January 18, 2020

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From Bethlehem, A Wanderer Returns

http://daphneanson.blogspot.com/2019/12/from-bethlehem-wanderer-returns.html

By Daphne Anson

 

On a few-holds-barred Zionist blog, a trenchant look at recent anti-Israel bleatings of blogger Robert Cohen.  Married to an Anglican vicar, he’s a favourite with certain Israel-bashing as-a-Jew Christians (should that, perhaps, be Christian as-a-Jews?) such as a certain woman who is a lay reader at her local church on Wales, and he’s a favourite, too, of churchy campaigners against Christian Zionism like Jeremy Moodey and Stephen Sizer.

And now he’s no longer the vicar of Virginia Water but the CEO of the so-called Peacemakers Trust, the latter (an old mate of ours, since we were the blog that broke his heinous 9/11 Facebook post) is, it seems, as peritatetic as ever in his support of Iran and derision of Israel.

No wonder he stays so slim.

Here he is (above) in the last day or so with Elias D’eis, project manager of the so-called Holy Land Trust.

That’s the same Holy Land Trust (HLT), founded and directed by US-born Sami Awad, that avowedly

“Through a commitment to the principles of nonviolence … seeks to develop spiritual, pragmatic, and strategic approaches that will empower the Palestinian community to resist all forms of oppression, and engage this same community in making the Holy Land be what it is supposed to be: a global model and pillar of understanding, respect, justice, equality and peaceful coexistence.”

Sani Awad, NGO Monitor tells us, has stated that non-violent demonstrations are  

“not a substitute for the armed struggle”. Awad has also minimized Israel’s legitimate security needs as a “manipulation” of the fear of another Holocaust. In a speech given at the “Christ at the Checkpoint” Conference in 2010, Awad stated that “the [Israeli] soldier now, who’s gone through that trauma experience [of visiting Auschwitz] now is trained in this weaponry all of a sudden is also put at a checkpoint inside the West Bank, between Palestinian areas.”In 2013, Sami Awad published demonizing rhetoric in Amos Trust’s Bethlehem Packet stating “No matter where you stand in Bethlehem, you can see the effects of the cold grip of this brutal and humiliating occupation.” 

 Moreover,  HLT, we’re told, inter alia,

“Conducts highly politicized tours of Israel and the West Bank promoting the Palestinian narrative and targeting church leaders and the international community, claiming to provide “cross cultural and experimental learning opportunities in both Palestine and Israel.” Suggests that its participants “limit information” given to Israeli airport security and hide the reason for their visits…..

Supports anti-Israel BDS (boycotts, divestment, and sanctions), including signing a petition in May 2005 calling for the academic boycott of Israel.

 [Is] Signatory to the 2005 “Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS,” which calls for an end to Israel’s “occupation and colonization of all Arab lands” and promotes a right of “Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties.”

Accuses Israel of “ethnic cleansing” and signed an “Urgent call to action” during the 2014 Gaza conflict accusing Egypt of “complicity in Israel’s genocide of the people of Gaza.”…

 In 2011, HLT produced a film called “Little Town of Bethlehem,” a 77-minute documentary that tells the story “of three men of three different faiths and their lives in Israel and Palestine. The story explores each man’s choice of nonviolent action amidst a culture of overwhelming violence.” Using a façade of multiple viewpoints, however, the film actually presents a single narrative of Palestinian victimization and Israeli violence.

 In 2013, HLT sponsored a festival in London called “Bethlehem Unwrapped,” featuring “a comedy show called “Stand Up Against the Wall,” a “Bethlehem Christmas dinner,” and a debate titled “Both sides of the Barrier – Separation or Security?” that featured Jeff Halper, founder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions.”

 The main purpose of the barrier — to protect Israelis from suicide bombings — was erased. The festival was co-sponsored by charities that have exploited the language of morality and human rights to attack Israel for many years, including Amos Trust, Interpal, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD)-UK, Jews for Justice for Palestinians, and War on Want….”

In June 2017, was a signatory to an “Open Letter” from the National Coalition of Christian Organizations in Palestine to the World Council of Churches that accuses Israel of “Discrimination and inequality, military occupation and systematic oppression.” The letter calls upon the WCC to “recognize Israel as an apartheid state,” and “unequivocally condemn the Balfour declaration as unjust, and that you demand from the UK that it asks forgiveness from the Palestinian people and compensates for the losses.” The letter also defends “our right and duty to resist the occupation creatively and nonviolently,” through “economic measures that pressure Israel to stop the occupation…in response to Israel’s war on BDS. We ask that you intensity those measures.”

HLT also supports the Kairos Palestine document.

The Kairos Palestine document calls for BDS against Israel, denies the Jewish historical connection to Israel in theological terms, and blames Israel solely for the continuation of the conflict. It also characterizes terrorist acts of “armed resistance” as “Palestinian legal resistance.”

 Its purpose is to rally churches globally to support BDS, delegitimization, and demonization directed at the State of Israel…..”

 HLT partners with Amos Trust and a number of other highly politicised Israel-demonising groups including, inevitably, Sizer’s Peacemakers outfit.

That Sizer has returned from Bethlehem as zealous as ever to continue the mission of weakening support for Israel within Evangelical ranks is indicated not just by that big smile under the Christmas tree but by his newly posted video here

Meanwhile:

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