I Just Don’t Understand

IsraeliUSpassports.istockHearing that today the Supreme Court struck down the notion that someone born in Jerusalem can list their home nation as Israel, I shook my head. Again.

I just don’t understand how we can be so arrogant as to tell another country their capital can’t be their true capital. Name another nation whose sovereign land is subject to the nods and finger-wags of another nation – or in fact, all the nations of the world plus the United Nations.

Find me another nation so beleaguered throughout its history, inexplicably, as Israel. Find me another nation for that matter that turned its desert wasteland into verdant hilly pasture yielding every crop imaginable and with a technology boom to boot.

Find me another nation so concerned for its citizens that even one life is considered as valuable as an entire nation. Find me another place whose people relate to one another heart-to-heart just because they are all from the same big community, even if that community spans many miles north-south and east-west and many years into the past and into the future.

Explain it to me. Because I just don’t get it.

As liberal as I am most of the time, when it comes to Israel I am a passionate conservative. I believe in the necessity of this Jewish nation and the importance of its self-rule.

The Israeli flag flies above the Kotel, the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.
The Israeli flag flies above the Kotel, the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.

I believe that the way it looks in the pages of the newspapers and on the television screens is not in any way close to the reality of being in Israel, living in Israel and calling yourself Israeli.

I don’t just believe it; I know it.

When you’ve been there, when you’ve kissed the pink stones, when you’ve heard from the people who live there day in and day out, you can’t help but believe as I do.

It’s when you keep your distance and think you know what fair is all about that you make mistakes like today’s court decision.

Who are we to tell another nation how to make peace? Especially if we are demanding that said peace be with a community that wants nothing less than the total annihilation of its people.

I don’t believe we are right in demanding that Israel pick another city for its capital since Jerusalem is so disputed and beloved by three major religions. I don’t believe we are right in ignoring the rightful citizenship as Israeli of someone born in Jerusalem.

I don’t believe it’s any of our business.

Can you imagine all the nations of the world thumbing their noses at us in 1776? Deciding that no, we don’t really have our own nation, we will be as they see us?

That’s what we do every day to Israel.

And it’s just not right.

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