PARALLEL UNIVERSE: Brits Wake Up, Finally Tell the Truth About Israel’s Capital

By David M. Kinchen
Who says there’s no good news? The day after Mitt Romney killed Big Bird like the Ancient Mariner killed the albatross (for those of you who are Samuel Taylor Coleridge impaired  Google “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner), I read on Thursday Oct. 4 that a British nongovernmental agency told news media in the U.K. to stop lying about Israel’s capital. The  ruling by the UK Press Complaints Commission, according to Honest Reporting, “set a precedent on British coverage of Israel, effectively barring all British publications from referring to Tel Aviv as Israel’s capital.”
Link to story about UK Press Complaints Commission and the capital of Israel:

From the story: “The commission also did the Guardian, and the British press in general, a favor. Since Jerusalem is, in point of fact, Israel’s capital, and since a large part of Jerusalem is uncontested, the refusal to put embassies there or to refer to Jerusalem as the capital has always been an assault not only on the Jewish state’s sovereignty but also on basic logic. However, calling Tel Aviv the capital is inexplicable. Whatever Israel’s opponents think of Jerusalem, how could anyone possibly justify inventing a new capital for the Jewish state? No newspaper that refers to Tel Aviv as Israel’s capital could possibly retain any credibility.”

How indeed. I’ve never considered Tel Aviv, Israel’s largest metropolitan area, any more the capital than I consider New York City, our largest, our capital.

The Obama administration has been leery of saying anything about Israel, fearing they might say something nice. However, an agency I can trust  — if only because it has drones and knows where I live — the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) says Jerusalem is the capital. In   “The CIA World Factbook 2010”  published for the trade market  by Skyhorse Publishing, Israel’s capital is listed as Jerusalem (Page 340). The CIA notes that “Israel proclaimed Jerusalem as its capital in 1950 but the U.S., like nearly all the other countries, maintains its embassy in Tel Aviv.”

That quote from the CIA is also contained in a answer to what’s the capital, from the Infoplease site:

“All major encyclopedias (Columbia, Britannica, World Book) and dictionaries (Merriam-Webster, Random House, American Heritage) list Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

“Please note that in our profile of Israel we include a footnote to our listing of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital: “Israel proclaimed Jerusalem as its capital in 1950, but the U.S., like nearly all other countries, maintains its embassy in Tel Aviv.”

“This is exactly how the CIA World Factbook, published by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, handles this issue in its profile of Israel.”


Israel’s Knesset (Parliament) Building in Jerusalem


End of story. Now that President Obama knows where the capital is, maybe he’ll visit it, as he did Cairo, the capital of Egypt, in 2009.

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