ISRAEL & Christians Today August 2011 Edition â€“ www.c4israel.org www.whyisrael.org
The Invisible Palestinians By Caroline Glick
gt. Gilad has now been in captivity for six years. Schalit was kidnapped on June 26, 2006 and has been held hostage by Palestinian terrorists affiliated with Hamas in Gaza ever since. For five years, Schalit has been held incognito. His terrorist captors have permitted him to send but one letter to his family and released but one video of Schalit over this entire period. He has been denied visits by the International Committee of the Red Cross. He was clearly emaciated in the video. Over the past five years, Hamas has engaged in periodic indirect negotiations with Israel through a German mediator and others. While their demands have varied from time to time, essentially they want Israel to release around 1,500 terrorists from its prisons in exchange for Schalit. And they want the terrorists to be released to their homes in Judea and Samaria and Gaza where they can pick up killing Jews where they left off And it isn’t only Hamas demanding these things. In an interview with IMRA news agency, Fatah negotiator Nabil Shaath said that the Fatah supports Hamas’s demands. Shaath explained that once the Fatah-Hamas unity government is formed Schalit will become the responsibility of the unified Palestinian Authority. The Palestinian Authority will continue to hold Schalit hostage and demand that Israel release thousands of terrorists as ransom for his release. As he put it, “We have 7,000 political prisoners in Israel by design – taken by the Israeli authority. They have to be also freed.” So the Palestinian leadership from Fatah and Hamas alike are unified in their view that it is perfectly acceptable to hold Schalit captive. As far as they are concerned, it is acceptable to stand in breach of international law and basic standards of humanity in order to extort Israel to free mass murderers from prison. And it is acceptable to the Palestinians for these murderers to return to their work killing as many Jews as they can get their hands on. It is hard to think of a more despicable comment on the state of Palestinian society than their wall to wall support for the taking and holding of hostages or their desire to see mass murderers released from jail. A person could be forgiven for thinking that on the fifth anniversary of Schalit’s abduction that the media would be full of articles describing in detail the evil that is Hamas and Fatah
Ya’ara Vinkler, Yoel Shalit, Noam & Aviva Shalit
which celebrate Schalit’s victimization and the suffering of his family. But that person would be wrong. The media coverage of the fifth anniversary of Schalit’s kidnap devoted no attention to his Palestinian captors. In fact, if a person were simply going by what he learned from the Israeli media over the past several days, he would likely believe that either Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is hiding Schalit in his cellar, or that Netanyahu is colluding with Hamas to keep Schalit captive in Gaza. Aping the increasingly grotesque genre of reality television shows, local celebrities and washed-out headline-starved failed former security brass got together with Yediot Aharonot and put on a reality TV stunt for the public to mark the anniversary. One after another these supposedly concerned citizens walked into a knock-off solitary confinement cell furnished with a dirty toilet and television cameras. The beautiful ones sighed, cried, kicked,
Scores of protestors came to the Shalit tent in support of the release of Gilad Schalit
and whined for an hour apiece. Their performances were broadcast live on Yediot’s Ynet news portal. Channel 2 rebroadcast the highlights on the evening news. The purported goal of the campaign was to “raise public awareness,” about Schalit’s plight. As if the Israeli public isn’t aware of his plight. For the overwhelming majority of Israelis, the mention of Schalit’s name evokes profound concern and sorrow. But then Yediot knows that. And raising public awareness was not the goal of their televised pimping of Schalit’s suffering with the help of shameless celebrities and far-left retired generals. Their goal was to turn the public against Binyamin Netanyahu – Schalit’s imaginary jailer. This message was delivered not only by the likes of radical failed Shin Beit chiefs Ami Ayalon and Carmi Gillon. It was delivered by Gilad Schalit’s father Noam Schalit at a press conference. Noam Schalit declared, “Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, you do not have the right to sentence Gilad to death. The weakness and the stubbornness you are showing in this crisis is an immediate danger for Gilad’s life and health. More than that, it is a danger for the values of the State of Israel, on which generations of Israelis were raised.” There is no doubt that Noam Schalit is acting as he is because he wants to get his son home alive. But there is also no doubt that by pressuring Netanyahu and the government and accusing them of being responsible for his son’s captivity, Noam Schalit is only making things worse. Hamas wants to destroy Israel. Its terrorists in prison want to destroy Israel. Hamas’s leaders view Schalit’s illegal incarceration and the anguish it causes in Israel as a source of pride for the movement and Palestinian society as a whole. It views the release of terrorists as a means of strengthening the jihadist movement politically and militarily.
Every time Noam Schalit blames the government for his son’s plight and demands that our leaders free terrorists to bring him home, he strengthens Hamas’s negotiating position. Netanyahu admitted that the pressure worked. Netanyahu did in fact agree to what had been Hamas’s demands for the release of more than a thousand terrorists for Schalit, but Hamas said that Netanyahu’s offer was too low. With Noam Schalit and the media in its court, Hamas knows there is no reason to rush into anything. So its leaders raised the price still further. In their refusal to recognize that they are hurting their son by directing their anger at the government rather than the Palestinians and their international supporters, the Schalits are unconscionably egged on by the media. As Yediot marked the fifth anniversary of Gilad’s internment with their celebrity solitary confinement stunt, Maariv marked the fifth anniversary by interviewing 25 celebrities about their activism on behalf of Schalit. All these celebrity attacks on Netanyahu are consistent with the past five years of media coverage of Schalit’s confinement. It is also consistent with their past coverage of the captivity of every other IDF hostage taken by Arab terrorists in recent years. The Schalit family’s counterproductive behavior is the result of a combination of desperation, ignorance and manipulation by PR agencies. But what explains the media’s behavior? Why are they helping Hamas? Some media critics attribute their behavior to journalistic laziness and a desire to create sensational stories that will sell newspapers. No doubt there is some of that at work. But lazy reporters and editors in search of screaming headlines have other options. They could pit Noam Schalit against the father of one of the victims of the murderers whose release the Schalits and their supporters are demanding. That would make Continued on page 3
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colorful page 1 copy. The media could have a reporter spend an hour researching the Israeli and international self-described human rights community’s silence on Schalit’s plight and the shameless absence of any concerted demand by the self-proclaimed human rights community for his immediate release. The Israeli and international “human rights” groups B’Tselem, Amnesty International, Israel; Bimkom; Gisha; Human Rights Watch; International Federation for Human Rights; Palestinian Center for Human Rights, Gaza; Physicians for Human Rights, Israel; Public Committee Against Torture in Israel; and Yesh Din all got together to release a statement about Schalit, but they failed to call for his immediate release. Certainly a banner headline reporting this outrage would have sold papers. All of these stories and journalistic stunts are low-cost and would sell newspapers. And at a minimum, none of them would harm Schalit’s chances of getting released. Yet the media have opted to sell the tale of the government’s culpability for his suffering due to its failure to bow to Hamas’s ever-escalating demands. The media’s behavior is puzzling not merely because they have options besides supporting Hamas. It is puzzling because their obsessive coverage of Schalit arguably hurts their tireless efforts to sell the public on the notion that it is a terrific idea to give Judea and Samaria and parts of Jerusalem to Schalit’s captors. By reminding the public of Schalit, the media are also reminding the public that the Palestinians are not interested in peace and that they use the land Israel gives them to attack us. That is, their Schalit campaign undermines their appeasement campaign. Finally, their demand that Netanyahu “release” Schalit is alienating their readers. In the face of their intense campaign, “for Gilad” according to a poll published last month by Maariv, only 41 percent of the public agrees with their surrender at all cost strategy and 51 percent opposes it. So by any rational measure, the media are acting against their own interests by pushing the pro-Hamas line. The only explanation that remains is irrational. But it is also consistent with the media’s serial irrationality on everything concerning Israel’s relationship with the Arab world generally and the Palestinians in particular. The explanation is that like the rest of the Left – in Israel and worldwide – the media hold Israel responsible for Hamas’s imprisonment of Schalit because they perceive the Arabs generally and the Palestinians specifically as objects rather than actors. The only actors they see are Israel and the US. Just as the international Left sends ships to aid and comfort Palestinian terrorists in Gaza to fight the so-called “occupation” which ended six years ago, so the Israeli media says the government is holding Gilad Schalit hostage. In both cases, the Palestinians are invisible, and inert. To its credit, after five years of inaction, the Red Cross finally asked Hamas to prove Schalit is still alive. Gazans reacted to the move by attacking the Red Cross office in Gaza. This major story received little mention in the media. And that makes sense. How can they cover a story about a group of people they can’t be bothered to notice? (Caroline Glick is an American-Israeli journalist and is the deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post. She is also the Senior Fellow for Middle East Affairs of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Security Policy)
World Council of Churches declare Jewish State “A Sin” By Giulio Meotti
ecently UK researchers announced that the 17 skeletons found at the bottom of a medieval well in Norwich, England, in 2004, belonged to Jews. The Jews were murdered in a pogrom or had been forced to commit suicide rather than submit to demands for conversion to Christianity. The bodies date back to the 12th or 13th Centuries, at a time when Jewish people faced killings, banishment and persecution throughout all Europe. Those 17 Jews were killed because of “replacement theology,” the most ancient Christian calumny arguing that because of their denial of the divinity of Christ, the Jews have forfeited God’s promises to them which have been transferred to the Church. Some 10 centuries later, global Christian forums are reviving this theological demonology against the heirs of those 17 Jews: the Jews of the State of Israel. The World Council of Churches, an ecumenical Christian body based in Geneva and boasting 590 million worshippers, just ended a four-day conference in the Greek city of Volos. Not a single word of criticism was uttered there against the Islamists who are persecuting Arabs who believe Jesus. Lutherans arrived to Volos from the United States, Catholics and Protestants from Bethlehem and Nazareth, Orthodox Christians from Greece and Russia, lecturers from Beirut and Copts from Egypt. The conference declared the Jewish State “a sin” and “occupying power,” accused Israelis of “dehumanizing” the Palestinians, theologically dismantled the “choseness” of the Jewish people and called for “resistance” as a Christian duty. The conference denied 3,000 years of Jewish life in the land stretching between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River, took sides against the very presence of Israel, likened the defensive barrier that has blocked terrorism to “apartheid,” attacked Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria invoking the name of God and conceptually dismissed the Jewish state, imagining it to be a mixture – Islamic, Christian and perhaps a bit Jewish. It even legitimized terrorism when it talked about the “thousands of prisoners who languish in Israeli jails,” proclaiming that “resistance to the evil of occupation is a Christian’s right and duty.”
Copying Ahmadinejad’s rhetoric In the last few months we have seen a radical and dangerous increase of attacks on Israel by the Protestant and Catholic churches. While the US is home to many Christian supporters of Israel, the groups more closely linked to global public opinion, European bureaucracy, the media industry, the United Nations and various legal forums are all violently anti-Israel and anti-Jewish. They are paving the way for a new Jewish bloodbath by the theological exclusion of Israel’s Jews from the family of nations. The patriarch of the Antioch Church, the Catholic Melkite Gregory III Laham, proclaimed that there is a “Zionist conspiracy against Islam,” reviving old conspiracy theories that led to infamous pogroms. In Antwerp, once called “the Belgian Jerusalem,” a highly respected and government-funded Catholic school, the
College of the Sacred Heart, just hosted a “Palestine Day” replete with anti-Semitic references and activities for youngsters. One stall at the event was titled “Throw the soldiers into the sea,” allowing children to throw replicas of Jewish and Israeli soldiers into two large tanks. The most influential international Catholic peace movement, Pax Christi, just promoted a boycott of Israel’s goods “in the name of love.” The most hated Israeli product includes Ahava, the famous Israeli cosmetics company, whose shop in Covent Garden, London, has just been closed by the company after years of demonstrations. Strangely, Ahava body lotion tubes have been chosen as a satanic symbol of Jewish colonialism. Today, most of the divestment campaign against Israel is driven by Christian groups such as the Dutch Interchurch Organization and the Irish Catholic group Troicar, both funded by the EU. The United Church of Canada, a very popular and mainstream Christian denomination, just voted to boycott six companies (Caterpillar, Motorola, Ahava, Veolia, Elbit Systems and Chapters/Indigo) and South African bishop Desmond Tutu convinced the University of Johannesburg to severe all its links with Israeli fellows. Last year the Methodist Church of Britain voted to boycott Israeli-produced goods and services from Judea and Samaria. The catholic Pax Christi is also leading the campaign glorifying Mordechai Vanunu, Israel’s nuclear whistleblower who had converted to Christianity. La Civilta Cattolica, the Vatican magazine reviewed by the Holy See secretary of state before publication, in January opened with a shocking editorial on Palestinian refugees. Adopting the Islamist propagandist word “Nakba,” just recently invoked by Arab mobs to breach Israel’s borders, the paper declared that the refugees are a consequence of “ethnic cleansing” by Israel and that “the Zionists were cleverly able to exploit the Western sense of guilt for the Shoah to lay the foundations of their own state.” Indeed, Ahmadinejad’s rhetoric is alarmingly similar.
with Albania or Luxembourg for example, because the Catholic Church has more than one billion adherents and a global moral authority. At the Rome synod, Archbishop Cyrille Salim Bustros, a cleric chosen by Pope Ratzinger to draft the synod’s 44 final propositions, denied the Jewish people’s biblical right to the Promised Land. “We Christians cannot speak about the Promised Land for the Jewish people. There is no longer a chosen people”, Bustros said, reviving the “replacement theology.” Edmond Farhat, a Maronite Apostolic Nuncio, who is a sort of Vatican’s ambassador, described Israel’s place in the Middle East in terms of a rejected “foreign implant” that which has no specialists “capable of healing it.” Elsewhere, the current Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Fouad Twal, named by Pope Ratzinger to represent the Catholic community in Israel and the West Bank, is sponsoring an appeal against the “Judaization of Jerusalem.” Indeed, at this time, new anti-Israel policies by the most powerful Christian groups are breathing new life into Medieval doctrine that demonized Jews for hundreds of years. The latest excavations in England suggest the Jews were thrown down the well together, head first, the kids after the parents. Five of them had a DNA sequence suggesting they were likely to be members of a single Jewish family. Some 10 centuries later, five Jews from the same Israeli family, the Fogels of Itamar, were slaughtered in their own beds. A famous Italian priest, Mario Cornioli, wrote immediately after the massacre in a subliminal justification of the killings: “What is Itamar? An illegal Israeli colony built on stolen land? The replacement calumny has changed its language, yet it still marks a death sentence for the Jewish people: Israelis, like Lucifer, were God’s chosen but were cast out for their rebellious and evil ways, and now deserve to be obliterated from the so-called “Holy Land” the argument goes. From Norwich to Itamar, the Jewish martyrs are an everlasting and heroic stain in this horrible, theological blood libel.
