Morrison must show strength in his Israel decision

Despite its good intentions, the Morrison government has got itself in to a dreadful bind with its review into whether we should shift our embassy in Israel.

Of course, there’s strong arguments for doing just that.

Since 1950, West Jerusalem — and not Tel Aviv where our embassy is now — has been Israel’s capital. That’s where the parliament sits, the administration resides, and the prime minister and ministers have their offices.

And West Jerusalem, where all this takes place, and where our embassy would go, is in the internationally recognised territory of Israel. It’s East Jerusalem that’s contentious. That’s the territory that Israel seized from Jordan during the Six Days War in 1967 and that would become the capital of Palestine in any two-state solution that the Arab and Muslim world might finally agree to.

How would we feel, for instance, if other countries refused to recognise Canberra as capital of Australia and refused to put their embassies in the ACT because, say, indigenous groups objected?

Quite rightly, we would regard it as highly disrespectful; after all a sovereign nation gets to choose its own capital surely? Yet for Israel it seems different rules apply.

Unlike Australia, Israel has always had to live with neighbours questioning its right to exist and arming themselves accordingly.

Moving our embassy to Jerusalem would be an act of solidarity with the only functioning liberal democracy in the Middle East; doing what we can to bolster their sovereignty is in our national interest, and the security of the wider West.

Read the article by Peta Credlin in The Daily Telegraph.