Pretending Tel Aviv Is the Capital of Israel
by Daniel Pipes
Translations of this item:
Some, especially in the mainstream media, pretend that not Jerusalem but Tel Aviv serves as the capital of Israel. (Tel Aviv hosts the Ministry of Defense but not much else of the central government.) The weblog entry documents some of those delusions, which are appearing more often, in reverse chronological order:
Agence France Press: An article on Jan. 23, "Israel PM urges European 'fairness' in Mideast," states that four European Union states lodged "a formal protest against Tel Aviv's drive to expand settlements on the West Bank." (January 26, 2014)
The New York Times: A front-page headline today over a story by Mark Landler and Jodi Rudoren uses "Tel Aviv" as a synonym for Israel's capital: "Mideast Chaos Grows as U.S. Focuses on Israel—Kerry's Tel Aviv Push Raises Questions About Priorities." (July 2, 2013)
CTV, a Canadian television station: Reported on Jan. 8 that "Tel Aviv is dealing with a heavy rain situation. The storms flooded roads and brought chaos to the Israeli capital." (January 17, 2013)
British Broadcasting Corporation: A BBC tweet today announced that "#Gaza militants launch missiles at Tel Aviv in 1st rocket attack on Israeli capital since 1991 Gulf War bbc.in/QJkWK9" (November 15, 2012)
White House: The White House press secretary, Jay Carney, did not say that Tel Aviv was the capital. But he also did not say it was not in this semi-comical exchange with reporters:
Carney ignored him and moved on to another question. (July 26, 2012)
The Guardian newspaper: Its style sheet actually states that "Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel; Tel Aviv is." (April 25, 2012)
Comments: (1) This absurdity parallels a tendency lately to pretend there's a country called Palestine.(2) For an amusing skit on this topic, see Honest Reporting's YouTube mock-umentary, "Searching for Israel's Capital."
Feb. 10, 2014 update: Les Kinsolving has named Connie Lawn as the "1st reporter" above and identified himself as the "2nd reporter."
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