Aug 10 2011
Following an article in which The Weekly Standard’s deputy online editor, Daniel Halper, discussed the ongoing debate over which country the U.S. believes Jerusalem is in, Halper claims that the White House “cleansed” its site of references to the city being definitively tied to the Jewish homeland.
QUESTION: What is the State Department’s position regarding American persons born in Jerusalem who wish to have passports issued that indicate their place of birth as Israel?
ANSWER: Current U.S. Government policy is that U.S. citizens born in Jerusalem may not have “Israel” listed in their passports as their place of birth. See the U.S. Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Manual 7 FAM 1300 APPENDIX D for further details.
The Blaze – As a result of the June 1967 Arab-Israeli War, the Government of Israel currently occupies and administers the Golan Heights, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. U.S. policy recognizes that the Golan Heights is Syrian territory, and that the West Bank and the Gaza Strip are territories whose final status must be determined by negotiations.
While the U.S. is clearly undecided on the issue, Halper highlights a photograph on the White House web site that, until last evening, allegedly had a caption that included “Jerusalem, Israel” (i.e. admitting that Jerusalem is a part of Israel). Following Halper’s article, the image’s caption (by his account) changed. Here’s the original image (notice the reference to Jerusalem, Israel):
Halper claims that he posted this image at 3:33 p.m. on Tuesday. Then, he writes, “Within two hours of posting, the White House has apparently gone through its website, cleansing any reference to Jerusalem as being in Israel.” Halper claims that the image was replaced with the following (notice “Israel” has been removed):
Perhaps the White House is afraid that any mentions it makes of the city’s placement within Israel will contradict its policies and rhetoric. Recently BNI posted about the ongoing debate surrounding Israeli-American passports: dear-mr-president-its-called-jerusalem-israel
Despite a 2002 law requiring it to do so, thus far the federal government has refused to allow those born in Jerusalem to have “Israel” printed on their travel documentation. Now, the case is headed for court and it could have a profound impact on how the U.S. government officially recognizes Jerusalem moving forward.
Below, watch a video montage that purportedly (and quite dramatically, based on the background music selection) shows other changes, in this same vein, the White House has made:
Obama Signs Document That Tells Israel, ‘Jerusalem Is Not Your Capital.’
MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF STATE
SUBJECT: Suspension of Limitations Under the Jerusalem Embassy Act
Obama signed this on June 3, 2011 – Pursuant to the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including section 7(a) of the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-45) (the “Act”), I hereby determine that it is necessary, in order to protect the national security interests of the United States, to suspend for a period of 6 months the limitations set forth in sections 3(b) and 7(b) of the Act.
You are hereby authorized and directed to transmit this determination to the Congress, accompanied by a report in accordance with section 7(a) of the Act, and to publish the determination in the Federal Register.This suspension shall take effect after transmission of this determination and report to the Congress.
BARACK OBAMA – source – White House
The Jerusalem Embassy Act Explained
Now The End BeginsCongress in 1995 passed a law recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and stating that “the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem no later than May 31, 1999.” An inbuilt waiver authority allowed the president to postpone the move, in the interests of “national security,” for consecutive six-monthly periods. Reflecting the strong level of support in the U.S. for Israel and for Israel’s claim to Jerusalem, the Jerusalem Embassy Act passed 374-37 in the House and 93-5 in the Senate.
President Clinton was not enthusiastic about the legislation, which he warned “could hinder the peace process.” He allowed it to become law, but without his signature.
Should the Jerusalem embassy not be opened by May 31, 1999, the law stated, the State Department would be barred from spending 50 percent of the funds allocated to buy and maintain official properties abroad during that fiscal year. The due date came and went, and then on June 17 Clinton issued the first “Suspension of Limitations Under the Jerusalem Embassy Act” notice.
President Bush continued the policy every six months, to the continuing frustration of pro-Israel lawmakers who argued that the intent of Congress was for the waiver would only be justified in the case of a genuine security threat. A striking difference between Obama’s waiver notifications and those of President Bush is that in Bush’s case, he inserted into the legal jargon a sentence stating, “My Administration remains committed to beginning the process of moving our embassy to Jerusalem.” The phrase appeared in all 16 Bush waiver notifications.
Obama’s stance was proof that neither the U.S. nor the world recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Rudeineh told the agency.