INDEPENDENT STATUS FOR ‘THE OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM’
(which is only 1 square kilometre in surface).
The roots of the Jewish faith go back to 1950 BC.
In those days, like many other Semites, the patriarch Abraham left the town of Ur in Mesopotamia – present day Iraq – to migrate to the fertile Arab land of Canaan bordering the Mediterranean Sea.
Originally Canaan was inhabited by Canaanites, Philistines, Phoenicians and Bedouins.
Many of them lived in towns such as Sidon, Hazor, Meggido, Shechem, Jericho, Salem, Hebron, Gerar, Beersheba, etc.
Melchizedek was then king -a priest king- of Salem, the future Jerusalem.
As opposed to others who worshipped several gods, Abrahamn only worshipped ONE single God, who had created ’heaven and earth’.
For this God, he built (sacrificial) altars in different places, including the ones near Shechem (Nablus) and Hebron.
And also on one of the mountains in the land of Moria, at three days travel from Beersheba -where he had pitched camp at the time- to sacrifice his son Isaac to God.
That would have been the Temple Mountain in Jerusalem.
That is when God promised Abraham to give him and his descendants the whole land of Canaan IN ETERNAL OCCUPATION!
The name of his grandson Jacob, son of Isaac, was changed by God to Israel.
Israel begot twelve sons, who became the founding fathers of twelve tribes, which spread out across the whole of Canaan.
One of them was Juda, from which the term Judaïsm has been derived.
Juda gave his name also to the territory in which he settled, Judea, of which Jerusalem was the centre.
Around 1800 BC. The Middle-East was subject to Egyptian rule.
Because of overpopulation and lengthy periods of famine in their own country, many Israelites migrated to Egypt, where they lived in slavery.
Four centuries later, Moses was born in Egypt, from Israelite parents.
Moses was chosen by God to free his people and take them back to ‘’the promised land’’ of Canaan.
Around 1400 BC, the people of Israel -after their flight from Egypt they wandered 40 years through the desert- returned to Canaan and systematically conquered the land from the Arab peoples.
David, from the genealogical lineage of Juda, became king of the Jews, as the Israelites were called from those days onward.
He conquered Jerusalem from the Philistines and combined the land parts of Israel (Samaria) and Judea, to form the first “United” Jewish Kingdom.
He bought the Temple Mountain (the threshing floor) from Arauna the Jebusite and established a new altar for God.
Under his reign, Jerusalem became a centre of secular and religious power.
In 1000 BC, his son Solomon built the first Jewish temple on the Temple Mountain in Jerusalem.
God’s commandments, as they were passed on by Moses to the Israelite people on the mountain of Sinai, and which were incorporated together with the ’Five Books of Moses’, also called the Torah, formed the fundamentals for it.
Less than 100 years later, in 930 BC. the Jewish Kingdom fell apart again in the ’house’ (tribe) of Juda and David, in Jerusalem, and the tribe of Israel, in Sichem.
In 600 BC. – after several foreign invasions – the Jewish temple in Jerusalem was destroyed for the first time by the Babylonians.
Almost all Jews were taken away in captivity.
One century later Jerusalem became subject to Persian rule.
In 300 BC. the Middle-East was conquered by the Greeks and a few centuries later by the Romans.
Around the year 0, from Jewish parents, from the geneological line of David, Jesus of Nazareth was born in Betlehem.
33 Years later Jesus of Nazareth was crucified in Jerusalem by the Romans AND by the Jews, because he had become a danger to the established order of the Romans AS WELL AS to the Jewish religion!
Christianity was born!
Because of the original no-violence, charity and forgiveness, Christianity spread quickly across the Middle-East and Europe.
In the year 70 AD, after yet another Jewish uprising against the Roman rule, the Jewish temple in Jerusalem was destroyed for a seconde time.
This time by the Romans.
From that date on, the Romans called the land that they had occupied Palestine, after the original inhabitants the Philistines.
In those days Palestine stretched from Syria in the north to the Red Sea in the south, and from the Mediterrenean Sea in the west, to deep into the lands of Jordan in the east.
Having no land of their own, most Jews dispersed (Diaspora=dispersion) across the entire Roman Empire.
In 634 AD. Syria, Jordan and Palestine were conquered by the Arabs.
