Under foreign and domestic pressure, Canada reluctantly joins international consensus opposing Trump’s decision on Jerusalem

Freeland

Global Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland announced on Dec 6th that Canada would not be following the US lead in moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. But she was very careful not to criticize Donald Trump’s decision. Read more….

Barely a week after Canada found itself isolated at the UN General Assembly over the Israel/Palestine issue, Minister Chrystia Freeland appeared to rejoin the international consensus on Israel/Palestine by declining to follow President Trump’s decision recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel.

But while she “declined to follow” she did not criticize. In a cautiously worded 4 sentence press release, Minister Freeland stuck to reaffirming “Canada’s longstanding position is that the status of Jerusalem can be resolved only as part of a general settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli dispute”.

In a subsequent media briefing, “a government official told media on Tuesday that Canada will keep its embassy in Tel Aviv, ” reported the Globe and Mail.

But the Minister’s comments were careful to avoid the strong criticisms leveled at Trump by foreign ministries around the world. The only voice of support for Trump’s move was, not surprisingly, Israel. Countries as diverse as France, Turkey and China formed a chorus in condemning the US move as reckless and dangerous.

While western allies criticize Trump’s Jerusalem move, Canada’s response remained muted, noted Evan Dyer of CBC. “unlike the governments of Britain, France, Germany and other Western countries, Canada did not make any public effort to change Trump’s mind about an action that many in the Mideast see as a needless provocation.”

A similar point was made by the Toronto Star’s National Affairs columnist Tim Harper.

Inside Canada’s Parliament, NDP Foreign Affairs critic Helene Laverdiere also denounced the US decision as “dangerous and ill- advised”. She demanded that Canada join the world in condemning the move.  Mr Matt de Courcey, Freeland’s parliamentary assistant found ways to avoid doing so however.

The Minister was treading carefully, as she had previously been lobbied by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) which strongly supports recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Is Jerusalem a part of Israel? Not according to the UN… or Canada

https://imeu.org/map/jerusalem-and-the-corpus-separatum-proposed-in-1947

The red line shows the outline of the special area proposed as an international city.  Zionist troops ignored the UN, taking over the green part, which became W. Jerusalem, expelling non Jews from it.

While Trump now says Jerusalem is a part of Israel, Canada does not agree.

Freeland’s position is no doubt based on legal advice given to her by  Justice Canada lawyers noting that Canada has never recognized Jerusalem (east or west) as part of Israel.

Canada supported, and still legally supports, UN resolution 181, which partitioned Palestine in 1947 into an Arab and a Jewish State. That resolution made provision for Jerusalem to have special status, (” a corpus separatum”) not under the control of either the Jewish State or the Arab one. It was to be placed under international control in order to ensure that all three religious groups which value Jerusalem (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) would have access.

This plan was never realised, as the Zionist forces intent on having Jerusalem for the Jewish State, ignoring UN resolution 181, took over the western part of Jerusalem, expelling the non-Jews who lived there.

Nonetheless Canada still adheres to that UN resolution 181, and does not accept the legality of Israeli control over any of Jerusalem, (although it acknowledges Israel’s de facto control of West Jerusalem, for example, by agreeing to meet Israeli officials in West Jerusalem, but not in East Jerusalem). This issue has actually been dealt with in the Federal Court of Canada, which rejected an Israeli/Canadian’s claim to have “Jerusalem, Israel” marked in his passport. The federal court decided that the status of Jerusalem was still unclear.

Will the Minister’s involvement in this issue remain there? Or will she look for some other way to support the Trump decision? In a private briefing to supporters on Dec. 7th, CIJA head Shimon Fogel apparently indicated that Canada’s largest pro-Israel lobby group is pressuring the minister to make a statement confirming the “Jewishness” of Jerusalem. To be continued.

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49 comments

  1. I, too, would prefer that Canada had been tougher. But we should remember that Chrétien didn’t criticize the U.S. and U.K. when he refused to take Canada into the war on Iraq. He just didn’t join in, and he remains something of a hero as a result. Actions and non-actions speak louder than words. Now if Europe decided to sanction Israel for its never ending occupation, that would be an action worth joining.

      1. Oh, no! Not myth-mongering!

        The article you cite says, “The Jean Chrétien government didn’t do what the Bush administration wanted above all else, which was to publicly endorse the invasion by joining the “coalition of the willing.” I wrote he “didn’t join in.”

