Why Jerusalem is not like Las Vegas


Americans for Peace Now is unsettled about recent Jerusalem tensions, and offers a nice twist on how the Holy City has just about nothing in common (except for dry heat) with that most unholy of cities, Las Vegas: "What happens in Jerusalem does not stay in Jerusalem."

The release is below, and APN’s Lara Friedman and Ir Amin’s Danny Seidemann provide background here.

Washington, D.C – Americans for Peace Now (APN) today expressed alarm at the spiraling violence in Jerusalem and urged the Obama administration to take immediate action to help stop the deterioration.
"Recent history teaches us that clashes in Jerusalem have a tendency to ripple throughout the region. What happens in Jerusalem does not stay in Jerusalem. Provocative actions in Jerusalem have in the past triggered extended, large- scale waves of violence, and such waves could derail the administration’s laudable efforts to jump-start Israeli-Palestinian negotiations toward a two-state solution," said APN President and CEO Debra DeLee.
"Extremists will always try to derail peace efforts. It is the duty of stakeholders in Middle East peace efforts to deny the extremists their role as spoilers. It is the duty of our government, as well as the governments of the Palestinian Authority, Israel, and its Arab neighbors, to do everything they can to defuse the hostilities and to redouble their efforts to achieve peace," DeLee said.

UPDATE: The Orthodox Union weighs in with the statement below:

On this Holiday of Sukkot, when Jews in Israel and around the globe are engaged in joyful celebrations, we are being confronted with violence and offensive inversions of history by Israel’s enemies.

As has been the case for many years, thousands of Jews made their way earlier today to the Kotel Ha’Ma’aravi (the Western Wall remnant of the Holy Temple), for a joyous holiday blessing of the Jewish people by Kohanim (priests).

The Palestinians, determined to deny Jewish history and our connection to our eternal capital of Jerusalem, plotted violence (as evidenced by stores of rocks and other materials discovered by the Israeli police). And, the Palestinian political leadership, with whom the international community presses for negotiations, has called upon world leaders to "force" Israel "to put off its attempts to take over Jerusalem and Judaize it."

Jerusalem has been at the center of Jewish life and faith for thousands of years. Just days ago, at the close of Yom Kippur, Jews around the world declared, as we have for thousands of years, the hope and prayer “Next Year in Jerusalem.” A majority of Jews, in the U.S. and Israel, continue to oppose relinquishing Jewish sovereignty over our eternal capital.

The enemies of our people recognize this, and seek to deny our history. In the face of all this we reaffirm that “for the sake of Zion we will not be silent” and we will not allow history to be denied.

The OU blog supplements the statement here.


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