The recent initiative by a group of Protestant leaders calling on the US
Congress to reevaluate military aid to Israel is a nauseating example of
applying double standards against Jews and Israel under the cloak of piety and
The signatories include leaders of the
Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist and National Council of Churches. Although
many of the rank-and-file members of these churches are supporters of Israel and
unaware of these activities, their radical anti-Israel leaders were obviously
not inhibited from taking such action despite being aware of the role of their
churches in demonizing, persecuting and murdering Jews over the past 2,000
One is tempted to suggest that some of the current Lutheran
leaders have inherited the anti-Semitic poison of their 16th-century founder,
Martin Luther, who after failing to convert the Jews called on his followers to
murder these “poisonous envenomed worms” and set fire to their synagogues and
They have simply redirected his anti-Semitic obsessions toward
the Jewish state in lieu of individual Jews.
These Protestant groups
share a common belief in the displacement of the Old Testament by the New, in
stark contrast to the Evangelical Christians who reject this approach and do not
believe that permanent exile is God’s punishment for Jews’ rejection of
The timing of this appeal to Congress to effectively end
military aid to Israel magnifies their malice. Israel today confronts greater
threats to its existence than at any time since its creation. It is the only
country in the world whose neighboring countries would embark on a war designed
to annihilate it tomorrow – if they felt they could succeed.
It is a time
when a nuclear Iran poses a potentially existential threat to Israel; when
Islamic fundamentalism has extended its influence and menaces Israel security at
virtually every border; when the anti- Semitic Muslim Brotherhood, the creator
of Hamas, holds the reins of power in Egypt and threatens to undermine the peace
treaty with Israel; when al-Qaida operates freely in the Sinai Peninsula and
threatens Israeli civilians; when Iran’s surrogate Hezbollah is pointing
thousands of missiles toward Israel’s major population centers; when Hamas
continues launching missiles from Gaza against innocent Israeli citizens; when
Syria is engulfed in a bloody civil war between al-Qaida, jihadist groups and
Assad’s Alawites with 30,000 people already killed.
ONE MUST ask: Is this
a time for “Christians” to call on Congress to limit military support for an
embattled Jewish state? They sanctimoniously couch their approach in utter
humbug, claiming that they wish “to help build a peaceful and resilient civil
society” and “seeking a just peace for Israelis and Palestinians” – despite many
having been at the forefront of BDS campaigns against the Jewish
They act as though Israel represents the obstacle to peace talks.
Yet Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas refused to deal with the Israelis
even after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had implemented an unprecedented
10-month freeze on settlements in a futile effort to bring them to the
The church leaders complained bitterly about the
settlements, which beyond the major blocs, amount to a minute proportion of the
West Bank. They conveniently overlook the fact that two Israeli prime ministers
offered the PA virtually the entire West Bank but were rebuffed without even a
They also disregard events following the Israeli
unilateral withdrawal from Gaza when the areas ceded were transformed into
launching pads for hurling missiles deep into Israel.
Nor apparently were
“Christian” sensitivities disturbed by the vicious anti-Semitic incitement and
hatred as well as the sanctification of terrorist mass murderers not only by
Hamas but also the PA, both of which to this day still deny that there is any
Jewish link with Jerusalem.
And, if that were not enough, the bizarre
behavior of these Christians is exacerbated by their blindness and insensitivity
to what is happening to their own Christian kinsmen in the region. In Egypt,
Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran and most Muslim countries, freedom of religion
other than Islam is absolutely prohibited. Christians are persecuted and no day
passes without reports of pogroms and murders against Christian minorities,
especially Coptic Christians in Egypt. Tens of thousands of Christians fled Arab
countries whenever Islamists assumed control.
Are they not aware of the
mandatory death penalty which Islamic jurisprudence imposes on converts from
Islam to Christianity or any other religion? Or the death penalty for blasphemy
which is repeatedly applied against infidels? Yet these “Christians” have the
gall to call on Congress to restrict military aid to the sole democracy and only
country in the region in which Christians and all faiths are guaranteed freedom
of worship. A country in which Christians are to be found at every level of
Israeli society including the Knesset, the Supreme Court and
Yet when it is suggested that these Christians are biased
against Israel or motivated by anti-Semitism they will indignantly insist that
they are merely seeking justice for the oppressed Palestinians suffering under
They conveniently ignore the fact that granted
security, the vast majority of Israelis yearn to separate themselves from the
Palestinians and have no wish to rule over them.
To their credit, most
American Jewish leaders have responded with indignation and anger at this
primitive display of double standards against the Jewish state.
president Rabbi Steve Gutow accused the signatories of being “out of sync with
mainstream values” adding “we eagerly await the day when these church leaders
step away from the troubling fixation on hurting Israel and adopt an approach to
peacemaking that fosters reconciliation rather than conflict.”
Rabbinical Assembly, the international association of Conservative rabbis,
stated that such callous and biased behavior by these Christian groups warrants
a reevaluation of their organization’s interfaith activities.
assert that aside from the double standards employed in this call to Congress,
the timing of such an initiative in the midst of the Jewish holidays and the
absence of any prior consultation is an “egregious breach of trust” which
challenges the merits of maintaining interfaith dialogue with such hostile
And full marks to Abe Foxman and the Anti-Defamation League who
withdrew from an October 22 interfaith event with these groups and called on all
other Jewish groups to do likewise.
In a post-Holocaust era in which
Israel and the Jewish people are no longer powerless, there is no need to
humiliate ourselves by sharing platforms with Christian denominations which
behave toward us or the Jewish state like their predecessors behaved towards
Jews in the Middle Ages.
Fortunately there are numerous other Christians
like the many evangelicals who passionately love the Jewish state and Catholics
influenced by the Vatican Council’s 1965 Nostra Aetate and who have demonstrated
their strong support for Israel.The writer’s website can be viewed at
www.wordfromjerusalem.com. He may be contacted at
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