        The article says, “As part of the tenth anniversary of the invasion many media outlets lauded Canada’s refusal to join the second Iraq war.” I wrote, “he remains something of a hero as a result.”

        So which part is inaccurate?

  2. It is little nuggets of brilliance like this that has enabled Trump to maintain a governing base. There is no strategic sense in taking the timid road as Joe Clark ultimately did – and this tepidness served no strategic purpose. Walking on eggshells with Palestinian Arabs is a poor strategy.

    More sense is shown by letting the Palestinian Arab side see that time is a wastin’ with their refusal to acknowledge the full world experience of the pre-1948 Jewish Committee – and showing a modicum of empathy for the position that it was in. Trump is in many ways a bull in a china shop – but the American people decided that the time has come to get off the complacent, ineffectual train.

    1. There’s something deeply offensive about Alan Blanes’ post. First, “Walking on eggshells with Palestinian Arabs” — as if governments and NGOs have been walking on eggshells with Palestinians rather than Jews, as they tolerate and often support, for example, Israel’s 50-year illegal occupation. Then, it’s a stretch to say “the American people” decided anything.

      1. Authur, it is time to stop the play acting with the Palestinian leadership. They, in earlier generations, could have faced history as the hospitable understanding people that is a part of Arab culture, or they could side with those who wanted to dehumanize Jews. Unfortunately the choice was the latter – and this resulted in a crush of Jews feeling estrangement from the world – and a homing impulse toward the place where Hebrew culture was born, emerged.

        The alternative of looking at the emergent problem of catastrophic proportions, that could be abated, if we worked together to use benign and ecologically wise planning to deal with the an impending thermos-effect of heat trapping below the stratosphere, is where the priorities need to lay. Palestinian Arab leaders need to join with all of the democratic forces in the Levant – especially Kurds and Israelis – to begin to take the 30,000 foot vantage point on this matter. Niggling over historical grievances has to be transcended, and game playing will not do it. What is needed is stern, frank honesty, and an understanding that Arabs’ interests ultimately lay with an engaged and equal Israel.

      2. The American people passed the Jerusalem Embassy act in 1995, There has been consistent support in both parties for implementing it every presidential election cycle and sometimes in between. The reason it hasn’t been has been international pressure. In so far as people decide anything in a representative democracy a position quite a bit further than Trump’s (United Jerusalem is the capital of Israel) was agreed to and supported by the American people.

    2. It’s hard to be hospitable when you’re driven from your home, your land and your history. If you read about it Jews and Muslims and Christians lived in Palestine for centuries in harmony. It was only after the arrival of the colonial mentality that the situation changed for the worse. It is not about religion, it’s about the aggressive pursuit of Palestine by a settler colonial mentality. When Palestinian self determination receives equal status with Jewish self determination, then the situation will improve

      1. Palestinian self determination is DIRECTLY tied to the need to create a working relationship with Israel, that can enable acceptance of each other by both sides. I suspect that many Palestinian leaders are oblivious to the fact that when they say two different things to international bodies and mouth homicidal canards to local groups of agitators – that this destroys their capacity to be negotiators for their side. Listen to the CURRENT on CBC this morning about the problem of complicity. Western anti-Zionists are complicit in keeping Arab leaders thinking there is some utility in trying to be oppositional to Israel. The precise reverse is true.

      2. Christians and Jews managed to live in peace with the Islamic occupiers of Jerusalem as long as they allowed the Islamists to think they were superior. When the Muslims found they were not, harmony ended.

      3. You cannot be settlers or colonists of your own land. Both Jew and Arab are indigenous people.
        As for Jerusalem, the 1911 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica says that 67 per cent of its population was Jewish and only a paltry 12 per cent Arab in 1905.
        If you read about it, Arab massacres of Jews began well before the founding of the modern Israeli state.
        Jews and Israel are an anathema to most Arabs. Remember, the grand mufti of Jerusalem conspired with Hitler.

    3. The American people decided nothing. History tells me 3 million more American citizens voted to elect Hillary Clinton as president than Trump, who’s official success relied entirely on the manipulation of the electoral college vote, likely through the very able assistance of Russian agents.

      But like Israel’s ongoing theft of Palestinian lands, anything that advances what you presume to be progress, including the theft of the US presidency is ok in your eyes.

