Testimony of Morton Klein On Moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel

Written Testimony of Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) National President Morton A. Klein

Hearing on Moving the American Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem: Challenges and Opportunities Before the House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security
November 8, 2017, 10:00 a.m.
Rayburn House Office Building, Room 2167



Chairman DeSantis, Vice Chairman Russell, Ranking Member Lynch, and Members of the Committee: Thank you for holding this hearing to examine relocating the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem,1 thereby finally implementing the bi-partisan Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, which Congress passed virtually unanimously2 twenty-two years ago.

It is a special privilege to come before you during this year of momentous anniversaries: the 100th anniversary of both the Balfour Declaration and President Woodrow Wilson’s essential prior U.S. consent to the Balfour Declaration3; and the 50th anniversary of the miraculous reunification of Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War, when Israel defended herself from Jordan’s attack.

I’d like to quote from then-Senator and subsequent Vice President Joe Biden’s statement in 1995, urging Congress to pass the Jerusalem Embassy Act. Senator/VP Biden eloquently described the central importance of Jerusalem to the Jewish people, and the justice of recognizing and moving the American embassy to Israel’s unified sovereign capital Jerusalem, as follows:

Those familiar . . . with the Jewish people know the central meaning that the ancient city of Jerusalem has for Jews everywhere. Time and again, empires have tried to sever

1 Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 (S. 1322 (104th)), Pub. L. 104–45, Nov. 8, 1995, 109 Stat. 398, at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/STATUTE-109/pdf/STATUTE-109-Pg398.pdf
2 S. 1322 passed by 93 to 5 in the Senate, and by over 90% of the vote in the House (374–37). https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/104/s1322/details

3 Britain required prior consent from its allies France and the United States before issuing the Balfour Declaration. “The Forgotten Truth about the Balfour Declaration,” by Prof. Martin Kramer, Mosaic Mag., June 5, 2017, at https://mosaicmagazine.com/essay/2017/06/the- forgotten-truth-about-the-balfour-declaration/

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the umbilical cord that unites Jews with their capital. They have destroyed the temple. They have banished the Jews from living in Jerusalem. They have limited the number of Jews allowed to immigrate to that city. And, finally, in this century, they tried simply to eliminate Jews. They may have succeeded . . . in destroying physical structures and lives. But they have never succeeded in wholly eliminating Jewish presence in Jerusalem, or in cutting the spiritual bond between Jews and their cherished capital. After the horrific events of the Holocaust, the Jewish people returned to claim what many rulers have tried to deny them for centuries: The right to peaceful existence in their own country in their own capital. How many of us can forget that poignant photograph of an unnamed Israeli soldier breaking down in tears and prayer as he reached the Western Wall after his army liberated the eastern half of the city in the Six Day War? Those tears told a story. A story of a people long denied their rightful place among nations. A people denied access to their most hallowed religious sites. A people who had finally, after long tribulation, come home.”4

The Jews were indeed the largest religious group in Jerusalem from at least the time of the first census in 1844, through the present day.5 In approximately 1880, Jews became the majority in Jerusalem. In 1906, out of a total Jerusalem population of 60,000: 40,000 were Jews; 13,000 were Christians and only 7,000 were Muslims.6

Senator/VP Biden also commented that maintaining embassies in Tel Aviv for the previous forty-seven years (1948-1995) was a “continued sham” and “a denial of fundamental reality.”7 That sham and denial of fundamental reality has now continued for 69 years.

As I will discuss, moving the U.S. Embassy to Israel’s capital will achieve tremendous benefits for the United States and our allies throughout the world.

1. Moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem Fulfills U.S. and International Law and Policy:

The move to Jerusalem will effectuate U.S. law and policy, as well as binding international law, to which the United States is a party, designating Israel, including Jerusalem, as the Jewish homeland.

(a) The Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 Establishes Moving the Embassy as U.S. Policy

4 Statement of Senator Joe Biden, Cong. Record Vol. 141, No. 165, Oct. 24, 1995 (Senate), p. S- 15533, at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CREC-1995-10-24/html/CREC-1995-10-24-pt1- PgS15522.htm (Emphasis is supplied, unless otherwise specified.)
5 Population of Jerusalem: 1844 to Present,” Jewish Virtual Library, at http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/population-of-jerusalem-1844-2009

  1. 6  Baedeckers’ Guide to Jerusalem, 1906.

