Thursday, July 07, 2005

UCC takes strong Israel stand

UCC takes strong Israel stand

Linking to the dreaded Washington Times, because I haven't seen the story anywhere else. Of course, they see this development quite differently than I do, and put the rebuttal before the statement itself:

Jewish leaders condemned resolutions passed by the United Church of Christ that call for Israel to dismantle its security fences around Palestinian territories and for companies to use "economic leverage" to promote peace in the Middle East.
The measures, passed by the UCC's rule-making body at its annual meeting Tuesday, seek to hold Israel to a different moral standard, said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean for the Simon Wiesenthal Center. He called them "functionally anti-Semitic."

Someone make this guy write on the chalkboard 100 times "Opposition to the policies of Israel does not equal anti-Semitism. Opposition to the policies of Israel does not equal anti-Semitism. Opposition to the policies of Israel does not equal anti-Semitism..."

Peter Makari, the church's executive director for the Middle East and Europe, defended the General Synod's votes, saying the church remains committed to religious dialogue and participation among Jews, Christians and Muslims.
"These resolutions condemn all acts of violence on both sides and indicate a clear desire by the synod to end violence and promote peace," Mr. Makari said.
The synod discarded a previous resolution endorsing divestment against companies involved with Israel in favor of a proposal to use the tools of "economic leverage" -- including divestment -- to promote peace, Mr. Makari said.
Such efforts would begin with trying to persuade companies to stop profiting from conflicts in the Middle East. If that failed, church officials might sell stock in those companies.
The second resolution calls for the Israeli government to tear down the security barriers around the Palestinian territories.
"The wall has devastating effects on the lives and livelihoods of Palestinians," Mr. Makari said. "It prevents the opportunity for interaction for people who desperately want there to be peace."

YAH! The guts to say "Mister Sharon, tear down this wall."

Meanwhile, Israel has the chutzpah to ask US, that is U.S. us, to pay $2 billion for the Gaza pullout. Let's see: you're leaving land that belongs to someone else in the first place, and you want US to pay for it? (This story, of course, is from a UK news source.)

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