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Opinion | Dec 15, 2017

Mr. President Withdraw your Finger (Part II)

President Trump Of USA
President Trump Of USA

‘Jerusalem is not yours to give to anyone,’ says an anonymous author

Has President Trump made the worst political decision?

Gordon Offin-Amaniampong writes
Rochester Michigan attorney Daniel (Dan) Marchese in April 2015 penned down 15 worst political decisions ever made by some former US presidents. Mr. Marchese cites US invasion of Iraq by President George W Bush as blunder of all blunders. It comes as number two (No. 2) of the 15 worst decisions. According to him Mr. Bush will probably have to wait even longer than President James Buchanan (15th president 1857-61), to be cleared of blame as ‘history hasn’t vindicated Buchanan’s more than a century and half political blunder.

Surprisingly, he cites President Barack Obama’s witch hunt of Edward Snowden as number one (No.1) worst decision made in the US political history. Snowden the whistleblower has since been exiled in Russia. But I tend to disagree with Marchese. The reason, we don’t know how the fallout would be. How would Snowden’s exile in Russia change the geopolitics or the cold war between the two world super powers? I think history will be the best judge.

And there was the Bay of Pigs --a political decision made by John F. Kennedy. It was a war between communist Cuba and the United States. US forces were defeated in that war and most captured American troops were put into Cuban prisons.

Remember the Iran Contra Affairs? President Ronald Reagan broke an arms embargo and supplied arms Iran and funding Nicaraguan revolutionaries. Almost century before that in 1870 Ulysses S. Grant made the Santo Domingo decision which would come back to haunt him. He decided to deport more than 4-million African Americans to Santo Domingo. Since he determined that freed slaves whites could not to coexist.

And there’s this one that seems familiar to what today America is witnessing. President Adam Johnson was ushered in during the Election 1864 to create a national unity even though he and Lincoln represented opposing parties. Johnson spent his time in the White House embattled with Congress because he sided with southern whites refusing to expand social equality for freed slaves beyond abolition slavery itself.

Would Mr. Trump go down in history as American president who made the worst political decision regarding Jerusalem?

President Donald Trump’s announced last week that the US recognises Jerusalem as the capital of Israel has received international backlash, among them some of its key allies in the Arabian including the Great Britain and France. The United Nations Secretary General Antonio Gutiérrez and Pope Francis have also critised Mr. Trump on his on Tuesday 5 December 2017 announcement.

The Pontiff called for the status quo of Jerusalem to be respected and for ‘wisdom and prudence to prevail in order to avoid further conflict’.

Upon assumption into the presidency in the early days, president Trump tried hard to undo everything his predecessor, Obama did. Obama lifted a 50-year-old sanction on Cuba. Trump reinstated the restrictions or the embargo. Obama supported NAFTA. Trump is against NAFTA. Obama introduced affordable health care Act also known as Obamacare. Trump is fighting tooth and nail to undo Obamacare. The US has tried over the years to maintain neutrality in resolving conflict between Israel and Palestine. That long standing order that president after president has adopted seems to be in jeopardy.

The creation of Israel
The creation of the state of Israel dates back the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I. After that war Britain took control over Palestine and in November 1917 the British government issued the Balfour Declaration—declaring its intention to help the “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”

Subsequent upon this, in 1922 the League of Nations granted Britain a mandate over Palestine which included among other things, provisions calling for the establishment of a Jewish homeland—facilitating Jewish immigration and encouraging Jewish settlement on the land.

As expected there was resistance--- the Arabs were opposed to Jewish immigration to Palestine and increased their attacks against the Jews. There were incessant attacks almost from all fronts forcing Britain to look for plan B. The Brits appointed a royal commission in 1936 to investigate the Palestine situation. And in the aftermath of that the Peel Commission recommended the partition of the country between and Arabs and Jews.

What happened? The Jews accepted the deal but the Arabs rejected the idea of partition.

The attacks would continue. On the 29th of November 1947 after protracted debate and discussion, the UN recommended the partition of Palestine into two states---one Jewish and the other Arab. Once again the Arabs rejected the UN resolution while the Jews accepted it. Before this deal, Britain had told the UN that it could no longer manage Palestine and handed it over to the UN

The British mandate over Palestine officially ended at midnight May 1948. Earlier in the at 4:00p.m, David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the creation of the State of Israel and became the first prime minister On May 15, the United States recognised the state of Israel and the Soviet Union also endorsed it.

