Trump and the Jerusalem Decision (plus Tweets)

Tweets are about the least important thing on my mind at the moment. On Wednesday morning I had a bad fall. Walking is never that easy for me, but now every step is agony. Still, that’s actually not the worst of my problems. 3½ hours later my landlord told me she was selling the house. So in around six weeks (maybe a bit longer if I’m “lucky”) I’ll be homeless.

Oh, and it’s my birthday in a couple of days. so I’ll have to start admitting to another year when asked my age. I hope that’s the third thing anyway.

On the world stage, Trump is continuing to expose his complete and utter lack of understanding when it comes to politics and diplomacy. His announcement that he would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is, as usual, all about himself.

Our prime minister, Jacinda Adern, along with every other OECD leader, every Middle Eastern leader, the United Nations, and more besides has condemned the move.

Trump frames it as some heroic move to keep a campaign promise. It’s not.

Although he won’t admit it publicly, Trump’s favourability rating is the lowest of any president at this stage in his presidency ever. There are very few people who are still strongly supporting him, and most of those are the conservative Evangelicals. To them, recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is Trump fulfilling God’s promise. It cements him as God’s pick as King. It is a part of the whole End Times myth that they embrace.

And let’s not fool ourselves. Most of us want peace in the Middle East, but the Evangelicals don’t. They want the religious war that they believe will bring about the second coming of Jesus. Sensible people, Christians or not, know that’s not happening. It’s not about whether you believe Jesus was real, or even whether you consider the Bible scripture. It’s about whether you belong to one of the Christian cults that interprets the Bible in a frankly delusional way.

There’s one other group that Trump is holding onto with this move. While most Jews vote for the Democratic Party in the US, more conservative ones are more likely to vote Republican. Some of those are very big donors. Sheldon Adelson, for example, donated US$25 million to Trump’s campaign. He is an advocate of the policy of making a fuss about naming Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. No other country does this. Every other embassy is in Tel Aviv, and for good political and diplomatic reasons.

Already the State Department has had to issue a warning to USians travelling overseas. I’m not one to blame the victim, and it is not Trump’s fault that a whole lot of religious bigots are going to react to his announcement with deadly violence. However, that is going to be cold comfort to those that lose loved ones. I predict USians will die because of this, and Trump is opening himself up to an avoidable political attack.

One of the reasons the much-maligned Jimmy Carter was able to broker a peace deal way back when was that he was seen as independent and honest. Trump insists that he still wants to sort out the Israel-Palestine issue, and Jared (Kushner) is the man for the job. The status of Jerusalem was always something that was going to be the last part of the process. Now, the US has come down firmly on the side of Israel. Any pretensions they still had to independence in the matter are gone.

Everyone in the Middle East was starting to get a bit sick of the intransigence of the Palestinians. They have very little support left. Behind the scenes, Israel and Saudi Arabia were starting to get on pretty well. Time and pragmatism were starting to heal wounds. Further, from the point of view of those in the region, it’s bad enough that the US and Britain meddle in their affairs so much. Now Russia is getting in there too on the side of the Shi’a. No one there wants this. Another of the consequences of Trump’s ill-advised decision is to make those in the region feel obliged to take the side of their fellow Muslims.

Jerusalem, to point out the obvious, is not just important to Christians and Jews, it’s the third most important religious site in the world to Muslims. They can’t ignore this. Turkey said before Trump made his announcement that this would be a red line. President Erdoğan is all too aware of his country’s importance in the region. It’s the buffer between Europe and the Middle East, and it’s been growing increasingly conservative under Erdoğan’s rule. He’s also been constantly threatening to ally with Russia instead of NATO. Erdoğan knows he’s needed by the forces for democracy, and he takes full advantage of that.

Wherever you look there are reasons for Trump not to have made this move. Even his own Secretary of State advised against it. But those who butter his bread want him to do this, and that’s all he cares about.

This is not the noble move he wants people to think it is. Like everything else Trump does, it’s entirely selfish.


Political Tweets

Ann German sent me this, reminding me of my previous comment, “What is wrong with these people.” Roy Moore believes so many disturbing things, but he’s not alone. A lot of the people who vote for him have the same opinions.


A few days ago, Croatian Slobodan Praljak committed suicide by drinking poison on hearing his twenty-year sentence for war crimes was upheld. Russia Insider has a different view. For example (see link in tweet):

Praljak became “notorious” to the globalist media for ordering the destruction of Mostar’s iconic Stari Most … 24 years ago, during the Bosnian War … . Symbolism, you see, is important, and to globalist, bridges are almost “fetish objects.”

But the truth is Praljak’s action was done for the humanitarian purpose of separating populations that were clearly having trouble living together.


