Israel is heading toward an international religious crisis and the loss of untold millions in tourism following increased police actions against Christians.
So warned millennium experts and Christian and Jewish leaders in the wake of Israel’s midnight raid, arrest and deportation this week of a group of 21 Christians, mostly Americans, who had been living without incident near the Mount of Olives anticipating the “return” of Jesus and the beginning of the End of Days.
The earliest of what promises to be a cascade of post-mortems on Israel's military performance in Lebanon last summer are starting to come in. And the picture they paint is far from pretty.
They depict military and political leaders sending soldiers to war against the Shiite guerrilla force Hezbollah with ill defined, constantly shifting goals. They speak of commanders who failed to lead their soldiers personally, in the time-honored Israeli fashion, instead staying behind the lines to monitor their units' progress on video screens.
On the eve of his first U.S. visit since becoming deputy prime minister of Israel, Avigdor Lieberman, who calls for stripping Israeli Arabs of their citizenship, has received a provisional pass from much of the Jewish establishment — and a stamp of approval from one leader who denounced him just last May.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Jewish Week this week, “I don’t see anything extremist since he became part of the government.”
Thursday, November 5th, 2009
Following up on yesterday’s post about the deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian peace process: the Washington Post has an editorial that neatly summarizes the dilemma the Obama administration faces - a dilemma partially of its own making.
It’s all up in flames—-our reconciliation with the world, with the church, with the Palestinians. Yossi Klein Halevi writes in The Los Angeles Times (April 8) that all the dialogue and advancements are “threatened by a one-sided Christian approach to the Middle East conflict.” Despite the “outrageous invasion of the Church of the Nativity by several hundred Palestinian gunmen and wanted terrorists...
For a forthcoming television documentary and DVD about contemporary anti-Semitism, New York producer Andrew Goldberg interviewed academicians, theologians and journalists on four continents. Many of the experts were Arabs and Muslims in the Middle East, because, as the documentary shows, that region is the source of most anti-Semitism today.
For another, less-intellectual, perspective, Goldberg also wanted a look at public opinion, the “Arab street.” So he went to an Arab street.
The Obama administration is confident it will retain strong Jewish support even as it ratchets up the pressure on Israel and offers clues that, unlike its predecessors, it means what it says about the thorny issue of Jewish settlements on the West Bank.
While the pro-Israel establishment is already reacting angrily to the administration’s shifted red lines on settlements, many analysts say President Barack Obama’s ability to soften tough positions with pro-Israel reassurances will prevent a broad Jewish backlash.
Thursday, September 24th, 2009
Let me see if I’ve got this right.
The Obama administration wants to move Israeli-Palestinian talks directly into “final status” issues, which in case you missed the memo are issues so difficult to resolve that they were reserved for the last stage of negotiations.