John Podhoretz writes:
Why did the media hype turn on a controversy involving an entirely theoretical issue involving possible future construction of apartment buildings and a road in and around a thriving Israeli suburb that sits only 4 miles from Jerusalem? If you were watching news or reading newspapers over the past week, you’d think that the U.S. and Israel were on a dangerous collision course over the issue of that suburb, called Ma’ale Adumim. Ma’ale Adumim is usually called a “settlement.” But as a description of the place, the word is absurd, because it conjures up an image of a few huts on an undeveloped bit of land. Ma’ale Adumim is 30 years old and is home to more than 30,000 people. The term “settlement” is used, as it is for all Jewish population centers on the West Bank, to suggest that the Israeli presence is only temporary. In truth, a serious peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians will almost certainly leave Ma’ale Adumim in Israeli hands.