Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah's speech on December 7th, 2017, following Donald Trump's decision to recognize Al-Quds (Jerusalem) as the capital of Israel
[...] The subject of my talk tonight is the recent US decision announced yesterday by the President of the United States of America regarding his recognition of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) as the capital of “Israel” in quotes (or rather) of the Zionist entity.
But before I begin, while we're still in the atmosphere of these blessed commemorations, I want to address my congratulations to all Muslims of the world during these days of the anniversary of the birth of the Greatest Prophet, the Seal of Prophets, Muhammad b. Abdullah, peace be upon him and his family, and of the blessed birth of his descendant Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq, peace be upon him.
O my brothers and sisters! As was said yesterday in more than one place in the Arab and Islamic world, we have the feeling of being faced with a new Balfour Declaration, a second Balfour Promise. Is it a coincidence or calculation, (exactly) 100 years after the first Balfour Declaration, a second Balfour Promise falls upon us.
I want to talk about three points here as concisely as possible, despite the large number of points that should be developed on this matter. The first point concerns the understanding (of the nature and magnitude) of the dangers of this American decision, and some of the dangers that add themselves to it. The second point will evoke certain facts on which this American decision sheds light, namely what it means, what it shows and what it reveals. The third point is the stance that is required. And finally a conclusion.
First, regarding the understanding of the dangers caused by the US decision. If we understand the extent of the dangers involved in this decision, it will be an encouragement for all of us to act and fulfill our responsibilities, and also, in addition, not to listen to the voices that will rise in the coming days, when everyone will share his position, I expect to hear voices in the Arab and Islamic world that will argue that what happened is not important or has no value, that nothing happened (that there is no need to worry) and therefore (we will unfortunately hear) denials of the importance and dangers of this decision.
Considering the dangers (involved in this decision), a brief introduction: we all know that the Israeli enemy, this entity and its leaders, in principle, do not respect international resolutions – that is something proven and established, just consider all international resolutions (applying to Israel) –, they do not respect international conventions, they do not respect international agreements, and they do not even respect the agreements they themselves (negotiated and) signed. Their interests take precedence over everything and always have the last word. And they do not even respect the so-called international community and the international will. They couldn't care less about the declarations and stances of the Arab countries, Islamic countries, European countries – yes, even Europe – the Russians, China, Latin America, Canada or Australia. For this entity, the only thing that matters fundamentally is the United States of America and the American position. This is well-known.
And therefore, in past decades, the successive governments of the enemy tried to take possession of Al-Quds, to seize it, in all respects: humanly, with the inhabitants, the holy places, at all levels. But successive US governments also, under the pretext of being the guarantors of peace, sponsoring the negotiations, ensuring (impartially) to respect the balance between the countries in the region, between Israel and its Arab allies, etc. sometimes allowed to a limited extent, and sometimes forbade Israeli measures (of gradual occupation) of Al-Quds.
For example, regarding the gradual eviction process of Palestinians from Al-Quds, (it has been done) little by little, and sometimes the United States looked away and allowed these expulsions – as we say, they closed their eyes – and sometimes they prohibited it and took a position (against it). Things were advancing in this framework (of deception). Regarding the construction of settlements, same thing, it was gradual: sometimes they opposed it, sometimes they facilitated it, sometimes they looked the other way. Regarding the ownership of homes and property of Palestinians, same thing. With regard to getting closer and closer to the Al-Aqsa mosque, same thing. Thus, the US position was a protection or encouragement in one way or another, ensuring that Israel would not (openly) get an absolute hold of the whole city in one strike, and that the Zionist project in Al-Quds is not completely fulfilled.
If we pay attention (to the data in) this introduction, we will understand the danger of the new
US decision. For what did Trump told them? He told them: “This (city) of Al-Quds, all of it, West and East, is yours, it is your land, it is your capital. It is subject to your sovereignty.” Therefore, it is over: the (gradual) encouragement dictated by US tactics, which was due to the diplomacy, the policy of (pseudo-) negotiations, measurement and balance positions between the Zionist entity and Arab and Islamic countries, all of this collapsed yesterday, shot down by a fatal blow. Now, the government of the enemy, Netanyahu and his party have no more obstacles facing them after this American position. And that brings us into some details about the dangers. I will list them progressively, until the greatest danger.
First, the Palestinian residents of Al-Quds : what will be their fate after the US decision? Will Israeli citizenship be imposed on them? As with the 1948 Palestinians? Or is it that they will be expelled? Etc., etc., etc. What awaits them? While in the past there were limits on the expulsion of Palestinians from Al-Quds, after this decision, all the doors are open.
Second, what is the future of Palestinian possessions in Al-Quds? In the past, we saw Israeli comedies in the media: they seized a house here, two houses there, they built a house here or there, sometimes in the guise of violations of the law, lack of building permits, etc., etc. So the property of the Palestinians, their homes, their houses, their fields, their lands in Al-Quds (all are under imminent threat of grabbing or destruction).
Third, in the past, if a colony was built, one or two hundred houses, European voices (of protest) rose, the Americans told them “Shut up” and “Be still”, but now, we will see a massive and rapid settlement movement, colonization without barriers and without limits within the East Al-Quds and throughout the suburb of the city of Al-Quds.
Fourth, Al-Quds will extend further towards the West Bank, under the title of the “Great AlQuds”. Tomorrow, everything around Al-Quds will be integrated to the “Great Al-Quds”. And it will even be officially recorded in the negotiations, if there can still be negotiations. And at this level - regarding the inhabitants, properties, houses and settlements, colonizing, everything that was done by the Israelis for decades, they will do much more in a very limited period of time. And this is a great danger.
