Israel Thanks Trump for Jerusalem Recognition, Embassy Move: ‘Like Cyrus’ the Great

Jerusalem celebrates (Ahmad Gharabli / AFP / Getty)
Ahmad Gharabli / AFP / Getty

Israelis celebrated President Donald Trump’s decision Wednesday to recognize Jerusalem as their capital city and to begin to move the U.S. embassy there.

In Jerusalem itself, the walls of the Old City were illuminated with the Israeli and American flags. The city also hung American flags prominently, and decorated a bridge at the entrance to the city in American colors.

Prime Minster Benajamin Netanyahu thanked the United States in an address in English, and followed with an address in Hebrew, recalling the history of Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish people. “Generations upon generations, wept and dreamed of Jerusalem,” he said, thanking President Trump for fulfilling their dream.

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog was also grateful, tweeting: “President Trump this evening carried out a major correction and historic justice that was awaited for 70 years with his recognition of the reality that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. He is owed great thanks from all part of the nation. Now he must realize the vision that he recognized in his speech — two states for two peoples and resolution of the core issues for the promise of the future of two nations and for the security and peace of the two nations.”

Ehud Barak, the former prime minister and opposition figure, also thanked President Trump, tweeting in Hebrew: “President Trump — wonderful and thrilling. The test of words — is behind us. The test of action — is ahead of us. Ahead of all of us.”

Conservative politician Naftali Bennett issued a call to the world to follow President Trump’s example: “We call on the leaders of the nations of the world to recognize Jerusalem as the capital city of the State of Israel.”

Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked was perhaps the most effusive in her praise, comparing President Trump to the ancient Persian emperor, Cyrus the Great, who allowed the exiled Jewish to return to Jerusalem and build their Holy Temple (Ezra 1). She tweeted: “Trump in his generation is like Cyrus in his generation. I thank President Trump for his  strong stance against heavy international pressures and on his recognition of Jerusalem as the capital city of the State of Israel. I hope that in the near future we will see the new embassy standing in the capital.”

Palestinians were somewhat less grateful.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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