      Frankly, as a Canadian I’ll hitch my pony to the Canada wagon that our Prime Minister has been jockeying about of recent while seeking free trade deals with various and sundry nations. It’s loaded with human rights positions.

      If my PM wishes to force such rules onto nations that will trade freely with us then I would insist those same human rights issues be pushed onto nations that claim or want to be “friends of Canada.

      In short, I want to see nations that get special friendship with Canada acting as we want nations that trade with us to act, namely by striving to protect the human rights of all rather than those of a special people.

      My message to you and to Trudeau is real human rights outweigh the sort of backroom diplomacy that politicians haven’t the intestinal fortitude to explain in an open and honest public discussion.

      1. Couldn’t agree more. It is important to move away from the Zionist narrative that Israel is the realization of Jewish destiny and adopt a solution based on law and human rights. Special relationships are ways to obfuscate the reality of the situation. Applying the same standards to both sides and the same expectations is a more certain way to ensure a lasting settlement.

      2. You are speaking as a sentimentalist who feels that direct democracy has merit and representative democracy has flaws. The extra 3 million Hillary votes were in coastal pockets that skewed the local support upward. Take a look at the sea of red on the electoral map – and then say the US chose Hillary…It does not compute.

        Mr. Trudeau has been claiming that he wants a progressive trade agenda. Possibly the Council of Canadians has been able to reach him on some common sense points. I see myself as an economic democracy supporter, so for me to point out that Trump did something that helps to move the parties along into a better focus of mind, is an irony. However, G-d works in mysterious ways.

        I have no interest in seeing land stolen from Palestinians. I am wanting to see conditions arrived at whereby serious discussions and headway becomes possible. I have made a simple point, that after about 5 decades of observing the dynamics of this conflict, I have came to two interim conclusions: 1] Palestinians have to face the fact that a pluralist society that allows discussion of sovereign autonomy for various populations has got to be faced. Zionism was the upholder of this principle, in practice, and nothing can advance so long as Palestinians are dead set against other groups having self determination rights. Viz., instead of “Days of Rage” about Israel naming its capital, why not Palestinians identifying and working with Israel for recognition of a specific [Vatican City-style] area in East Jerusalem for their capital? 2] Both parties are going to have to demonstrate the subtlety of mind required to grasp that this parochial dispute is hampering the ability of the region to do its share of what is needed to ameliorate the climatic catastrophe that is imminent if we do not pull together and get all the barren regions of the planet covered with deep dark foliage – so that the Earth increases its capacity to absorb heat, and to filter out pollutants which forests do, so that they don’t end up acidifying the oceans more than they are. This is a whole area where the 17 Sustainable Development Goals for 2030 have to be treated with extreme seriousness. Read the book “The Global Forest” and see what a difference the human race can make if it gets its priorities straight, and gets beyond looking at the infinite number of past injustices as reasons for contention. Lets put them in perspective – and strive to move beyond that limited gestalt.

      3. Alan Blanes, I’ve never seen anyone use environmentalism as a justification for ongoing Occupation. You treat Israel as if it’s some kind of multiculturalist, pluralist democracy and ignore entirely the huge number of various kinds of fanatic Jews, from isolationist Haredi to religious-nationalists to plain old fascist. And a great many otherwise liberal Jews who, no matter how powerful their army is and no matter how many Palestinians are killed or forced from their homes, are incapable of seeing themselves as anything other than victims. Meanwhile, your idea of non-sentimental thinking for Palestinians requires their abject surrender to Jewish Israelis. You seem to think Palestinian surrender is the only practical solution to more than a century of Zionism, but the likelihood of Palestinian surrender is about the same as that of the Jews of Israel agreeing to live in a state in which a near-majority of Palestinians get to vote.

        It’s difficult, Alan Blanes, to tell whether you are a very creative propagandist for Israel or just delusional.

  3. I would welcome a discussion based on Dr. Jonathan Kuttab’s talk last week, in which he argued that the two state solution is dead (and has been for a long time). One state would mean that Israelis and Palestinians would have to figure out a way to live together as equals, in a democratic country. This move by Trump may well force the conversation to move to a one state solution and the difficult compromises that will require.

