"Gilo, a Neighborhood of Jerusalem"

Goldblog reader Hershel Ginsburg writes:

A few additional points (and a correction) related to your Gilo post.

First of all, Gilo is not a suburb of Jerusalem.  It's a neighborhood in the city, i.e., within the city limits, forming the southernmost part of the city (not in "east" Jerusalem as a number of ignorant journalists have reported).

Second, the land upon which Gilo sits was largely, if not overwhelmingly, purchased, much of it before 1948 and the balance after 1967.  It was one of the earliest neighborhoods built after 1967 and is contiguous with pre-1967 Jerusalem.

Third, there are something like 30-50,000 (or more) residents in Gilo many secular Jews, some religious Jews and some Arabs.  As such it is very much a mixed Jerusalem neighborhood.  The current planning commission vote to authorize the 900 additional housing units is just the latest, and not the last step, in a process that started a number of years ago and it will likely be a few more years before the first bulldozer moves the first clod of dirt related to these housing units.
Fourth, Gilo is so much a part of the Israeli consensus that even a Meretz member of the Jerusalem City Council told Army Radio this morning that it is integral part of Jerusalem and that Israel has every right to build there (admittedly she may now change her tune as she learns that such a statement contravenes the current world-wide P.C. dogma; Meretzites are strict adherents of political correctness).

Another measure of how much Obama has lost the Israeli mainstream, even the left-wing mainstream:  Razi Barka'i, the host of Army Radio's flagship morning news & public affairs interview show, opened the segment on the Gilo controversy by playing a snippet from Obama's 2008 AIPAC speech and his subsequent comments recorded during the 2008 visit Sderot, where he spoke of an undivided Jerusalem or at least one that will not be a mindless 50-50 split, and that in all events it's not the U.S's' job to dictate to the parties what to do.  But as Barka'i (who is not, G-d forbid, suspected of any right-wing leanings; quite the contrary) noted, that was 2008 before the election and this is 2009 after the election. Or in standard American political English, bait and switch.  Bait which much of the mainstream American Jewish Community swallowed hook, line and sinker.
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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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