Who "controls" the Holy Land anymore?


#1

This is really a question of opinion, but if this is a proven fact, that would be great, too. Who “controls” the Holy Land anymore? Is it still the Moslems after the Crusades?


#2

Interesting question. From my last visit there, I’d have to say that it is clearly the Israelis (Jews) who control the Holy Land. Hands down. A quick anectode is that not only does any Israeli carrying an Uzi (whether part of the army/police force or simply an average citizen) can question (hassle) you. They have road-stops all around the country, and namely in Jerusalem… I was nearly forbidden to go through to see the wailing wall, but was finally able to convince them to let me through after I said I needed to put a petition in the wall from a fiend of mine who was studying to be a Rabbi. But when two friends of mine from Mexico wanted to see the Al Aqsa mosque (I simply lead them there…no intention of stepping foot anywhere near) the Israeli security guards eyed them and asked me in English if they were Muslim. I said no, that they were Christian but professors of antiquities. The Soldier waved us away and said no.

Now, having said that, in Jerusalem’s Christian/Armenian quarters, it appears accomodation is the order of the day. The Israelis never bothered us there. As a matter of fact, a groujp of Christian Arabs were attacked outside our hostel by a Muslim gang and the police only showed up after the ambulance did.


#3

Israel’s definitely in control. Based on what the International Court of Justice just ruled at the Hague, it would also appear that they’re at risk of becoming an oppressive regime. We really do have to examine America’s relationship with Israel and put the skids on some of their despicably cruel treatment of the Islamic and Christian residents.


#4

An aside, I have to say that I admire our Pope for doing his best to try to bring peace to the region with his visits, dialogues, etc… His dauntless efforts to reconcile Catholics with all groups (Christians and non-Christians like) to be open to dialogue is exactly what we need in the world today.


#5

[quote=loyola rambler]Israel’s definitely in control. Based on what the International Court of Justice just ruled at the Hague, it would also appear that they’re at risk of becoming an oppressive regime. We really do have to examine America’s relationship with Israel and put the skids on some of their despicably cruel treatment of the Islamic and Christian residents.
[/quote]

No disrespect, but Israel has been an oppressive regime for a couple of decades now. Ask any Lebanese how unoppressive Israel is. Anyone can be taken (see: kidnapped) at any point in time and held indefinitely for the slightest suspicion (no proof needed) of terrorism. But at the end of the day, they are still the closest ally to the US in the middle East and that will and cannot change for the good of the US.


#6

I would say that the terrorists control the Holy Land.


#7

[quote=Salvo]No disrespect, but Israel has been an oppressive regime for a couple of decades now. Ask any Lebanese how unoppressive Israel is. Anyone can be taken (see: kidnapped) at any point in time and held indefinitely for the slightest suspicion (no proof needed) of terrorism. But at the end of the day, they are still the closest ally to the US in the middle East and that will and cannot change for the good of the US.
[/quote]

Indeed. Sword of Gideon diplomacy has turned into Get the **** Out of Our Country Already diplomacy. Other than a brief period of clarity during the Carter Administration, we’ve been far too close to Israel and burned too many bridges with the rest of the region. Time that Israel give the West Bank back to Jordan and allow the Palestinians to heal. If it could happen in Egypt, it could happen on the West Bank.

It’s also time to start prosecuting some Israelis for war crimes. They crossed the line 3 years ago and we’re not doing enough to keep them in check.

I’d much rather have King Abdullah and Hasni Mubarek as our best friends in the region, rather than the Israeli hardnose of the month.


#8

[quote=ByzCath]I would say that the terrorists control the Holy Land.
[/quote]

Which terrorists? Hebrew or Arabic?


#9

I would say “none of the above”

Satan controls the Holy Land now. Need proof?


#10

[quote=loyola rambler]that Israel give the West Bank back to Jordan and allow the Palestinians to heal. If it could happen in Egypt, it could happen on the West Bank.

[/quote]

Jordan has already made peace with Israel and gave up all claims to the West Bank. As such it seems to me that the West Bank belongs to, protectorate of, Israel under international law as conquerred territory as a result of defensive military actions.

The only reason why we have no peace in the holy land is because of the rabid desire to destory the state of Isreal and murder Israelis. These efforts are funded by just about every Arab state in the gulf and many still have open declarations of war against Isreal to this day. ie Iran, Syria and Saudia Arabia and used to be Iraq etc.

