Jerusalem must be partitioned : Ehud Olmert

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by Son of Govinda, May 21, 2012.

  1. Son of Govinda

    Son of Govinda Regular Member

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    World News: Jerusalem must be partitioned former Israeli PM Ehud Olmert says - thestar.com

    JERUSALEM—Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Sunday urged Israeli leaders to relinquish the idea of a unified Jerusalem if they truly want peace, contending in a pair of interviews that years of government neglect have kept the Jewish and Arab sectors irreparably divided.

    The comments, made as Israel marked the 45th anniversary of capturing east Jerusalem, were nearly unprecedented for a mainstream Israeli leader and put Olmert at odds with his successor, Benjamin Netanyahu. Celebrating Israel’s control of the city on the Jewish state’s “Jerusalem Day,” Netanyahu declared his government was committed to keeping it the country’s undivided capital.

    “No Israeli government since 1967 has done even a smidgen of what was needed in order to unify the city in practical terms. That is a tragedy that is going to lead us, for want of another choice, to making inevitable political concessions,” Olmert told the Maariv daily.

    Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Middle East war and immediately annexed the area, home to sensitive Jewish, Christian and Muslim holy sites as well as a large Arab population. The Palestinians hope to make east Jerusalem the capital of an independent state including the neighbouring West Bank and Gaza Strip.

    Speaking Sunday evening from the site of a Jerusalem battle from that war, Netanyahu said the city will not be partitioned.

    “Israel without Jerusalem is like a body without a heart. And our heart will never be divided again,” he said.

    The future of Jerusalem is one of the thorniest issues at the core of the conflict. Jerusalem’s old city is home a compound sacred to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. Jews revere it as the site of their two biblical Temples and Muslims regard it as Islam’s third-holiest site.

    “There are those who believe that if we only divide Jerusalem, and that means giving up the Temple Mount, they believe we will have peace,” Netanyahu said. “I am doubtful, to say the least, that if we deposit that square of the Temple Mount with other forces, that we won’t quickly deteriorate to a religious sectarian war.”

    “I know that only under Israeli control is accessibility and religious freedom is ensured, and will continue to be ensured to all the religions. Only under Israel will the quiet be preserved, only under Israel will the peace between the religions be ensured,” Netanyahu said.

    Olmert said the notion of a united Holy City is unrealistic. He pointed to a number of Arab neighbourhoods in east Jerusalem, saying they have not been integrated into the rest of the city.

    “We can’t unite them and connect them to the real fabric of life in Jerusalem, and except for grief, we haven’t gotten anything from them,” he said.

    Olmert went through a dramatic political transformation late in his career.

    As mayor from 1993 to 2003, he was an outspoken hard-liner opposed to concessions to the Palestinians. Then, while prime minister from 2006 to 2009, he pursued a peace agreement envisioning broad territorial concessions to the Palestinians before a corruption case forced him to step down.

    In those talks, Olmert offered to turn over parts of east Jerusalem to the Palestinians, and have Jerusalem’s Old City, home to the most sensitive religious sites, be administered by an international consortium including Israelis, Palestinians, Americans, Jordanians and Saudis.

    Olmert claimed his talks with the Palestinians came tantalizingly close to an agreement. The Palestinians have said Olmert did not go far enough.

    Since taking power three years ago, Netanyahu has repudiated Olmert’s willingness to partition the city. With a newly expanded coalition, Netanyahu has cemented a formidable majority for his hardline policies.

    The Palestinians have refused to conduct peace talks with Netanyahu unless he halts settlement construction in east Jerusalem and the West Bank. About 200,000 Israelis live in east Jerusalem, approaching the Arab population of about 280,000. Netanyahu says talks should resume without any preconditions.

    Israel marked Sunday’s anniversary with a series of marches and speeches throughout the city. The Palestinians’ chief peace negotiator, Saeb Erekat, said the Israeli celebrations were “clear proof” that Israel is not interested in peace. “Clearly, this behaviour reflects the mentality of a colonizer, rather than a supposed peace partner.”

    Also Sunday, Israel’s Shin Bet security service said it had arrested nine Palestinians who tried to kidnap Israelis in the West Bank. The agency said in a statement that the ring made three unsuccessful kidnapping attempts in March, hoping to ransom the Israelis for Palestinian prisoners in Israel.

    Last year, Israel released more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for a captive Israeli soldier.
     
