More results...

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

More results...

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

The Day In Israel: Tues Oct 26th, 2010

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has urged the Pope to denounce a statement by Melkite Catholic Archbishop Cyril Salim Bustros at the recent Vatican Synod on the Middle East.

bustrosThe archbishop had opined that “We Christians cannot speak about the promised land for the Jewish people. There is no longer a chosen people. All men and women of all countries have become the chosen people. The concept of the promised land cannot be used as a base for the justification of the return of Jews to Israel and the displacement of Palestinians.”

Butrus added that the “justification of Israel’s occupation of the land of Palestine cannot be based on sacred scriptures.”

Jewish reaction was swift.

“This political stunt, wrapped in theological garb, not only insults every Jew, but flies in the face of the statements and actions of Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, both who have visited Israel and expressed solidarity with her people,” said Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper, dean and founder and associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, respectively. The two men had audiences with both pontiffs.

“The archbishop’s statement comes at the end of the conference wherein the so-called ‘Palestine Kairos’ document – which openly denies the right of Israel to be a Jewish state – was presented at the Vatican for the first time. These developments demand immediate action by the pope. Hopes for peace in the Middle East will only come when both sides recognize the rights of the others. These latest moves, left unchallenged, will damage interfaith relations and embolden anti- Semites and terrorists,” said Hier and Cooper.

The Anti-Defamation League also expressed deep concern over the remarks, calling them “the worst kind of anti-Judaism, bordering on anti-Semitism.”

In a letter to Cardinal-elect Kurt Koch, the newly-appointed president of the Vatican’s Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, ADL national director Abe Foxman wrote: “By stating that God’s covenantal promise of land to the Jewish people ‘was nullified by Christ’ and that ‘there is no longer a chosen people,’ Bustros is effectively stating that Judaism should no longer exist.”

A spokesman for the Vatican, Father Federico Lombardi, issued a statement Monday that sought to play down Butrus’s remarks and distance the Holy See from them.

“If one wants a summary of the Synod’s position, attention must currently be paid to the “Message,” which is the only written text approved by the synod in the last few days,” Lombardi said. “There is also a great richness and variety in the contributions made by the fathers, but which as such should not all be considered as the voice of the synod as a whole.”

Lombardi, without specifically mentioning Bustros, embraced the synod’s call for “an end to the occupation” while suggesting that the Arab bishop’s statements belonged to the collection of “individual” contributions that did not express the synod’s official stance.

According to the Catholic News Service, the Synod Message regarding the Jews “warned against inappropriate use of the words of the Bible,” and said that “recourse to theological and biblical positions which use the word of God to wrongly justify injustices is not acceptable.”

Who cares what the Vatican thinks? The words of the Bible could not be clearer, not just on the issue of the promised land but also on the prohibition against changing the word of G-d.

By the way, Cyril Salim Bustros was born in Lebanon.

Updates (Israel time; most recent at top)

11:35PM: Behold, my latest animated short.

10:02PM: Israeli officials are incensed at the comments of a UN envoy who has compared vandalism against olive trees to terrorism.

Following UN envoy’s comments in which he compared alleged settler vandalism against olive trees to terrorism, Israel reacts: “Does Serry pretend Israeli suicide bombers attack Palestinian buses?”

Israeli officials slammed UN special envoy Robert Serry’s comments Tuesday equating alleged settler vandalism against olive trees to terrorism, saying such an equation was “absurd” and “reprehensible.”

Serry, attending an olive harvest event with Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad  in the West Bank village of Turmus’ayya, near the Shilo, said the olive tree was a significant Palestinian symbol.

“There could be nothing more symbolic here in Palestine than to participate in the olive harvest. The harvest is an act of identity and self-reliance. It is a symbol of a people’s unyielding attachment to their homeland,” he said.

The settler violence against Palestinian olive farmers, he continued, has only served to underscore the urgency to end Israel’s “occupation of the West Bank.”

“In recent weeks in this village alone, settler extremists have destroyed hundreds of trees by poison or by knocking them down. The same story can be told by villagers in many other places. I am appalled at acts of destruction of olive trees and farmlands, desecration of mosques, and violence against civilians,” said Serry.