Imagine how holocaust survivors feel when they see Germans and give good will grants to Hamas who is a prime fighting force against Israel. The thought of palestians cheering when they machine gun pregnant women and children makes me sick just imagine how the survivors of the holocaust feel about it.

I think Israel has adopted a policy that arguablly is already saving lives, the wisdom to unilaterally declare the new border last agreed to by YA in earlier negotiations, build a wall to keep the killers out and live in peace as best you can has already been credited with the near elimination of terrorist attacks and the need for reprisals. Once security can reasonably be achieved then perphaps Christain and other minority rights abuses will be better heeded.

God Bless


#11

Jesus Christ echoed the Old Testament command. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.” Here the City of God will be brought down from Heaven when Christ returns for His Bride, the Church. May the saints of God patiently endure the prophesied persecution. Even so, “Come, Lord Jesus.” May the Holy Spirit and the Blessed Virgin Mary, His spouse, draw us to Christ. “The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come.’”


#12

It is very true that many Arab Muslims (possibly the majority) seek the destruction of Israel. And many of the charters to their organisations call for it.

Machine gunning pregnant women? Tugging at the heartstrings, aren’t we? In the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, far more pregnant women and children have been killed BY Israelis than Palestinians. The Israeli PR likes to say how they are not killing indescriminately, but the statistics and foreign media show otherwise. The mere fact that Israelis launch missiles into heavily populated areas (either buildings or trafic) to “assasinate” a specific person, which they know will result in the deaths of all civilians surrounding their target is proof enough. Since 2000, 111 Israeli children have been killed, while 590 Palestinians have been killed. For a breakdown of how they were killed on both sides, you can go here.

The wall was built both ON and THROUGH Palestinian territory. It si not following the agreed boundaries at all. This is the reason the International Court at the Hague has declared it ilegal. It was an arbitrary decision made by the Likud party and fat man. It is a myth that the wall is preventing suicide bombings and other terrorist infiltrations. There were two such actions carried out within the last 2 weeks.

I would be interested to hear about these minority rights abuses of Christians you are referring to. To the best of my knowledge, all Christians killed in Israel/Palestine within the past 3 years have been killed by Israelis (including a 10-year-old altar boy leaving church). I used to believe the Israeli government was the lesser of two evils for the Christians. Now, I don’t believe that at all.


#13

Your conclusions are invalid because you ignore the manner in which both sides are conducting themeslves in the conflict as a matter of policy.

The mere fact that Israelis launch missiles into heavily populated areas (either buildings or trafic) to “assasinate” a specific person, which they know will result in the deaths of all civilians surrounding their target is proof enough

. Absolutely no credible observer believes that Israel uses it weapons indiscriminatly. The fact that they repeatedly select only the smallest scale munitions demonstrates a profound desire to minimise death and damage to palestian civilians. The same can not be said for the palestian fighter.

War is horrible and is always more costly to the innocent and we should never loose sight of the women, children and men caught in the crossfire. However when an agressor force disguises itself as civilians or conducts armed conflicts behind civilian sheilds as the palestian fighters do then by international law they are 100% responsible for the deaths of civilians killed in the armed conflict. To claim that Israel is responsible is wrong in law and morallity and simply mallicious propoganda.

There simplly is no credible evidence to support a supposition that the Israelli government systematically targets civilians the way palestian fighters do. Tragedies and undefendable actions have occurred on both sides but only the palestian fighters are systematically targeting civilain populations for military strikes.

The wall was built both ON and THROUGH Palestinian territory. It is not following the agreed boundaries at all.

The fact that there never has been a legitmate palestian state makes the above statesments impossible to defend and basiclly just more of the same propoganda.

Under international law a state that is attacked and repluses that attack is not obliged to return conquered territory to the attacker prior to a peace treaty and then they are under no obligation to return land that will only be used to launch future attacks. Jordan owned the land and has relinquished any future claim to get it back. Since the palestians fighters refuse to negotiate any meaningful peace then Israel is completely justified in its actions under international law.

I used to believe the Israeli government was the lesser of two evils for the Christians. Now, I don’t believe that at all.

When the palestian fighters wage a war of extermination against the Israelis horrible things happen including abuses against minorities. To claim that any religious minority is better off in a islamic dictatorship/revolutionary state then a liberal democray is so wrong that it makes a mockery history and sound moral and intellectual development. Christains are fleeing every muslim state in droves be it lebanon, pakistan, idonessia, sudan etc. to suggest that palestian christains will enjoy more human rights under a muslim dictatorship is highly speculative and without much credibility.