Fifth, and it is among the greatest dangers, the fate of the holy places of Islam and Christianity. Previously, Al-Quds had a special status recognized by the international community, etc. Now, what is left of this special status? Nothing at all. The sovereignty over the Muslim and Christian holy sites, according to US recognition, belongs to the Israelis. And we hear from the beginning, and in recent years, voices, saying it is an historic opportunity to rebuild the (Jewish) Temple [of Solomon, which implies the destruction of the Al-Aqsa Mosque] and fully realize the Zionist project in this regard. After this statement, we can honestly say that the Muslim and Christian holy places are in great danger, we must sound the alarm, but what is in even greater danger is the Al-Aqsa mosque itself. The Al-Aqsa Mosque itself. Let no one be surprised if one day, with all that is happening in the world, we wake up one morning and are told that there were excavations under the Al-Aqsa Mosque, we do not know what happened, that a tunnel was dug or a wall destroyed and the Al-Aqsa mosque (accidentally) collapsed, do not hold it against us ladies and gentlemen. This can happen any night, at any moment. So even the fate of Muslim and Christian holy sites, especially the Al-Aqsa mosque (is seriously threatened).
Sixth, the future of the Palestinian cause as a whole. For Al-Quds is the heart of the Palestinian cause, its base, its shaft, its foundation. When in fact, Al-Quds is removed from this cause, what is left? There's nothing left. Today, what did Trump say to the Palestinians and the Palestinian people, the Arab and Islamic communities and the world? “There is no Palestinian cause. It's over. There are Palestinian people, some are present inside (the entity of) Israel, according to their terms, some are outside, we must find a solution. Let's see where we can accommodate them, install them, maybe we can take them to Jordan or give them the Sinai (in Egypt), giving them a kind of administrative autonomy. And what of those in Gaza?” This is (all) the extent of the issue. But as for the Palestinian cause, the heart and foundation of the Palestinian cause that is Al-Quds, as regards the United States, the issue ended yesterday.
And that even for those who believe in the path of negotiations (which was never the case of Hezbollah). And even more so for the future of the independent Palestinian state whose capital is the holy Al-Quds. What remains of al-Quds for the Americans, that can be negotiated and obtained (as the capital of Palestine)? Regardless (of differences between those who) claim (the whole of) Palestine from the (Mediterranean) Sea to the (Jordan) river, who accept the 1967 borders on a permanent basis or accept them temporarily, Palestinians are unanimous on the fact that the capital of the Palestinian state, whatever its extent, must be Al Quds East. Today, Americans erased it permanently.
The Americans, the (alleged) sponsors of negotiations and guarantee of agreements - when any were reached - declare to all of us and to the Palestinians that Al-Quds is not part of the negotiations, it's over, it is not a subject of debate, negotiation or even discussion. If negotiations continue, they will talk about other things, but absolutely not of Al-Quds. What does that mean? As for those who are interested in negotiations and by the so-called "peace process", clearly and frankly, some of them have said yesterday that Trump fired the last (and fatal) bullet on this process. And some even said it was a stillborn process from the start, but that Trump has had the courage to announce his death. But there may still be in the Arab world people who insist on asserting that it is still alive.
Another danger – and I will conclude on this – also with regard to what is outside of Al-Quds, when the United States have the audacity to take on what is dearest to Palestinians, to the Arabs, Muslims, Christians, Arab and Islamic worlds, and to grab it like this - I'm talking about Al-Quds - tomorrow, what will be the fate of the West Bank? What will be the fate of the Golan Heights (occupied Syrian territory)? Cheb'a Farms and Kafar Shuba Hills (occupied Lebanese territories)? And anything else? When they have the audacity to take what is dearest to you, the most holy, without fear, without taking the slightest element into consideration, how will they behave with what is incomparable in holiness, in importance, and (weighs much less) on aspects of civilization, (national) feelings and religion? And that's why all other causes which are an object of struggle with the Israeli enemy will be threatened, especially if we are silent facing this dangerous decision. These are just some of the dangers evoked briefly.
Now, if we stop and think about it calmly, put into it a little time, 24 hours, two or three days, if people sit and think about it (together) we will discover many (other) dangers contained in this decision, especially if is met only with silence, because beyond what concerns the Arab-Israeli conflict, one of the greatest dangers is that the Americans no longer exerce any restraint or limit (for) all that is in the Arab and Muslim world. Because the community that allows the rape of AlQuds, that let it be torn forcefully from its history, its civilization, its heart, his reason, its soul and its (deepest) feelings, is a community that can give up any other thing, whether it has a link with the Arab-Israeli conflict or anything that would raise the ambitions and greed of the US administration. […]
[...] Regarding our position (against Trump's decision about Al-Quds / Jerusalem), I wish to express some (recommended actions) that I will categorize into two parts. The first part concerns the protest against this decision. (On the one hand), any form of protest, condemnation, denunciation, objection, rejection, refusal expressed against this open American aggression and dangerous move, and, on the other hand, any announcement of solidarity, support, expression of the fact that we stand alongside Palestine, the people of Palestine and the cause of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), that it is important for all of us, that it is our responsibility and concerns all of us, are indispensable actions, it is the lesser degree of faith (of struggle imposed on everyone). Maybe someone will ask what are words good for, but no, it is necessary and indispensable to speak, it is the lesser degree of faith. Let no one devaluate or shrink (the importance of) positions, statements, speeches and all forms of denunciation and protest which I will discuss in a moment. These actions are essential. Of course, more is needed, but if some (countries and factions) do not do more, this responsibility remains nevertheless imposed on each and everyone of us.