  2. 7  Statement of Senator Joe Biden, Oct. 24, 1995, supra, p. S-15533.

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The bi-partisan Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, passed virtually unanimously, states that it is U.S. policy that Jerusalem “should remain an undivided city . . . recognized as the capital of the State of Israel” and that “the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem no later than May 31, 1999.”8

The Jerusalem Embassy Act lists seventeen historical, religious, factual and legal findings warranting the embassy move. Legal-related findings include: “(1) Each sovereign nation, under international law and custom, may designate its own capital”; “(2) Since 1950, the city of Jerusalem has been the capital of the State of Israel”; and “(16) The United States conducts official meetings and other business in the city of Jerusalem in de facto recognition of its status as the capital of Israel.” The Jerusalem Embassy Act also invokes the prior passage of unanimous Congressional resolutions (1990 and 1992); and respective 1995 Senate and 1993 House letters to the Secretary of State encouraging “planning to begin now” for relocation of the embassy to Jerusalem, and that the relocation “should take place no later than . . . 1999.”9

(b) The Jerusalem Embassy Act’s Waiver Provision Is Required to be Narrowly Construed, and is Not Intended to be Invoked Repeatedly or for Policy Disagreements

For the past two decades, successive U.S. administrations have repeatedly invoked the Jerusalem Embassy Act’s waiver provision every six months, even though the waiver provision was not intended to permit such repeated delays. The Jerusalem Embassy Act states that the President may invoke additional six-month waivers

if the President determines and reports to Congress in advance of the additional suspension that the additional suspension is necessary to protect the national security interests of the United States.” 10

In Congressional hearings in 1995, then-Senator and Majority Leader Robert (“Bob”) Dole, who introduced the Jerusalem Embassy Act along with Senators Moynihan, Kyl, Inouye, and 61 other colleagues,

Senator Dole also explained, during the following revealing exchange with then-Senator Kyl, that the waiver provision is required to be narrowly construed, may not be lawfully invoked simply because an administration disagrees as to when or if the embassy should be moved, and is not intended to allow indefinite delays. The Jerusalem Embassy Act’s intent was for the American embassy to be established in Jerusalem by May 1999:

8 Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, supra, § (3)(a)(1)-(3), Statement of Policy of the United States.
9 Id., § 2, Congressional findings (1), (2), (9), (10), (13), (14) and (16).
10 Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, supra, Presidential Waiver, §§ 7(a)(1) and (2).

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Mr. KYL: The waiver provision in S. 1322 will be examined by many people. I would like to join with the distinguished majority leader in clarifying on the Record the meaning and purpose of the waiver language.
Mr. DOLE: . . .
It is important that no one think that this [waiver] provision would allow the President to ignore the requirements of S. 1322 simply because he disagrees with the policy this legislation is promulgating. The President cannot lawfully invoke this waiver simply because he thinks it would be better not to move our Embassy to Jerusalem or simply because he thinks it would be better to move it at a later time. The waiver is designed to be read and interpreted narrowly. It was included to give the President limited flexibility — flexibility to ensure that this legislation will not harm U.S. national security interests in the event of an emergency or unforeseen change in circumstances.

Mr. KYL: What is the significance of the phrase ''national security interests'' as opposed to ''national interest''?

Mr. DOLE: This is the way we are ensuring that the waiver will not permit the President to negate the legislation simply on the grounds that he disagrees with the policy. ''National security interests'' in [sic] much narrower than the term ''national interest''– and it is a higher standard than national interest. The key word is security. No President should or could make a decision to exercise this waiver lightly.

Mr. KYL: Is it fair to say that the intention of the waiver is to address constitutional concerns that have been raised about S. 1322?

Mr. DOLE: It is fair to say the waiver is intended to address unusual or unforeseen circumstances. We believe S. 1322 is constitutional even without the waiver, but the constitutional questions that have been raise about it deal [[Page S 15532]] with issues so important that we think it is best to offer the President the limited flexibility of the waiver. It is within the constitutional appropriations power of Congress to withhold funds from the executive branch if it does not act in accordance with congressional mandates.

