The myth of “historically Arab” East Jerusalem

This video was produced by Honest Reporting.

Per Honest Reporting’s Simon Plosker:

“How the media report on Jerusalem has a tremendous impact on public policy. The Palestinian Authority is claiming that Jerusalem — including the Old City — will be “restored” to Arab control as capital of their new state.

The media stubbornly clings to the notion that there are two separate cities of Jerusalem, East and West, and that the eastern half, including the Western Wall in the Old City, lacks Jewish legitimacy.

Honest Reporting investigates the issue, including interviews with Jewish refugees from 1948.”


Categories: Uncategorized

Tagged as: ,

26 replies »

  1. The problem is that the Israeli govt and the City of Jerusalem in particular continue to treat East and West Jerusalem as two different cities, with vastly different levels of govt and municipal services provided in each.

      • A fine analogy. What do all smokers have in common ? They are in total denial of reality and ignore all expert research and opinion. No doubt many smokers make personal verbal attacks on doctors and scientists who insist on telling them that smoking will kill them, rather than addressing the health issue. Sound familiar ?

          • I was referring only to the statement “The media stubbornly clings to the notion that there are two separate cities of Jerusalem, East and West” and the undeniable fact that the various authorities treat the two parts of J’m as two different cities. This is current events, not history. This policy has been self-defeating because the Palestinian Authority has been quick to take advantage of the vacuum and provide services that the govt should but doesn’t provide, i.e. this official discrimination has provided a golden opportunity for the PA to gain a strong foothold in East Jerusalem. This is also fact, not history.

        • ‘They are in total denial of reality and ignore all expert research and opinion’

          It’s not a very good video, not least because it introduces much extraneous matter, such as the 3000 years of alleged unbroken Jewish habitation (it wasn’t unbroken but that does not in my view mitigate Jewish national claims). But what is currently called ‘Arab East Jerusalem’, was largely a collection of outlying villages which expanded and grew from 1948 into a de facto suburb of the Old City.

          The Jordanians did expel Palestinian Jews from the Old City and Jewish East Jerusalem (it was Jews, the largest single group in the city from 1845, who built the first residents’ neighbourhood outside the Old City, whence grew Jewish and west Jerusalem: Mishkenot Sha’ananim in 1860) or its outlying districts, as had Palestinian Arabs from 1929 on, when they expelled the Jews of Hebron.

          Frankly I think this a separate issue from that of whether Jerusalem should be divided or not, which I think it should, old and new.

          What is disturbing is that such as you do seem to swallow pretty much unexamined the current Palestinian Arab nationalist narrative. This will make things only harder for the Palestinians, since the more such as you insist Israel deny what it knows, what is staring it in the face, the more it will cling onto it.

  2. mindthecrap: yes, I went to a talk by Anat Hoffman a long time Meretz city counciller, 10 years ago when she warned that the council’s unequal funding practices for Arab areas had the makings of a divisive and hostile faction within Jerusalem.
    She expressed her frustration that Arab city members of the council were not helping by refusing to take up their posts and to vote funds for their amenities because of their anti normalisation policy, but she still warned that if Jerusalem did not deploy these funds equitably even without the Arab vote, it would redound against Israel’s own interests.

  3. MindofCrap.

    Your excuse is a simplistic red herring, designed to put the blame where it does not belong.
    It wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference were Israel to provide the E. J’lem Arabs with mansions.
    The problem is ideological….Islam will not recognise any sovereignty over any part of J’lem…indeed over any part of what it recognises as Islamic lands, other than its own.
    Continue in believing in mythology, if it makes you happy!

    • My “excuse” is not an excuse : it is a fact. If you had bothered to read the link I posted, you would see that the City of Jerusalem does not provide school facilities for half of the children of East Jerusalem. There is a compulsory education law in Israel and the govt is legally obligated to provide the facilities.

      So is East Jerusalem part of Jerusalem (and hence Israel) or isn’t it ? If it isn’t, then you don’t object the the city being divided in the framework of any peace agreement and the question of municipal services is not relevant. If it is, then the govt should start acting like the democracy that it claims to be and stop providing ammo to those that claim Israel is an apartheid state.

      The only one offering a “simplistic red herring” is you. Start looking instead at what is actually happening on the ground instead of lecturing us on mythology.

    • ‘It wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference were Israel to provide the E. J’lem Arabs with mansions.’

      By not agreeing to divide Jerusalem, old and new, Israel will make the same kind of mistake the Palestinian Arabs made in 1947. It is a remarkable level of stupidity, I think, that cannot sense that insisting on the whole loaf entails the real risk of losing it all at some point.

      If the Qassems fall, as some predict, then at least Israel will be on a sound footing in international law to do something about them.

      • You mean like everyone (UN, US etc) promised would be the case before we withdrew from Gaza?

        That didn’t turn out too well, did it? The minute we responded after 8 years of rocket attacks, all those who had promised otherwise proceeded to throw the international law book at us with great gusto.

        And I do have to ask…would you be so frivolous with the safety of your own children?

        • With all due respect, the siege of Gaza hasn’t turned out too well, has it? It’s collapsed.

          Why do you think direct occupation would have been easier or less costly?

          Better would have been to let Gaza be and, when Hamas raised its head, hammered it. That way Israel could have done Cast Lead Plus, and still been on better grounds in international law for doing so.

          Yes, Hamas may come to power in territory evacuated by Israel (especially as the process of Hamasising Fatah has begun. But at least Israel would be on better grounds for undertaking the necessary reprisals.

          Cast Lead Plus, plus better footing in international law.

          Re. my children: I wouldn’t want to put my children in a complete, undivided Jerusalem that will fall to a pan-Islamic siege one or two generations down the line.

  4. ‘It wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference were Israel to provide the E. J’lem Arabs with mansions.’

    It is very curious that the Don’t divide Jerusalem lot mirror the PSC and BDS lot in their claims to the entirety of certain territories. The solution lies in the middle ground. There is nothing more than such as Ben White would love than that Israel refuses to divide Jerusalem, so that that a third Intifada that he fears/hopes for, or a further wave of Arab state jihad, erupts to liberate it.

    Sometimes I think you lot deserve each other.

    • Because the Jews have it. If Israel’s capital were Timbuktu the Arabs would be clamouring for it, claiming it’s their fifth holiest site or some such.