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that if Israel was at peace with its neighbors then Christians in Israel and Palestian would be better off. The only reason why there is no peace now is because the palestian fighters want war with Israel and not the other way around.

God Bless


#14

Jordan has already made peace with Israel and gave up all claims to the West Bank. As such it seems to me that the West Bank belongs to, protectorate of, Israel under international law as conquerred territory as a result of defensive military actions.

Jordan never HAD a legitimate claim on the land to begin with. The West Bank belongs to the Palestinians, seperate from Jordan, according to the U.N. mandate that both Jordan and Israel ignored. Before the Israelis took the West Bank, the Palestinian militias were fighting against Jordan, and that’s the reason Jordan has not sought to reclaim the land from Israel.

The fact that there never has been a legitmate palestian state makes the above statesments impossible to defend and basiclly just more of the same propoganda.

One was never allowed to develop because of the surrounding Arab states and Israel going after the land immediately after the U.N. order came down. Palestine was always intended to be a seperate state, but the states of Jordan and Egypt annexed it illegaly in their war with Israel.


#15

[quote=Deacon2006] Your conclusions are invalid because you ignore the manner in which both sides are conducting themeslves in the conflict as a matter of policy.
[/quote]

No, my conclusions are valid. You are just unwilling to see the truth through your own brainwashed vision. You say no “credible” observer thinks Israel does not use it’s weapons Indescriminately. I guess Amnesty International or the Vatican is not “credible” enough for you.

QUOTE=Deacon2006]
However when an agressor force disguises itself as civilians or conducts armed conflicts behind civilian sheilds as the palestian fighters do then by international law they are 100% responsible for the deaths of civilians killed in the armed conflict. To claim that Israel is responsible is wrong in law and morallity and simply mallicious propoganda.
Have you ever heard of Beit Jalla? It is a Christian neighbourhood that separates the Jewish side of Jerusalem from Muslim PA land. The Israelis have essentially confiscated it as a buffer zone. They destroy and confiscate Christian houses for strategic importance with no provocation from the Christian inhabitants. You really don’t have a clue, do you?

LOL! So in one breath you laud the Israelis for building a wall on the 1967 borders then when you find out they have breached these borders, you say, “uih…well, see…that’s OK because…”

Listen, I doubt you have ever been to Israe/Palestine and definitely not within the last 4 years. If you had gone, you’d see things are much different than your AmeriCath vision of innocent Israelis being bullied by those mean Palestinians (who still count a large percentage of Christians among them). And as I have said, it is the Israelis are the ones killing Christians, not the Muslims there. When faced with this fact, you stammer out a list of other hsitorical Muslim regimes. That fact that Muslims have historically killed Christians scores you a big “DUH!” for the day. That was not the issue. You made the claim that Christians were not safe under the PA and you have yet to prove it. I can give annectodal evidence to say Christians are not safe living under a “liberal Democracy” such as Turkey and did rather well under a Muslim dictator, namely Saddam Hussein. But that has no bearing or relevence to this particular topic, does it?

Can you try providing facts and intelligence to this conversation rather than from the hip commentaries?


#16

Thank you for you thoughts on this matter and I appreciate your emotion packed perspective however I must disagree with your conclusions. I consider your zeal to be a by product of your passion on this issue. I hope we both can agree on one point that no rational person desires the innocent death of so many people caught in the middle of a war.

Unfortunatley nothing can change the historical record that Israel is the victim of an attack from enemies bent on its extermination. The current generation of Palestinian fighters draw their weapons and logistical support from nations that are still at war with Israel. The actions of Israel today reflect the full context of its existence and cannot be parsed away in self-serving tit for tat propaganda jabs.

Israel has made mistakes in defending itself that at times quite rightly makes Christians cringe. Israel has a lot reprations to make after this war comes to an end and but so does the palestinian authority and its allies.

That being said it is a far cry to move from deploring the over reactions of the Israel to getting in bed with Palestine fighters.

To support an unjust use of military power (unwinable by the palestinians) and to then again support a conflict that is conducted in unjust manner (the executions of unarmed civilians and strapping bombs on frightened boys) demonstrates a poor grasp of natural law and Christian morality.

