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From now on, you are either with Jerusalem or Yerushalayim

Israeli forces stand guard as Palestinians gather to enter the Al-Aqsa Mosque on 27 July 2017 [Mostafa Alkharouf/Anadolu Agency]

Muslims around the world have their hearts in their mouths, afraid that Trump will actually acknowledge Jerusalem to be “the eternal capital of Israel”. Many Arab and Muslim politicians are preparing statements of condemnation or begging Trump not to do this, while some mosque preachers are waiting for Friday, having prepared firm words and phrases in this regard. Not all of the preachers will be in agreement, though; some in Saudi Arabia have already said that America is the reason for security and stability in the world, and that they have no problems with the Zionists.

Many people in the region will suffer pain and sorrow over Jerusalem, and wait on their leaders to do something; deep down, they hope and believe that, maybe, just maybe, Trump will not actually make such a declaration. They pray that they are not humiliated more than they already have been, but they forget that the events of the 1948 Nakba have been over for a long time.

What is left of Jerusalem after the Israelis have razed the Moroccan Quarter; turned the Buraq Wall into the Wailing Wall; razed the tombs of some of Prophet Muhammad’s companions; displaced Jerusalemites, demolished their homes and prevented them from being rebuilt; and filled Jerusalem with Jews from all around the world, in the biggest and most dangerous of its many Judaisation projects? What is left of Jerusalem for the Muslims to cry over?

Perhaps they are confirmed in their certainty that the most that the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and Arab League can do is issue a statement begging the US to study the consequences of its actions and end with a plea not to take such a dangerous step. A statement will probably be issued next Tuesday, after the meeting scheduled to be held at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo. Meanwhile, Arab officials continue to engage in suspicious projects to impose “deal of the century” formulas on the Palestinians, urging them to accept only a fraction of their legal and human rights, in light of the siege on Gaza, the fact that everyone has turned against them, and their demonisation.

Read: Palestinian leaders should stop discussing Jerusalem within the context of negotiations

However, the fact that Muslims and oppressed Arabs are even remotely surprised that the US is taking such steps means that the brutal colonial messages sent by Israel’s military occupation have not sunk into the consciousness of the Ummah’s political and intellectual elite. It also means that the true approach of the Americans over the past few decades has not yet penetrated the hearts of the Arabs and Muslims.

Trump and the US administration are not willing to take into consideration the emotions of the Muslims, nor are they even a little bit moved by their pleading. The issue is linked to a strategic path that requires an end to the Muslim world’s influence and a rise in its moral oppression, before throwing it into a maze of frustration and decline.

Successive US administrations have destroyed Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and Syria, all while supplying Israel with the most up-to-date weapons to displace and kill the Palestinians and people of Lebanon. The US has committed more crimes than one can write about, and objects to the stance taken by more than 150 member states at the UN which are opposed to Israel’s illegal annexation of Jerusalem.

Read: The legal, political and popular consequences of Trump’s plans for Jerusalem

Let Trump move forward with his intentions, though, like the Crusaders before him; they turned Al-Aqsa Mosque into stables, remember. However, let it be clear that history does not move in straight lines and no one can count on future events with any degree of certainty. The centre of the action moves from place to place and nation to nation.

It must also be clear to us all that Trump’s expected speech will not add anything to what we already know; after all, we only expect evil from him. If he goes ahead and moves the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, his position will give the Palestinians additional ammunition for their revolution; and it will give the Arabs and Muslims a solid reference point.

From now on, friendship with the US will become a crime, just as failing to defend Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa will become a crime. Indeed, from now on, there is no room for any “grey areas” or ambiguity; you are either with Jerusalem or with Yerushalayim. May God grant us His Mercy. Amen.

This article first appeared in Arabic in Arabi21 on 6 December 2017

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.

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