Bishops visiting Holy Land: Christians must oppose Israeli settlements


#1

Bishops visiting Holy Land: Christians must oppose Israeli settlements cnstopstories.com/2017/01/19/bishops-visiting-holy-land-christians-must-oppose-israeli-settlements


#2

:clapping: May God bless these bishops.


#3

Yeah, how dare a bunch of Jews think they have the right to live in the Middle East…, or Europe,…or anywhere.


#4

I don’t much doubt these bishops’ moral compasses are appropriate. But what I cannot agree with them on is the interpretation of the facts. Here’s one quote from them:

“It becomes clearer that (the settlements) are not just about outlying settlements but something more systematic; more about infiltrating Palestinian land and forcing Palestinians out by making them so uncomfortable with such limited freedom they don’t want to continue living there.”

First of all, most of the settlements are in “outlying” areas, a great number in the desert, which most of the West Bank is.

Second, there is the assumption that the West Bank is “Palestinian land”. Why is it “Palestinian land” only? I doubt they would affirm that “American land” should only be owned by “Americans”, or that land in Germany should only be owned by Germans. I doubt they would affirm that Israeli land should only be owned by Jews.

Arabs can own land in Israel, and do. No Jew can own land in Jordan or Gaza. Why should the West Bank be “Judenrein”? Israelis buy the land if there is any clear owner which, in some parts of the West Bank there isn’t. Arabs can, and do, buy land there too.

And does anybody think Jews in the West Bank have any more freedom of movement than the ARabs do there? Has nobody figured out that the “settlements” are designed for safety against terrorist attack? Jews have to deal with the roadblocks just as the Arabs do.

It would be good if some bishops would study these things out more before adopting what are often simply one political view.


#5

I agree with you.!


#6

Indeed, but that is a strawman and relates only to a caricature of the Bishop’s points with the spectre of the Nazis been invoked in a not so subtle manner via the remarks.


#7

I will agree that one can object to the Israeli settlements in the disputed areas.

I am not going to make it a question of religion, as in “Christians should…” This is a political issue, and is to be answered in the political, or failing that, military sphere.

No one is morally bound to hold to one position or the other. There is no “Christians must…” in this dispute. Christians can agree or disagree with one side or the other.


#8

Interesting that before they were driven out of that area then the Jews were called/considered the Palestinians. Now they’re to be driven out yet again in order to make way for today’s so-called “Palestinians”.


#9

There are Jews and Arabs in the West Bank. Jews are something like 1/4 to 1/3 of the total population. It seems to me if there is ever to be peace between Jews and the Arabs who call themselves “Palestinians” (which is the majority of the population of Jordan as well) an experience of living together may be the only, if very long term, cure for it. Jordan won’t allow Jews to own land in Jordan. Gaza won’t allow Jews to even exist in Gaza, let alone own land. So, as remote as it might seem right now, a “mixed territory” of Jews and Arabs may eventually be exemplary to an Arab Muslim world that presently will not tolerate it.

I do not think the path to peace is throwing the Jews out of the West Bank and turning it over to Hamas, which is not much more than another ISIS with better PR.


#10

Which, under international law, is considered conquered territory…

[quote=Ridgerunner] Jews are something like 1/4 to 1/3 of the total population.
[/quote]

Thanks to the government of Israel fostering the squatter settlements…
Before Israel conquered the territory, there were very few Jews there. Those population figures are not static, but only came about thanks to Israel’s illegal occupation of the territory.

[quote=Ridgerunner] It seems to me if there is ever to be peace between Jews and the Arabs who call themselves “Palestinians” (which is the majority of the population of Jordan as well) an experience of living together may be the only, if very long term, cure for it.
[/quote]

Since the two state solution appears dead, I would have no problem with Jews and Palestinians living together in one democratic Israel where all citizens have equal rights. But that solution would not exist in an Israel that is a Jewish state, because Israel as a Jewish state means Jews are superior to non-Jews.

[quote=Ridgerunner] Jordan won’t allow Jews to own land in Jordan. Gaza won’t allow Jews to even exist in Gaza, let alone own land. So, as remote as it might seem right now, a “mixed territory” of Jews and Arabs may eventually be exemplary to an Arab Muslim world that presently will not tolerate it.
[/quote]

and Israeli Arabs are looked upon with greater suspicion and hostility than ever in Israel today.

[quote=Ridgerunner]I do not think the path to peace is throwing the Jews out of the West Bank and turning it over to Hamas, which is not much more than another ISIS with better PR.
[/quote]

The chances of that (the West Bank being turned over to HAMAS) are extremely remote

I suspect that if the Palestinian people gained full citizenship rights, either in their own state or in Israel, that HAMAS would disappear. And by the way, there is little resemblance between ISIS and HAMAS.


#11

Actually, Palestinians ar forbidden to use certain roads. In March 2015, there were 60.92 kilometers of roads in the West Bank that Israel had classified for the sole, or practically sole, use of Israelis, first and foremost of settlers. Israel also prohibits Palestinians from even crossing some of these roads in a vehicle, thereby restricting their access to nearby roads that they are ostensibly not prohibited from using. In these cases, Palestinians travelers have to get out of the vehicle, cross the road on foot, and find an alternative mode of transportation on the other side. In addition, Palestinian motor traffic is prohibited on 6.72 kilometers of internal roads in downtown Hebron. Some sections are off-limits to Palestinian pedestrian traffic as well.

