What’s this? The Pope making anti-Semitic remarks? Well, there’s more than one Pope. It’s not Pope Benedict XVI. Nor one of those self-appointed alternative Popes, like blog-writing Pope Michael (more about him here). No, it’s the Coptic one.
THE LEADER of the Coptic Church, Pope Shenouda III of Alexandria told Egyptian television last month the Western Churches were wrong to exonerate Jews for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and criticised recent statements apologising for Christian anti-Semitism.
Asked whether Jews were “Christ-killers”, responsible for the crucifixion, Shenouda stated, “The New Testament says that they are,” and asked rhetorically whether the Vatican was “against the teachings of the New Testament?”
Shenouda stated he had banned Copts from visiting Israel for fear they will “be influenced by the Israeli media, and we will not be able to prevent this. Who knows what ideas they will return with?”
The Coptic Christians are oppressed by their Muslim overlords. Is this dhimmi nervously trying to please the latter in the hope that they won’t hurt him? Or is he anti-Semitic anyway? Or both?
It's the 40th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem, and here are some interesting links for the occasion.
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, has been pleading for the release of the BBC journalist Alan Johnston, abducted in Gaza.
He likens Johnston’s fate to his own experience of imprisonment by Idi Amin – the shadowy nearest anyone gets to criticism of the Palestinians. There is an implication here, perhaps, that there might just be brutality and injustice and other kinds of nastiness within the angelic Palestinian community, who are normally beyond criticism. He doesn’t say this openly, however. No Church leader does.
“But my faith in Christ, my knowledge of the prayers being said on my behalf, these two things were instrumental in being able to survive each day in captivity.” He added: “My continuing prayers for Alan Johnston’s freedom are grounded in the belief that the journalistic enterprise is a noble and worthy one.”
Yes, I’m sure the “journalistic enterprise is a noble and worthy one”. According to his UK Palestinian supporters, however, he was not an impartial journalist. He was a Palestinian propagandist. His work was to contribute to the view of them as a purely victim people, whose faults (if they have any) are really the fault of their Jewish neighbours. This constant media brainwashing is what makes it difficult for many people to offer the criticism the Palestinians often so richly deserve.
From the BBC's own horsey mouth: UK Palestinians: BBC "Works for Us".
Restaurant owner Mohammed Zomlot, who is from Gaza, said the Palestinian community in the UK wanted to support Mr Johnston.
“I feel that we are the people who really should care about Gaza, and who should care about Alan,” he said.
“Because Alan, at the end of the day, he’s one of the people who cares about us and he works for us, and that’s why we have a responsibility to protect him, and we have to ask for his immediate release.”
Jewish writer Melanie Phillips shows more concern for Christians who are being persecuted by Palestinians than any Christian leaders do about their oppressed brothers and sisters.
Last month, Palestinians bombed a Christian book store funded by American Protestants that exclusively sold Christian books. Two nearby Internet cafes also were bombed. The campaign of violence against Christians and other non-Muslims is not confined to Gaza. There have been numerous reoports of attacks on Christians in the Palestinian-controlled territories. Anti-Christian riots have been reported in Ramallah, Nazareth and surrounding villages. Last September, Palestinian gunmen attacked and set fire to the Young Men’s Christian Association headquarters in Qalqiliya, a large West Bank city controlled by Hamas.
These are not random attacks but an attempt at religious cleansing targeted principally at Christians.
One Christian leader, an aide to Jerusalem’s Latin Patriarch Michel Sabah who asked his name be withheld out of fear of Muslim retaliation, called the threats against Qalqiliya’s YMCA part of a general trend of Christian persecution in Palestinian areas… Some analysts called the recent bombings of secular and Christian institutions in Gaza recent indications Hamas may be seeking to impose Islamic rule on the Palestinian population.
Church leaders are quick to blame Israelis for problems suffered by Christian Arabs, but won’t allow even the faintest whisper of criticism of Palestinians to cross their lips.
Has the Archbishop of Canterbury, who last Christmas blamed Israel for the flight of Bethlehem’s Christians, thundered from the pulpt about this Palestinian persecution of his flock? Is it being reported by the western media? Of course not. Have the grisly demands by the Palestinian terror group that appears to have kidnapped the BBC’s Alan Johnston provoked leader-writers and columnists to denounce Palestinian savagery? Of course not. The reaction ranges all the way from muted reporting to total silence.
Why do they blame Israel at every opportunity, while refusing to criticize the Palestinians? Anti-Semitism? Mindless acceptance of propaganda brainwashing which tells them over and over again that the Palestinians are a victim people like no other victim people, in spite of so much evidence to the contrary? But why do they accept this propaganda so eagerly and without question? Perhaps we’re back to the same explanation again. Anti-semitism.
Not much to do with Christians and Jews - at least not directly - but a voice of freedom in the Middle East has just been stifled. Egyptian blogger Sandmonkey has fallen silent.
Today is going to be the day that I've been dreading for quite sometime now. Today is the day I walk away from this blog. Done. Finished.
There are many reasons, each would take a post to list, and I just do not have the energy to list them. As anyone who has been reading this blog for the past month, I think it is apparent that things are not the same with me. There are reasons for that:
One of the chief reasons is the fact that there has been too much heat around me lately. I no longer believe that my anonymity is kept, especially with State Secuirty agents lurking around my street and asking questions about me since that day. I ignore that, the same way I ignored all the clicking noises that my phones started to exhibit all of a sudden, or the law suit filed by Judge Mourad on my friends, and instead grew bolder and more reckless at a time where everybody else started being more cautious. It took me a while to take note of the fear that has been gripping our little blogsphere and comprehend what it really means.
I always enjoyed reading his blog, and it was easy to forget the courage it took for him to write it.