Earlier this week, President Donald Trump announced that he plans on moving the United States embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Unsurprisingly, this has consequently outraged countless Palestinians, who are now calling for “3 days of rage” in response, prompting Israel to prepare themselves for potential violence.
Specifically, in response to President Trump’s recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the US embassy there, the Palestinian “national and Islamic forces” released a joint statement declaring “3 days of rage” starting Wednesday and ending Friday. “We call on all our people in Israel and around the world to gather in city centers and Israeli embassies and consulates, with the aim of bringing about general popular anger,” they began in their statement.
“A huge protest should be launched in order to reject out of hand the attempts of the US administration to transfer the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem or recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel,” they continued, noting, “the people and the nation [must] act in all legal and diplomatic ways within the international community [and] the international law in the Hague in order to torpedo this attempt.”
Trump’s plan was also condemned by Hamas leader Ismail Haniya, who called the decision a “flagrant aggression” and “uncalculated gamble that will know no limit to the Palestinian, Arab and Muslim reaction” while speaking to reporters.
“We call for stopping this decision fully because this will usher in the beginning of a time of terrible transformations, not just on the Palestinian level but on the region as a whole,” he explained, noting, “this decision means the official announcement of the end of the peace process.”
Worried about the numerous violent protests that are expected to take place throughout the week, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have since prepared themselves accordingly. They believe that most of the activity will take place in large cities near American embassies and consulates. What they fear is that during the demonstrations, “lone wolf attacks will be carried out by perpetrators across the city.”
According to reports, several protests varying in violence have already broken out in multiple cities across the region. Yesterday in Gaza City, for instance, hundreds of Palestinians came together and marched on the streets carrying anti-Trump banners. Numerous people also set fire to US and Israeli flags and burnt up pictures of Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Hordes of people also took to the streets to protest Trump’s decision in the Palestinian city of Ramallah. During the demonstration, a bunch of protesters started throwing stones and other projectiles at Israeli soldiers stationed at a checkpoint leading from Ramallah into Jerusalem. In response, the soldiers fired sponge bullets as well as “dozens of rounds of tear gas and stun grenades” at the growing crowd of angry Palestinians in order to get them to disperse.
Israeli police officers also had to deal with protesters in Jerusalem. But so far, the violence there has been minimal. There were only a few minor scuffles and three arrests. However, on Friday, when large crowds of people leave their respective mosques after their weekly prayers, this may change.
Despite the fact that President Trump’s decision sparked a massive amount of outrage, it ultimately was a wise move. This is because, by moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, he not only strengthened our relationship with Israel but also sent a powerful message to the rest of the world that we won’t be intimidated by threats of violence.