    1. Trump has repeatedly said he’s open to a 1SS or a 2SS. There are multiple 1SS proposals being discussed by Israeli parties both on the left and right and even within Likud. There was a 1SS solution discussion in the Senate during the David Freedman confirmation hearing. The Palestinians have 1SS discussions regularly.

      It is Europe and the UN (and I guess Canada) who thinks this is some shocking development. The UN’s position does not have support in the USA, does not have support among Israelis, does not have support among Palestinians. It has always been the UN trying to impose a solution that the people who live there don’t want against their wishes.

    2. @Bessa

      The one-state solution that Dr. Kuttab is referring to, with other human rights activists, is bi-national state where every Palestinian and Jew can live and enjoy safety, peace and dignity. The Zionist version of the one-state solution is this one:

      http://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/israel-slippery-slope-1.4368018

      “” Forget the ‘slippery slope’ — Israel already is an apartheid state.
      Since the election of Donald Trump, colonization has surged with an invigorated enthusiasm”

      Neil Macdonald, CBC News

      I personally support a one-state solution – the human rights based version.

    3. That would never happen. An Arab Muslim majority would quickly overwhelm a Jewish minority and turn into yet another Muslim state. You are obviously no student of history. Over 700,000 Jews were expelled from Arab lands. In Libya, they were stripped of their citizenship. In Iran, where some Jews remain, they are dhimi.
      Why would your naive proposal be different?
      Jews have been discriminated against, persecuted, and massacred in countries all over the world. Even in Canada, they’ve had quotas imposed on them at universities, been denied employment, refused admission to clubs, been prevented from purchasing land, etc. Why do you think that democracy, especially Arab democracy , whatever that is: Hello Arab spring
      would protect Jews?

      1. @Leigh

        Obviously it wouldn’t. One of the core contradictions in BDS thinking is believing that Israelis would agree their total permanent subjugation in response to mild economic pressure.

      2. “One of the core contradictions in BDS thinking is believing that Israelis would agree their total permanent subjugation in response to mild economic pressure.”

        Two mistakes in one sentence! “BDS thinking” is a pretty malleable term, but there’s nothing in the BDS program that calls for or implies subjugation. And it may be that cultural boycotts are more effective than an economic boycotts. How would Israel respond to being barred from the Olympics? Would it compromise? Or would it self-destruct, like those role models at Masada?

  4. It really doesn’t matter what Trump or Netanyahu or anyone else says about the status of Jerusalem. Under the UN partition plan Jerusalem has a unique status and does not belong to one side or the other. That is a law not an opinion and recognizing it as the capital of either side holds no legal weight. Israel’s annexation if east Jerusalem in 1980, capture of West Jerusalem in 1948, and continuing efforts to judaïsé east Jerusalem are all against international law. The issue is not one of what is illegal and what is not, it it the abject apathy with which the world views Palestinian rights and it’s failure or refusal to hold Israel to account for it’s behavior. Why there needs to be negotiations with an occupying power by the occupied is beyond understanding. Palestinian leaders have relied on US support believing that they had equal standing in the peace process. Too late they realized that they don’t. They have capitulated on everything from Israel’s security as primary importance to backing the illegal gaza siege, all for nothing. Trump’s offensive move proves once and for all that Palestinians are on their own. The Zionist fantasy that Jerusalem belongs only to Jews is not consistent with either history or law. Since Israel’s acceptance into the UN was determined in the general assembly, and since general assembly resolutions can’t be vetoed as in the security council, I’d suggest putting Palestinian statehood to a general assembly vote and see what happens. There is simply no way that the current situation will last. Jerusalem will outlast the selfishness and narrow mindedness of extremism on all sides and still be standing when Zionism fades from history.

    1. You roam around Jerusalem, it is filled with Arab stalls and Arab people, and it is ridiculous to say that Israel says Jerusalem is only for Jews. The problem that people who support intransigence as a policy for the Arab leadership is that the more the refusal to become potential allies of Israel persists, the more marginal the position of the Arab side becomes. This should be understood as self fulfilling by the Arab side and their sympathizers outside of the Palestine – Israel region.

      1. Yes there are lots of Arabs in east Jerusalem. They have residency cards, are not citizens of Israel, and have had over 20000 homes demolished since 1967. It is virtually impossible to obtain a building permit unless you are Jewish. Forced displacement, house demolitions etc is part of a long standing plan to judaise east Jerusalem. It’s no secret and not denied by Jerusalem authorities.

