The BBC Isn’t Sure Israel Has a Capital

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History confirms that this right is not just a norm; it is so assumed that it is taken for granted. States establish or move their capitals without protest or external intervention because other nations accept this as a state’s natural right. This process continues even today. For example, Burma chose to move its capital with only five months’ notice in 2005, apparently based on political fears and/or “soothsayer” prophecies. While condemned as “totally irrational” by experts, no one claimed that Burma didn’t have the right to move its capital. Last year, South Sudan, a newly declared state, chose its capital, Ramciel, without international fanfare because establishing a capital is just “what you do” after you declare independence. Even Iran has been considering moving its capital since 2009, even though Tehran has been its capital since 1795. Unfortunately, Tehran, the largest city in the Middle East, sits uncomfortably close to at least 100 fault lines, and the city may not survive a major earthquake. No one questions the rights of these sovereign governments to make internal decisions regarding the location of their capitals because it doesn’t even occur to them to question it.

The choice of a capital is an internal political and practical decision. Under Israeli law, Jerusalem is the capital of the state of Israel and has been since the founding of the state. Israel’s first Prime Minister David Ben Gurion proclaimed Jerusalem as the Israeli capital on December 13, 1949, and all branches of the government have been located in Jerusalem since that time. Jerusalem, as opposed to East Jerusalem, is undisputedly under Israel’s legal sovereignty, and, therefore, Israel has the right to place its capital there. All states that recognize the state of Israel recognize Israel’s exclusive and unquestioned sovereignty over the portion of Jerusalem within the “Green Line.” The Knesset formalized this position in January 1950. The parliament, in “Basic Law: Jerusalem Capital of Israel,” reiterated Jerusalem as the capital in 1980. United Nations Security Council Resolution 478, a non-binding resolution, immediately declared this domestic law “null and void and must be rescinded forthwith.” However, Resolution 478 is both non-binding on the international community and contrary to accepted international practice since the creation of the nation-state system. The choice of a capital is a legitimate domestic decision relegated to the individual states, not something governed by the political policies of other countries.

Even if one refuses to accept the “legal” argument for what determines a state’s capital, there is the factual argument for determining the location of a capital: where are the government offices? Since 1949, all branches of the Israeli government have been located in Jerusalem. The supreme court, parliament, and government offices are all located there. The official residences of both the President and Prime Minister are there. Perhaps this is where the BBC got its idea for the “seat of government” designation. However, if the seat of government is in Jerusalem, what is the actual capital according to the BBC? For example, the Hague is the seat of government for the Netherlands, even though Amsterdam is the official capital. And no one disputes the sovereign right of the Netherlands to have such an arrangement.

The BBC seriously injured its journalistic integrity when it ignored Olympic ideals, international law, and the facts on the ground by refusing to recognize that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, both legally and factually.

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  • Chezwick

    Britain's capital is Londonistan.

    • Gee

      Actual name is Londonium – This occupy this Roman city


    Due to Europeon dhimmitude, Europe is now known as EURABIA..

    • Christian West

      And due to whose dhimmitude the American president genuflects before the saudi satrap, embraces Moslem Brotherhood, installs an Arab moslem, whose entire family has had connection with the Moslem Brotherhood, in a most sensitive position as an advisor to the secretary of state, urges NASA to collaborate with moslem scientists, delivers cretinous, sycophantic speeches praising islam and blabbering of West's cultural and civilizational debt to Islam and etc, etc, …? European or American? Makes one throw up.


  • penny lane

    Israel's capital is Tel-Aviv. Where's the problem?

    • Christian West

      Israel's capital is what Israel says it is – even if penny lane has a problem with it.
      So, where's the problem?


    • @ygalg

      Tel Aviv is not israel's capital. Jerusalem is israel's capital. the problem is where ignorant such as yourself unable to digest this fact. israel is a state since 48. there is a state. there is capital. it is Jerusalem.
      as for palestinian issue, it remains to be seen, what will Jerusalem status quo be in the future. in the meantime Jerusalem functions fully as israel's capital. its israel's capital.

    • kafir4life

      [knock knock knock] penny….[knock knock knock] penny….[knock knock knock] penny…..It appears you're mistaken, penny. The capital of Israel is Jeruselem. Why would you think otherwise?

      • Mike L

        Yes, Sheldon?

    • SHmuel HaLevi

      Greetings penny,
      I doubt your silly comment is worth more than a penny… :)
      We are booked for our yearly vacation in Jerusalem and will be there in 18 days. We are veteran visitors to our Capital since 1977. Our ancestors lived there during King David's and King Solomon times some three thousand years ago. When we visit Jerusalem we also take the short bus ride to Hebron to pray at the resting places of our forefathers and mothers at the Mausoleum. Would you believe penny that there are Abraham, Sarah, Leah, Jacob, Itzhak and his wife as well as Adam and Eve? Not a single Muslim Icon there penny. I am personally very close to Mother Leah since she is the Mother of Levi and therefore my direct ancestor.
      The City has since advanced well into the 21st Century and posts among many marvels, including the Dead Sea Scrolls Museum, glorious parks, The National Museum, University Campuses, INTEL and other giants factories, a Symphony Center, art Museums, etc. And also the Holocaust Yad V'hashem"…
      Other than some contrived urban legend styled claims and usurped locations there are no Islamic roots there.
      There is a new light rail system that travels for about one hour from Hertzl's Mount to the Air Force Academy station through all of Jerusalem.
      The major error committed by Dayan allocating to Muslims rights over the Jewish Temple Mount will soon be corrected but even now we will pray there. We do that every year at least four times.
      At any rate. I forgot all about Tel Aviv. Great place for foreigners to go to and believe they visited Eretz Israel.