Mr. KYL: Although in drafting the legislation Senators did not limit the number of times the President could invoke the waiver authority, is it correct to say that the intent of the drafters is not to grant the President the right to invoke the waiver in perpetuity?

Mr. DOLE: The waiver authority should not be interpreted to mean that the President may infinitely push off the establishment of the American Embassy in Jerusalem. Our intent is that the Embassy be established in Jerusalem by May 1999. If a waiver were to be repeatedly and routinely exercised by a President, I would expect Congress to act by removing the waiver authority. 11

11 Statement of Senator Bob Dole, Oct. 24, 1995, supra, p. S-15528.

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Senator Dole also explained that the presidential waiver was added to the bill “despite having the votes to prevail” without the waiver. This was simply done in the spirit of addressing any administration concerns.12

My (Morton Klein’s) personal discussions about the Jerusalem Embassy Act with its authors and many other members of Congress in 1995 and since then, likewise indicated that the Jerusalem Embassy Act’s waiver provision was not intended to be used to repeatedly delay the move for two decades past the stated deadline of 1999. I also observed, based on these conversations, that there were more than sufficient votes for the Jerusalem Embassy Act to pass without the last-minute insertion of the waiver provision.

(c) Additional U.S. Legal Commitments to Move the American Embassy to Jerusalem

Congress has reiterated its commitment to moving the embassy to Jerusalem. Section 214 of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, FY 2003, provided:

(a) CONGRESSIONAL STATEMENT OF POLICY- The Congress maintains its commitment to relocating the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and urges the President, pursuant to the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-45; 109 Stat. 398), to immediately begin the process of relocating the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem
.” 13

The U.S. obligation to move the embassy is further buttressed by pre-existing U.S. commitments to the Jewish homeland in the area encompassing Jerusalem, contained in additional U.S. law and binding international agreements to which the United States is a party.

The Lodge-Fish Resolution (1922) signed into law by then-President Warren Harding, approved the establishment of the Jewish homeland in Palestine.14 Palestine was a geographical area encompassing Jerusalem. (Palestine was never a country.)

The 1924 Anglo-American Convention (Treaty) confirmed the League of Nations Mandate, designating the area that is now Israel including Jerusalem and Judea/Samaria (and the area of present-day Jordan) as a “sacred trust” for reconstituting the Jewish homeland. The

  1. 12  Statement of Senator Bob Dole, Oct. 24, 1995, supra, p. S-15531-15532.

  2. 13  Foreign Relations Authorization Act, FY 2003, H.R. 1646, 107th Cong. (2001) (Sept. 30, 2002),

§ 214, at https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/107/hr1646/text .
14 Joint Resolution Favoring the Establishment in Palestine of a National Home for the Jewish People” (Lodge-Fish Resolution), H. J. Res. 73, 67th Cong., Pub. Res. 67–73, Sept. 21, 1922, 42 Stat. 1012 (enacted), at http://legisworks.org/congress/67/pubres-73.pdf.

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Convention was ratified by the U.S. President and Senate in 1925, making it a binding U.S. treaty obligation.15

UN Charter Article 8016 (the “Jewish people’s clause), adopted in 1945, to which the United States is a party, preserved intact all rights granted to Jews under the League of Nations’ Mandate for Palestine, even after the Mandate’s expiration in 1948. As legal scholar Howard Grief has explained, Article 80 prevents the UN from transferring rights over any part of Palestine to any non-Jewish entity, such as the Palestinian Authority or a “Palestinian state.” 17

(d) There is No Lawful Impairment to the Embassy Move

Further, there is no U.S. law or binding international law that impairs Israel’s right to Jerusalem, or that impairs her right to maintain her capital in Jerusalem. The 1947 UN “Partition Resolution” was a mere non-binding recommendation (and subject to a vote by Jerusalem’s residents as to Jerusalem’s status after ten years).18 The recommendation was rejected by the Arabs, and thus did not become an internationally binding agreement or treaty.

