Jerusalem, of course, represents one of the keys to a genuine solution to the conflict. Not only is it absolutely central to Palestinian political, cultural and religious life, but it represents the economic heart of any Palestinian state. Some 40% of the Palestinian economy will revolve around tourism in Jerusalem and its related industries.
Rather than share the city, Israeli seeks to keep Jerusalem’s resources exclusively to itself while denying a Palestinian state any developmental potential. “Judaization,” Israel’s own term for its policies of cleansing the country of any Palestinian presence, takes place on many levels. But physically taking over the urban space of the city while fragmenting Palestinian areas into small enclaves and isolating Palestinian “East Jerusalem” from the wider Palestinian society is key to this process. How this is done in radiating circles of control is illustrated in the following maps.
On the map are marked more than 50 locales outside of the Jewish Quarter where Israel has either established settlements or other types of “judaization,” such as tunnels and archaeological parks which emphasize the Jewish connection to the city while destroying all the others, Muslim and Arab in particular. It is clear, as the settlers continually assert, that the entire Old City is considered “Jewish” property. Thus the settlements extend into the Muslim Quarter (dubbed on Israeli maps “the New Jewish Quarter”), including a large Israeli-only apartment complex in the heart of the Muslim Quarter, along the northeast walls by Herod’s Gate. There is also a large settlement in a Palestinian building next to the Holy Sepulchre, in the Christian Quarter, taken over by Israelis in 1990.