      • jacob

        Shmuel :
        Allow me to correct you…
        DAYAN's error will not be corrected by any of the spineless governments who came after and when
        I say any, I include the present one.
        Who can understand or condone a statu quo that allows Arabs to even play football on the Temple
        Mount, while Jews are prevented by its own police from entering and even praying in the allegedly
        sacrosanct place of the Jewish people ??????
        Such asinine statu quo allowed to stand ad perpetuam is what allows somebody like Israel's "friend"
        OBAMA to claim that Israel's capital is not even TEL AVIV but BEERSHEBA

    • Roger

      Did you also campaign for halil food at the Olympics?

    • Dan Goucho

      The problem is the anti-Israeli, muslim @ss-kissing president that keep pandering to and appeasing Pisslam.

  • oldtimer

    WWI , Ottoman empire destroyed & divided……Only to be put back together, piece by piece and the only piece left is Israel….It is a religious war yes but it is also political in that Islam wants the world, and countries, once good proud countries like Britian, are handing it over to them, for fear of being called a racist. Islam is not a race…..And Israel belongs to Israel, Jerusalem is it's capital……..

  • Nehama, UK

    Speaking of the BBC's subjectivity posing as objectivity, their latest trick is smearing Mitt Romney as an idiot. I've heard three or four casual comments in the last couple of days by political commentators or presenters describing Romney as "stupid" or "dumb" (just as they did with G. W. Bush, though in Bush's case they could rely on his poor public speaking style to justify it). We can expect the Beeb to ramp this up as we get closer to US elections, despite the fact that as a news provider in a foreign country they should have zero interest in being bias. Fact is, in this day and age, the once conservative BBC is now run (from top to bottom) by lefty-liberals; ergo the BBC loves Obama and hates Israel, and will not moved from that position.

    • Shmuel Malov

      The BBC, CNN, and NBC all belong in the same basket.

      • Kufar Dawg

        Shouldn't that basket also include Al Jizyaera?

  • Boston

    As a US citizen, I now believe that the capital of my country is New York City and the seat of our governement is Washington D.C.. But NYC and D.C. is occupied territory and should be returned to the Native Americans who it really belongs to. :=)

    • aspacia

      I hope this is sarcasm Boston!

      • Bamaguje

        Isn't it obvious?

      • Boston

        Sure it’s sarcasm when we’re talking about a country settled in the 1600s by Europeans. But it’s all servious when certain fools talk about Israel who was settled by Jews over 2000 years ago.

    • @ygalg

      I wonder about the fate of london, would it continue to be UK's capital, now that majority there are muslims and every street toilette facing mecca? what would BBC say then, when muslims start to claim it an islamic waqf?

      • @ygalg

        anyway unlike anti israeli Obama administration, I'm an israeli recognize Washington D.C the capital of united states. recognize london UK's capital. its a deficit, that the courtesy its not return similarly, especially when regard countries that supposed to represent the epitome of civilization.

  • tagalog

    "Palestine" is not a nation, but has a claimed capital which is designated as "East Jerusalem," while the BBC finds it problematic to identify Jerusalem as the claimed capital of Israel, which has been a nation since, what, 1947, by fiat of the United Nations?

    What's wrong with this picture? We have come to expect this kind of spinelessness from the Obama Administration and its press representatives, but come on…

    How afraid are we going to get of the Arabs and Muslims before we actually decide to stand up like men?

  • patenglish1

    Brilliant title! What do you expect from the BBC who are always politically correct. And dear BBC, Romney is no fool and will be our next President. Thank God for that. We can not endure another four years of a communist dictator!!

  • EthanP

    Britains anti-semitism is of long standing. Sir Walter Scott remarked on it in "Ivanhoe". So what did you expect.

    • Clare Spark

      I tried to compile a comprehensive outline of the sources of antisemitism in the West. Here is the link:…. “The ABC’s of Antisemitism.” It has an internal link to a related piece on the Wandering Jew myth, partly inspired by Edgar Rosenberg’s still relevant From Shylock to Svengali.

    • aspacia

      LOL, there is a great analysis of Scott's romantic notions of the ME in Jihad Watch.

  • Metatron

    The BBC will certainly be sure to publish the agenda of the Westminster Abbey Mosque…(it won't remain a church for long). As a matter of fact, it will be demolished to make space for the mosque. Time marches on! Muslims have money…money trumps ethics.

    • Roger

      Maybe they'll just convert it like they did the red and blue mosques in Turkey.

      What ever they decide to do, the English will no doubt call it a victory for 'tolerance' and allow them muslims to call it the 'holy city of westminster'.