Israel a “foreign implant?” Israel’s relationship with the Vatican is different from Jerusalem?s relationship
(Giulio Meotti is an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, and the author of the book “ A New Shoah: The Untold Story of Israel’s Victims of Terrorism”)
Apocalyptic Time By Rev. Willem J.J. Glashouwer
hen the Lord Jesus begins His discourse about the end times, He is sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple. Jesus foretells the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. Then, when the disciples ask: Tell us, when will these things happen and what will be the sign that all these things are about to be fulfilled? Jesus says, Watch out that no one leads you astray. Many will come in My name, claiming, ‘I am He,’ and will deceive many (Mark 13:6). Then He begins first of all to warn the disciples about spiritual temptations - false christs and false prophets. He mentions them no less than three times in Matthew 24, in verses 5, 11 and 23/24. Only afterwards does He refer to wars, earthquakes and famines, as the beginning of the woes. Jesus speaks these words around the year 30, and in the year 70 Jerusalem did fall and the Temple was destroyed. Does the Lord Jesus mean that many will come in His Name between the year 30 and the year 70? Maybe, for Flavius Josephus refers to a whole series of messiahs just before and just after the coming of the Lord Jesus.
It was indeed an apocalyptic time. The end times seemed almost to have dawned before the fall of Jerusalem in the year 70. 20,000 Jews are killed in a bloodbath in Caesarea, in fighting between Syrians and Jews. These two groups of the population confront each other as mortal enemies in many large cities in Syria. There is much unrest and there are many uprisings throughout the whole of the Roman Empire. Central authority is hard to find. No less than 5 emperors succeed one another within a few years: Nero, Galba, Otho, Vitellius and Vespasian. There is a terrible famine under emperor Claudius in the year 46 (see Acts 11:30) and earthquakes raise whole cities, such as Laodicea and Hierapolis in Asia Minor, among others, to the ground. Pompeii and Herculaneum are covered by ash as a result of an earthquake and a volcano eruption in the year 63. Half of the Eternal city, Rome, goes up in flames under emperor Nero in the year 64, with many thousands of victims. And so forth … The Roman historian Tacitus says: ‘I intend to write a book rich in disasters – bloody on account of slaughters, and torn apart by uprisings.’ But nevertheless: there is no real talk of people claiming to be Jesus, or who present themselves as messiahs in Jesus’ Name in those days before the fall of Jerusalem. There is indeed talk of people who embellish themselves with the title ‘Messiah’, or who give the impression of wanting to be Him, and there is also talk of many deceivers both in and outside the Christian and Jewish churches.
will finally be a new heaven and a new earth, in which eternal justice will exist, and God will be in everything and in everyone. And Israel is totally involved in all this. The return of the Jewish people, as we have been observing with our own eyes for decades, is also totally involved in it. This is the beginning, the prelude to worldwide redemption. Israel is on the way to its rest. The law will go forth from Jerusalem.
That is something that does and will take place in apocalyptic times – populist leaders, saviours, prophets, with all kinds of fine slogans and brilliant (social) programmes, who, given the opportunity and with great show of force and much and cruel violence, point the way to all kinds of beautiful earthly paradises utopia within reach! That was the case then too. People like a certain Jonathan, and Theudas (see Acts 5:36), Dositeus, Simon Magus (Acts 8:9), Menander, ‘the Egyptian’ (Acts 21:38), etc. and later as well, after the fall of Jerusalem, during the Jewish rebellion under emperor Hadrian, from 132 to 135: Bar Kochba, who was greeted and recognized as the Messiah by the famous rabbi Akiba. They can be considered as being counted among the ‘many antichrists’ 1 John 2:18 speaks about. They do not claim to be Jesus, but they do lay claim to His title, ‘Messiah’, ‘the Anointed One’, ‘Christ’, ‘Saviour’ - great and small deceivers. The Lord Jesus warns against such people in the closing verses of the Sermon on the Mount, among other places, Matthew 7:15-20. Ravenous wolves in sheep’s clothing, He calls them. They come in their own name, not in the name of the Father, as He said of Himself. And He predicts in John 5:43 “I have come in my Father’s name, and you do not accept me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him” – people who come in the name of mankind: builders of the Tower of Babel, ideologists and philosophers of all kinds and types, grand words and mottos, right-wing National Socialism and left-wing Communism, freedom, equality and fraternity, as in the
(photo Henriette Heuvelman)
French revolution, revolution in the name of peace and in name of the human paradise that is supposed to be within our grasp, within reach, the theology of the revolution – and it always ends with streams of blood. Millions and millions are slaughtered, murdered, gassed, exterminated – and all that in the name of progress. Man wants to be like God – temptation and fall in paradise, rising to divine heights in the name of man, just like his master, Lucifer, wanted to ascend in his own name and make himself equal to Almighty God. Unfettered forces of science and technology must help fallen mankind to achieve this, and anything daring to stand in the way of this progress must be ‘re-educated’ or otherwise mercilessly removed. A few years ago, in Amsterdam, there were groups of young people who called themselves: ‘auto-nomen’/autonomous people, laws unto themselves, deciding themselves what was law, not recognising any law from elsewhere, whether from God or from man. It is remarkable that the antichrist is called ‘the lawless one’, the a-nomos (nomos means law in Greek) in 2 Thessalonians 2:8, and 1 John 3:4 says: “Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness… … the secret power of lawlessness is already at work” says Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2: 1-12, and the great falling away and the man of lawlessness are coming soon (that kind of people is already on the march!) “…the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped.” Daniel says of
him in Daniel 11:36 that he will exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, and that he will even speak things unheard of against the God of gods, and that he will prosper until the measure of indignation is full. The world is full of this lawlessness that is rushing in like a storm - and even more so as we approach the outcome of this phase of world history. The forces of darkness are advancing and the night will be at its darkest when the coming of the King is closer than ever! But then the Son of Righteousness will arise and the Morning Star will shine in our hearts at the complete renewal of all things! This is the Christian hope. This is what we are longingly looking forward to. This gives us courage to persevere, even as the realm of the antichrist is increasingly manifest. His reign will be short lived. The Bible speaks about 3½ years, 42 months, 1260 days, a time + times (2) + half a time = 3½. If people in the Second World War had known in advance that the occupation was only to last 5 years, they would have encouraged one another much more: just a little more suffering, just a little more fighting and then the great deliverance will come! This applies to us too, we, who are living in the end time. Jesus really is coming and He is coming soon to make all things eternally new. And He will come soon to sit on the throne of His father David, to reign in the midst of Jacob = Israel over the whole world, and peace will go forth from Jerusalem and cover the world and the nations will no longer train for war: the third form of the Kingdom of God, in which creation itself will finally be involved, so that there
Micah 4:1-3 and Isaiah 2:2-4 say: “In the last days the mountain of the LORD’s temple will be established as the highest of the mountains; it will be exalted above the hills, and peoples will stream to it. Many nations will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the temple of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. He will judge between many peoples and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide. They will beat their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.” The nations will no more train for war! Peace will cover the whole earth. Then the Kingdom will have come, because then also the King of that Kingdom will have come. The Messiah of Israel, the King of kings and the Lord of lords, Jesus Christ will come with justice. Revelation 19:11-16 says: “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Coming out of his mouth is a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron sceptre.” He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” We are sliding ever further into the dark end times but one thing is certain: when we see these things beginning to come to pass, we may know that our redemption is nigh, Luke 21:28. Rise up and raise your head! For this means that Jesus is coming soon to make all things eternally new! (Rev. Glashouwer is the President of Christians for Israel International)
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Remembering Six Days in 1967 By Michael Oren
We shall destroy Israel and its inhabitants,” declared Palestine Liberation Organization leader Ahmad al-Shuqayri. “As for the survivors – if there are any – the boats are ready to deport them.” A half-million Arab soldiers and more than 5,000 tanks converged on Israel from every direction, including the West Bank, then part of Jordan. Their plans called for obliterating Israel’s army, conquering the country, and killing large numbers of civilians. Iraqi President Abdul Rahman Arif said the Arab goal was to wipe Israel off the map: “We shall, God willing, meet in Tel Aviv and Haifa.” This was the fate awaiting Israel on June 4, 1967. Many Israelis feverishly dug trenches and filled sandbags, while others secretly dug 10,000 graves for the presumed victims. Some 14,000 hospital beds were arranged and gas masks distributed to the civilian population. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) prepared to launch a pre-emptive strike to neutralize Egypt, the most powerful Arab state, but the threat of invasion by other Arab armies remained. Israel’s borders at the time were demarcated by the armistice lines established at the end of Israel’s war of independence 18 years earlier. These lines left Israel a mere 9 miles wide at its most populous area. Israelis faced mountains to the east and the sea to their backs and, in West Jerusalem, were virtually surrounded by hostile forces. In 1948, Arab troops nearly cut the country in half at its narrow
waist and laid siege to Jerusalem, depriving 100,000 Jews of food and water. The Arabs readied to strike – but Israel did not wait. “We will suffer many losses, but we have no other choice,” explained IDF Chief of Staff Yitzhak Rabin. The next morning, on June 5, Israeli jets and tanks launched a surprise attack against Egypt, destroying 204 of its planes in the first half-hour. By the end of the first morning of fighting, the Israeli Air Force had destroyed 286 of Egypt’s 420 combat aircraft, 13 air bases, and 23 radar stations and anti-aircraft sites. It was the most successful single operation in aerial military history. But, as feared, other Arab forces attacked. Enemy planes struck Israeli cities along the narrow waist, including Hadera, Netanya, Kfar Saba, and the northern suburbs of Tel Aviv; and thousands of artillery shells fired from the West Bank pummeled greater Tel Aviv and West Jerusalem. Ground forces, meanwhile, moved to encircle Jerusalem’s Jewish neighborhoods as they did in 1948. In six days, Israel repelled these incursions and established secure boundaries. It drove the Egyptians from the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, and the Syrians, who had also opened fire, from the Golan Heights. Most significantly, Israel replaced the indefensible armistice lines by reuniting Jerusalem and capturing the West Bank from Jordan. The Six-Day War furnished Israel with the territory and permanence necessary for achieving peace with Egypt and Jordan.
