to the Palestinians. Israel must accept the fact that we will never give up our claim to Jerusalem."

Husseini said Israel must also realize that peace can't be achieved without a solution to the issue of Jerusalem.

"There will be no Palestinian state without Jerusalem as its capital," he said. "This is a holy city and we want Israel to acknowledge this fact. Israel is mistaken if it thinks that the policy of driving the Palestinians out of the city can lead to peace. Peace can't be achieved by denying the rights of the others. Disrespect for others is a sign of weakness, not strength."

The Waqf department, which is in charge of the Islamic holy sites in the city, remained under the control of the Jordanians after the Six Day War in 1967. Attempts by the PA over the past 14 years to establish an alternative Waqf department have been thwarted by both Israel and Jordan.
Olmert's willingness to divide Jerusalem has woken up Yuval Steinitz of the Likud:
Likud MK Yuval Steinitz on Wednesday said Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had proven his hypocrisy by negotiating Jerusalem's future with Abbas. He recalled campaigning for the Knesset with Olmert, who told people to vote for him because he left the Jerusalem mayoralty to defend Jerusalem from a position of power against those who wanted to divide it.

"Olmert is a prime minister with zero public support, waiting for a verdict from the police and the Winograd Commission, who is ready to divide Jerusalem and allow it to be destroyed to save his skin," Steinitz said.
Yuval is right of course. But if he's waiting for his boss, Binyamin Netanyahu, to get up and lead the battle cries against the division of Jerusalem, he is sadly mistaken. Netanyahu is apparently waiting for Olmert to do the dirty work of dividing Jerusalem, so that when Netanyahu becomes Prime Minister he will be faced with a fait accomplis. The police and Winograd reports could yet be a long time in coming. I have noted before,
Olmert is also under several serious criminal investigations, but the state's attorney's office here is in the left's pocket, and so long as Olmert is moving towards the creation of a 'Palestinian state', he will be protected the same way Sharon was protected from criminal indictment while expelling the Jews from Gaza.
Olmert is trying to divide Jerusalem NOW. Will Steinitz be the one to get up and lead the people into the streets? We wait and see.

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