Obama, Biden, Clinton ignore US legislation

Forget History and you are condemned to relive it.Like most graphic artists (and more than a few bloggers) I am in awe at Yaacov Kirschen’s ability to capture a clear idea in a 320 X 496 pixel box. He has graciously allowed Five Minutes for Israel to link to his website.

Usually I leave the cartoon up without comment. Let it speak for itself but in the latest instance I feel I should not just link but copy his comments in full. As an advocate I’m not sure what bothers me most that the current United States administration ignore the history of US policy and legislation or that the current Israeli administration ignore it.

We’re sorry to have embarassed you, Joe, but what you say is not just counter productive, in that it encourages the Palestinians to sit back and wait for some external deux ex machina† such as the United States, the European Union, the Arab League or the Quartet to fight its battles but against not that vague creature that is International Law but against clear U.S. Law.


Today’s Golden Oldie is from November 1995.

President Obama’s administration seems bent on ignoring history and American law. At least where Jerusalem is concerned.

As a reminder, just one month before I drew this cartoon, the United States Congress had passed into law “The Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995” which includes the following statement of U.S. policy:

Statement of the Policy of the United States“.(1) Jerusalem should remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected.

(2) Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel; and

(3) the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem no later than May 31, 1999.”

The U.S. Law also states that:

(1)Each sovereign nation, under international law and custom, may designate its own capital.
(2) Since 1950, the city of Jerusalem has been the capital of the State of Israel.
(3) The city of Jerusalem is the seat of Israel’s President, Parliament, and Supreme Court, and the site of numerous government ministries and social and cultural institutions.
(4) The city of Jerusalem is the spiritual center of Judaism, and is also considered a holy city by the members of other religious faiths.
(5) From 1948-1967, Jerusalem was a divided city and Israeli citizens of all faiths as well as Jewish citizens of all states were denied access to holy sites in the area controlled by Jordan.
(6) In 1967, the city of Jerusalem was reunited during the conflict known as the Six Day War.
(7) Since 1967, Jerusalem has been a united city administered by Israel, and persons of all religious faiths have been guaranteed full access to holy sites within the city.
(8) This year marks the 28th consecutive year that Jerusalem has been administered as a unified city in which the rights of all faiths have been respected and protected.
(9) In 1990, the congress unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 106, which declares that the Congress ‘‘strongly believes that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected’’.
(10) In 1992, the United States Senate and House of Representatives unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 113 of the One Hundred Second Congress to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem, and reaffirming congressional sentiment that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city.
(11) The September 13, 1993, Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements lays out a timetable for the resolution of ‘‘final status’’ issues, including Jerusalem.
(12) The agreement on the Gaza strip and Jericho Area was signed May 4, 1994, beginning the five-year transitional period laid out in the Declaration of Principles.
(13) In March of 1995, 93 member of the United States Senate signed a letter to Secretary of State Warren Christopher encouraging ‘‘planning to begin now’’ for relocation of the United States Embassy to the City of Jerusalem.
(14) In June of 1993, 257 members of The United States House of Representatives signed a letter to the Secretary of State Warren Christopher stating that the relocation of the United states Embassy to Jerusalem ‘‘should take place no later that 1999’’.
(15) The United States maintains its embassy in the functioning capital of every country except in the case of our democratic friend and strategic ally, the State of Israel.

Read the law in its entirety and more about the US/Israel relationship.


Deus Ex Machina is an outside force that solves a seemingly unsolvable problem in an extremely unlikely (and, usually, anticlimactic) way. A Latin expression from ancient Greek theatre when a god is lowered by crane to take care of things. Who says I don’t educated Five Minutes for Israel readers?

About David Guy

B.A./B.C.A. (Communication and Media Arts) University of Wollongong, AUSTRALIA M.A. in Government (Diplomacy and Conflict Studies) Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya, ISRAEL Twitter @5MFI
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