BANDERSNATCH FOREIGN POLICY ANALYSIS
THE JERUSALEM PROBLEM

Jerusalem is a very holy city. That's the problem. God allowed three major religions to vest themselves in the place. If there was only one religion claiming Jerusalem, there wouldn't be a problem. But there's at least three...the Jews, the Christians, and the Muslims.

Now, things wouldn't be so bad if all three religions claimed Jerusalem because of the same Old Testament basis...Jews and Muslims share the Old Testament. Darned if God didn't send down his Son to be crucified in Jerusalem. That should tell everyone a lot about the place--preach love and forgiveness and the authorities (Roman at the time) nail you to a telephone pole.

People have been fighting over Jerusalem for thousands of years. It has to be the most conquered city outside of New York City. (The majority population of New York today is....?)

Jerusalem is the ultimate Historic District. And anyone familiar with the politics of historic districts knows what a futile effort that is.

The problem is God gave what amounts to real estate title to Jerusalem to more than one religious group, and what we've had is an adverse possession problem ever since.

Whichever religious group is controlling Jerusalem at the time, they've managed to alienate everyone else by denying them access to their religious sites. When the Palestinians had control over the Wailing Wall, Jews weren't allowed to visit their most holy site. 

So...since no one else seems to be able to figure out a Jerusalem Solution, The Frumious Bandersnatch has its Modest Proposal:

The major problem is the Old City, with all the religious sites. Since God created the problem, God ought to be responsible for solving the problem. The Old City should be declared an International Historic Site, and the place be put in charge of the Pope, Israel's chief Rabbi, and whoever is the top Muslim cleric. Now, this isn't the start a a joke (the Pope, a Rabbi and an Ayatollah were in a boat together...).

The three religious leaders would have to guarantee the faithful of the other religions free access to their holy sites. This would be most interesting since the Jews, the Muslims and the Christians have been fighting for two thousand years. Remember the Crusades?

A new building could be constructed in Jerusalem (the only one to be allowed) which would be the site of the perpetual peace negotiations that will continue between Arabs and Jews. This would save both sides a lot of travel time to Camp David.

Jerusalem is actually a much bigger city than the Old City.

With the Old City safely in the hands of religious leaders...turning the Old City into one gigantic mosque/church/synagogue with the obvious accoutrements of plaster saint shops, and reserved parking for those whose dues are paid up...the rest of the city could be divided up between the civil authorities of Israel and Palestine.

This is another major sticking point.. Who is in charge of Palestine? Hamas? Fatah? It is easy to understand why Israel isn't going to allow a Palestinian state to emerge controlled by guys who daily fire rockets into Israel. Do you think for a minute the US would tolerate rockets being fired into El Paso from Juarez, Mexico by the Mexican Drug Cartels? (Note: We just tolerate people being killed in American cities by the drug cartels.)

Copyright 2000 - 2009 by Hugh A. Holub

BACK