It transformed Jerusalem from a divided backwater into a thriving capital, free for the first time to adherents of all faiths. It reconnected the Jewish people to our ancestral homeland in Judea and Samaria, inspiring many thousands to move there. But it also made us aware that another people – the Palestinians – inhabited that land and that we would have to share it. As early as the summer of 1967, Israel proposed autonomy for the Palestinians in the West Bank and later, in 2000 and 2008, full statehood. Unfortunately, Palestinian leaders rejected these offers. In 2005, Israel uprooted all 8,000 of its citizens living in Gaza, giving the Palestinians the opportunity for self-determination. Instead, they turned Gaza into a Hamas-run terrorist state that has launched thousands of rockets into Israel. Now, the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank intends to unilaterally declare statehood at the United Nations without making peace. It has also united with Gaza’s Hamas regime, which demands Israel’s destruction. In spite of the Palestinians’ record of rejection and violence, Israel remains committed to the vision of two states living side by side in peace. But peace is predicated on security and on our ability to defend ourselves if the peace breaks down. Such provisions are crucial in the Middle East, where the governments of Israel’s neighbors might change tomorrow. As such, we seek the demilitarization of the Palestinian state as well as a long-term IDF presence along the Jordan River to prevent rocket smuggling,
as has occurred in Gaza. Moreover, we need defensible borders to ensure that Israel will never again pose an attractive target for attack. For this reason, Israel appreciates U.S. President Barack Obama’s opposition to unilaterally declared Palestinian statehood and negotiations with Hamas, which refuses to recognize Israel, uphold previous peace agreements, and disavow terrorism. Similarly, we support the president’s call for the nonmilitarization of any future Palestinian state that must be capable of assuming “security responsibility.” In his recent address to a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu affirmed the president’s statement that the negotiated border will be “different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967.” Forty-four years after Arab forces sought to exploit the vulnerable armistice lines, it remains clear that Israel cannot return to those lines. And 44 years after the United Nations, through Resolution 242, indicated that Israel would not have to forfeit all of the captured territories and must achieve “secure and recognized boundaries,” the unsecure and unrecognized armistice lines must not be revived. Israel’s insistence on defensible borders is a prerequisite for peace and a safeguard against a return to the Arab illusions and Israeli fears of June 1967. Michael B. Oren is an American-born Israeli historian and author and the Israeli ambassador to the United States. (Source: www.israelunitycoalition.org)
Denmark’s theologian of Muslim background E ach morning Massoud Fouroozandeh stood at the pulpit at the Koranic school in Tehran. In front of the boy 3000 other students waited in long, winding queues to get their day blessed with words from the Koran. The blessing was performed by Massoud as one of three elite school students. “My father’s greatest wish was that I could recite from the Koran, and he was incredibly proud of me,” says Massoud Fouroozandeh about his father who was a fundamentalist Muslim and a senior official under Ayatollah Khomeini. Today the 40-year-old Iranian sits in Vartov before one of the final lessons leading to the title Master of Theology. The pulpit in Iran has been replaced with one in a free church in Odense, that Massoud Fouroozandeh is the leader of, and the Bible replaced the Koran years ago. The journey has been long and includes a ride with a broken leg over the Kurdish mountains. It also includes a father who has denounced him, and a meeting with a national church, that he dreams of becoming a priest in. “The Danish Church is tolerant but also very mono-ethnic. The church is tailored to Danish culture and mentality, and it has been unprepared for the arrival of other Christians and Muslims with other truths. How to embrace and integrate them into the Danish church, is a large, unanswered questions,” says Massoud. He is the daily leader of the free church, Church of Love in Odense. Services are conducted in Farsi, English and Danish, and are being simultaneously interpreted. The churchgoers are mostly Afghans and Iranians. Since 1997, when the Church of Love was founded, Massoud Fouroozandeh has baptized about 500
people in the churches in Odense, Aarhus and Copenhagen. Most of them are Muslims who have become Christians. Rev. Massoud Fouroozandeh, pastor of the Church of Love, has seen many Muslims become Christian, which has made local Muslim imams very angry. “God is doing great things and some people are not very happy about it. My first car, they stole it and burned it,” he said. A second car was also vandalized but Fouroozandeh said he has given his fear to God. “Today I can be afraid but I don’t live in fear because I have Jesus Christ,” he said. “I know He has promised me that He is with us every single day.” Even the famous Christian author Hans Kristian Neerskov, who has written 43 books including Mission Possible, told CBN News he has been attacked four times in the last six years by Danish Muslims. The last time was after he held a hearing on Iran in the Danish parliament. “Two weeks later a young Iranian
man came and knocked me down here,” Neerskov recalled. “And one week later another man came and knocked me down.” “Another one came and rang the doorbell. He said I am from Lebanon, I was taught by Hezbollah and I came to kill you,” he said. Neerskov talked the young man out of murdering him. After some time some Christian organizations in Iran helped Massoud’s mother to flee to Denmark, and here she became a member of a group of Christian Iranians. She gave her son a Bible in Farsi, and he tried to find all the weaknesses and attack the Christians. “But when I started reading, I felt that my Islamic roots had become loose, and I met a God who was conciliatory in contrast to Allah, who was very judgmental, “says Massoud Fouroozandeh. The shift from Islam was not without consequences. Massoud’s father denounced him, as did his sister, a teacher at a Koranic school in Iran. No wonder, because Islam is a very all embracing and conquering
religion. “It not only concerns your faith, but every step you take from morning till evening. What you are to eat, not eat, drink, what clothes you will wear and how much fun you may have. That is why I think Islam has a hard time integrating into a democracy. Islam and democracy are like oil and water,” says Massoud, “and when you compare Jesus and Muhammad, the two founders, the difference is huge. Muhammad kills to survive. Jesus gives himself for you to survive. This is the crucial difference that makes the two religions so different.” Some years ago Massoud got a call from his sister, who for years had cut off contact with him because she saw him as unclean and on the 24th December a few years ago the phone rang again. On the line was Massoud Fouroozandeh´s father. For the first time in years he wanted to wish his Christian son Merry Christmas. “It’s the best gift I have ever received. We are being reconciled, and it’s great.” (Source: www.councilofexmuslims.co)
news & views
Lebanon Warns Israel ‘Playing with Fire’ Offshore By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
ebanon has warned Israel it is “playing with fire” by staking out energy claims in the Mediterranean Sea, where Beirut says Israel’s discoveries are in its territory. The Israeli Cabinet, heading off another dispute similar to the Sheba Farms land dispute at the northern border, approved a “marine economic zone proposal” after Lebanon presented maps to the United Nations, marking maritime borders that would include part of the giant Leviathan and Tamar fields. The United Nations previously has refused to take responsibility for marking the maritime borders. The Lebanese daily As-Safir, in an article under the headline “War of Oil: Another Phase of Israeli Offense,” reported that Lebanese Minister of Energy and Water Joubran Bassil said Israel “is playing with fire “by violating Lebanon’s maritime border and oil rights.” He added, “Obviously we will prevent any violation. However, in case of violation, Israel will not be the only damaged part, but also large companies that
cooperate with it. We, in Lebanon, respect the rights of others, and we don’t want to violate the rights of others, but at the same time, we do not want someone to attack us. Lebanon will not give up its rights or its borders.” Israeli firms discovered the gas fields, which also are believed to hold large commercially viable oil deposits, two years ago. Afterwards, Lebanon said the discoveries are in its territory, and it recently has announced that a Norwegian company will start a seismic research offshore. Hizbullah, with its eyes on the rich reserves, previously has threatened that Israel is risking war by planning to “steal” its offshore energy reserves. Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon denied a report in the Haaretz newspaper that the United States already has backed the Lebanese position. “The dispute over the border with Lebanon was created by the Lebanese,” he said on Army Radio. “It is incorrect that the Americans sided with Lebanon in this dispute. There are very objective and organized rules,
and I think that Israel will have no problem proving its ownership of the maritime areas that are ostensibly in dispute.” He also said that Israel has unsuccessfully tried to talk with Lebanese officials about maritime borders, despite the countries’ officially being enemy states. “We’ve been in contact with Lebanon for a very long time,” he explained. “We have an interest in demarcating and setting all the borders, but they refuse. Even the current land border, which is recognized by the United Nations, [was demarcated] without Lebanese involvement or recognition,” Ayalon said. “After the huge gas reserves were discovered, they suddenly woke up. Now that they’ve suddenly sent maps, we have no choice but to set the borders ourselves.” Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman charged that Lebanon is “under pressure from Hizbullah” and “is looking for friction.” He added that there are “very strong arguments under international law” that back Israel’s claims. (Source: Arutz Sheva)
Refusing to move U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem By Morton A. Klein
he Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has expressed its disappointment with President Barack Obama, for once again invoking the Presidential waiver on the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act, which calls for the U.S. Embassy in Israel to be relocated from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. President Obama’s notification of his use of the waiver did not include a commitment to moving the embassy at some point in the future, unlike his predecessors, Bill Clinton and Georg W. Bush, who did suggest that this may be a possibility. Obama’s actions have been praised by the Palestinian
Authority (PA)’s Nabil Abu Rudaineh, who said that Obama’s decision affirms that the world and the US do not recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Since the Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995, an initiative of then-Senator Bob Dole (R-KS), U.S. law has required that the U.S. Embassy in Israel be established in Jerusalem, and over $100 million dollars was approved for the move. Failure to do so by 1999 was to have triggered severe penalties on the other constructions under the U.S. foreign aid program. But the establishment of the Embassy in Jerusalem has been
postponed without penalty through the exercise of the Presidential waiver in the 1995 legislation, first by President Clinton in December 1999, and subsequently every six months by the Bush Administrations. “National security concerns,” have been consistently cited as the reason for the delay, without real explanation. Congressional resolutions and efforts to put the spotlight back on to the 1995 requirements have failed to alter the White House position. Even though Jerusalem is the seat of Israel’s government, it remains the only capital city designated by the host country in
which the U.S. does not maintain an embassy nor fully recognize it as the capital. “It’s now been fifteen years since the Jerusalem Embassy law has been enacted,” ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “It’s deeply disappointing, and unacceptable that the will of Congress and the American people continues to be waived every six months. The legislation mandating the move of the embassy to Jerusalem became law in 1995 and was approved by over 90% of both Houses of Congress. “The refusal of President Obama to move the U.S. embassy
to Israel’s capital Jerusalem actually harms the cause of peace by sending a message to Palestinian Arab terrorists and other Islamist terrorists – that their use and threat of terrorism pays and even intimidates the United States into submission to their demands. This only encourages more terrorism, because they see it works. This policy is detrimental to our international war against Islamist terrorists. It also harms Israel’s long-standing position that Jerusalem is its capital. We dare not be intimidated by terrorists.” (Source: Zionist Organization of America)
Wiesenthal Center slams US position on Muslim Brotherhood By Jeremy Sharon
he Simon Wiesenthal Center strongly criticized the US administration recently for conducting talks with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. The condemnation from the Jewish human rights organization came in response to a statement made by US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton that the Obama administration has been engaged in “limited contacts” with the Islamist political movement. “If the State Department thinks its going to convert the Muslim Brotherhood and dissuade them from their anti-Semitic beliefs, it is the height of folly,” said the Center’s founder and dean, Rabbi
Marvin Hier, in comments to The Jerusalem Post. “The Muslim Brotherhood has not categorically renounced violence towards Israel,” he continued, and pointed to a
statement made in June by the organization’s head in Egypt, Mohammed Badie. “Allah has warned us of the tricks of the Jews, and their role in igniting the fire of wars... and they labor hard to spread corruption on earth,” said Badie. Former Israeli ambassador to Egypt, Zvi Mazel, also rebuked the US administration for the announcement. “Muslim Brotherhood leaders continue to make very extremist statements,” he told the Post, citing the recent call of prominent Muslim Brotherhood leader Sheikh Hazim Abu Ismael for the imposition of the jizya, an Islamic
poll tax for certain non-Muslim citizens of an Islamic state, on the Coptic Christian community in Egypt. “It’s difficult to understand how the Americans ignore these kind of comments,” Mazel said, “especially now when different factions are splitting from the Muslim Brotherhood and they are
in the midst of a crisis. The US should be supporting and encouraging the secular parties instead of coming to the aid of the Muslim Brotherhood and providing them with this kind of international legitimacy.” Rabbi Marvin Hier broadly echoed this sentiment, calling on the White House to predicate any contacts and discussions with the organization based on guarantees from its leaders that it would work to uphold the Egypt-Israel peace treaty and cease its anti-Semitic declarations. “These should be the benchmarks for engaging with the US,” he said.
Nine Flotilla Facts - Violating International Law L
ast year, anti-Israel extremists and Turkish jihadists organized a flotilla to violate Israel’s naval blockade of Hamas-controlled Gaza. The Israeli Navy redirected five of the boats to the Israeli port of Ashdod without incident. However, those on the sixth boat refused to cooperate. When Israeli officers boarded the ship, the Turkish jihadists brutally attacked them with knives, metal bars, and guns. Nine jihadists were killed. This year, the same anti-Israel extremists are planning another international flotilla against Israel. Originally, they anticipated they would have 10 to 15 ships with 1,000 to 4,000 passengers from 32 countries. They repeatedly encountered difficulties. At the time of this writing, (6-27-11) it appears there will only be 8 to 10 ships with 200 to 500 people, and the sailing date is still uncertain. Reports have also surfaced that members of the 2011 Flotilla also plan to use violence, and possibly chemical weapons, against Israeli personnel. Nine basic facts about the flotilla: 1. The flotilla organizers blatantly violate international law by trying to breach a legal maritime blockade. According to international and customary law, Israel has the legal right to impose a land and naval blockade on Hamas-controlled Gaza. Hamas is openly dedicated to Israel’s destruction, has been in an ongoing state of armed conflict against Israel, and has fired over 10,000 rockets into Israeli civilian centers. Israel has the legal right and responsibility to protect its citizens by inspecting goods entering Gaza to prevent weapons from reaching Hamas. 2. The flotilla organizers intend to aid and support Hamas, which is designated a terrorist organization by members of the international community, including the U.S., Canada, Israel, the EU, Japan, and Jordan. Hamas’ founding document calls for the murder of Jews, the obliteration of Israel, and Israel’s replacement with an Islamist theocracy.
