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Jerusalem: why city-shrines make bad capitals

By Leone Radiconcini

The embattled Trump administration took, at the beginning of the month, the decision to officially recognise Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel, by moving the US Embassy from Tel Aviv. This undoubtedly opens up a Pandora’s Box both in the Arab and the Muslim world where it is perceived as the latest injustice in the decades-old conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. The announcement of the move has also provided more rhetorical fuel to extremist and terrorist organisations, exploiting the opportunity of revamping their recruitment capabilities.


In addition, the decision pushed several regional and international actors to question the role of the United States as a neutral broker in the conflict and vocally reject the new US position. No other country followed the US. A wait-and-see-approach is being pursued. If Jerusalem was really to become Israel’s capital, there would arguably be more long-term consequences than meets the eye at present. In particular, this would be a unique case in contemporary histor