He called on Israel to protect the Palestinian farmers against such violence.

“Israel states its condemnation of attacks, and I welcome this. But its record in imposing the rule of law on settlers is lamentable. Israel must combat violence and terror by Israelis, as is expected of the Palestinian Authority in the case of violence and terror by Palestinians,” said Serry.

It was Serry’s placing “terror by Israelis” in the same league with that of the Palestinians that had some Israeli officials infuriated.

“We understand Robert Serry’s condemnation of violent action by a certain number of settlers, but the Israeli government strongly condemns them and instructed the law enforcement agencies to crack down on the perpetrators, even before this advise from the UN envoy,”  Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said.

“As for the use of the word ‘terror,’ does he want to make believe that there are Israeli suicide bombers attacking Palestinians buses?” he said.  “One cannot understand this absurd equation. The Israeli government has acted with determination against violence directed against Palestinians, with a number of offenders brought to trial and an unambiguous approach by the Israeli justice system to this problem”

Another government source said he found “reprehensible” a comparison of vigilante actions against trees, actions which he condemned strongly, “with the murdering of civilians. This is a problematic comparison that just shouldn’t be made.”

8:30PM: Apparently, I am “up in arms” about Lauren Booth’s conversion to Islam.

Alternatively, some numbskulls can’t tell the difference between being pissed and taking the piss out of (hat tip: Judeopundit)

8:02PM: Tutu: No no, don’t go go.

7:54PM: First hummus, now butter.

5:20PM: Some more photos of the “peace activists” posing with Islamic Jihad terrorists.

4:54PM: The PA has just redefined what a “settlement” is.

The Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of National Economy responded to allegations that its minister’s office violated a total boycott of settlement goods on Tuesday by saying it did not describe the Atarot Industrial Area as an illegal Israeli settlement.

Initially unavailable for comment when the report surfaced, Abdul Hafiz Nofal, the ministry’s undersecretary, told Ma’an Radio that while the Israeli-built industrial area falls east of the Green Line in Jerusalem, it is not considered a settlement because of several Palestinian investments.

“We have submitted a report to the Council of Ministers strongly indicating that the number of investments in this region exceeds 500 million dollars,” Nofal said.

On Monday, a consumer protection society in Hebron said minister Hassan Abu Libdeh’s office had failed to pursue an indictment against the Herbawi paper mill, caught smuggling notebooks manufactured in the area.

He added: “Many companies and factories owned by Palestinians have warehouses in that area. For example the Palestinian newspaper Al-Quds prints their papers in Atarot.”

Nofal called for “more accuracy before judging, in order not to cause any chaos or problems.”

How convenient.

4:32PM: Great piece on anti-Israel numbskull Lauren Booth and her recent conversion to Islam.

Lauren Booth’s embrace of Islam veils the truth

While Tony Blair was promoting his autobiography last month, his sister-in-law, Lauren Booth, was rolling around on the floor of a mosque in Iran.

She was, it has transpired, having a spiritual experience: she left the building with a vow never to eat pork or drink alcohol again.

Blair, meanwhile, was sounding off about the threat from Iran. “We have got to be prepared to confront them,” he said, “if necessary militarily. I think there is no alternative to that if they continue to develop nuclear weapons. They need to get that message loud and clear.”

Now the message to him from Iran is loud and clear: Christmas will never be the same with a friend of Iran’s President Ahmadinejad in the family. Booth works for Press TV, a propaganda channel run by the Iranian government from an office in Ealing.

In her broadcasts, Booth dons a headscarf, so it’s perhaps little surprise that this weekend she announced to an Excel arena packed with the Muslim faithful that she has joined their flock: “My name’s Lauren Booth and I’m a Muslim.” She described “the overwhelming sense of peace” she’d experienced at that mosque in the city of Qom and recalled a prayer: “Allah, thank you for putting me on this journey.”

Then she asked God to get out his diary: “If you could spare some time to look at Palestine to ease their pain, that would be great.”

Many will be dismayed Booth didn’t pray that the people of Iran be spared their pain too. It’s baffling how a journalist could visit a country with Iran’s appalling human rights record and not be moved to report on the injustices suffered by its people — such as Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who remains under threat of being stoned to death for alleged adultery. And then there’s the rape and torture used by the Iranian state to punish opposition.