Some of the weaponry taken from the Gaza-aid ship ‘Victoria’
3. The flotilla organizers are trying to provoke a violent confrontation. If they were sincerely concerned about humanitarian aid for Gazans, they would deliver it through official Israeli entry points. Israel has repeatedly offered to deliver goods after officially inspecting them for weapons. The organizers have refused to comply. Instead, they hope their provocative, hostile breach of the blockade will compel Israel to use force and make Israel look like an aggressor. 4. Gazans are not facing a humanitarian emergency that justifies breaching the blockade. Humanitarian and consumer goods enter Gaza on a daily basis. UN officials repeatedly confirm that there is an ample supply of food and consumer goods. Israel only limits the entry of dual-purpose goods that could be used for weapons. International statistics indicate that Gazans have a higher standard of living than people in nearly all of Africa, including South Africa, as well as parts of Asia and the Middle East. In fact, Gaza faces a glut of goods, not a shortage of goods, according to recent press reports. 5. Hamas, not Israel, has caused the suffering of Palestinians in Gaza. Hamas has chosen war against Israel instead of peaceful
coexistence. It has imposed a repressive, dictatorial, fundamentalist regime on Gaza residents and has murdered its political rivals. 6. Flotilla organizers claim to be “nonviolent” peace activists and “human rights” activists. They are not. They are members of extremist organizations that support terrorist groups and are dedicated to the destruction of Israel. The Free Gaza Movement is an affiliate of the International Solidarity Movement, which opposes the existence of the Jewish state. The IHH (Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation) is a Turkish Islamist organization with links to jihadist organizations in Bosnia, Syria, Iraq, Libya, and elsewhere. 7. If flotilla organizers really were peace and human rights activists, they would not go to Gaza but to Libya or Syria, where the brutal Assad regime has arrested, tortured, and murdered thousands of nonviolent, freedom-seeking demonstrators and has caused thousands of others to become refugees. 8. The flotilla organizers are violating, not upholding, one of the most fundamental human rights; a nation’s right and
responsibility to protect itself from enemies bent on murdering its citizens and destroying its state. “As a country, we will never tolerate our security being threatened, nor stand idly by when our people have been killed. We will be relentless in defense of our citizens.” - U.S. President Barack Obama, May 1, 2011 9. International leaders oppose the flotilla. U.S.: “Groups and individuals who seek to break Israel’s maritime blockade of Gaza are taking irresponsible and provocative actions. We want to just reiterate that there are established and efficient mechanisms for getting humanitarian assistance through to Gaza.” - U.S. State Department Spokesman Mark Toner, June 1, 2011 UN: “The secretary-general called on all governments concerned to use their influence to discourage such flotillas, which carry the potential to escalate into violent conflict.”Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, May 27, 2011 Canada: “Unauthorized efforts to deliver aid are provocative and, ultimately, unhelpful to the people of Gaza. Canada recognizes Israel’s legitimate security concerns and its right to protect itself and its residents from attacks by Hamas and other terrorist groups, including by preventing the smuggling of weapons.” - Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird, May 28, 2011 France: “The boarding of any naval vessels which are known to have the intention of breaking the naval blockade imposed on Gaza is strongly discouraged, given the security risks associated with such an undertaking.” Official Statement EU: “I don’t consider a flotilla to be the right response.” - Catherine Ashton, EU High Commissioner for Foreign Policy Turkey: “We are reconsidering our plans [about participating in the flotilla]. From our point of view, the developments in neighboring Syria are critically important.” - IHH Board Member H’seyin Oru, June 14, 2011. (Source: StandwithUs.com)
Victory for Free Speech By Bat Ye’ or
he acquittal of Geert Wilders has deeper meanings for Europe’s future than it appears at first glance. As Geert Wilders said: it is a victory for truth. But what does truth mean in international policy? Do we not see that in Eurabia the words ‘justice and peace’ are travesties for submission to injustice and terrorism? Here one needs to know the extensive system of lies spread at every political and cultural level in Eurabia, to understand the Copernican revolution achieved by Geert Wilders. A victory performed by a single unarmed man, constantly threatened by death and whose only defence was his courageous and unbending commitment to say the truth. A truth buried by the whole Eurabian transnational and international system created since the 1970s. Imposed on Europeans by controlling networks such a system emanates from the European Commission whose masters are no other than the political leaders of the European governments. The EU, a mastodon Kafkaesque structure, consuming astronomical sums, often enables European leaders to implement an authoritarian policy escaping people’s awareness. Rivalries for power, ambitions, ideology, oppose Eurocrats to those they disdainfully call “racist, populist, xenophobic” opponents to their globalist Islamophile ideology. Yet there is more than usual policy into these
clashes. There is what Wilders calls: the truth, a human moral element. To understand the tremendous revolution achieved by Geert Wilders, one has to realise that the foundational stone of the Eurabian mind consist of two principles stated in article 22 of the 1990 Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam: a. Everyone shall have the right to express his opinion freely in such manner as would not be contrary to the principles of the Shari’a. b. Everyone shall have the right to advocate what is right, and propagate what is good, and warn against what is wrong and evil according to the norms of Islamic Shari’a. Europe, while claiming to defend human rights has, in effect, adopted these principles and obeys a fundamental law of dhimmitude: dhimmis are forbidden on pain of death to propagate ideas considered hostile to Islam. Qadi ‘Iyad (d. 1149), the famous Andalusian Imam, prolific author and scholar, described explicitly blasphemy. It consists in cursing Muhammad, blaming him or attributing imperfection to him, to his religion, whether in the form of a curse, contempt or belittling him or maligning him. He stated that any Jew or Christian who reviled the Prophet should be beheaded or burned, unless he converts. Under the pressure of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, Eurabia has adopted
these Islamic blasphemy rules. The dhimmi attitude that has developed among European intellectuals, politicians, and the clergy requires the Western public to conform to one of the basic rules of dhimmitude: the express prohibition on Christians and Jews to criticize Islamic history and doctrine. This means that shari’a law has been imposed on Europeans by their own dhimmi leaders in their outreach to Islam. No wonder that since the 1970s Eurocrats censor any criticism of jihad and incriminate Israel’s right to exist as an aggression, triggering wars and terrorism. The denial of the jihadist current trend by Europe, its compliance to shari’a laws by prosecuting and punishing its own citizens for criticizing them, constitute the basic issues of Wilders trial. By exposing them, he has overturned EU’s policy. In this tremendous fight for truth, Wilders is not alone. Many sacrificed their position and reputation, many despaired such as the sociologist Jacques Ellul (d. 1994) who saw the return of Nazism in a machinery disguising its Fascist authoritarianism and antisemitism with the words ‘peace, justice, love, human rights’. Can Wilders and his courageous supporters – each fighting in his own country against their dhimmi leaders – succeed in bringing some morality into a sordid policy of lies, corruption, hate and cowardice? Or could
this success for truth be just a moment of light and hope before being crushed? Will Muslims themselves take this opportunity offered by the sacrifices of Wilders and the young anti-racist militants for freedom of speech, to ponder upon their own history of a long genocidal jihad over four continents with its trail of enslavement and dispossession of people? We are waiting to hear them acknowledging that jihadist ideology is criminal and that dhimmitude is a dehumanising oppression. Now, the world sees the fanatical and revolting persecution of Copts and other Christians in Islamic countries, and the jihadist genocidal hatred against Israel. And Now, Jews, Christians, Hindus and others victims of Islamic wars, who suffered dispossession, apartheid, deportations, humiliations, child abductions – crimes perpetrated altogether within the context of dhimmitude – are hoping for a reconciliation that can only come with Muslim acknowledgement of a criminal supremacist ideology and its rejection. Bat Ye’or (Hebrew meaning “daughter of the Nile) is an Egyptian-born British writer and political commentator, who writes about the history of non-Muslims in the Middle East, and in particular the history of Christian and Jewish dhimmis living under Islamic governments. She is the author of eight books, including Eurabia: The Euro-Arab Axis. (Source: www.hudson-ny.org)
BOOK OF JOEL – CHAPTER THREE
A MESSAGE OF WARNING TO THE NATIONS By Joel Rosenberg
he Book of Joel is a wake up call and a trumpet call to Israel and the Church. It is also a message of warning to the nations – and a very sobering message at that. Joel 3:1 – “in those days and at that time” – what time? • The last of the last days • The time of the physical, literal, actual Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ • The end of human history as we have known it and the dawn of the Millennial Kingdom, the 1,000 year reign of Christ on the throne of David in Jerusalem • The time when God is going to fully and completely and graciously “restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem” • The time of the end of the nations crushing Israel and the Jewish people Joel 3:2 – the Lord is going to gather all the nations – not some of the nations…not a few of the nations…the text says “all” of the nations…true, the Lord singles out a few specific nations with whom He is angry… among them: 1. Tyre and Sidon (Lebanon) Joel 3:4 2. Philistia (Gaza) 3:4 3. Greece 3:6 4. Egypt 3:19 5. Edom 3:19 But let there be no doubt – He is going to judge “all” the nations…He will gather them to the Valley of Jehoshaphat…the valley of judgment…what we know today as the Kidron Valley right here in Jerusalem… “Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of My people and My inheritance Israel whom they have scattered among the nations; and they have divided up My land.” (3:2) The Lord is going to judge the nations for at least six reasons: 1. For scattering Israel and the Jewish people among the nations (Joel 3:2) 2. For dividing up the land of Israel, which the Lord describes as “My land” (3:2) 3. For selling the Jewish people into slavery (3:3,5) 4. For engaging in sex trafficking (3:3) 5. For stealing treasures from the Lord (perhaps from the Temple), and from Israel (3:5) 6. For murdering Jews and shedding Jewish blood (3:19, 21) Some of these are atrocities that various nations and empires have committed against Israel and the Jewish people over the
centuries. Yet some of these are atrocities that will be committed against Israel and the Jewish people during the “time of Jacob’s troubles” (30:7), also known as the Tribulation. • The Bible teaches us, for example, from the Book of Daniel that the Antichrist will invade the Beautiful Land and set up his reign of power here in Israel. (Daniel 11:41-45) • The Hebrew Prophet Zechariah tells us that under the reign of the Antichrist and his global, one-world, tyrannical government that two-thirds of the Jewish people will be murdered. (Zechariah 12:8-9) • As horrifying as this is, Jews will not be the only ones to suffer terribly during under the Antichrist’s global reign of terror. Anyone who resists the Antichrist will suffer. Many will perish. Indeed, the Bible reveals that this includes people who have become followers of Jesus Christ during the Tribulation and refuse to bow to the Antichrist. They will be beheaded. They will be martyred. En masse. [Read Revelation 6:9-11 – how long, O Lord, until you avenge…] The good news is that Joel tells us a day of reckoning is coming...the Day of the Lord is coming…surely it is near. • “I will avenge their blood which I have not avenged, for the Lord dwells in Zion.” (Joel 3:21) • Psalm 9:11-12 – “Sing praises to the Lord, who dwells in Zion; declare among the peoples His deeds. For He who requires (or avenges) blood remembers them; He does not forget the cry of the afflicted.” Amen. And then comes more good news – the Millennial Kingdom…during this time: 1. The Lord will make Jerusalem holy and pure…there will be no “strangers” there, Joel tells us in 3:17…only those who have been born again and made righteous by the blood of Jesus, shed on the cross for the remission of sins…only those who have been adopted into His family by receiving Jesus as the Messiah 2. The mountains of Israel will drip with sweet wine (3:18) 3. The mountains of Israel will nourish cattle who flow with milk (3:18) 4. The land of Judah will always flow with springs of water (3:18) 5. A spring will actually burst forth underneath the Temple and flow into a river down to the Dead Sea, which will be resurrected (3:18 – see also Ezekiel 47)
6. Israel/Judah/Jerusalem will be inhabited forever (3:20) 7. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself will dwell in Zion (3:21) The Hebrew Prophet Joel gives us a great hope…that God is sovereign and He will reign from this city and make all things new and beautiful by His grace and power. There is so much richness to each and every verse of chapter three. I’ve taken most of the last year to study it and I’m still finding treasures I didn’t see before. But given the moment that we are in I want to focus on verse two.
“I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; and they have divided up My land.” (3:2) Consider these words carefully and completely…and let the United Nations be warned…let the United States be warned… let the Palestinian Authority be warned…let Hamas be warned….let the Government of Israel, too, be warned. It may look like a brilliant idea to divide the City of Jerusalem…to divide Judea and Samaria – a.k.a., the West Bank – away from the State of Israel…to give away the Golan Heights…as it seemed brilliant to some to give away the Gaza Strip in 2005…but let there be no mistake: the Word of God warns us in no uncertain terms that judgment is coming for all who divide Israel…and divide Jerusalem…and scatter, oppress and mistreat the Jewish people. As I say this, the United Nations is preparing to hold a vote in the next few months to divide Jerusalem and the rest of Jerusalem and unilaterally declare a sovereign Palestinian state. For many, this seems wise and fair and just…but willfully disobeying the Word of God is never wise…never fair…never just… and it comes with consequences.
I recognize that these Scriptures can be difficult for many Palestinian Arabs and many Israeli Arabs to read and accept, especially if they are Muslims and nominal Christians without a personal relationship with Christ… but even if they are born again brothers and sisters in the Lord. Most Palestinians long for a sovereign state of their own…many have been deeply hurt during the rebirth of the State of Israel and throughout the past 63 years…I am sympathetic with this pain and this longing. The Bible indicates that Jews would be a sinful people when they return to the Land in the last days. Only after they return, the Bible teaches, will the Holy Spirit be poured out upon the Jewish people in an increasingly significant way (Ezekiel 39:29 and Joel 2:28-32 – or Joel chapter 3 in Hebrew Bibles). Only then will a growing number of Jewish people repent and return to a personal relationship with the Lord. Jesus said in Matthew 24 and Luke 21 that there would be “wars and rumors of wars” and “revolutions” and “lawlessness” in the last days. Certainly, the rebirth of Israel – while prophetic and God-ordained – has come with wars, rumors of war, revolutions, sins, and even crimes committed by some Arabs as well as some Jews. The Bible doesn’t teach this period of the last days will be easy, and the Bible is right… that said, while these are painful facts, they are facts nonetheless…and each one of us must be true to the revealed Word of God… we do not please the Lord – or do our Arab brothers any favors, or do the nations any favors – if we ignore, deny or try to explain away the plain meaning of these verses, that Israel would be prophetically reborn and the Jews would come back to the Land that the Lord promised Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and their descendents. Genesis 12:1-3 tells us that the Lord will bless those who bless the children of Abraham, and He will curse those who curse the children of Abraham. Those who have cursed Israel have, sadly, found themselves facing great pain and suffering. Those who have tried to divide the Land again and again have found themselves both causing but also experiencing great pain and suffering. For many, these are not easy truths to hear or to hold…but God in His love and fairness puts us on notice that there are Continued on page 9
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consequences to rejecting these truths. At the same time, we who accept by faith what the Bible teaches about God’s divine love, plan, purpose and Land for Israel and the Jewish people must remind ourselves and each other of two other truths: 1. First, how we communicate Biblical truth – how we say what we say in light of the Word of God – matters to God. 2. Second, how we live out Biblical truth – how we do what we do in light of the Word of God – also matters to God. What do I mean? Allow me to explain. First, our communication – consider John 12:49 (NIV), where Jesus said, “the Father commands Me what to say and how to say it.” What we say matters to God…but so does how we say it. It’s not enough just to communicate what is Biblically true…we must also examine how we communicate it…are we speaking the truth in love?...are we being gentle?…are we being humble? • Proverbs 12:18 – “There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” • Proverbs 15:1 – “A gentle turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” • Proverbs 15:28 – “The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer” • Proverbs 21:23 – “He who guards his mouth and his tongue guards his soul from troubles.” • Proverbs 25:11 – “Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word spoken in right circumstances.” Yes, the Day of the Lord is coming…Yes, God is going to bless and save the nation of Israel…Yes, the nations are going to be judged for dividing the Land and shedding Jewish blood and for committing atrocities against the Jewish people…These are truths…they are from the Lord…they are just and true…But we must be careful in how we communicate these truths because they are so difficult for so many to hear…especially our Arab brothers and sisters…Let us be wise and humble and respectful in how we teach what we teach lest we inadvertently sin with our callousness or insensitivity…lest we cause additional pain or even create a new stumbling block to our listeners being able to hear and truly receive the truth. Second, our actions – Are we living out the fullness of the implications of Biblical truth, especially when it comes to the Book of Joel? Today, those of us who believe in the Abrahamic Covenant that God gave the Land of Israel to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and their descendants as an “everlasting possession” and who agree with the Apostle Paul that “the gifts and the calling of God
are irrevocable” (Romans 11:29) are at risk. At risk of what? At risk of being outflanked on the justice issue…at risk of being – and/or being perceived around the world as being – insensitive to the charges that we are blind to or callous towards injustice suffered by the Palestinian people…“Justice” can be a politically loaded word…and it can be wielded for unscriptural ends. But it is a Biblical word…it is an important word… and we must embrace it and passionately pursue its true Biblical meaning.
