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Detroit, International Experts React to Trump’s Jerusalem Announcement

Jake Neher/WDET

Saeed Khan

Decades of foreign policy and international consensus has been overturned this week. On Wednesday, President Donald Trump declared that the U.S. now recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The president also put in motion plans to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv, although there are no concrete details on when this will happen. 

What does the president’s announcement mean for the future of peace talks in Israel, Palestine, and throughout the Middle East? What does it mean for U.S.-Israel relations? 

Saeed Khan, senior lecturer in Near East and Asia studies at Wayne State University, speaks with Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson. Khan explains why there is so much tension behind the decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. 

Howard Lupovitch, Associate Professor of History and the Director of the Cohn Haddow Center for Judaic Studies at Wayne State University, also joins the show. Lupovitch explains that President Trump’s announcement was part of promises he made during the presidential campaign. It is also fits into a much larger context.  

Jake Neher/WDET

Yonah Jeremy Bob

It’s important to keep in mind that the promise of moving the embassy and recognizing Jerusalem as the capital, that promise was part of a much broader and more challenging promise of brokering a peace deal,” he says. 

Intelligence, terrorism, and legal analyst for the Jerusalem Post, Yonah Jeremy Bob, also joins Detroit Today from Jerusalem. 

The Israeli reaction is overwhelmingly positive,” says Bob. “There are critics…but on this issue, almost all the entire left is in favor.” 

Osama Siblani, publisher for the Arab American News, sees the the decision by the U.S. as reckless.


According to Siblani, the U.S. has repeatedly tried to be a peacemaker in the Middle East, but this changes things. 

Now (the U.S.) show clearly that this is not an honest broker position,” he says. “That takes, literally, the United States out of being a negotiator or a mediator in the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians.” 

Click on the audio player above for the full conversation. 

Image credit: The World Factbook/CIA

About the Author

Detroit Today

Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.

detroittoday@wdet.org  

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