    2. @John

      This already happened as least as much as it can. Membership as a state in the UN requires a 2/3rds of the General Assembly after a Security Council recommendation. H.Res. 1765 (2010) instructs the President to veto such a bill being presented, the Senate confirmed that in S.Res 185 (2010). So the recommendation is very unlikely. Those rules are why Palestine is a non-member observer, because the General Assembly can do that on its own (138–9-41 vote). As an aside Canada was one of the 9 nos.

      As for Zionism fading from history, I don’t think that’s likely but I would highly doubt that Israel dies and Jerusalem survives its death throes.

      1. Israel is not going to die but it cannot sustain it’s current political climate indefinitely. Zionist politics are not compatible with Jewish traditions, and more than one rabbi has raised the specter of Zionism as a cause for antisemitism. The only two solutions are two states with EQUAL STATUS based on law and human rights or a single state with equality for ALL citizens. The Jews are not leaving nor are the Palestinians. It is simply myopic to believe otherwise. There is no question about the Jewish connection to Jerusalem. But there’s also no question about the Muslim and Christian connection either.

  5. @Jonathan Menzies wrote:

    “Under the UN partition plan Jerusalem has a unique status and does not belong to one side or the other.”

    The partition plan, like all GA resolutions has no legal weight and represents the opinion of the international community, at a particular moment in time.

    That said, it was not the Zionists that rejected the partition plan. It was the Palestinian Arab leadership which had been seized through intimidation and force by Haj Amin al-Husseini. Indeed their were other Palestinian clans who were more open to peaceful partition but they were shut out of the power structure by the Husseinis.

    The corpus separatum was never instituted and it was not because the Zionists occupied western Jerusalem and expelled the Arab population. If the Zionists had not succeeded in breaking the siege of Jerusalem, the entire Jewish population of the city would have been starved out, exiled or killed. In Jerusalem, large numbers of Jews were in fact driven out of the homes and neighbourhoods that they had occupied for generations. Not a single Jew was left in the area of Jerusalem that was occupied and annexed by the Kingdom of Jordan during the Israeli War of Independence.

    It is a plain fact of history that Western Jerusalem has been Israel’s capital for over 60 years. It took the US 24 years to acknowledge the communist victory in China and open diplomatic relations in 1972. Surely, after 68 years, it is time to acknowledge Israel’s victory that same year and accept reality.

    The boundary of the prospective Palestinian state remains up for negotiations if the Palestinians ever deign to return to the table. In 2008 Ehud Olmert offered East Jerusalem to Abbas as the capital of a prospective Palestinian State, but Abbas never even made a counter-offer.

    The fact that Palestinians are rioting against this purely symbolic gesture of solidarity by the Americans toward Israel augurs badly for the prospects of peace any time soon.

      1. His analysis is crap though it’s obvious why you would applaud it.

        The criminal zionists never accepted the partition plan. In fact they occuppied and had offensive troops operating outside of their partition prior to any declaration of independance. The Arabs made the mistake of being honest while the zionist played a two faced game of accepting with while using violence and ethnic cleansing to gain territory. Just as for the past 50 years they have openly pretended to desire a two state solution while expanding territory with no intent of ever permitting a Palestinian state.

        It’s one thing to encourage discussion and lower the heat. It’s another thing to permit such blatant dishonesty and propaganda which is proven wrong by Israel’s own government documents. This serves no purpose other than to allow the rogue criminal state to further it’s racist, expansionist, apartheid agenda.

    1. Dear anoymous.

      Not a single part of Jerusalem has been a part of Israel in any legal sense of the word. Not since 1948.

      Trump has legitimized the Russian annexation of Crimea. The Iraqi annexation of Kuwat and the German annexation of the Sudetenland in one fell swoop. Might is not right in any moral world.

      Now both the US and Israel are rogue states. Forget the GC’s. They are in violation of the Hague Conventions as well.

      The Palestinians are not under any obligation to make counter offers (which they have made) their land is not Israeli territory. It is Israel who is under the obligation if it wishes to retain it’s illegaly gains.

      You would have thought the world would have learned the lesson of appeasing an expansionist state but apparently not. This will not end well.

    2. Well it had enough legal weight to allow Israel’s statehood. The argument that if you take something it’s yours and the world should accept it is simplistic. What happens in the future when someone else takes Jerusalem. Who are you going to ask to help get back. Oh that’s right. There’s no one there. That’s the problem with selfishness, it only works if you’re winning.