The 1949 ceasefire lines (also known as the “1949 Armistice Demarcation Lines” or the “Green Line” or “pre-1967 lines”) were non-binding. The lines merely marked approximately where the fighting stopped in 1949 after six Arab nations invaded Israel, and Jordan illegally seized the eastern portion of Jerusalem – containing the Old City, Jewish Quarter, Judaism’s holiest sites, and Jewish cultural and academic institutions. The eastern portion of Jerusalem is the Jerusalem of the Bible and history. Israel and her neighbors specifically agreed that these lines were “without prejudice to an ultimate political settlement between the parties.”19

15 Convention Between the United States and Great Britain in Respect to Rights in Palestine,” (Anglo-American Convention of 1924), Signed Dec. 3, 1924, Ratified advised by U.S. Senate Feb. 20, 1925, ratified by U.S. President, Mar. 2, 1925, ratified by Great Britain, Mar. 18, 1925, ratifications exchanged at London, Dec. 3, 1925; proclaimed Dec. 5, 1925, at http://www.alliedpowersholocaust.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/1924-Anglo-American- Convention.pdf .

16 Charter of the United Nations, Chapter XII: International Trusteeship System, Article 80, at


17 Article 80 and the UN Recognition of a ‘Palestinian State’,” by Howard Grief, Algemeiner, Sept. 22, 2011, at https://www.algemeiner.com/2011/09/22/article-80-and-the-un- recognition-of-a-“palestinian-state”/
18 UN General Assembly Res. 181, Nov. 29, 1947, at http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/peace/guide/pages/un%20general%20assembly%20r esolution%20181.aspx

19 Israel-Jordan Armistice Agreement, Apr. 3, 1949, Articles II.2, VI.8 and VI.9, at

http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/mfadocuments/yearbook1/pages/israel- jordan%20armistice%20agreement.aspx

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The western portions of Israel continued to be under Israeli control throughout Jordan’s illegal occupation of eastern Jerusalem (1949-1967). Jerusalem served as Israel’s capital from 1950 onwards.

After Israel recaptured the eastern portion of Jerusalem during the defensive Six-Day War in 1967,20 Israeli sovereignty was restored to a unified Jerusalem. The Levy Commission (appointed by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and headed by esteemed former Israel Supreme Court Justice Edmund Levy) concluded that when Israel recaptured eastern Jerusalem and Judea/Samaria:

the original legal status of the territory was restored, namely, a territory designated as a national home for the Jewish people, who had a “right of possession” to it during Jordanian rule while they were absent from the territory for several years due to a war imposed on them, and have now returned to it.”21

UN Security Council Resolution 242, adopted after the 1967 Six Day War, called for Israel to have “recognized and secure” borders, and did not call for Israel to surrender “all” lands captured in 1967.22 The secure borders that Israel is entitled to necessarily include Jerusalem. Then-U.S. President Lyndon Johnson stated shortly after the adoption of Resolution 242:

We are not the ones to say where other nations should draw lines between them that will assure each the greatest security. It is clear, however, that a return to the situation of June 4, 1967, will not bring peace.”23

Israel has arguably more than complied with Res. 242 by returning the Sinai to Egypt pursuant to the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty.

20 Jordan attacked Israel in June 1967, even though Israel implored Jordan not to attack, saying: “we shall not engage ourselves in any action against Jordan, unless Jordan attacks us. Should Jordan attack Israel, we shall go against her with all our might.” “Message from Prime Minister Eshkol to King Hussein,” 5 June 1967, at http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/MFADocuments/Yearbook1/Pages/16%20Message %20from%20Prime%20Minister%20Eshkol%20to%20King%20Huss.aspx.

21 The Levy Commission Report on the Legal Status of Building in Judea and Samaria,” Jerusalem, June 21, 2012, Tammuz 1, 5772, translated into English by Regavim, 2014, at http://www.regavim.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/The-Levy-Commission-Report-on-the- Legal-Status-of-Building-in-Judea-and-Samaria2.pdf

22 UN Security Council Resolution 242, Nov. 22, 1967, at http://mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/Peace/Guide/Pages/UN%20Security%20Council%20Resol ution%20242.aspx
23 Lyndon Johnson Administration: Speech on ‘A Just and Dignified Peace’,” Sept. 10, 1968, Jewish Virtual Library, at http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/president-johnson-speech-on- ldquo-a-just-and-dignified-peace-rdquo-september-1968

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Further, the 1994 Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty recognized the Jordan River (not the “green line”) as the international boundary between Jordan and Israel.24 Thus, Jerusalem is on the Israeli side of the agreed-to border. The Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty merely respects Jordan’s “special role . . . in Muslim Holy shrines in Jerusalem.”25

