December 6, 2017
Dear Mr. President,
As you are currently considering a United States declaration regarding the city of Jerusalem, please allow us of Neturei Karta International [NKI], to give you a little background on the traditional Jewish position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. NKI represents anti-Zionist Orthodox Jews true to our Torah, living throughout the world, including in the Holy Land and Jerusalem.
Zionism, the movement that created the State of Israel, is the complete opposite of traditional Jewish belief. Judaism is subservience to the Almighty, while Zionism is its total transformation into nationalism. In regard to creating a Jewish State, ever since the destruction of the Jewish Temple, 2000 years ago, Jews have been in exile by Divine decree and are forbidden to make a sovereign state of their own, rebel against any nation and certainly are forbidden to kill others or take the land of another people. From the time the Zionist movement was founded, rabbis from all Jewish communities worldwide spoke out against it, unanimously.
In July 1947 when the United Nations was considering the Partition Plan, the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, Rabbi Yosef Tzvi Dushinsky, came and testified before the UN’s committee, saying, “We wish to express our definite opposition to a Jewish state in any part of Palestine.” Several months later, on November 18, 1947 when he realized that the UN was proceeding with a recommendation for a Jewish state, he sent a telegram saying: “Our community demands that Jerusalem be an international zone, under your protection, with full autonomy, and its residents be free citizens of the international zone of Jerusalem.” The UN honored this request.
The creation of the state of Israel has led to both Palestinian and Jewish suffering. The Palestinians were murdered and expelled from their land, and those remaining were oppressed and denied equal rights. Likewise the original Jewish community of the Holy Land, the anti-Zionist religious Jews, have been continuously attacked and oppressed by the Israeli government. Their most recent attack on our freedom is their attempt to force Jewish boys and girls to serve in their army, which is a direct rebellion against the Almighty.
Declaring the heart of the Holy Land as the officially recognized capital of this illegitimate state, would be pouring salt on open wounds. It would magnify the catastrophe suffered by the Palestinian people and the pain felt by religious Jews.
We therefore ask you, Mr. President, to please rethink your planned declaration, for the benefit of all involved.
We pray to the Almighty for the day when we Jews and Arabs can live once again together in peace and harmony, as we have for so many hundreds of years in the Holy Land prior to the occupation of Palestine.
May we see the day when all of mankind joins together to serve G-d with one heart. Amen.