And, from this link:

[LIST]
*]According to Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem: “Since East Jerusalem was annexed in 1967, the government of Israel’s primary goal in Jerusalem has been to create a demographic and geographic situation that will thwart any future attempt to challenge Israeli sovereignty over the city. **To achieve this goal, the government has been taking actions to increase the number of Jews, and reduce the number of Palestinians, living in the city.” **Methods used by Israel as part of an effort to “Judaize” or alter the religious composition of Jerusalem by increasing the number of Jews while decreasing the number of Palestinians, include:
[LIST]
*]Revoking residency rights and social benefits of Palestinians who stay abroad for at least seven years, or who are unable to prove that their “center of life” is in Jerusalem.
*]Encouraging Jewish settlement in historically Palestinian-Arab areas through official and unofficial organizations.
*]Systematically discriminating against Palestinian neighborhoods in municipal planning and in the allocation of services and building permits.
*]Destroying Palestinian homes and structures built without difficult to obtain permission from Israeli authorities. Since 1967, approximately 2000 Palestinian homes have been demolished in East Jerusalem. According to official Israeli statistics, from 2000 to 2008 Israel demolished more than 670 Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem. It’s estimated that the number of Palestinian housing units threatened with demolition is as high as 20,000.
[/LIST]

[/LIST]
West Berlin used to have a wall *around *it. Bethlehem (for example) has a maze of walls through the middle of it.


#12

Thank you for posting this. Most Americans are unaware of what Israel is doing in the Palestinian areas of Jerusalem. I guarantee you won’t hear about it on Fox, CNN, or MSNBC.

I would also note that the policy of “Judaization” is being implemented inside Israel as well, targeting Arab neighborhoods and enclaves.


#13

You do know that a lot of these “so-called ‘Palestinians’” are Christians descended from the first Jewish followers of Christ whose families have been living there for thousands of years… yes?


#14

Absolutely, zerocrossing. :thumbsup: That most salient fact really can’t be underlined enough, or repeated enough. Bravo! :slight_smile:


#15

Most Americans are also not aware that pre-1967 (the borders and status so many want restored), Jews were not allowed into Jordanian controlled areas of Jerusalem and Christians had to present proof they were baptized (and thus not Jews) to enter and visit holy sites.

Goose-gander, all that.

ETA: Or all the Jews that were forced to leave their homes and properties in other Muslims controlled countries around the Middle East.


#16

“International law” is that which nations bind themselves to observe. Nothing more. Every nation has some exceptions to its acceptance of international rules proposals, including the U.S. and Israel.

Jewish settlements are not “squatter settlements”. The land is purchased, usually from ARabs who find that Jewish money spends just as well as Arab money. In some cases, there is no clear owner because the Ottomans had no land registration system. The Brits started one, but never completed it.

Israeli Arabs hold some of the highest offices in Israel, including in the Israeli parliament, government and armed forces. They have the same rights Jews have except for one. They cannot serve in the highest levels of the intelligence service. That’s it. And there is no exodus of Arabs from Israel because it’s far and away the best place to live in the Middle East, with the best human rights record of all. But how many Jews are in the parliaments of any Arab states? How many Jewish generals are in the Jordanian army? How many Jewish cabinet ministers in Iraq? Answer: None.

Hamas would absolutely take over the West Bank if not for Israel. The only thing protecting Fatah from being killed or driven out by Hamas (like they did in Gaza) is the Israeli security forces. And Hamas kills innocent people just as readily as ISIS does. They are just better at PR and don’t televise it when they shoot rockets at Israeli schools for all the world to see.

Nor is there any reason to assume that the West Bank must either be a nation or part of Israel. It can be (and should be) the one part of the world in which Arabs and Jews can live together.

There are plenty of “Islamic states” and nobody pays a lot of heed to that, particularly not the “international community”. Being Jewish is both an ethnicity and a religion. Nobody raises a fuss is “Germany” is a state composed of Germans, or “Poland” is almost entirely populated by Poles. You can’t be a citizen or permanent resident of Jordan unless you’re an “Arab”.

No, it’s just Jews. Can’t let them have a country. Better to let terrorists kill them all, (as Hamas’ charter promises to do) or drive them out.


#17

Very true.


#18

The article states in a veiled manner the bishops are concerned about Israelis using the settlements to “force out” Palestinians in order to create a political buffer zone.

That may be true, but it’s also very clear many, perhaps even a majority, of Palestinians do not ultimately want peace with Israel.


#19

Christian leaders who do not take the time to holistically examine the situation risk scandal and misleading the flock in the worst ways possible. If they are too busy to do that, then they are better off keeping their views and analyses to themselves.

And frankly, I am sick and tired of trying to explain away their positions when it is painfully obvious they are only going by political talking points and/or what the media and this false notion of “peer review” tells them. To put a fine point on it, I expect folks like youtube news feeds to fall for and spend hours explaining away why they didn’t, not bishops, pastors or other leaders.

Very disappointing.

And I agree—no one doubts the intentions. But we really have gone back several centuries if we are still stuck on that. Really, who doesn’t have good intentions, compassion, caring, good virtue ect. ect.

This idea of empathize everything is killing our culture, our nations—and our Church.


#20

What do you consider “a lot”? I ask because currently in Jerusalem only 2%, or 14,000, are Christians.


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