The Oslo Accords (1993-1995), signed by the PLO and Israel, do not grant any rights to Jerusalem to the PLO – and never spoke of a Palestinian Arab state. In Prime Minister Rabin’s last speech to the Knesset, he explained that the contemplated “permanent solution” with the PLO would involve establishing a Palestinian Arab entity that was “less than a State” that governed the lives of Palestinian Arabs, and no giveaway of any part of united Jerusalem. “First and foremost,” Jerusalem would remain united under Israeli sovereignty.26

Further, the United Nations does not have the power to make or interpret international law, or to render Israel’s sovereignty over unified Jerusalem “illegal,” via UN Security Resolution 2334

24 Treaty of Peace Between The State Of Israel And The Hashemite Kingdom Of Jordan, 26 Oct 1994, Article 3 and Annex I, available at http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/peace/guide/pages/israel- jordan%20peace%20treaty.aspx (Article 3) and http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/Peace/Guide/Pages/Israel- Jordan%20Peace%20Treaty%20Annex%20I.aspx (Annex I)

  1. 25  Id., Article 9.2

  2. 26  Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin: Ratification of the Israel-Palestinian Interim Agreement, The

Knesset, October 5, 1995, Israel Ministry of Public Affairs Archive, at http://mfa.gov.il/MFA/MFA-Archive/1995/Pages/PM%20Rabin%20in%20Knesset- %20Ratification%20of%20Interim%20Agree.aspx Rabin’s statement contemplated that the ultimate result of “Oslo process” negotiations, saying: “We view the permanent solution in the framework of State of Israel which will include most of the area of the Land of Israel as it was under the rule of the British Mandate, and alongside it a Palestinian entity which will be a home to most of the Palestinian residents living in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. We would like this to be an entity which is less than a state, and which will independently run the lives of the Palestinians under its authority. The borders of the State of Israel, during the permanent solution, will be beyond the lines which existed before the Six Day War. We will not return to the 4 June 1967 lines. . . . [W]e envision and want in the permanent solution: A. First and foremost, united Jerusalem, which will include both Ma'ale Adumim and Givat Ze'ev — as the capital of Israel, under Israeli sovereignty, while preserving the rights of the members of the other faiths, Christianity and Islam, to freedom of access and freedom of worship in their holy places, according to the customs of their faiths. . . .”

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(2016)27 or other UN resolutions which sought to delegitimize Israel’s reunification of Jerusalem.28

(e) Moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem comports with the commitments and policies of the major U.S. political parties, top elected officials and the American public’s views

The major U.S. political party platforms and statements are committed to moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, or at the very least, having Jerusalem remain as a united city and the capital of Israel. No major U.S. party platform calls for the division of Jerusalem, or for Jerusalem to be recognized as the capital of any state other than Israel.

The 2016 Republican Party platform clearly called for the U.S. Embassy to be moved to Jerusalem, stating:

“We recognize Jerusalem as the eternal and indivisible capital of the Jewish state and call for the American embassy to be moved there in fulfillment of U.S. law.29

Likewise, then candidate Trump declared in March 2016:
We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people,

Jerusalem.” 30

27 See Leading Int’l Legal Scholar Kontorovich Emphasizes at ZOA Event: US Embassy Should Move to Jerusalem,” ZOA News Release, Jan. 23, 2017, at https://zoa.org/2017/01/10350197- leading-intl-legal-scholar-kontorovich-emphasizes-at-zoa-event-us-embassy-should-move-to- jerusalem/ Professor Kontorovich will be testifying on the same panel today.