What has become of that proclamation and endorsement?

Since then Israelis and Palestinians have both claimed Jerusalem as their political capital and as sacred religious site. Israel controls a lion’s share of the disputed city. Officially, Jerusalem has been disputed since the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Before that the United Nations had designated Jerusalem as a special international zone. During the war Israel seized the Jerusalem’s western half plus the eastern half during the next Arab-Israeli war in 1967.It is important to note that most people foresee a peace deal that gives western Jerusalem to Israel and eastern Jerusalem to a future Palestinians State. And I personally believe that’s the way to go. God loves all his people—Jews, Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists or Hindus.

How would Jesus react to this Jerusalem brouhaha?
Matthew 22:21 Jesus said: “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.”

Remember the battle is the Lord’s and not by our military might.

How did Gideon win his battle against the Midianites?

An army of some 15,000 Midianites had invaded Israel for the purpose of hijacking their food supplies, according to the Old Testament. Gideon-- a judge called on Israelites to stand up and defend themselves. Some 30,000 showed up to form an army that was probably large enough to defeat the Midianites (Judges Chapter 7).

However, God told Gideon to downsize. It was scaled down to 10,000 men or smaller. The Lord said: “The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me saying, ‘my own hand has saved me.’

Gideon was further asked to slash down the number. Gideon was told to use just 300 men. At the battle front they employed an unusual military tactic. They blew their trumpets, flashed their torches and threw stones rather than standard assault tactics—sword and spear. When they blew the 300 trumpets, the Lord set every man’s sword against his comrade and against all the army and they fled. Israel won the battle.

Remember the battle is the Lord’s and ‘Jerusalem is not yours to give to anyone’.

The Battle for Jericho
According to the book of Joshua the battle of Jericho was the first battle of the Israelites in their conquest of Canaan. The walls of Jericho fell after Joshua’s Israelite army marched around the city blowing their trumpets. (Joshua 6:1-7)

And consider the Yom Kippur War
The Yom Kippur and Ramadan War also known as October war Israel from October 6 to 25, 1973. It was fought by a coalition of Arab states led by Egypt and Syria. It’s also known as the 1973 Arab-Israel war. The war was fought around the Sinai and the Golan Heights territories that had been occupied by the Israelis since the six-day war of 1967. In both battles Israel won. They say, if you cannot beat them befriend or join them. Then Egyptian president Anwar Sadat saw the need to use diplomacy and it worked. And up to day Egypt has become the biggest or chief mediator in conflicts between Israel and the Arab world.

Anytime Israel goes her own way things don’t go right.

The 2006 Lebanon War also called the 2006 Israel-Hezbollah War and known in Lebanon as the July War and in Israel as the Second Lebanon War was a 34-day military conflict in Lebanon. It was centred on Northern Israel and the Golan Heights.

The principal parties were Hezbollah paramilitary forces and Israel Defence forces (IDF). The conflict started on 12 July 2006, and continued until a United Nations brokered ceasefire went into effect in the morning on 14 August 2006. I must note that it finally ended on 8 September 2006 when Israel lifted its naval blockade of Lebanon. Let me also add, it was a proxy war as Hezbollah got supplies from Iran.

Sometimes God causes your enemy to build for you, to feed you, to cloth you and to take care of you.. According to the Bible Cyrus the Great king of Persia was the monarch under whom Babylonian captivity ended. In the first year of his reign he was prompted by God to decree that the Temple in Jerusalem should be rebuilt. He also gave Israel gold, silver and building materials to help build the city.

Did the refurbishment of the Temple at the time cause rapture?

Following Mr. Trump’s announcement some religious leaders have given different interpretations to it. According to some this will follow the rebuilding of the Temple and then the apocalypse. If Jesus the Son of Man said he has no knowledge of the times and seasons that would happen why these men of God beating the End Time or the Apocalypse drum?

Like his predecessor president Obama, history will judge president Trump whether his announcement to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel would go down in US political history as the worst decision ever made since George Washington? Would the Arabs and the Palestinians continue to see US as neutral and unbiased arbiter in the Arab-Israel two state peace talks?

Gordon Offin-Amaniampong
Gordon Offin-Amaniampong, © 2017

This author has authored 237 publications on Modern Ghana.
Author column: GordonOffinAmaniampong

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