|Olmert postpones negotiations on Jerusalem|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Monday, 28 January 2008 15:12|
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has said that negotiations on the status of Jerusalem are to be postponed until a later stage in the peace process, over fears that the divisive issue could derail the talks. The Prime Minister has said that negotiations should begin with issues in which there is a greater chance of agreement. This is quite a change in tact for Olmert compared just a few weeks ago. Around the time of the international peace conference in Annapolis, he had publicly questioned why Arab-majority communities were ever considered part of Jerusalem. Most recently Olmert asserted that the division of Jerusalem was inevitable, stating that "the world that really supports Israel, when it speaks of the future, it speaks of Israel in terms of the '67 borders. It speaks of division of Jerusalem. We must remember this". And following the commencement of final status talks and the Har Homa dispute he ordered the freezing of all construction work in the east of the city, even in areas which Israel presently intends to keep as part of a peace agreement, signalling that the Israeli government ultimately intends to divide the city to pave the way for the establishment of a Palestinian state.
Quote: "Several days ago, the prime minister met with Ma'aleh Adumim Mayor Benny Kashriel, who asked Olmert to approve several construction plans -including in the controversial E1 corridor linking Ma'aleh Adumim to Jerusalem. Olmert refused, saying the issue was sensitive in terms of relations with the United States and the Palestinian Authority. Kashriel also asked Olmert to approve tenders for the completion of the settlement's 07 neighborhood. Barak approved the construction during his term as prime minister, and the new neighborhood was to have a total of 3,500 housing units - 2,000 of which have been built and sold, and another 1,100 of which are currently under construction. Most of the units that are under construction have also been sold. The Housing Ministry was to issue tenders for the remaining 400 homes, but Kashriel says Olmert refused to approve the request. Kashriel also asked Olmert to authorize the construction of schools and kindergartens in the 07 neighborhood, but said this request was also denied. "I told the prime minister that I need another school and more kindergartens, by September, otherwise I'll bring the children to his office and they can study there," said Kashriel.
It seems that what Prime Minister Olmert says and what Prime Minister Olmert does are two different things. Officials in the Israeli government believe the real reason why Olmert is being so cautious over his plan for the division of Jerusalem is because other parties in his coalition government would not support it. The ultra-Orthodox Shas party has already threatened to walk out of the government the minute the two sides begin negotiations on Jerusalem. And the fall of Olmert's government could derail the whole peace process.
So it seems that once again the division of Jerusalem has been put on the back burner. And this is exactly what the Bible predicts. For according to Daniel's prophecy, a peace agreement between Israel and the surrounding nations will be confirmed for a period of seven years. I don't know what this agreement will be, but somehow Israel will be permitted to keep east Jerusalem and rebuild their Temple. But following the collapse of the agreement, the land of Israel will be divided by the Antichrist (Daniel 11:39), and the Arab nations will be in siege against Judea and Jerusalem (Zechariah 12:2, Revelation 11:2). And the Antichrist, who at one time appeared as the harbinger of peace, will turn his back on the Jewish people. Following Jesus Christ's three and a half year ministry on this earth, the Jewish nation publicly rejected their King, calling on Him to be crucified and saying, "His blood be on us, and on our children", Matthew 27:25. God took them at their word. Following the nation's three and a half year period of great tribulation, they will turn to the One that they rejected. Only this time they will accept Him as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Have you accepted Jesus Christ as Lord of your life? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved (Acts 16:31).