She didn’t have to go to Iran: there are beautiful mosques in Britain she could have rolled about on the floor in.

Either way, her prayer for Palestine remains unanswered. Last weekend thugs in Gaza burned to the ground the already vandalised Crazy Water theme park for children, which they considered unIslamic, while the Hamas administration — which has banned women’s lingerie from shop windows and women from using water pipes — turned a blind eye.

These are Lauren Booth’s friends. In 2008, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh presented her with a “VIP” passport to Gaza; both he and Booth are backed by the Iranians.

In converting to Islam she follows in the footsteps of her Press TV colleague Yvonne Ridley, the former Express journalist who honoured a promise to her Taliban captors to adopt their religion in exchange for her release.

Cassius Clay converted to Islam and became Muhammad Ali in the context of the US civil rights struggle of the Sixties. Cat Stevens’s conversion in the Seventies was because he believed God had saved him from drowning — and he used it to get out of the media circus. Booth is doing the opposite in that respect.

While Booth’s spiritual experience was clearly very real to her, one cannot but recall Ahmadinejad’s claim to have been visited by divinity during his maiden UN speech in 2005. One of his aides had seen him surrounded by a halo of light as he became a vessel for the message of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the world.

3:35PM: According to French daily Le Figaro, Hizbullah has amassed approximately 40,000 missiles, thanks largely to Syria.

1:56PM: While George Galloway was denied entry to Gaza at Egypt, it seems as though he may have made it in after all.

11:06AM: Brian of London defends the EDL goes on the counterattack against opponents of the EDL.

10:46AM: Quote of the day:

“The priest doesn’t have to teach us about interpreting the Bible. We don’t teach them how to interpret the New Testament”

– Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger

10:12AM: The New York Times Thomas Friedman interviewed on Israeli television.

Memo to Friedman:

  • Ask yourself why Oslo broke down to begin with. Should we just turn a blind eye to terror?
  • The US is not Israel’s “only friend”
  • We couldn’t care less if you (Thomas Friedman) are our friend. But with friends like you, who needs enemies
  • You believe “What matters in life is what people do voluntarily”, and therefore do not think we should force the palestinians to recognize Israel. Yet you are fine with Israel being forced to freeze housing?

9:26AM: Jimmy Carter reportedly rejected a request for a meeting with the family of Gilad Shalit

Sergeant Shalit’s father, Noam, told Radio Israel that the ex-President said “he does not have time for this”. His son’s situation, he added, is “still the same – there’s nothing new”.

In contrast, this is what he did have time for.

6:15AM: Ma’an reports on trouble in paradise.

A Palestinian official is accused of violating his own government’s ban on trading in settlement goods.

The office of Hasan Abu Libda, the Palestinian Authority minister of national economy, recently torpedoed an indictment against a paper mill owner who was caught smuggling notebooks manufactured in a West Bank settlement.

A consumer protection society in Hebron says that instead of prosecuting the Palestinian vendor, Abu Libda issued permits to vendors and merchants allowing them to trade in the settlement goods from Atarot despite a blanket PA ban preventing such trade.

6:12AM: Anti-Israel shenanigans at the University of Michigan, where students staged a walkout on 2 IDF soldiers who came to speak.

6:08AM: Ynet reports that the Viva Palestina “peace activists” visited Islamic Jihad terrorists.

During their visit to Gaza, the Turkish delegation members visited several Islamic Jihad posts. One of the guests was quoted as telling the group’s gunmen that they are “a source of pride for all decent people in the Arab and Muslim world.” He defined them as “the forefront of the struggle against the Zionists.”

The Turkish guests praised the Palestinian activists, saying, “I am proud to be here with you, who have sacrificed so much for the sake of the Muslim nation. All of the Turkish people, as well as the Arabs and all Muslims, pray for your victory, support you and strengthen you.”

They have also published photos of the “activists” posing with the terrorists, such as the below, from the visit.

turkish activist

Of course, Israellycool readers would not be surprised by any of this.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Scroll to Top