He was a good senator, but he’s doing the right thing. I like what he says here.

Pre-Mueller Time Tweets

It seems clear from this that Donald Trump Jr was actively seeking dirt on Hillary Clinton from what he thought was the Russian government. At this stage though, that appears to me to be more a sign of extremely poor judgement rather than collusion.
(Via Ann German.)


39 times! Un-effing-believable!
(Via Ann German.)


Mueller Time Tweets

Just sayin’,


Human Rights Tweets

This is fantastic!
(Via Ann German.)


Here’s the video she’s referring to …


Good luck to David Ermold!
(Via Ann German.)


Most of you have probably heard about retiring GOP senator Jeff Flake of Arizona donating to Doug Jones, the Democratic opponent of Roy Moore in the Alabama senate election next week. Flake has shown himself to be a man of integrity in relation to Donald Trump, and here again with Roy Moore. Here’s a pic of the cheque. #CountryOverParty
(Via Ann German.)


Atheist Tweets

This will be good!
(Via Ann German.)


Entertainment Tweets

Have you read the ‘Outlander’ books by Diana Gabaldon? I’m a big fan. The first in the series is Cross Stitch. They’re being made into a TV series, but I don’t know where they’re being broadcast – it’s one of the pay channels. I’ve got them on DVD and the quality is fabulous.


This is fun!


Christmas Tweets

I laughed. A lot. Am I an evil person? I hope there are more of these coming!
(Via Ann German.)







Environmental Tweets

While the rest of the world is making efforts to do more to protect the environment, the Trump administration is doing its best to destroy it. He lied in his speech when he was announcing the reduction of the size of the Utah national parks, and now his stooge can’t even get the photo op right.
(Via Ann German.)


This was one of the responses to the above tweet.
(Via Ann German.)


Jolly good!
(Via Ann German.)


Not sure where else to put this.


Weather Tweets

Very cool!


Science Tweets

One of those things you could watch for hours!


Architecture Tweets

Wow! Another gorgeous library.


Other Animals Tweets

Video of a beaver with its kit.


Wonderful guy! You can see by his body language how distressing he finds the idea of the rabbit being caught by the fire.


Go otters!


Poor thing!

Insect Tweets

Very cool.


Bird Tweets

I love owls, so this video was a real treat.


New Zealand is working to make the whole country predator free to protect our native birds. Several off shore islands have this status already, and native birds were relocated there to thrive. Once is Whenua Hou, where there’s a Kakapo population. But …


Dog Tweets

This is hilarious! Look out for the look on the dog’s face towards the end!
(Via Ann German.)


Very sweet.
(Via Ann German.)


Cat Tweets

Aren’t they lovely?!


This cat knows how to deal with interlopers!


What a cutie! Blanket quicksand!


No comment!


Another cutie!


If there’s a cat in your home, and this has never happened to you, you probably never do jigsaws!


So that’s what unicorns are for! (Making kittens look even cuter!)


We finish off with the wonderful Sean Carroll’s cats …


Okay, one more. Who can resist this gorgeous creature!


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23 Responses to “Trump and the Jerusalem Decision (plus Tweets)”

  1. Claudia Baker says:

    Sorry to hear about your fall and about your house Heather. Your landlord has very bad timing – so close to Christmas!

  2. Glenda says:

    Wanted to say once again I enjoy your current event posts and the tweets. BUT I am very, very sorry that your life just got a whole lot more complicated. Given your health issues you sure didn’t need the latest.Hope this all turns out ok in the end.

  3. Jenny Haniver says:

    I haven’t even looked at yr. tweets yet, but want to say what dismal news; and not simply two separate events, but the first makes the second that much more difficult. It’s physically difficult and psychologically wrenching enough being told abruptly that you have to completely upend your life and move out of your home in the space of weeks, even if you were in the pink of health, which you’re not. Sure hope you’ll get lucky and find a congenial place to live and be able to stay there without worry, abd that the effects of your fall will recede.

    I agree with just about everything you write about Trump and Jerusalem, but would add that, yes, this, like everything he does, that was selfish and completely consistent with his raging narcisiscism, but as Jeffery Toobin observed, he gave away the store — asked for and got nothing in return, and makes further negotiations with the Palestinians well-nigh impossible. And what of Jared Kushner’s vaunted role in Middle East negotiations? It is said that he has great plans, but does he really have anything at all, or is he just doing this and that? Even if he has concrete plans, of what use would they be now? And what if he goes down in the Mueller probe? Then what?