As the Hebrew Prophet Micah taught us, “He has told you, O man, what is good and what the Lord requires of you, but to do justice and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8) You and I are passionate advocates of justice for Israel because of what the Bible teaches. We must also be passionate advocates of justice from Israel because of what the Bible teaches. This does not mean Israel should divide the Land. This does not mean Israel should ignore her real and serious security needs. But too often, Christians who love Israel are not aware of – or sufficiently concerned about and responsive to – the plight of the Palestinian people, and particularly the struggles of the Palestinian believers. • Are some of the political, moral and historical charges of the Palestinians against Israel overblown? Yes. • Is some of the rhetoric of the Palestinians against Israel, Jews and Christians who love Israel hyperbolic and unfair? Yes. • But are the Palestinian people struggling in real and very painful ways? Yes – the truth is they are. And we should care because Jesus cared. • Much of this struggle has been caused by the unwise and ungodly choices of their
leaders…and their Arab and Islamic allies in the region…and by the terror groups in their midst. • But is some of this pain sometime caused by – or exacerbated by – Israeli mistakes… excesses…and even sins? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Again, this does not mean the Land should be divided…That does not mean a sovereign Palestinian state should be created…It does mean that followers of Jesus Christ should care about justice and mercy – for the Jews and for the Palestinians, and for all of Israel’s neighbors who are suffering in this fallen world…After all, while the Bible clearly explains that the Lord will bring the Jewish people back to the Land of Israel and allow them to reclaim their God-given ownership of the Land, nowhere in the Bible are Jews (or any group of people) given a license to commit injustice. • To the contrary, the Bible teaches Israel to love her neighbors (Leviticus 19:18 and Matthew 19:19). • The Bible also teaches Israel to love her neighbors and pray for those who persecute them (Matthew 5:44). The Jewish people do have rights to the ownership of the Land, but they also have responsibilities to govern justly and compassionately, in accordance with the Scriptures. • In Leviticus 19:13, for example, the Lord says: “You shall not oppress your neighbor, nor rob him, so as to profane the name of your God; I am the Lord.” • Leviticus 19:15 – “You shall do no injustice in judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbor fairly.” • Leviticus 19:33-34 – “When a stranger [non-Jew] resides with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt; I am the Lord your God.” • Exodus 22:21-24 – “You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. You shall not afflict any widow or orphan. If you afflict him at all, and if he does cry out to Me, I will surely hear his cry and My anger will be kindled…” Those of us who are followers of Jesus Christ need to not just preach but also to practice sound Bible doctrine regarding Israel and the Palestinians…We need to love both…bless both…pray for both…We need to stand with and encourage our brothers and sisters in the Messiah whether they are Jewish or Arab…The Bible gives us no freedom to ignore, deny, or oppose our brothers and sisters on either side…Jesus
said “blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9). We need to be pro-actively building relationships with Israelis and Palestinians… we need to be faithful ambassadors of Christ…we need to be true agents of reconciliation whenever and wherever possible…We do not have to agree with everything that our brothers and sisters believe – especially if those beliefs are unscriptural – but we are commanded to love them unconditionally and sacrificially…We are commanded to see struggle and suffering and respond in love and compassion, whether it’s a Jewish person in pain or an Arab. Jesus said, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35) Jesus loves the Jews…Jesus loves the Arabs…Jesus loves the Iranians…Jesus loves the Druze, the Bedouins, and all who live in the epicenter…Jesus died for all… Jesus rose again for all…Jesus is coming back again to this city for all…The Day of the Lord is coming…surely it is near…Joel teaches us that the Day of the Lord is a day of great sadness and judgment for those who reject the Lord and disobey His Word…But Joel also teaches us that “whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” Which leads me to my final point. In addition to praying for Jews and for the Palestinians… In addition to seeking real and practical ways to bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of Jesus… In addition to providing food, clothing, medical supplies and other humanitarian relief to the poor and needy on both sides of the security fence…of caring for widows and orphans…of caring for Holocaust Survivors and victims of war and terrorism…We need to make sure everyone from Tel Aviv to Tehran hears the good news of God’s amazing love and grace as revealed through Jesus Christ. Let those of us who love Israel also love Israel’s neighbors and enemies enough to make sure they hear the gospel…to strengthen the Church in the Arab and Iranian world…to help them train pastors and plant churches and fulfill the Great Commission. Precisely because the Day of the Lord is coming…surely it is near. As the Apostle Peter taught us, “the Day of the Lord will come like a thief” and “the Lord is not slow about keeping His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:10,9) Amen.
‘Palestine’ In The Land Of Israel? By Jerold S. Auerbach
ould the creation of a Palestinian state by vote of the United Nations General Assembly, expected in September, be illegal? Yes, according to a recent letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Signed by an array of lawyers, law professors and international law experts, it asks him to block the forthcoming resolution, promoted by the Palestinian Authority, for recognition of a Palestinian state within the 1949 Armistice lines. The letter was drafted by lawyers affiliated with the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, a non-profit organization founded in 2004 to find “fair and equitable solutions” for Israelis then about to be evacuated from Gaza. Among its distinguished signers were Alan Baker, former legal adviser for the Israeli Foreign Ministry and ambassador to Canada, and Meir Rosenne, another former legal adviser for the Foreign Ministry and ambassador to the United States. They claim that UN recognition would be “contrary to international law, UN resolutions and existing agreements.” Their letter, in effect a legal brief, argues that such a resolution would contravene UN Security Council Resolutions adopted after the Six-Day and Yom Kippur wars. It would be “in stark violation” of existing agreements between Israel and the Palestinians. Indeed, “the legal basis for the establishment of the State of Israel,” they indicate, goes back to 1922 when the League of Nations affirmed “the establishment of a national home for the Jewish People in the historical area of the Land of Israel.” Empowered to enact international law for the new postwar world order, the League conferred on Great Britain a Mandate for Palestine. “Palestine” was defined as the land east and west of the Jordan River, now comprising Jordan, the West Bank and Israel. But in what became the first partition of Palestine, now long forgotten or ignored (even by Israeli government officials), the British government lopped off all the land east of the Jordan River, three-quarters of the designated Mandatory territory, and bestowed it upon Abdullah, son of the Sharif of Mecca, for his own kingdom of Trans-Jordan. The entire remainder, west of the Jordan to the Mediterranean, was redefined as “Palestine” and designated for the “Jewish National Home,” a phrase borrowed from Lord Balfour’s famous letter of November 2, 1917. But the League went beyond that vague and indeterminate assurance. Article 6 of the Palestine Mandate explicitly protected “close settlement by Jews” in the shrunken land to be called Palestine. That guarantee remains the international legal foundation for Jewish settlements built ever since the Six-Day War returned Israel to its ancient Jewish homeland. It has never been rescinded. As signers of the Legal Forum letter indicate, any General Assembly attempt to create a Palestinian state in that territory would violate an array of international guarantees. Among them, most crucially, is Article 80 of the UN Charter. It explicitly protected the rights of “any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments to which members of the United Nations may respectively be parties.” Drafted by Jewish representatives (including Prime Minister Netanyahu’s father), Article 80 became known as “the Palestine clause.” It preserved, under international law, the rights of the Jewish people to “close settlement” in all the land west of the Jordan River, even after the British Mandate had expired and the League of Nations had ceased to exist. Those rights were flagrantly violated when Jordan invaded the fledgling Jewish state and claimed sovereignty over the West Bank in 1949. But the Jordanian claim had no standing in international law and was never recognized. After the Six-Day War, Security Council Resolution 242 permitted Israel to administer the West Bank until “a just and lasting peace in the Middle East” was achieved. That, of course, has not yet happened. Even then, however, Israel would only be required to withdraw its armed forces “from territories” – not from “the territories” or “all the territories” (proposals that were defeated in both the Security Council and the General Assembly). The absence of “the” – the now famous missing definite article – was neither an accident nor an afterthought. It resulted from what Yale Law School Professor
Right-wing counter demonstration at a 20,000 left-wing activists march in Tel Aviv
Eugene W. Rostow, then undersecretary of state for political affairs, described as more than five months of “vehement public diplomacy” to decisively clarify the meaning of Resolution 242. No prohibition – or even limitation – on Jewish settlement, guaranteed west of the Jordan River under the League of Nations Mandate forty-five years earlier, was adopted. As the Legal Forum letter indicates, “1967 borders” (so labeled recently by President Obama) “do not exist, and have never existed.” Under the terms of the 1949 Armistice Agreements between Israel and the invading Arab states, the newly established “Armistice Demarcation Lines” were “without prejudice to future territorial settlements or boundary lines.” Therefore, the letter signers conclude, those borders “cannot be accepted or declared to be the international boundaries of a Palestinian state.” Should the UN General Assembly approve the current Palestinian proposal, the Palestinians would also be in “fundamental breach” of the 1995 Israeli-Palestinian Accord, when the signatories agreed not to attempt to change the status of contested territory before permanent status negotiations were concluded – certainly not before they were even begun. After the Six-Day War the core Zionist commitment to settling the land of Israel, which had driven state-building efforts since the 1880s, passed from secular to religious Israelis. That transformation surely explains why successive Israeli governments, whether led by Labor or Likud, have either maintained silence – or demonstrated intense hostility – toward Zionist settlers wearing kippot or long skirts. At best ambivalent – and usually hostile – toward Jews in Judea and Samaria, government officials have resolutely maintained silence about the international guarantees for the “close settlement” of Jews west of the Jordan River. Joined by a chorus of academic intellectuals, journalists, and cultural luminaries, they have been exceedingly leery of strengthening religious Zionism by authorizing new settlements or enlarging existing ones. The special venom toward settlers displayed by current Defense Minister (and former prime minister) Ehud Barak expresses the deep-rooted hostility of Labor Party and left-wing Zionists toward their despised ideological challengers. Not all settlers, to be sure, are religious. The majority doubtlessly chose to live in Judea and Samaria because housing prices were lower, and the quality of life better, in their sparkling new communities than where they previously lived. Perhaps one hundred thousand settlers are religious Zionists who claim the land as Israel’s biblical birthright and inheritance. Unlike Tel Avivians, who gaze across the Mediterranean to Los Angeles and the Silicon Valley for their sources of cultural inspiration, these Israelis stand on the bedrock of Jewish history, looking to the past and to sacred texts, not to the West, for inspiration. Critics from the secular left have been unrelenting in their castigation of settlements. In Lords of the Land (2007), the first comprehensive history of the settlement movement, historian Idith Zertal and Haaretz journalist Akiva Eldar
lacerated settlers for their illegal occupation of “Palestinian” land. The “malignancy of occupation,” they wrote, “in contravention of international law,” has “brought Israel’s democracy to the brink of an abyss.” But persistent efforts to undermine the legitimacy of Israeli settlements, wrote international legal expert Julius Stone thirty years ago, have been nothing less than a “subversion of basic international law principles.” They still are. Yet the United Nations, with an international constituency that has been relentlessly hostile to Israel ever since it first hallucinated that “Zionism is racism” in 1975, keeps trying. Catering to international support for Palestinian victimization claims, the International Criminal Court, established by the UN General Assembly in 1998, made Jewish settlement a “war crime.” But Israel (like the United States) “unsigned” from the statute of authorization for the Court; furthermore, as international legal scholar Jeremy Rabkin indicates, the Court lacks jurisdiction over “crimes” committed before 2002. By then, virtually all the currently existing Jewish settlements had already been established. That renders any designation of settlements as “war crimes” meaningless ex post facto rhetoric – although not without power to elicit ever more anti-Israel venom. The question never asked is whether a Palestinian state in the land reserved under international law for “close settlement” by Jews is even legal. The Jewish claim, forged by three thousand years of history in the Land of Israel, including two eras of national sovereignty, reinforced in the modern era by a succession of international legal guarantees, is indisputable. The Palestinian claim, by contrast, is a contrived recent invention. Palestinians, as Barbara Lerner has written (National Review Online, June 17), “are not a people distinguishable by virtue of their common genes and/or language, religion, culture, history, or form of government.” Devised by Arabs who only recently identified themselves as “Palestinians,” it is built on the foundation of perpetual victimization claims, the international determination to delegitimize Israel, and – perhaps most revealing – the pillaging of Jewish and Zionist history. “Palestine” was so named by the Romans after they crushed the Bar Kochba rebellion in 133 CE. Any ancestors of present-day Palestinians who may have lived in Palestine under Ottoman or British rule were considered by others, and by themselves, to be Arabs. In 1948, without undue protest, they became Jordanians. Not until the creation of the PLO by Arab states at the Arab League Summit (1964) did they become “Palestinians.” It took another decade, which included the stunning victory of Israel in the Six-Day War, before statehood was mentioned on the Palestinian wish list. The validity of the Palestinian historical claim can be measured by its sources – nearly all of which, revealingly, are Jewish. In a remarkable inversion, a people without an identifiable national identity or history until well into the 20th century has plundered Zionist history to create its own illusory past in a land that was never theirs. Continued on page 11
Continued from page 10
Relying on the Hebrew Bible, Palestinians (like Arabs throughout the Middle East) claim Ishmael, Abraham’s son by his servant Hagar, as their founding ancestor. They adopted as their ancient forebears the Canaanites, who, according to the biblical narrative, were displaced by conquering Israelites. (Palestinian history not only invents itself; it anticipates itself.) Insisting that Jews never had national commonwealths in the Land of Israel many centuries before the birth of Islam, Palestinians reject irrefutable historical and archeological evidence to the contrary. So, too – like Muslims throughout the Middle East – they resolutely deny that there ever was a Temple in Jerusalem and that the Western Wall has been a Jewish holy site ever since its destruction in 70 CE. Yet triumphant Islam built the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aksa mosque on the Temple Mount precisely because it had been sacred Jewish space. In Hebron, similarly, Muslim conquerors seized the Cave of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs where Jews had already worshipped at the graves of their biblical ancestors for more than ten centuries. Transforming it into a mosque, Muslims barred Jewish “infidels” from entry for seven hundred years – until the Six-Day War forced open the doors. Even the flotillas to Gaza, beginning with the notorious Mavi Marmara a year ago, are modeled after the rickety refugee ships that tried to bring desperate Jews, fleeing from Nazi terror and extermination, to Palestine before and after World War II. The most famous of these was the Exodus, with thousands of Holocaust survivors on board, turned away by the British government in 1947. Any resemblance is, of course, purely intentional – and patently absurd. Might there be an alternative to Palestinian usurpation of the ancient Jewish homeland? Certainly West Bank Palestinians must be guaranteed the right to remain in place, living in their cities and villages and farming their land. They should have the option of citizenship in the Kingdom of Jordan, occupying two-thirds of Mandatory Palestine, where more than half the population is already Palestinian. The distances are not far: from Nablus (biblical Shechem, where Jacob dwelled), the second largest Palestinian city, to Amman it’s only 68 miles. King Abdullah might prefer not to have an even more menacing democratic challenge to his Hashemite minority rule, but that would be a small price to pay for peace. Jewish settlements, and other land legally owned by Jews in Judea and Samaria, would become part of the Jewish state. On Israeli land there would be no distinctive restrictions on development. A joint Israeli-Palestinian police force could continue to patrol the land between Palestinian and Jewish communities, as has now been done for nearly twenty years. In Hebron, where the special challenge of a divided city exists, Jews would be free to inhabit Jewish-owned property, which they often cannot (by edict of their own government), and to purchase land and buildings from willing Arab sellers. A continuing Israeli military presence in the Jewish zone of the city, where Arabs also live, would be required indefinitely for the safety of Jewish residents. In May 1967, Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda Kook memorably cried out to his graduates, assembled at the Mercaz HaRav yeshiva in Jerusalem to celebrate Independence Day: “They have divided my land. Where is our Hebron? Have we forgotten it? And where is Shechem? And our Jericho – will we forget them?” One month later, at the Western Wall, Defense Minister Moshe Dayan promised the victorious nation: “We have returned to all that is holy in our land. We have returned never to be parted from it again.” President Obama, of course, demands otherwise. But his insistence on the 1949 Armistice lines as the framework for negotiation, his determination to propel Palestinian statehood by the end of this year, and his silence on the Palestinian “right of return” (to Israel) easily qualify him as the president most hostile to the Jewish state since 1948 (with the possible exception of Jimmy Carter). Having quickly turned against a longtime American ally in Egypt, then “leading from behind” in Libya, and now remaining silent while the Assad regime slaughters innocent Syrian civilians, Obama focuses relentlessly on Israel as the primary source of Middle East problems. The return of Jews to the Land of Israel is what Zionism has always been about. A Palestinian state in the Jewish homeland will undermine it from within. (Jerold S. Auerbach is the author of “Brothers at War: Israel and the Tragedy of the Altalena,” published in May by Quid Pro Books) (Source: www.jewishpress.com)
Judea and Samaria, where the Patriarchs lived By Rachel Neuwirth
apply to the Jews. Prior to the illegal Jordanian occupation of 1948-67, Jews had maintained several thousand years of continual residence in the area. However, the term does apply to both Jordanians and the “Palestinian” Arab squatters of today (seeResolved: are the settlements legal? Israeli West Bank policies).
