My in-box is filled with e-mails and press releases asserting that East Jerusalem, including and especially the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem, and including and especially the site on which the Shepherd Hotel stood until this past weekend, when it was bulldozed to make way for apartments for Jewish Israelis, is holy Jewish territory, part of the holiest city in Judaism, and therefore a place where Jews have a perfect right to build and live.
Let me stipulate at the outset that I believe Jerusalem is Judaism's holiest city; let me stipulate that I believe Jews have a right to live wherever they want to live in the Land of Israel; let me even stipulate, for argument's sake, that God in Heaven is actually a real estate agent, and busies Himself each day by devising plans to populate certain Jerusalem neighborhoods with Jews.
I will also stipulate that the Shepherd Hotel, in and of itself, is not a morally profound issue. It was bought legally by Jewish buyers years ago; it did not house Palestinians; and it is associated historically with the former Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al Husseini, who was an actual bona fide Nazi, so its disappearance does not cause me sorrow. The world's focus on Sheikh Jarrah is, of course, disproportionate in the larger scheme of things.