    Noting Jeffery T’oobin’s Fresh Air interview (linked above), which discusses his article in the New Yorker about Trump’s lawyers in re Flynn, in light of recent comments here by Ann German, “da lawyah” (as they say in Brooklyn, where I’ve never been), she might find Toobin’s interview and article particularly interesting, especially since he discusses the points she brought up in her comments about Dowd, who has subsequently, made even more nutty, egregious claims, which only serve to put both him and his client in even more jeopardy than before. He and Trenton Garmon ought to start a law firm: Bozo and Bozo, Esq.

    • Jenny Haniver says:

      I’ve seen the tweets and am rolling with laughter at “Amanda” and her Advent calendar. Each one is superb, but the little fairy flying into the flames is just the best. But they’re all so funny, they rate right up there with Kenneth Hagin’s church of laughter for inducing spontaneous hilarity. As for Hagin, if atheists could go to his church, I’d be sorely tempted. Just for fun. After all, that’s what it’s all about.

  4. Trump is obviously simultaneously throwing a sop to the evangelicals who have abandoned any pretence of ‘Christian’ morality in return for political influence, and creating a distraction to divert attention from the investigation into his links with Russia and Russian interference in the 2016 election. Such is his narcissism that it matters not a jot to him that unrest in the Middle East, which his action is designed to foment, will make life even more miserable for millions of people and could lead to a much wider conflict. His base enjoys watching him insult and abuse Muslims and that’s all that matters to this egotistical maniac.

    Give an emotionally immature adolescent a Twitter account and tell him he runs the world from his bedroom and you’ll get something indistinguishable from Donald Trump at 3 a.m.

    • I agree completely with your take, as usual. I especially love that last paragraph – more evidence of your excellent writing too.

      (I hope you’re all following Rosa Rubicondior’s blog and checking out his books!)

  5. Sorry to hear about your fall and your housing problems, Heather. I hope things work out satisfactorily for you. What rights as a tenant do you have?

    If it’s any consolation, my birthday is in a few days too. 🙂

  6. rickflick says:

    Sorry to hear about your fall and the need for new digs. Let’s hope these issues resolve quickly.

  7. Mike Brogan says:

    Sorry about your problems Heather, what does it say in your lease agreement? hope you get both better and sorted out with your housing crisis.

  8. Lee Knuth says:

    Distressing to hear about your fall and your housing problem. Hope all turns out ok for you. I, too, loved the Outlander books and am currently watching the series on cable. They have done a terrific job. Recoup fast and keep the tweets coming. Usually the best part of my day.

  9. Yakaru says:

    Get well soon, Heather… And I hope you get a better landlord next time around.

  10. Mark R. says:

    A fall and then an eviction, what crap. I gave you a birthday present to hopefully lighten your load. Thanks for everything you do here on Heather’s Homilies; it is much appreciated.

    • Thanks so much Mark, and everyone else for your very kind words of support. I appreciate it, and it helps to know there are people who care.

      To those who have asked about my lease, I’m on the standard lease that NZ law mandates as a minimum. Once the house is sold, I have 42 days. It’s the sort of place that will sell quickly and is at a premium in the market. Despite that, I think my landlords are asking too much for it, so hopefully that will delay the process.

      I HATE shifting. It’s an absolute nightmare. I can’t do any of it myself because of the crap state of my body either, and so I’m at the mercy of movers too. This is the fourth time I’ve had a home sold out from under me, and I’ve also had to shift towns on several occasions because of work. It gets harder every time.

      I’ll cope. I always do somehow. No other choice really.

      • Linda Calhoun says:

        Hang in there, Heather.

        We’re all rooting for you.

        I wish I were closer than half a world away, so I could give you a hand.


        • Thanks Linda. 🙂

          So far there are two looking that I know of. One would keep me on as tenant, but they haven’t made an offer, and it’s being promoted as a place to live in rather than rent out. I’m not sure where the others are, though my impression is that the husband is keener than the wife.

      • nicky says:

        I’m sure you have thought about it, but is it very difficult/expensive to buy a home in NZ?

        • It’s very expensive to buy a home in NZ, especially in the big cities. The average price in Auckland at the moment is over NZ$1 million. It’s easy to buy a home if you have a deposit and the money to service the mortgage.

          It’s about to get much more difficult for overseas people with a new law to be introduced by Christmas making it almost impossible. One of the criteria currently is “good character”. There’s talk that Matt Lauer may have to sell his house here following the recent revelations.

  11. j.a.m. says:

    Sorry to hear. Best wishes.

  12. Federico Bär says:

    We are lucky enough to live in our own home since several years, but we have known, among other period, a stretch of 7 removals in 14 years’ time.
    Taking into account you physical problems – which I of course regret – this comparison is not meant as just a consolation, only as an intent of solidarity. Cheers.

  13. Andrea says:

    I hope you are feeling better!

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