hy is it that people are proposing a Middle East peace plan that will make Judea and Samaria Judenrein (the Nazi term for a place with no Jews)? It is the historic homeland and birthplace of the Jewish People, yet many world leaders including every American President believe that the removal of Jewish communities from Judea and Samaria is a crucial prerequisite for a peaceful resolution. Unfortunately, every Israeli Prime Minister has been pressured to follow this policy. Jews have lived in Judea and Samaria for thousands of years. In fact, the Jewish religion and people were birthed in Hebron. We know of the ancient Jewish presence there from both the Hebrew and Christian Bibles and from abundant archaeological and documentary evidence. No one denies that the oldest document showing the historical connection of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel, including Judea and Samaria (A.K.A. the West Bank), is the Bible. Genesis 24:18 says: “And Abram moved his tent, and came and dwelt by the Terebinths of Mamre, which are in Hebron.” And the world’s oldest documentation of real estate being purchased for a full price is also in the Bible (see Genesis 23:9). And for those who doubt Biblical references, there is substantial evidence in archaeological findings. Historically, the Jewish homeland included what is today called Judea and Samaria, the Golan Heights, and a considerable part of today’s Jordan. The land was inhabited mainly by Jews and was ruled by Jews. Therefore, Lord Robert Cecil, former acting British foreign secretary, was right to use the name “Judea” for the whole land in his famous remark: “Our wish is that Arabian countries shall be for the Arabs, Armenia for the Armenians, and Judea for the Jews.” (December 2, 1917) The Jewish presence there has been continuous, except for 19 years from 1948 to 1967 when the area became Judenrein. And during that 19 years, the Jordanians and Arabs of the remaining portion of “Palestine” desecrated Jewish Holy Sites and cemeteries in an attempt to deny that the Jews ever lived there. Those who advocate the dismantling of the Jewish communities in this territory are advocating a policy of ethnic cleansing. This may sound extreme, but from the early 1900’s, the Arabs carried out a policy of ethnic cleansing that included the massacre and pogroms in 1929 and 1936 in Hebron. Both the spirit and practice of ethnic cleansing are being continued in the current conflict (see Palestine Facts). So, what did UN Secretary-General Kofi Anan mean in his 2001 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech when he said, “A genocide begins with the killing of one man - not for what he has done, but because of who he is. A campaign of ‘ethnic cleansing’ begins with one neighbor turning
on another.” Does this not also apply to the Israeli Jews who have re-established homes in Judea and Samaria? Should they be ethnically cleansed from the heart of their historical homeland? Does the Nobel recipient not know a real victim of ethnic cleansing when he sees one? The same people and countries that condemn ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, Cyprus, Rwanda and Tibet totally reverse themselves when it comes to the right of Jewish People to live in the lands of their historic patrimony. If Chinese People were forbidden to live in China, Buddhists barred from Tibet, or Irish-Catholics banned from South Boston, there would be a tremendous outcry against such injustices. But where is the outcry against the removal of Jews from Judea - their historical homeland? Is there any other country on earth that has such a legitimate birth certificate as Israel? And if the Jews have no such document, then the Old and New Testaments are worthless. The war for Israel’s independence ended in 1949 with the Jordanians in full control of Judea and Samaria and the Old City of Jerusalem (the “West Bank”), cutting the Jewish People off from their most holy religious sites. (see Jewish Roots to Judea and Samaria) The official status of these areas, then, was disputed territories, as no one had held sovereignty there since the defeat of the Ottoman Empire. Only two countries, Pakistan and Britain, recognize the 19-year Jordanian “illegal occupation”. Even the entire Arab world refused to recognize it and, consequently, it was illegal and illegitimate abinitio. After the 1967 war, the Jewish People have simply been returning to the land from which they were forcibly expelled during the first Arab - Israeli war of 1948-49. This territory has always been known as Judea and Samaria. Do the names “Jew” (for Judea) and “Samaritan” (as in “good Samaritan”) sound familiar? In fact, Shemer, founder of Asher, a clan of one of the twelve tribes of Israel, was the owner and eponym of the hills of Samaria. Is there anything Arab or “Palestinian” about either? Even UN Resolution 181, the Partition Plan of 1947 refers to these territories as Judea and Samaria. The word “occupiers” does not
In the early part of the 20th century, the Arab population carried out a war against the Jewish inhabitants of the area. This resulted in a series of massacres in Hebron, the birth place of Judaism, in 1929, as well as numerous other violent acts, such as the 1936-39 pogroms against Jews, ending in the total expulsion of the Jewish population from much of Judea, Samaria and the Old City of Jerusalem. As a result of the Israeli victory in 1967, Jewish People returned to this area and reunified the historic capital of Jerusalem. Many of the Jews who had been expelled from this territory, or whose parents and grandparents were murdered by rampaging Arabs, have merely returned to their previous homes. And in subsequent years, additional Jewish communities (not “illegal settlements”) were built, mainly for security purposes, and others for historical and emotional reasons on mainly state-owned land and historical outposts. Judea and Samaria were liberated, not stolen or occupied, from Jordan. (see Legality of the settlements and History of the Jewish Settlements). Since 1967, 261 new Arab settlements have been built in Judea and Samaria. According to international law, all of these are illegal, as no sovereignty was ever recognized over these territories: yet no one calls for their removal. Why is it that no one talks about those Arab settlements as obstacles to peace - especially when they are bases for carrying out terrorism and their inhabitants are constantly taught virulent hatred toward the Jewish People and the West? Dismantling the Jewish communities in these territories will only reward terrorism. The Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, are a litmus test of Arab intentions. Why can’t Jews live in their historic homeland if there is really peace? After all, there are 1.2 million Arabs living as citizens of Israel in one Jewish country in the world, while there are only a handful Jews living in any of the 22 Arab countries. In fact, in Jordan and Saudi Arabia, not only is it illegal for Jews to be citizens, they are not even allowed to live there. Therefore, instead of Israel being the “apartheid state” in the region, it is the Arab world that is not only apartheid, but also racist and religiously exclusive. (Rachel Neuwirth is an internationally recognized political commentator and analyst. She specializes in Middle Eastern Affairs with particular emphasis on Militant Islam and Israeli foreign policy – www. MiddleEastSolutions.org)
Can Islam Be Reformed? By Dennis Prager
he title question is in no way meant to be provocative, let alone insulting. But the world, including vast numbers of Muslims, needs this question answered. After having studied Arabic at college and lectured on comparative religion for decades, and having devoted years to writing my upcoming book comparing American values with leftist and Islamist values, I have become convinced of two things regarding Islam: It must be reformed, and it can be reformed. Both suppositions are highly controversial. Few believing Muslims think that Islam needs to be reformed; the suggestion would strike most religious Muslims as absurd, if not insulting and ultimately blasphemous. And it would strike many non-Muslim critics of Islam as naïve. As Lord Cromer, British consul-general in Egypt 1883 to 1907, put it in a quote known to all Western students of Islam, “Islam reformed is Islam no longer.” Let’s deal first with the question of whether Islam needs reforming. The case for it is compelling. Here are a few reasons: • Majority-Muslim and Islambased countries are not, and have not been, free societies. According to the 2010 Freedom House “Freedom in the World” survey, of the world’s 47 Muslim-majority countries, only two are free, 18 are partly free, and 27 are not free. There is no honest explanation for this nearly total absence of liberty in Muslim countries that does not reflect in some way on Islam. • Muslim treatment of Jews and Christians in places such as medieval Spain was morally far superior to the treatment of non-Christians by European Christians during the same
period. But in the modern period, nowhere Islam controlled afforded non-Muslims anywhere near the equality that non-Christians came to take for granted in the Christian world. • There was a burst of intellectual and scientific creativity in the Muslim world for a few hundred years, but then the opponents of reason came to dominate Islam, and with that development came a loss of scientific and intellectual curiosity. How could it have been otherwise? The dominant Muslim view was that the natural world had no laws. Everything that occurred did so solely because Allah willed it. If an arrow hit its target, it was not because of the archer’s ability or wind patterns or laws of physics; it was because Allah willed it. According to a United Nations report written by Arab scholars, the Arab world’s lack of interest in the non-Arab and non-Muslim worlds is so great that in any given year, comparatively tiny Greece translates more books into Greek than all the Arab countries combined translate into Arabic. • Regarding women, one cannot name a culture or religion in which the status of women is as low as it is in many Muslim societies. Moreover, the status of women has actually declined in many Muslim
societies in the present generation. For example, the veil is more common in Egypt today than it was a hundred years ago. • In nearly every Muslim country in which non-Muslims live (usually Christians) – from Nigeria to Egypt to Iraq – they suffer persecution. • A very small percentage of Muslims are terrorists. But nearly every international terrorist is Muslim. And according to every poll I have seen, at least 70 million of the world’s more than 1 billion Muslims support Islamist actions and theology. • Every state that calls itself an Islamic republic and rules according to Islamic law is a totalitarian state, and it is usually a bloodthirsty one. Saudi Arabia is an example of the first; Taliban Afghanistan, Islamist Iran, and Islamist Sudan are examples of both. So, yes, Islam needs to be reformed. This is no insult to Muslims. Judaism and Christianity have undergone major changes. And needed to. Can Islam be reformed?
Yes, and American Muslims will lead the way. I do not agree with Lord Cromer. I believe it can. What is necessary is that Muslim reformers: 1. Honestly acknowledge the Muslim moral record, i.e., the lack of liberty in Muslim nations, the killing of large numbers of non-Muslims, the low status of women, etc. This does not necessitate rejecting the Koran or Islam.