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  3. pack leader

    pack leader Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    good luck with your fantasy provided by the most unpopular prime minister in Israeli history
    corrupt to the core and facing a long prison sentence

    your leftist fantasy will never come to pass
    we will never sell our holy city to Islamist trash
     
  4. Son of Govinda

    Son of Govinda Regular Member

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    Sorry but under international law it's not "your" city :troll:
     
  5. pack leader

    pack leader Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    no one gives a flying ---- about international law
    India included :taunt1:
     
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  6. Son of Govinda

    Son of Govinda Regular Member

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    Apparently it matters to your main allies who still refuse to recognize Jerusalem :troll:
     
  7. pack leader

    pack leader Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    it matters little in real life
    reality not perception caries the day

    "it mattes not what the genitals say but only what Jews do " - David Ben gurion
     
  8. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

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    We have a former President like him, name of Jimmy Carter.
     
  9. Razor

    Razor CIDs from Tamilnadu Senior Member

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    You do mean gentiles, right ? :)
    Or as in the original qoute 'goyim'.
     
  10. mayfair

    mayfair Elite Member Elite Member

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    International law is strange indeed...they do not recognise East Jerusalem as a part of Israel, they do not recognise Turkish Cyprus, yet they recognise the Pakistan (illegally) occupied J&K as a part of Pakistan and Aksai Chin as a part of China.
     
  11. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    No they do not.

    PoK is just de-facto part of Pakistan..called Pakistan Administered Kashmir by international agencies and not accepted as de-jure part of it,
     
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  12. mayfair

    mayfair Elite Member Elite Member

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    They also use the term Indian administered Kashmir. World bank and ADB and other agencies have funded enough projects in that region (Mangla dam etc.), international dignitaries have visited those parts, all but affirming the Paki government position. I am not sure how much more "de-jure" can you get.
     
  13. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    No they don't

    The legal terms is Pakistan administered Kashmir and it is not recognised as part of Pakistan. Same as with the Indian side.

    The issue has now been relegated to a bilateral issue which is what India wanted. Once India and Pakistan decide on the border, it will be accepted under International law as well.


    Ehud Olmert was very close to achiveing a break through because it was one of the first time a true two state solution was being proposed to the Palestinians which included West Bank Gaza and the Arab majority parts of Jerusalem. Howeer according to him, American supports of the Israeli right funneled in cash to topple him before he could actually action his peace plan and derailed it
    Olmert: Right-wing U.S. cash derailed Israeli peace plan - CNN

    The point is that everyone agrees that the two state solution is the best possible deal and is in Israeli interests as well but no one actually came forward with the plan as such. Rabin was the only other leader to actually do so but was assasinated soon after.

    Even in the Arab world in a poll conducted in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and the UAE in 2010, there was 85% support for the two solution so it is a doable thing as long as the politicans on both sides are brave enought to take the bold step to resolve this conflict.
    Poll: 85% agree to two-state solution - JPost - Middle East
     
  14. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Mangla Dam was funded by the World Bank which was basically controlled by the US and Western European countries who were pro-Pakistan around that time.

    ADB funds projects in Indian Kashmir as well and clearly states that funding of their proojects does not mean it recognises soverignity in disputed territories. For example, recently it funded flyovers in Srinagar (ADB to fund two flyovers in Kashmir - Yahoo! News India)

    The International position on Kashmir is that it is an issue that will be resolved Bilaterally. This is what the Shimla Agreement entails and that is what GoI has been pushing for the past couple of decades. No interference of third party mediators and no UN resolutions. Basically treating it as a boundary dispute.


    While the Israel-Palestine issue has been taken to the ICJ and both Israeli courts and the ICJ have ruled on these territories. No such thing has happened in the Indian case. Mostly because, India doesn't want it and the Shimla agreement restricts either party from raising it at an International forum.

    India however does have a strong International case apart from the Maharaja singing the ascension treaty AND having an ELECTED J&K assembly raifying the ascension to India. Voting rights are not provided to Arabs living in West Bank and Gaza so there is really no comparison between Kashmir and this particular issue.
     
  15. devgupt

    devgupt Regular Member

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    I would two more names Ehud Barak and Ariel Sharon.

    In 2000 Camp David Ehud Barak agreed to give more than 90% of the total Palestinian land demand including a partitioned Jerusalem.

    Olmert's predecessor Sharon was also proposing the same thing before he had a stroke.
    In fact he formed Kadima party for this purpose only.He bulldozed Jewish settlements in Gaza Strip and West Bank, and started a unilateral withdrawal.

    Sharon with the force of personality would have forced things.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2012
  16. one

    one Regular Member

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    I agree. No one can divide Jerusalem how hard they try including some big nuts in the Knesset.
     
  17. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    Where was your reason all these years Mr. Olmert? I hope the current Israeli government picks up your wisdom while in Office (not out of office)...
     

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