Christians can never support murderers that target unarmed students in university cafeterias or commuters on buses. These immoral and illegal choices of the Palestinian fighters are never defendable by Christians. I

The Vatican on numerous occasions has concluded that Palestinians must stop killing Israelis if diplomatic normality’s are to proceed. Yes they want Israel to stop retailating but they Vatican has always maintined that Israel has a right to self defense and peaceful prosperity.

I firmly believe that the only hope for a redress of abuses done in the name of the defense of Palestine or Israel can only happen when the palestinians stop attacking Israel. All credible evidence indicates that Israel would behave as any other democracies behave if its population were assured of peace and security.

The only reason why there is not peace and security in the holy land is due to the ongoing war against Israel by its neighbors.

Let us pray that these nations and terrorist groups see the light and stop there illegal and unjust war against Israel. Let us pray that the palestinian authority stops these terrorists eliminating the need for reprisals and offensive operations in the palestinian territories. Let us pray for a swift withdrawl of Israeli forces and settlements back into reasonable and defendable Israeli borders. Let us pray that Palestine and Israel will make reparations to those whose rights were abused in this conflict

God Bless


#17

From a pilgrim’s perspective, the Jews generally control Jerusalem, but the Arabs have been permitted to control Bethlehem and Nazareth. Arabs can be either Christian or Muslim. To get into an Arab-controlled area you must pass through an Israeli army checkpoint, and in times of violence these checkpoints may be closed.


#18

[quote=Deacon2006] I hope we both can agree on one point that no rational person desires the innocent death of so many people caught in the middle of a war.
[/quote]

This is probably the one and only point we can agree upon. No, I do not condone the death of innocents. At the hands of any Palestinian terrorists or Israelis.

[quote=Deacon2006]Unfortunatley nothing can change the historical record that Israel is the victim of an attack from enemies bent on its extermination.
[/quote]

No, we cannot change history. That is such a profound statement I think I will lay awake tonight. You are truly a philosopher on par with Nietsche for that one. But while we cannot change history, we can seek to address present injustices. As long as the Israelis and Jews continue to play the victim card (and they have been the clear agressors for over 2 decades now, ask any Lebanese if you don’t know about this) then they will never win international sympathy or legitimacy for their actions.

[quote=Deacon2006]To support an unjust use of military power demonstrates a poor grasp of natural law and Christian morality. Christians can never support murderers that target unarmed students in university cafeterias or commuters on buses. These immoral and illegal choices of the Palestinian fighters are never defendable by Christians.
[/quote]

Typical Americath propaganda. Who is supporting terrorists? Not me. You think in a very shallow 2 dimensional way: “Either you support Israel or you support terrorists.” Just to let you know, not all Palestinians are terrorists. For instance, during the Israeli seige at Bethlehem (which the Vatican denounced as Israeli agression) the PA fighters fought the Israelis conventionally. The terrorists who commit suicide bombings are not part of the PA government (although one can draw conclusions that YA tacitly supports their actions). I support Palestinian Christians and their right to live unpersecuted in Israel and the PA. You seem to support Israel doing whatever it wants because they can justify it due to an historical persecution.

[quote=Deacon2006]The Vatican on numerous occasions has concluded that Palestinians must stop killing Israelis if diplomatic normality’s are to proceed.
[/quote]

You don’t get to tell me what the Vatican says or doesn’t say on the subject. I am far more in tune to this than you are obviously. I read L’Osservatore Romano consistently. The Vatican has stressed on numerous occasions, specifically during the seige at Bethlehem when many unarmed Christians were killed by Israelis, that Israel was clearly the agressor in the conflict and asked for a cessation to all conflict on both sides. And just so you know, that incursion into PA territory had nothing to do with any suicide bombing.

[quote=Deacon2006]All credible evidence indicates that Israel would behave as any other democracies behave if its population were assured of peace and security.
[/quote]

Then you are living in a dream world that has no basis in reality. What “credible evidence” do you have to support this? The fact that Israel continues to build a wall against the UN’s ruling? The fact that Israel has invaded a sovereign state (Lebanon) and kidnapped people, holding them for decades incommunicato? The fact that Israel continued to build settlements in PA lands long after the Oslo accords? Is this the “evidence” you are referring to? Because if it is, you are once again confusing evidence with your own baseless personal feelings on the subject.

Once again, I would suggest you actually GO to Israel (there are planes that go there daily last I checked) and see first hand the situation you are trying to talk about. Unfortunately, until you do this, you regurgitation of propaganda remanes unsubstantiated and frankly useless.