2. Eschew incorporating sharia into state law and oppose the establishment of any Islamic theocracy (which is not, in any event, Koran-based, according to moderate Muslims). 3. Publicly and unambiguously condemn all violence in the name of Islam, including violence against Israel. 4. Express a deep appreciation of the moral record of America, including its superb treatment of both its Muslim citizens and Muslim immigrants, along with a complete rejection of the Islamist notion that America is hostile to Muslims. 5. Fully accept the existence of Israel as a Jewish state, and distance themselves from the Muslim/Arab obsession with Israel. At this very moment there are Muslim reformers who believe and express all five of these propositions. Examples include University of Delaware professor Muqtedar Khan, who runs www.ijtihad.com: “American Muslims really have no reason to feel they are victims of anything. The Muslim-American community is thriving, proof of “America’s benevolence and tolerance of Islam.” Another is Ahmed al-Rahim, a professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia: “The most important message is that we condemn all kinds of hate speech including anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism and that we come out as boldly as possible against violence committed by Muslims in Iraq, in Israel.” Regarding the Muslim obsession with Israel, Khan has written: “It is time the leaders of the American Muslim community woke up and realized that. . . Islam is not about defeating Jews or conquering
Jerusalem. It is about mercy, about virtue, about sacrifice and about duty. Above all it is the pursuit of moral perfection.” Zainab Al-Suwaij, a refugee from Saddam Hussein’s Iraq and executive director of the moderate American Islamic Congress, publicly declared that America “has given Iraqis the most precious gift any nation has ever given another – the gift of democracy and the freedom to determine its own future.” And Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, a physician in Arizona whose parents fled Syria in the 1960s, is the founder and chairman of the board of the moderate American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD). A believing and practicing Muslim, Dr. Jasser advocates American values and promotes a Koran-based life to be practiced by the individual Muslim and never imposed by the state. He is courageous in confronting the Islamist groups that the mainstream media in the Western world have promoted to appear as the spokesmen for Western Muslims. As Dr. Jasser says of organizations such as CAIR and other so-called Muslim civil-rights organizations: “There was more concern with hate crimes against Muslims, which I think were relatively low; there was more focus on that than actually looking at the violence and the hate speech that has been committed in the name of Islam.” Islam is too important to deny its need to reform. And it is too important to deny its ability to ever reform. And if it does reform, Muslims who have embraced America and American values will lead the way. (Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and columnist. He may be contacted through his website, dennisprager.com)
Glenn Beck: “Biblical Esther and Ruth Guided Me” By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Glenn Beck speaking at Knesset
merican news personality Glenn Beck told the Knesset Aliyah and Absorption Committee recently that the biblical Esther and Ruth have guided him as he stands up for Israel. “Esther knew she had no choice but to come out and speak,” Glenn Beck said, referring to Queen Esther’s risking her life to save the Persian Jewish community. “I knew I had no choice but to speak the truth. I came here in 2002, looked for the truth, and when I got home and told it, I received my first death threat.” Speaking of Ruth, a non-Jew who followed her Jewish mother-in-law Naomi from Moab to Israel despite the difficulty, Beck said, “Your people are my people and where you go, I will go. Your God is my God. I invite the People of Israel to stand with your God.” At the end of the session, Beck said: ”We have to believe in common decency, link arms, and God will do the rest.” Glenn Beck spoke at the committee hearing at the invitation of committee
chairman Danny Danon (Likud) and Shas Knesset Member Nissim Ze’ev. The panel wanted to hear Beck’s views on fighting the worldwide campaign trying to make Israel seem illegitimate. Arutz Sheva had live streaming from the meeting both on English and Hebrew sites. “The world has changed. People now have power,” Beck told the committee. He explained that the Internet has allowed people to be more accessible to the truth, which he said has been censored by mainstream media. “The world is being changed by a few guys in the basement writing on the Internet. The truth will set you free. Forget the [mainstream] media,” Beck added. “Rulers want to control, and that is where there is trouble,” Beck told the committee and guests. “I am truly humbled and disturbed by what people say to me on the street… People sincerely thank me for saying the truth. What is disturbing is that if a guy just gets on television or radio and says that [and gets
thanked for telling the truth], Israel and Western life is danger.” Beck said that the demands of the Palestinian Authority are another excuse for the world to continue a centuries-old campaign of anti-Semitism, which he said is “going through the roof. The Holocaust was just one part of the history of anti-Semitism. The United States has an economic problem now and the Jews will be blamed.” The Arab-Israeli conflict is “about the end of Western civilization and the destruction of Israel,” according to Beck. He asked Israelis to join him in Jerusalem on August 24, 2011, when he is scheduled to hold a “Restoring Courage” rally, similar to the Restoring Honor rally in Washington last year. Four presidential candidates will attend, joining people from all over the world, including Bahrein, he noted. The rally next month will be viewed worldwide on at least 700 remote viewing stations. (Source: Arutz Sheva)
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Christian Zionism in balance By Malcolm Hedding
oday, Christian Zionism stirs up all sorts of reactions within the confessing church and sometimes is regarded as extreme or even heretical as a theological position. Those taking this view forget that some of the greatest leaders of the church through history held this position. Indeed, a good case can be made that the original Apostles did (Acts 1:6). The documents of the early church reveal that, for much of the first three centuries of the fledgling church, this was the predominant view. The Puritans of the 17th century, who gave us democracy and the authorized King James Bible, were Christian Zionist by belief. The world’s greatest revival was led by Christian Zionists, even though the term was not yet in use. I am referring to the Wesley brothers, Charles and John. Leading Pietists in Switzerland, Moravia, Germany and Sweden also held “Restorationist” views. In our times, one of the world’s greatest expositors of the Bible, David Pawson, is a Christian Zionist. The late Dr. Derek Prince was a dedicated Christian Zionist. One of the greatest evangelists of our times, Reinhard Bonnke, is a Christian Zionist! We can also include CBN founder Dr. Pat Robertson and Dr. Jack Hayford of the Four Square Church. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Thus, great church leaders have held Christian Zionist views, just as great church leaders have not held these views. This in turn means that we should be very careful how we handle this matter, and it should never divide us or bring us to a place of hostility, even if we are right! Further, it is instructive to note that there can be excesses on both sides of this issue within the Church. For instance, Christian Zionists who are not anchored theologically tend to “rubber stamp” all that Israel does. They drift toward dual covenant teaching, become “Judaizers” and lack compassion for the Arab peoples of
the region. Meantime, Christians who adhere to Replacement or Fulfillment theology tend to drift toward anti-Semitism, are disconnected from the purpose of God in Israel’s restoration, embrace deviant methods of biblical exposition, and can end up supporting sinister agendas for the destruction of Israel. At its heart, Christian Zionism is the belief that the
land of Canaan was bequeathed to the Jewish people as an “everlasting possession” (Genesis 17:7- 8) within God’s purposes for world redemption. This divine promise was ratified in the Abrahamic covenant. There is absolutely no evidence in the Bible that this promise has at any point been annulled or reconstructed, as the Replacement camp contends. Indeed, Scripture affirms that it cannot be (Romans 11:29; Galatians 3:17; Hebrews 6:13-20). The Abrahamic covenant carries a two-fold promise. That is, a promise that salvation would come to all the world through a “seed” of Abraham – that is, Jesus (Genesis 12:3; Galatians 3:15-18); and a promise that the descendants of Abraham would inherit the land of Canaan as an everlasting possession (Genesis 17:7-8; Psalms 105:7-12). The Jewish people, while mediating the Abrahamic covenant to the world, are required to radiate the light that they mediate! Their disobedience does not cancel the covenant, but it does remove from them the privilege of enjoying its benefits. Thus, rebellion has meant the loss of residency in the land they otherwise own. This is the warning of the Torah and the abiding lesson of the major and minor prophets. This is why God always warns them, but at the same time encourages them with restoration and blessing (Amos 9:9-15). It is thus not biblical to suggest in any way that the Abrahamic covenant has been abolished or reconstructed. Equally, it is not biblical to assert that the Jewish people can live on all the land promised to them without reference to their spiritual condition. It is on these critical points that both adherents and detractors of Christian Zionism often falter! (Rev. Hedding is executive director of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem) Source: www.beitariel.co.za
Terrorists wearing a Burqa… By Phyllis Chesler
here they all stand, guilty as sin, Afghan Taliban terrorists disguised in women’s burqas – but exposed when they were captured by the Afghan Border Police. One of these charmers was wearing an explosive vest; six had AK-47s. Clearly they were up to no good. Their photo (or rather photos) were taken by an Afghan photographer somewhere near Jalalabad and have been seen worldwide. The burqas represent a security risk. For the last six years, Dr. Pipes has been detailing the number of common criminals and Islamist terrorists who have robbed jewelry stories and peeped into women’s bathrooms while wearing burqas, or who have blown themselves and others up from under the protective cover of a mere woman’s shroud. In December, 2009, a suicide bomber dressed in a full veil and abaya gained access to a ceremony attended by government officials and killed 19 people, including three cabinet ministers. In February, 2010, a female suicide bomber killed 54 Shia pilgrims in Baghdad. She was dressed in an abaya, which police said allowed her to hide an explosive device. In December, 2010 in Pakistan, a woman wearing a burqa threw a grenade and detonated an explosive vest at a U.N. security checkpoint, killing 41 people. This is not just happening in Muslimmajority countries or in war zones. In August, 2010, a man wearing a burqa robbed a bank in Silver Spring, Maryland. In January, 2011, a man wearing niqab (a face veil) attempted to rob a bank in Philadelphia. Three years earlier, also in Philadelphia, three men dressed as Muslim women stuck up a Bank of America branch. One of the men shot and killed a police officer during their getaway. Why are burqas allowed in public? Or rather, why don’t we view them as potentially
Taliban terrorists exposed…
suspicious as opposed to a religious custom which we infidels are obligated to honor and revere? For reasons of safety, the West, and for that matter the entire Muslim world, should immediately ban the burqa as a security risk. However, I have also gone on record calling for a ban on the burqa, at least in the West, on the grounds that it violates a women’s human rights. For example, an unnamed Saudi princess described her experience of the Saudi abaya (to Jean Sasson) as follows: When we walked out of the cool souq area into the blazing hot sun, I gasped for breath and sucked furiously through the sheer black fabric. The air tasted stale and dry as it filtered through the thin gauzy cloth. I had purchased the sheerest veil available, yet I felt I was seeing life through a thick screen. How could women see through veils made of a thicker fabric? The sky was no longer blue, the glow of the sun had dimmed; my heart plunged to my stomach when I realized that
from that moment, outside my own home I would not experience life as it really is in all its color. The world suddenly seemed a dull place. And dangerous, too! I groped and stumbled along the pitted, cracked sidewalk, fearful of breaking an ankle or leg. Qanta Ahmed, a Pakistani-BritishAmerican religious Muslim physician worked in Saudi Arabia for a few years. She writes: The veiling was anathema to me. Even with a deep understanding of Islam, I could not imagine mummification is what an enlightened, merciful God would ever have wished for half of all His creation. These shrouded, gagged silences rise into a shrieking register of muted laments for stillborn freedoms. Such enforced incarceration of womanhood is a form of female infanticide. I am not opposed to the hijab (the headscarf). I am only addressing the face-obscuring garments that are cumbersome, dangerous, and exclude a
woman from normal social interaction. Wherever the extreme Saudi or Iranian versions of female head, face, and body covering exist, you will probably find fundamentalist Islam and potentially infidelhating, Jew-hating terrorists. Burqas and jihad go hand-in-hand. There is another reason to ban the burqa in the West. Muslim girls and women are being beaten and even honor killed for refusing to wear this costume of utter subordination. Many (certainly not all) Muslim girls must toe the line in terms of how they dress or they will be threatened, beaten, acid-attacked, or even honor killed. If their families or roving self-appointed Vice and Virtue squads decide that they are looking too “Western,” or dressing in too modern a fashion, they will be punished. Young, including educated, Muslim women in the West are increasingly wearing oppressive Muslim garb in a show of resistance to infidel culture. Just yesterday in New York City, I saw, in ninety-degree heat, a casually dressed man followed by a woman in a severe and heavy hijab. I have found that Muslim girls and women are at risk in the West when they attempt to assimilate and begin to want “Western” things, beginning with casual clothing, makeup, an education, non-Muslim friends, perhaps a non-Muslim boyfriend, perhaps a divorce from an illiterate and violent first cousin. We in the West must strategize ways to protect those Muslims and ex-Muslims who choose to assimilate and to prosecute those who are violent towards them. (Phyllis Chesler, Ph.D, is an Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies at City University of New York) Source: FrontPage Magazine
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Why Abbas Cannot Recognize Israel as a Jewish State By David Meir-Levi
srael’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu demands that the Palestinian Authority recognize Israel as a “Jewish State.” The Palestinian Authority’s President Mahmud Abbas refuses. Netanyahu demands again and Abbas refuses. Netanyahu tells the US Congress that if only Abbas would recognize Israel as a Jewish State then 90% of the conflict would be over; but Abbas refuses. One might think that we are witness to two five-year-olds engaged in a playground argument: “Yes you will!” “No I won’t!” “You must!” “I can’t!” But one would be wrong. The issue of Israel’s existence as a Jewish State is the very core of the conflict. If Abbas, or any other Muslim leader for that matter, were to agree that Israel is a Jewish state, he would be in opposition to the Islamic religious concepts of “defense of Muslim lands” and of non-Muslims as dhimmi. Though not found in the Qur’an, the obligation for the defense of Muslim lands is a core concept in medieval and modern Muslim theology, dating back to the 13th century Muslim exegete Ibn Taymiyyah, who declared that all Muslims are obligated to rise up and attack any non-Muslim who takes Muslim land. It is a compulsory duty (fard Ayn) to wage interminable jihad until the Muslim land is reclaimed and again under its divinely ordained and rightful Muslim sovereignty. There are Muslim scholars who disagree. They quote the Qur’anic references in Chapters V and XVII and elsewhere which state specifically that Allah gave the Promised Land to the Children of Israel as an eternal inheritance. However, Ibn Taymiyyah’s interpretation, that Palestine is Muslim land and must be reclaimed from the Jews, despite the Qur’anic references to God’s promise to the Israelites, seems to prevail in modern Muslim thought.
Abbas and Netanyahu - The issue of Israel’s existence as a Jewish State is the very core of the conflict
The concept dhimmi is based upon a Qur’anic source, Sura 9:29, in which Muslims are commanded to make the defeated non-Muslims feel low and subdued. The “Pact of Omar” written during the time of the Caliph Omar II (early 8th century), but ascribed to the 7th century Caliph Omar 1, established a list of regulations detailing the status of non-Muslims under Muslim rule, and circumscribing their behavior. While there is scholarly debate about the extent to which these laws were enforced, it is clear that the position of the dhimmi was subordinate to that of Muslim, and as such the dhimmi could never be a full citizen of any Muslim state, and could never be in a position of authority or sovereignty over Muslims. Given the high antiquity and religious authority of these concepts, no Muslim leader can acknowledge or recognized Israel as a Jewish state. To do so would be to ignore Allah’s command that Jews (along with other non-Muslims) are condemned to dhimmitude and are not free citizens with their own sovereignty. Similarly, an
acknowledgement of Jewish sovereignty and statehood would be an admission that “Palestine” is not Muslim land but is in fact Jewish “Israel.” And, most critical of all, such acknowledgements would mean that there is no basis for declaring a jihad against Israel or against Jews. Instead, by refusing such recognition and maintaining that Israel is an illegal occupier from an Islamic ideological viewpoint, holding Jewish sovereignty over Muslim land contrary to God’s will, Arab leadership can declare the need to maintain a holy jihad until the land is again under divinely ordained Muslim sovereignty. This is an important issue because it reveals that the prime motivation for the conflict is not borders or water sources or refugees: it is the Arab refusal to accommodate the existence of a Jewish state. Such a motivation, arising from what in essence is Islamic institutionalized religious apartheid, is inconsistent with the sensibilities of 21st century western culture, and would thus have difficulty finding support among western nations. So Abbas and
others lie about it. They pretend that a Jewish state is likely to discriminate against its non-Jewish inhabitants — a rather risible claim since non-Jewish minorities in Israel are far better off than any minorities, Muslim or non-Muslim, in Arab lands. Or they argue that a religious definition of a state is inherently racist — beyond risible since they have no such complaint against the Islamic republic of Iran or the self-identified Muslim states of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, or Saudi Arabia. To further obfuscate the real motivation for their animus toward Israel, Arab leaders and propaganda sources have focused the world’s attention on a variety of issues such as borders, water rights, refugee repatriation, and the status of Jerusalem: all of which could be resolved in peaceful negotiations, if the Arab side were willing to end the conflict peacefully. All too many of our mainstream media outlets and our political leaders have been duped by this obfuscation. And all attempts at resolution have failed because the focus has been on Israel’s concessions to these propagandistic demands, while ignoring the real cause of the conflict: Arab leaders’ unwillingness to accept Jewish sovereignty over what they still consider Muslim land. But a Palestinian Authority spokesperson let the proverbial cat out of the bag, perhaps inadvertently, earlier this year. Among the “Palestinian papers” released to the world via wikileaks, there is one called “Talking Points on Recogntion [sic] of Jewish State.” In this paper the Palestinian Authority spokesperson details the reasons for not accepting Israel as a Jewish state. Among them: “Recognizing the Jewish state implies recognition of a Jewish people and recognition of its right to self-determination…. Those who assert this right
also assert that the territory historically associated with this right of self-determination (i.e., the self-determination unit) is all of Historic Palestine. Therefore, recognition of the Jewish people and their right of self-determination may lend credence to the Jewish people’s claim to all of Historic Palestine.” In other words, if Abbas were to acknowledge that Israel is a Jewish state, then he would have acknowledged that Jews have the right to political self-determination and national self-realization, just what he claims for the Palestinians, and just what the Qur’anic concept of dhimmitude denies to Jews. Arab leaders don’t want to do that because that would strengthen the Israeli argument for Israel’s just demand of those same rights. And such an admission would acknowledge that Jews can have sovereignty over Muslims (Arab Muslim citizens of Israel) and over what Muslims call Muslim land. So Abbas must continue to deny the obvious, no matter how ridiculous it sounds, because to not do so will weaken his own arguments. And to admit that the motivation for the animus that so much of the Muslim world bears toward Israel originates in the Islamic religious concepts of dhimmi and of the inadmissibility of non-Muslim sovereignty on Muslim land would be to reveal the real core issue in the conflict: the Muslim religious apartheid ideology of the supremacy of Islam. Thus, Netanyahu is right to demand recognition of Israel as a Jewish state. Since the real motivator for Arab animus against Israel is the Jewish character of the state, there can be no end to the conflict until Arab leaders abandon these Islamic religious concepts. This is not likely to happen any time soon. David Meir-Levi is an American-born Israeli, and the director of the Israel Peace Initiative (IPI). (Source: FrontPage Magazine)
Iranian Pastor Faces Brutal Choice… By Mike Tighe (Newsmax)
U.S. State Department official expressed outrage and pressed Iran to reverse a court decision that gives an Iranian pastor an outrageous, and suicidal, choice: Reject his Christian faith, or die. The 32-year-old pastor, Yosef Nadarkhani, was arrested in October 2009 for apostasy because he objected to the teaching of Islam to Christian children at Iranian schools. He was sentenced to death by hanging late last year, a verdict that he appealed to Iran’s Supreme Court. The appeal appeared to have been granted, as his lawyer indicated to a news agency on July 3. But an Iranian human rights
agency now says the ruling actually imposes the recant-or-die choice, according to CNSNews online. A U.S. State Department official issued a statement expressing dismay at the prospect: “While Iran’s leaders hypocritically claim to promote tolerance, they continue to detain, imprison, harass, and abuse those who simply wish to worship the faith of their choosing.” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said. “We join the international community in continuing to call on the Iranian government to respect the fundamental rights of all its citizens and uphold its international commitments to
protect them.” The indictment against Nadarkhani, a father and evangelical pastor who became a Christian at age 19, accused him of organizing evangelistic meetings, sharing his faith, inviting others to convert, running a house church, and “denying Islamic values.” After his death sentence, his appeal appeared to win a reversal of the fate of hanging. But the victory was not as clear-cut as it seemed, and Nadarkhani now has been told that he may face new charges or the case could be returned to the original sentencing court in northern Iran’s Gilan province, according to the Human Rights Activists News Agency,
an association that Iranian human rights advocates established in 2009. Now, it appears that the Gilan court will “question the defendant again in order to determine whether he believes in Islam or not. If he is a Muslim, Yosef Nadarkhani must be released. If it is determined that he is a Christian, he may repent from his faith. Otherwise, if he insists on his beliefs, the death penalty must be carried out,” CNSNews quotes the agency as saying. And the advocacy group Christian Solidarity Worldwide said, that, despite reports that the death sentence had been
reversed, “in reality the Supreme Court appears to have added a precondition requiring him to renounce his faith, or face execution.” Although Nadarkhani didn’t practice any faith before he became a Christian at 19, he was born to Muslim parents and Islamic law dictates that a child of Muslim parents is considered to be a Muslim. Although apostasy is not an offense in the Iranian penal code, CNSNews reports that Iran’s constitution includes a clause demanding that, if a basis for a judicial ruling does not exist in the law, judges must turn to “reliable Islamic sources or a valid fatwa.”
