Today, former Congressman Ron Klein (D-FL), chair of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, released the following statement in response to President Trump’s announcement that his administration recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and will begin the process of moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem:
“We recognize that Israel’s capital is Jerusalem and believe the United States can and should move our embassy to a location in Jerusalem under undisputed Israeli sovereignty. Any steps to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv must immediately acknowledge other strategic foreign policy goals, including an unequivocal commitment to a two-state solution and regional peace between Israel and its neighbors and that final-status issues must be determined through direct negotiations between the parties as part of that two-state solution.
“In his first year in office, President Trump’s foreign policy has been largely naïve and haphazard. As is typical with much of his rhetoric, today’s announcement is short on details and substance. It is being issued in a vacuum, without context or consideration to many of the region’s most imminent issues impacting the vital national security interests of both the U.S. and Israel.
“Unlike under Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, the current administration has neglected efforts to meaningfully support peace between Palestinians and Israelis. President Trump has abdicated America’s traditional role in the region and created a void that Russia is quickly and dangerously filling. Also, his disclosure of sensitive Israeli intelligence to Russia greatly undermined Israel’s security, not to mention damaged our relationships with countless other allies.
“While it is right to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, this is the time for bold moves toward regional peace among the parties, not rhetoric that is unmatched by fully thought-out policy or the hard diplomatic work required for such important steps.”