Why Trump Must Man the Western Wall

Earlier this week, President Trump stopped to pray at the Western Wall during his visit to Israel. After the United Nations Security Council, aided by Obama’s decision to direct the U.S. Ambassador to abstain on this vote, rejected Israeli sovereignty over East Jerusalem and UNESCO denied the connection between the Jewish people and the Temple Mount, including the Western Wall, supporters of the American-Israeli alliance can take comfort from this gesture of  President Trump’s support. By participating in an important tradition of the Jewish people, Trump demonstrated his support for Israeli control of the Western Wall.

This is critically important because many proponents of the two-state solution argue that the entire Old City of Jerusalem, including the Western Wall and other Jewish holy sites, should become the capital of a new Palestinian state. The enemies of Israel must deny the Jewish connection to Jerusalem, in order to hand over the entirety of Israel’s ancient capital, leaving only modern West Jerusalem for the Israelis.

They have fallen prey to the fallacy that if Israel will give up more land and holy sites, the Palestinians will accept Israel and terrorism will cease. PragerU skewers those who hold this viewpoint by revisiting the history of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Israel has returned the Sinai to Egypt, given the Palestinians independence in Gaza, and offered the Palestinians sovereignty over a Jewish holy site in Hebron. The Palestinians rejected generous peace offers and rewarded the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza by electing Hamas in the Gaza strip and firing missiles at Israeli population centers. At the same time, Hamas’ primary political opposition, the Palestinian party, Fatah, continues to provide incentives for terrorism by giving money to the families of suicide bombers. Prior to last year’s planned elections, Fatah attempted to gain a political advantage over Hamas by boasting about the number of their “martyrs” and the Israelis killed by them.

The continued violence and the rhetoric of Palestinian leaders has increasingly made it clear that Israel does not have a partner for peace in Palestine. This is one reason why Trump should reject the false premise that Israel can and should hand over the Western Wall and the rest of the Old City because more concessions will lead to peace. He should defend the Israelis’ right to the most important part of their homeland, their city, the Temple Mount, and the visible reminder that the Jewish people inhabited Jerusalem centuries before Islam emerged, the Western Wall.

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