28 These include UN General Assembly (“GA”) Res. 2253 (1967); UNGA Res. 2254 (1967); UN Security Council (“SC”) Res. 252 (1968); UNSC Res. 267 (1969); and UNSC Res. 478 (1980). Professor Malvina Halberstam explains that: “Notwithstanding these and other resolutions by the General Assembly and Security Council, moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem would not violate international law. The UN Charter does not give the General Assembly the authority to adopt binding resolutions. Its resolutions are recommendations which States are free to accept or reject. The Security Council does have the authority to adopt resolutions that are legally binding. However, only resolutions adopted under Chapter VII of the Charter are binding. None of these resolutions were adopted under Chapter VII, and are, therefore, not binding.” “Moving the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem: An Analysis and Discussion of U.S., Israeli and International Law,” by Prof. Malvina Halberstam, Esq., Israel Nat’l News, reprinted on ZOA website, May 23, 2017, at https://zoa.org/2017/05/10363858-jewish-prayer-on-har-habayit- whats-the-status-quo-and-should-it-be-changed/

29 2016 Republican Party Platform, p. 47, at https://prod-cdn- static.gop.com/media/documents/DRAFT_12_FINAL[1]-ben_1468872234.pdf 30 Donald Trump’s Speech to AIPAC” transcript, Time Mag., Mar. 21, 2016, at http://time.com/4267058/donald-trump-aipac-speech-transcript/

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The Trump campaign’s policy platform also unconditionally reaffirmed:
The U.S. will recognize Jerusalem as the eternal and indivisible capital of the Jewish

state and Mr. Trump’s Administration will move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.”31 The 2016 Democratic Party Platform confirmed that Jerusalem should remain Israel’s capital

and undivided, stating:
While Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations, it should remain the capital of

Israel, an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.”32

Last month, the Senate Democratic Minority Leader, Senator Chuck Schumer renewed a call for the American embassy to be moved to Jerusalem saying:

As someone who strongly believes that Jerusalem is the undivided capital of Israel, I am calling for the U.S. Embassy in Israel to be relocated to Jerusalem. Moving the embassy as soon as possible would appropriately commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of Jerusalem’s reunification and show the world that the U.S. definitively acknowledges Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.”33

The American public overwhelmingly supports Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel. In the 2014 McLaughlin & Associates poll, in response to the question, “Do you believe that Jerusalem should remain the undivided capital of Israel?,” a clear majority of 55% of Americans replied that Jerusalem should remain the undivided capital of Israel, as opposed to a mere 13% who believe it should not. 34 That is over a 4 to 1 ratio in favor of Jerusalem remaining as Israel’s undivided capital.

31 Joint Statement from Jason Dov Greenblatt and David Friedman, Co-Chairmen of the Israel Advisory Committee to Donald J. Trump,” – Compendium of Positions Confirmed with Donald Trump, Medium, Nov. 2, 2016, at https://medium.com/@jgreenblatt/joint-statement-from- jason-dov-greenblatt-and-david-friedman-co-chairmen-of-the-israel-advisory-edc1ec50b7a8. 32 2016 Democratic Party Platform, at http://s3.amazonaws.com/uploads.democrats.org/Downloads/2016_DNC_Platform.pdf

33 Schumer Renews Call for Embassy Move After Trump Puts Idea on Hold,” JTA, Oct. 10, 2017, at https://www.jta.org/2017/10/10/news-opinion/politics/schumer-renews-call-for-embassy- move-after-trump-says-give-peace-bid-a-chance
34 McLaughlin & Associates: “ZOA Release Of New Poll: Americans Show Overwhelming Support For Israeli Positions –– Oppose Obama’s Positions,” Jan. 28, 2014, at http://mclaughlinonline.com/2014/01/28/new-poll-americans-show-overwhelming-support-for-israeli- positions-oppose-obamas-positions/

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In mid-May, sixty top Christian leaders sent a letter to the president, organized by American Christian Leaders for Israel (ACLI), urging the president to end the waivers and move the American embassy to Jerusalem.35

2. Moving the U.S. Embassy acknowledges reality (and will be more convenient for U.S. Government personnel):

Relocating the American embassy to Jerusalem would acknowledge the reality that Jerusalem is and has been the reconstituted State of Israel’s capital and seat of government for almost 70 years.

The Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 found that the U.S. has already de facto recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, saying: “The United States conducts official meetings and other business in the city of Jerusalem in de facto recognition of its status as the capital of Israel.”36

It is not surprising that official U.S. government business is regularly conducted in Jerusalem, and that relocating the embassy will be far more convenient and practical for U.S. embassy personnel: As the Jerusalem Embassy Act found: “The city of Jerusalem is the seat of Israel’s President, Parliament, and Supreme Court, and the site of numerous government ministries and social and cultural institutions.”37

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