  • Eamonn Gavin

    The BBC also thought that Tim Henman would win Wimbledon every year. Now they've changed to Andy Murray. Next, it will be a gay Palestinian who is in a single-sex marriage and who can have three same-sex spouses at any one time. I hope I'm dead before they make it compulsory. Éamonn, Dublin, Ireland.

  • Mensch Keymelon

    And as far as what they claim, a country can claim anything it wants…but it can't have a capital in another people's country…BTW Israel does not even have a border, how can it have a capital? Talk about getting the cart ahead of the ass.

    • @ygalg

      before the establishment of israel, there was no other's people country. that's historical fact. not until 48.

      there were no Jordan nor Pakistan states either. yet, you do recognize their sovereignty. no?

      actually israel does has boarders. but there are people who exercise to undermine this status-quo. people who accumulate a lot of anti israeli sentiments to the extent it burns into their lungs. some do so out of religious/cultist conviction some out of racial ideology or political agendas.

      • Mensch Keymelon

        Israel has not agreed upon a border…that's the main issue between them and their neighbors. There is no border.

    • Drakken

      You arabs lost the wars you savages started so get bent, to the victors go the spoils.

      • Mensch Keymelon

        Arab? Weeping Jesus, pull your head out of it, okay?

  • kasandra

    Hey, the BBC is no worse than the Obama administration. It's mouthpiece Jay Carney can't tell you what Israel's capitol is, either.

  • Schlomotion

    The central committee of Hasbara clearly had a meeting, because journalists all over the world are now synchronously releasing timed stories that say "so and so doesn't know what the capital of Israel is."

    Let's recap:

    Two weeks ago, some shyster lawyers from Israel retroactively annexed the whole West Bank in legalese. Then Israel demanded that the Olympics give them the opening ceremony to commemorate the Munich Massacre and were politely told "no way." Then Mr. Netanyahu loudly faked a terrorist threat warning against Jews at the Olympics. Then Hasbara agents began to vilify the Olympic Committee. Then an Israeli plant tried to pressure Jay Carney into proclaiming that all of Jerusalem belongs to Israel. Then Mitt Romney flew to Israel to kiss their behinds and ask for money. Then an Israeli plant in the UK tried to get the BBC to proclaim that all of Jerusalem belongs to Israel. Now we are up to speed.

    • Drakken

      Well I certainly don't see you over there linking arms with your arab friends singing kumbaya. Your all talk and no action.

      • Schlomotion

        You are trying to incite violence.

        • UCSPanther

          You are playing the victim.

    • Schlomotion

      Clarification: This article reads as blowback from England, but really it is a "Lawfare Expert" (synonym: shyster lawyer) working at the behest of Benjamin Ryberg in NJ. Within the past five years, shyster lawyers who are Jewish coined the phrase "Lawfare" to describe shyster lawyers who are Muslim. It is now elevated to "an emergent form of asymmetrical warfare which must be countered both tactically and strategically." Doesn't that sound important? It sounds as if only Muslims are doing it and it is as dangerous as IEDs. In reality, it is a propaganda campaign being waged by a small handful of Zionists who would have you believe they are the saviors of American law. In short, only by reinstating the Sanhedrin will American law be preserved.

      • Kufar Dawg

        "American law" being synonymous with Sharia law right Abdul?

    • Stern

      Schlobrain, you're getting so desperate, it's actually funny.

    • Larry

      Hey, schlockforbrains, you know what I'm going to tell you, but you'll read it any way and it will burn your guts.

      Happy eternal nakba. :D

  • abdulameer

    "The BBC seriously injured its journalistic integrity …"
    I didn't know it had any to injure.

  • Ghostwriter

    What day wouldn't it be without a hideous Jew-bashing comment from Schlomotion?

    • Kufar Dawg

      Shlo would be much happier in a muslo-fascist state where his delusional antisemitism would be considered normative.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    The BBC should be banned to protect the mental health of all unlucky enough to be slimed
    by it's ruinous distortions……………………………..William

    • Kufar Dawg

      Are British taxpayers still funding the BBC? That would be ugly.

      • WilliamJamesWard

        While a twin In the womb it must have been part of the defective birth of MSNBBC…………William


    What do expect from a former empire that released the convicted bomber of Pan Am 103, on "compassionate" grounds – the passion for Oil Contracts by Libya for BP (British Petrol).

  • Arthur

    I have news for the BBC. The (self appointed) capital of The Netherlands is Amsterdam! And guess what!? You won’t find any embassy there, those are ALL in The Hague!!! Eat that, you incompetent boys! :D

  • SAM000

    The writer of this paper is missing something very important.
    According to the Mullahs who occupy IRAN, Jerusalem is called QODS from 1979, but according to IRANIANS, BBC is called "AYATOLLAH BBC" from the start up of HER Majesty's BUREAU of SPEECH PROPAGATION.

    BBC starts always his news by "BUREAU OF SPEECH PROPAGATION of BRITANNIA"

    Every Iranian of all age call "AYATOLLAH BBC"
    How the talented writers of this FORUM ignore this historic identification of BBC?!