Op-Ed: Move of American Embassy to Yerushalayim and Palestinian Arab Residence in Eretz Yisrael


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Recently, my wife and I visited Yeshiva University’s museum on 16th St in NYC to see the Arch of Titus exhibit. We saw the museum’s full-size 3-D computer recreation of the famous scene of the Jewish prisoners of war carrying the Temple relics (menorah, shulchan, trumpets) to Rome. We also saw the displayed collection of 20-30 coins of the Second Temple period, minted in Palestine by the Jews and by the Romans.

In one small corner of a display case, I saw the complete collection of coins minted by non-Jewish Palestinian governments from 1917 back through the Byzantine period, the Roman period, the Greek period, the Persian period, the Jewish monarchy and before. The complete set of these coins minted by non-Jewish Palestinian authorities fits comfortably in one small corner of a display case because these coins do not exist and have never existed. There are no such coins. Zilch, zippo, nada, cero, efes, null, gornicht, nuttin. The empty set. There was never an identifiable, Arab Palestinian people, or a Palestinian ethnic identity until the mid-20th century when some Arab hate merchants realized that such a peoplehood and ethnic identity would be useful in opposing the national aspirations of the Jews.

Until the 20th century, “Palestine” was understood by Arabs to be a province in Greater Syria. From 1948 until 1967, Arabs in Eretz Yisrael living under Jordanian control were comfortable with Jordanian nationality and ethnicity. There was no problem in the Arab mind with Jordanian sovereignty on the West Bank of the Jordan River because everyone, Arab and non-Arab, knows that Jordan is Arab Palestine. The post World War I formation by the British of the country of Transjordan resulted in the first example of Palestinian Arabs holding sovereignty in any part of Palestine. During the previous several centuries, the Turks held sovereignty in Palestine.

Mr. Saeb Erekat, a senior Palestinian diplomat, is now struggling to stop Mr. Trump from moving the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Yerushalayim. I must ask Mr. Erekat some questions because he has asserted that his people have lived in our Eretz Yisrael for thousands of years.

1 – When the Romans invaded Judea/Palestine in the first century CE, did your Palestinian, non-Jewish ancestors a) fight alongside the Jews?, b) fight alongside the Romans?, or c) Remain non-combatants like today’s Quakers?

2 – Since (as you assert) your ancestors were present in Palestine at the time of the Roman invasion, either choice above would have been significant. Why is it that not a single historian of that period mentions the choice that your ancestors made from the three alternatives above?

3 -Do you share the belief that, until recently, the Jews never held sovereignty or even lived in Palestine?

If you are correct, how was it that Roman sculptors created a fictitious, Jewish-focused relief and chiseled it into the Arch of Titus? It is not credible that 1900 years ago, some early Italian Zionists paid those Roman sculptors to create a historical fraud and received permission to have it stand in Rome. How was it that no Roman writer mocked this historical fraud or mentioned it during the ensuing centuries? Do you believe that an element in that relief, a 7-branched candelabrum (we call it a menorah), a relic from our ancient Temple is really a lighting fixture from some pre-Muhammad Palestinian tavern? If your ancestors were in Palestine at that time, they probably frequented taverns or beer halls at night after work to drink liquor and eat ham sandwiches on pita. Obviously, they would have needed illumination there. We both agree that in the first century CE Muhammad had not yet been born so he had not yet provided humanity with his revelation which outlawed alcohol, pork, graven images, etc.

1 – If Yassir Arafat, who was born and raised in Egypt, can be a Palestinian, why can’t David Ben Gurion, who was born and raised in Poland, be a Palestinian (i.e., an Israeli)?

2 – Do you believe both a) the Holocaust did not occur, and b) Israeli soldiers behave like Nazis? Well, if the Holocaust never happened, then Nazis must have been good guys like the Brits and the Americans, smiling as they distributed candy to children.

Someone once observed that the chimpanzee is an organized sarcasm on the human race. The lies that flow from your mouth and your pen are an organized sarcasm on the truth. The fact that Arab Muslims and Arab Christians live within the borders of the State of Israel today is not a proof that their ancestors lived there. The fact that many Cleveland Indian baseball players live and work in Ohio today does not establish that their ancestors were all native Americans from what is now Ohio.

When Mr. Arafat told President Clinton at Camp David that there was never a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, President Clinton objected because that ridiculous assertion contradicted what President Clinton had read in his Bible. President Clinton knew that his messiah had not chased moneychangers out of a mosque.

Ambrose Bierce wrote, “Any idiot can tell the truth, but it takes a genius to know how to lie well.” Mr. Erekat, I am happy that you are no genius.

Mr. Erekat, you have acted dastardly by spreading lies about the Jewish People and the State of Israel. That makes you a real dastard! (Yes, it’s in the dictionary.)

Dr Bert Miller – NYC

NOTE: The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of YWN.



  1. Perhaps, but when the WHOLE WORLD is united against the Jews, no amount of logic will prevail to change their twisted minds. We are in Galus, and as evidenced in the current Parshiot, Vayezei, Vayishlach, Vayeshev, etc …till Beshalach, we can NOT make too much noise in Galus.

  2. Dear Dr Miller,

    I completely and totally agree with your convincing arguments about the Jewish People’s rights to Israel as a homeland.

    However, that does not mean that we should want the US embassy to be moved to Jerusalem. Such a move would (lo aleinu) undoubtedly cause a Palestinian uprising, and it’s likely that innocent Jewish blood will be spilled r”l. Even if just one Jewish life is lost, is the move worthwhile? What gains could possibly justify such a loss?

    You’re right that Israel is our homeland, not anyone else’s. But that doesn’t mean that the US embassy should be moved to Jerusalem.

  3. Lav Melachim B’yad Hashem. Same things as above commenters say , was said about the Balfour Declaration.
    Ironically, it was the Oslo Accords, a galut’ie agreement, which brought the Intifadas along with the bloodshed.
    Maybe now the Arabs would be willing to do some honest talking and negotiating.
    I’ll buy the galut arguments when we stop harassing traffic ticket cops, and create animosity with non-Jews in newly moved -in neighborhoods with zoning and eiruv issues. in the American galut.

  4. “it’s likely that innocent Jewish blood will be spilled r”l”
    Could be, but that would also be an argument for yidden not moving to eretz yisroel, and no reputable posek would say that.

    “we can NOT make too much noise in Galus.”
    so, we should not advocate for aid to yeshivos, the right to build eiruvin, shechita, milah? We should not even try to get the goyim to step on us less that previously?

  5. Rebbe Yid: “…that would also be an argument for yidden not moving to eretz yisroel, and no reputable posek would say that.”

    I beg to differ: that would NOT be an argument against moving to Israel, because b”h the chances are very slim that one moving to Israel would get killed himself, and his move is also unlikely to cause anyone else to get killed.

    This move, however, is likely to get someone killed, which is why I said it’s not worthwhile.