An Open Letter to Prime Minister David Cameron
By Melanie Phillips that the Arabs wish to destroy the State of Israel. The solution, therefore, is to stop them from continuing to try to do so. And to achieve that, it is essential that the West stop rewarding them for their attempts.
Dear Prime Minister, I was interested to read that, when you met Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu last week, you said: “Britain is a good friend of Israel and our support for Israel and Israel’s security is something I have described in the past, and will do so again, as unshakeable.”
For the single most important reason for the never-ending nature of the Middle East impasse is that, uniquely, for more than nine decades the West has rewarded the Arab aggressors and punished their Jewish victims. And from the start, the western leader of this infernal process, I’m afraid to say, was Britain.
I wonder, therefore, if you make a habit of threatening your friends? For you also said that unless Israel “engages seriously in a meaningful peace process” with the Palestinian Authority, the more likely it is that Britain will endorse the “State of Palestine” for which the PA is expected to seek recognition at the UN in September. This is not the behavior of a friend so much as the kind of intimidation that is more reminiscent of a mafia protection racket. First of all, you have incomprehensibly decided to pressurize the victim in this conflict to make peace with its aggressor, even though the victim is the one party that constantly tries to make peace. It is the PA which has refused to negotiate with Israel, not the other way round, on the spurious grounds that Israeli expansion of Jewish homes beyond the “Green Line” is a bar to negotiations. I wonder whether you might explain to both Britain and the Jewish people why you do not insist that Palestinian Authority President Abbas “engages seriously in a meaningful peace process” by unambiguously renouncing – in both English and Arabic – his repeated assertions that his people will never accept Israel as a Jewish state, the casus belli of the entire conflict? I wonder also if you might explain to both Britain and the Jewish people why you implicitly endorse the racist ethnic cleansing inherent in the putative “State of Palestine” which the PA says it will declare – a state in which Abbas has repeatedly declared that not one Jew will be allowed to live – but which you have now threatened to support? I’m sure the British people in particular would be interested to know when you decided that racism and ethnic cleansing were part of your modernizing program for the Conservative Party. Next, I wonder if you might clarify for us exactly why the British government has welcomed the alliance entered into between Hamas and Abbas’s Fatah, and why you believe that this will advance the cause of peace. As you know, your government still regards Hamas as a terrorist organization. More than that, Hamas is explicitly committed to the destruction of Israel and the genocide of the Jews, a platform from which it has explicitly stated this week that it will not resile. And as you know, following the killing of Osama bin Laden the leader of Hamas in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, condemned the “assassination and the killing of an Arab holy warrior” – while for their part the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, the terrorist department of Fatah that you do not appear to think is an obstacle to peace, called bin Laden’s death “a catastrophe” and vowed to step up the jihad to establish the dominance of Islam in the world.
I’M SURE we are all agog to learn why you, a Conservative prime minister and the supposed ally of America in the defense of the free world, have chosen not only to applaud and promote a coalition which includes genocidal fanatics who are in bed with both al-Qaida and Iran, but why you are also threatening their victim, Israel, that Britain will endorse a state run by this genocidal coalition unless Israel itself enters into negotiations with it. To carry on with the mafia analogy, this is akin to threatening someone that if they do not put a gun in their mouth and pull the trigger you will set the mob on them to achieve the same result.
It was the British who, out of sheer breathtaking malice against the Jewish people, first incited the (hitherto mainly benignly disposed) Arabs against the Jews returning to their ancestral homeland in Palestine in the early years of the 20th century. It was the British who set out to undermine and reverse their own government’s policy to reestablish the Jewish national home in the land of Israel. It was the British who reneged on their internationally binding treaty obligation to settle the Jews throughout Palestine – including the areas currently known as the West Bank and Gaza – with the result that they kept out desperate Jews trying to flee Nazi Europe, causing thousands to be murdered in the Holocaust.
encouraged from the start, by robbing the Jews of their rightful inheritance and giving great chunks of it to their aggressors. But if aggressors are rewarded, the inevitable result is more aggression until they achieve their final terrible aim. And that very same process is in evidence today, with Britain’s grotesque endorsement last week of the coalition for genocide and your government’s unconscionable pressure upon Israel to negotiate its own destruction with its mortal enemies. Prime Minister, the virus of Judeophobia is now rampant once again throughout Europe – let alone in the Arab and Muslim world. And the fuel for this fire is the set of genocidal falsehoods about the Arab and Muslim war of extermination against Israel, a big lie which has turned victim into aggressor and vice versa. Appallingly, the British government is helping stoke this vile inferno by endorsing many of these falsehoods – and now, worse still, by actually promoting the coalition of genocide and turning the screw on its victim. The similarities with the 1930s and 1940s are uncanny and horrifying – similarities not just with what was allowed to develop in Europe, but also what happened in Palestine itself, the source of today’s terrible impasse. Prime Minister, if you are not very careful indeed history will judge that you
I’d be grateful if you could explain to us why you support the killing of the leader of al-Qaida, as well as sanctions against Iran on the grounds that both represent an unconscionable threat to the free world, and yet at the same time demand of Israel that it makes concessions to a coalition made up of the allies of Iran and al-Qaida. I’m sure we’d all like to know, if this is how you treat your “friends,” how you would treat your enemies. I realize, Prime Minister, that before you achieved high office your knowledge of and interest in foreign affairs was hovering around the zero mark. As a result, it is likely that your only knowledge of the Middle East comes from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which has a history of virulent antagonism towards the Jewish people. I would also expect, however, that you have an eye to your own place in history, and that you would probably like to be viewed by future generations as the British prime minister who stood shoulder to shoulder with the victims of genocidal aggression against their destroyers, rather than the other way round. If you are to get this the right way round and thus avoid such posthumous infamy, it is vital that you come to realize the key point about the Middle East impasse. To arrive at a solution, it is imperative first of all to correctly identify the problem. The problem in the Middle East is not the absence of a state of Palestine. Were that the case, the problem would have been resolved when such a state was first mooted long before World War II. The problem is instead
Jerusalem – Celebrating the Jewish feast of Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles)
At the same time, they encouraged Arab immigration from neighboring countries and turned a blind eye to the pogroms carried out by these Arab newcomers against the Jews whose land it was supposed to be – thus laying the groundwork for the false claim that the Arabs were the rightful inheritors of the land. And all the time, the British cloaked this vicious treachery in the honeyed fiction that they were the true friends of the Jewish people and had their interests at heart.
THE HISTORY of the British in this terrible conflict between Jew and Arab is not merely a chronicle of the utmost perfidy and malevolent Judeophobic bigotry. It is also directly responsible for the continuation of the conflict to this day. For Arab aggression against the Jews has been rewarded and
photo by JudyMcComb
reestablished a direct line back to the malevolence of the British in Palestine; back to that terrible time when Britain so foully betrayed the Jewish people and became a party to genocide; back to the approach which gave genocidal fanatics hope that victory was within their grasp. To stand up against all this – the defining madness of our times – would demand of you, I know full well, the utmost statesmanship and moral courage. But the alternative is to earn the contempt of decent people everywhere and the scorn of posterity. The choice, Prime Minister, is yours. (The writer is a British journalist and author of several books, incl. Londonistan, The World Turned Upside Down and The Ascent of Woman) Source: www.melaniephillips.com
christians for israel
Bring the Jews Home! By Koen Carlier
ur resources were strengthened when Dmitriy, a new fieldworker, joined our team about five months ago. I have known Dmitriy since the early nineties when he was working as a tour guide. On our many trips together, he would always tell the new Jewish immigrants of the prophetic importance of their return to the land of Israel. Later, he and his wife opened a basis on the Crimean Peninsula, the autonomous republic within the country of the Ukraine. With the help of a local team, they assisted many Jewish families to get to the Simferopol airport to make aliyah. Their work continued until the spring of 2006. Presently Dmitriy is based in Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine and his task, among others, is to inform the churches in the
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is the premier publication of CHRISTIANS FOR ISRAEL Christians for Israel – International Rev. Dr. John Tweedie, Chairman Rev. Willem J.J. Glashouwer, President Andrew Tucker, CEO PO Box 1100, 3860 BC Nijkerk Holland (The Netherlands) Tel. +31 33 245 8824 Fax +31 33 246 3644 Email: email@example.com www.c4israel.org Editorial Staff Henk Kamsteeg, Managing Editor Harmen Kamsteeg, Design Christians for Israel – Australia Henk Kamsteeg, Director PO Box 2280, Yokine South Western Australia 6060 Tel. +61 (08) 9444 3065 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Christians for Israel – Canada Rev. Dr. John Tweedie, Chair P.O. Box 26048, Brantford, ON N3R 7X4 Tel. +1 519 7200870 – Email: email@example.com www.c4i.ca
Ukraine about the importance of God’s role in the return of the Jews to Israel. There exists a gaping need for education about Israel. Dmitriy recently accompanied three olim from two small villages. Vladimir (77years) and his wife Raisa (74 years) thought that they would never make aliyah. Over a period of ten years, they had to say good-bye to many Jewish families and friends. Then, five years ago, their own children left as well. Now their children, grandchildren and great-granddaughter all live in Ashdod. One day, Vladimir and Raisa, received a letter. It contained an ‘invitation’ from their children, demanding that their parents join them in Israel. Initially this ‘invitation’ was put aside, but after discussions with the Jewish Agency and a couple of phone calls, they decided to leave Berschad, the little village of their birth. Once the administration wheels were set in motion, things went reasonably smooth. We were responsible for their transport to the Israeli Embassy and, with aother olim, from Berschad to the airport. During the trip to the airport they were very quiet, because leaving brings sadness, and an unknown future causes apprehension. It was a couple of hours
Dmitriy, our new fieldworker, brings Vladimir and Raisa to the airport
later that Dmitriy had the opportunity to tell them about the multitude of people from all over the world that are praying for the Jewish people and Israel, and about the faithfulness of the Lord who was fulfilling His promise by returning His Jewish people from out of the dispersion to Israel (Zachariah 8:4-5).
Dmitriy also told them about operation ‘Bring the Jews Home’. It is our task to lend practical assistance, and support the new olim by giving them hope. With every trip, we all realize and experience again the importance of the task God has called us to do.
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Please accept my donation to bless Christians for Israel’s ministry
One Person $300 New Zealand / $300 Australia $200 Canada / $170 U.S.A.
Phone Email New Zealand P.O. Box 314046, Orewa 0946, Auckland
One Family (5 persons) $1,250 New Zealand / $1,000 Australia $1,000 Canada / $850 U.S.A.
Australia P.O. Box 2280, Yokine South, WA6060 Canada P.O. Box 26048, Brantford, ON, Canada N3R 7X4
One Busload (25 persons) $6,250 New Zealand / $5,000 Australia $5,000 Canada / $4,250 U.S.A.
South East Asia Region Towner Post Office 078, Singapore 913223
Please send your cheque, payable to Christians for Israel, to the address applicable to you
U.S.A. P.O. Box 12438, Pleasanton, CA 94588
OTHER COUNTRIES: C4I International, PO Box 1100, 3860 BC Nijkerk, Netherlands (Holland)
Christians for Israel - South East Asia Region National Co-ordinators Kenneth Khoo & Wilson Ng Towner Post Office, PO Box 078 Singapore 913223 Tel: +65 - 9179 1757 Email: email@example.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.c4israel.org