  6. Trump’s attack on Palestinians is the “best attack” they have ever faced!

    In one step, Trump ended the dangerously successful US policy to support Israel and liquidate Palestinian rights. This strategy is called the “peace process” and Oslo agreement.

    He forced Palestinians to work harder for their national unity.

    He exposed and embarrassed the puppet regimes in the Arab world that are building up their alliance with Israel such as the Saudi regime.

    He motivated Palestinians everywhere to mobilize and get even greater support form the solidarity movement across the world.

    The bi-national one-state solution is now more popular among Palestinians and their friends. I mean the real one-state solution and not the Zionist fake news one.

    Frankly, it is good to have a clown as a US president sometimes 🙂

    1. Trump offered to provide disruption and to not continue dysfunctional complacent policies. There is no rational reason why Palestinians can’t also ask for a region of Jerusalem to be their capital. In fact, Trump just made that potentiality a bit closer to being formulated.

  7. My opinion is that the world should be quietly ignoring Trump’s statement. Trump’s behaviour is that of a man that enjoys, in fact needs, attention. By debating and condemning this latest move, people are giving him exactly what he wants and rewarding him for disruptive behaviour.

    Trump is not King of the world; he has little power over Israel and no power over the Palestinians. Anyone who thought that the US might be a neutral power that could act as an honest broker in the Zionist/Palestine dispute was delusional. Among other things, they were ignoring the huge amount of military and financial support that gives Israel its strength. If Trump has achieved anything with this declaration, he may have destroyed the false illusion that the US was neutral. Other than that, I don’t think that Trump has changed anything of substance. Those who agree with this position, like those who decry it, have not changed their minds.

    The world should ignore this statement and get on with trying to find a just peace without trying to please a US that pretends to be an arbitrator while supporting Israel 100%

    1. Totally agree, Dr. David, with you:

      ” If Trump has achieved anything with this declaration, he may have destroyed the false illusion that the US was neutral.”

      It seems that Trump’s pathological needs have positive political side effects sometimes 🙂

  8. In our efforts to please and flatter Donald Trump we should be careful not to sell our integrity for a mess of potage.

  9. Get ready for ‘de-Arabization of Jerusalem’ ‒ fmr IDF soldier

    Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital bolsters the country’s “brutal occupation and brutal campaign of ethnic cleansing,” Israeli human rights activist Miko Peled tells RT

  10. Although causing emotion and disruption in the search for a solution in Israel Palestine, POTUS recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel may eventually produce forces that could lead towards a UN mandated “two state solution.”

    It is important to note that POTUS did not recognize Jerusalem as the “eternal and undivided capital of the Jewish state of Israel” which is the official claim of the Government of Israel. Indeed, he specifically said that this step was without prejudice to the current conflicted status of Jerusalem (including Palestinian claims to a capital in East Jerusalem) and limits on Israeli sovereignty. He called for no change in and access to the Jewish, Christian and Muslim holy sites. While he did not specify West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, this can be taken as a given since all countries with relations with Israel conduct business with Israeli institutions in West Jerusalem where some countries have had embassies in the past and others like Canada in 1979 considered moving and on which Russia confirmed recognition last April with little attention. The US consulate is in West Jerusalem could have been turned into an embassy with the stroke of a POTUS pen, but USA is taking years purposely to establish and move its emassy Finally POTUS confirmed a USA commitment to a negotiated two state solution including final status for Jerusalem based on international law UNCSR resolutions and a USA commitment to faciltate such a process..

    A positive result of the POTUS announcement was that notwithstanding the absence of criticism, it made the Government of Canada reaffirm its commitment to Canadian policy to support the conditions leading to a negotiated two state solution based on law and UN consensus that would also finalize the status of Jerusalem. PM Trudeau also indicated that Canada would not be moving its embassy from TelAviv to Jerusalem. Since Canadian Mideast policy had been given little or no voice or action by the previous pro Israel Harper Govt, it may now open an opportunity for the Trudeau govt to do more in a balanced manner in advancing to an israel Palestine 2 state soution.