Their new religion, the Islam: full submission and dedication to ONE SINGLE God, Allah, displaced the Jewish and Christian religions in the Middle-East.
The crusades from Europe, between 1100 and 1300 AD, did not change this.
The Muslims also built their new temple on the Temple Mountain in Jerusalem (then wasteland): The Rock Dome, because their Prophet Mohammed was supposed to have ascended to heaven on that location.
Around 1500 AD. Palestine was conquered by the Turks.
In 1882, after fierce pogroms (persecutions of Jews) in Eastern Europe, the first Jews migrated to the basis of their religion and started to built settlements.
It was the beginning of Zionism: the world wide return of Jews to the ’Holy Land’.
In 1917 the English occupied Jerusalem and ended 400 years of Turkish and 1300 years of Islamite rule.
All of Palestine became subject to British rule.
At that time, the English already suggested in the Balfour Declaration, that Palestine be SPLIT UP in a Jewish AND an Arab State.
The second World War and the holocaust spurred on the massive return of Jews to Palestine in a dramatic and overwhelming way.
In the partitioning plan of the United Nations, in 1947, both the Israelis and the Palestinians were given the RIGHT to their own independent state.
Jerusalem was divided up into an Israeli and an Arab/Jordan part.
In 1948, the State of Israel was proclaimed, ending the British mandate.
However the Arab countries refused to recognise the State of Israel and to proclaim an independent State of Palestine.
They declared war on Israel.
Hundreds of thousands of Jews fled the Arab countries to go to Israel and were received in their own country.
Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled to the Arab countries and ended up in refugee camps.
Israel won that ’war of independence’.
Nowadays already 5,6 million Palestinian refugees live in refugee camps.
For 73 years already.
In 1967 five Arab countries attacked Israel again.
Israel again won that war, which only lasted six days.
Israel occupied then a great number of territories, including the West Bank of the Jordan River, the Gaza strip and the Eastern part of Jerusalem.
In 1980 Israel proclaimed Jerusalem the undivided ’’ETERNAL” capital of the State of Israel; an action which was not approved by the United Nations.
This was the immediate cause of the Intifada (armed rebellion), which actually started in 1987.
Already for 73 years milions of Palestinians have been living as outcasts, in the most wretched conditions in dozens of refugee camps in different countries.
Their desire to found their own independent state is blocked by fundamentalists on both sides.
As a result, the Palestinian resistance against the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, the Gaza strip and especially East-Jerusalem is becoming increasingly violent.
It has become a fight of the desperate!
With the Palestinians, ALL Muslims in the Middle- East AND abroad feel opressed and humiliated, because two of their most important sanctuaries – the Rock Dome and the El-A|ksa Mosque – are in Israeli hands.
The frustrations and anti-western sentiments that have been building up over the years among the Palestinians and the 1,6 billion Muslims, have taken on dangerous forms for the whole world, culminating in the dramatic attacks in New York, London and Madrid.
THAT IS WHY THE STATUS OF JERUSALEM IS NOT ONLY AN INTERNAL ISRAELI PROBLEM !
To ensure a peaceful coexistence in the Middle-East, it is of vital importance for the United Nations, the United States of America and Israel to immediately dedicate all efforts towards:
- The proclamation of independency of ‘The Old City of Jerusalem’, without any political interference whatsoever, by whomever, such as the Vatican in Rome, Italy.
- West Jerusalem then becomes the administrative Capital of the State of Israël.
- East Jerusalem then becomes the administrative capital of the State of Palestine.
- Recognition of the State of Palestine withinthe borders of 1948/1967.
- Complete separation of Church and State in the State of Israël as well as in the new State of Palestine.
- Large aid programs for all 12 million Palestinians.
- Negotiations about the Jewish settlements on the West Bank on basis of exchange of territory and/or financial compensation.
Perhaps the sting will be out of the conflict then.
Perhaps all deeply felt beliefs will be able to blossom then.
Perhaps we will finally be able to follow a REAL roadmap to peace.
From a historic point of view, both the Israelis AND the Palestinians, have RIGHTS to parts of Palestine AND Jerusalem.
Its is up to the international community – in particular the United Nations – to bring about this allocation in a just and fair matter.
EVERYONE IS ENTITLED TO HIS OWN BELIEF,
BUT ALL TOGETHER WE SHARE ONLY ÒNE SINGLE WORLD!