#19

Your last post lacks civility and is clearly vitriolic. It’s too bad you feel the need to be so petty in your characterizations of those who disagree with you.

Only an inexperienced mind would believe that social justice for innocent Palestinians can come about prior to serious efforts and ultimately the disbanding of those organizations seeking the extermination of Israel.

These murders, some include YA as one, are the catalyst that robs diplomats of the influence they need to bring about good will. The wall being built around Israel is designed to keep out murders from bus stations. The heavy-handed isolation they are imposing upon themselves is regrettable and severe but only an anti-Israel extremist would conclude they chose this path without provocation.

An entrenched anti-Israeli stance is not and has never been the catholic position, on the contrary the church has always called on Arab Catholics to be loyal citizens of Israel, as Patriarch Michel Sabbah made that point at the recent chapter of the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land, held in Amman.

'You must be loyal to your place in your Arab nation, to your Christian faith, and to the state of Israel in which you live. They are three different loyalties that do not contradict one another; rather, they must be complementary,”

The Pope said

Despite the recent setbacks on the road to peace and fresh outbreaks of violence and injustice, we must continue to affirm that peace is possible and that the resolution of differences can only come about through the patient dialogue and persevering commitment of people of good will on both sides. Terrorism must be condemned in all its forms for it is not only a betrayal of our common humanity, but is absolutely incapable of laying the necessary political, moral and spiritual foundations for a people’s freedom and authentic self-determination.,

Just recently he said

“The scourge of terrorism has become more virulent in recent years and has produced brutal massacres which have in turn put even greater obstacles in the way of dialogue and negotiation, increasing tensions and aggravating problems, especially in the Middle East.”

To argue that the central problem undermining the diplomatic efforts for justice and peace is Israel’s reactions to terrorism, is simplly wrong and is not what the Catholic Church believes.

On more than one occasion you misrepresented my positions, in particlular I have never said or implied that I support everything Israel does however I do take my cue from the pope and his assessment of the situation. It is inescapable that the terrorism conducted by Palestinians robs the innocent of their authentic rights to self-determination. Your refusal to acknowledge this fundamental obstacle to justice puts you not at odds not with me but with the church.

Unfortunately you don’t agree with the church, your public position is completely the opposite of what the church teaches.

I used to believe the Israeli government was the lesser of two evils for the Christians. Now, I don’t believe that at all.

I will state it again and again.

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that if Israel were at peace with its neighbors then Christians in Israel and Palestine would be better off. The only reason why there is no peace now is because the Palestinian fighters want the destruction of Israel.

God Bless


#20

[quote=Deacon2006] Your last post lacks civility and is clearly vitriolic. It’s too bad you feel the need to be so petty in your characterizations of those who disagree with you.
[/quote]

Actually, given your consistently patronising tone and regurgitation of baseless propganda, I have actually been quite charitable with you.

Well, there, you’ve earned your daily “DUH!” Of course the Vatican supports the existence of the state of Israel, and denounces terrorism in all its forms, as should we all. I also support the existence of Israel, but that doesn’t mean I support Sharon or his regime.You need to learn to separate a regime and the people who live within it. I realise this may be a heady concept for you, but give it a day or two.

Sad. Now you are given to pulling out fictitious statements out of your hat. Where is there any doctrine of the church on Israel’s peace in the world? Where has the church issued any binding statements on Israel’s diplomatic efforts? Don’t tell me what “the church believes”. I am more Orthodox on this or any other subject than you will ever be.

You mean when the pope said:
Pope accuses Israel of humiliating Palestinians
"the Vatican summoned the Israeli Ambassador to the Holy See to accuse his country of imposing **unjust conditions and **humiliations upon the Palestinians. "

or maybe this:
POPE CONDEMNS SECURITY FENCE
And hey, just for laughs you can go HERE to see what your friends, the Israelis think about the pope and his decision.

Jerusalem Patriarch condemns Israeli occupation
Uh…he’s Palestinian, AND he’s Catholic meaning “the church”. Just so you know…

No, you are a liar. It is YOU who do not agree with the Pope (who last I heard heads the church, FYI) on the issue of the Wall AND the Israeli treatment of Palestinians. I will restate: you are a typical Americath. You pick and choose what is convenient for you, then say the pope is “wrong” or misquote things to suite your agenda. I am betting you also supported America going to war in Iraq when the Pope clearly condemned it. I’m right, aren’t I?

Typical. Extremely sad, and typical.


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