    Key question now is whether the USA will come through with the Trump Kushner “deal of the century” two state solution that can satisfy IsraelPalestine and the international community. The failure of the Obama Kerry efforts were deemed primarily the responsibility of Israel in the USA view (reread Obama and Kerry assessment which complained at lack of Israeli leadership and the complaints of Tpsi Livni the Israeli negotiator) because of a failure of now hard line and rejectionist Israel to make any concessions on sovereignty, security, settlements, a symbolic right of return and compensation – not to mention Jerusalem itself – and now calling into question any two state remedy.

    It can at least be hoped POTUS announcement on Jerusalem may ultimately give the USA sufficient leverage with Israel and eventualy influence with the Palestinians after the crisis has died down to allow a future Israel Palestine agreement to be signed on the Whitehouse lawn as the US UN ambassador has predicted. This will require much international support and a consensus in the UNSCR.

    If Canada lends its strong support to such an efective USA international initiative (in stark contrast to Harper who undermined Obama’s efforts), Canada might get to play a direct role in a fair and just Israel Palestine two state solution including Jerusalem, as a voting member of the UNSCR and still respected peacemaker.

    George Jacoby

  11. PM Netanyahu is in Europe accusing the Europeans of coddling the Palestinians, predicting and cajoling the Europeans to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s ‘ capital and giving absolutely no indications that Israel is open to any kind of a “two state solution.” He will be undoubtedly following the same strategy with Canada and other supporters of Israel.

    It is therefore an appropriate time for Canada and the EU and other Europeans to join together to recognize West Jerusalem as the capital Of Israel. At the very same moment they would all recognise Palestine as a state with East Jerusalem as its capital. They could give the parties a year to work out the modalities of such a “two state solution” along the lines of UNSCR resolutions and the Arab peace initiative and with provisions for “aliya and the right of return” in Israel and Palestine respectively as well as full and equal protections for minorities in each state. Such an agreement would be consistent with the official policies of the EU and Canada which would gve appropriate assistance and guarantees. Canada would push with others its own plan for the internationalization of the holy sites that has been developed by Michael Bell (deceased) and Michael Molloy, two eminent Canadian foreign service Mideast experts who have served as ambassadors to Israel, Jordan, Egypt etc. The USA would be asked to join in through the current and future efforts of Mr. Kushner. if the parties reached such an agreement all countries would be invited and free to establish their embassies to Israel in West Jerusalem and to Palestine in East Jerusalem with the holy sites internationalized. If such an agreement was not reached the matter would revert to the supreme authority of the UNSCR as France has suggested for a some sort of solution

    Hopefully Canada woild be on the UNSCR as a member to either validate or declare such a ” two state solution for Israel and Palestine. It could be signed on the White House lawn with Jimmy Carter and George Bush (the architects of Israel Egypt and Israel Jordan peace treaties) along with President Trump who would have achieved the “deal of the century” on Israel Palestine peace. Could Canada get a Nobel Peace Prize for its oeace efforts?

    George Jacoby

  12. Yes I think so Arthur. EU Foreign policy chief Mogherena sp just said that EU countries would not be recognizing or moving their embassies in Israel to Jerusalem until there was an acceptable two state solution with Jerusalem the capital of both Israel and Palestine. It would not take much more to recognize Palestine as a state along with Israel with East and West Jerusalem their respective capitals but await any embassy move to Jerusalem on an acceptabe and legal “two state sollution.”
    USA is not moving its embassy for a long time.
    None of this antisemitic for many good reasons.

    George Jacoby

  13. @John Menzies

    Israel is not going to die but it cannot sustain it’s current political climate indefinitely. Zionist politics are not compatible with Jewish traditions, and more than one rabbi has raised the specter of Zionism as a cause for antisemitism.

    I think you are conflating two things whether diaspora Judaism is viable and whether Israel is viable. Even if Zionism caused a surge of Antisemitism that started yet another wave of migration to Israel I’m hard pressed to see how that is a negative for Israel. Israel benefitted from the antisemitism in Eastern Europe that drove the first few aliyah. The mass migrations that followed World War 2 benefitted Zionism. The Arab led destruction of their indigenous Jewish minority benefitted Zionism… Zionism is like Judo to antisemitism, antisemitism makes Zionism stronger. Arguably one of Zionism’s few weak spots was the 1990s when there was a huge drop in tension against Israel.

    The only two solutions are two states with EQUAL STATUS based on law and human rights or a single state with equality for ALL citizens.

    Are you sure those are the only two solutions?

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