The church stares into the abyss
Published in: Jewish Chronicle
It's the church's AUT moment. The endorsement by the Anglican Consultative Council of divestment from companies supporting Israeli policies echoes the boycott debate among university lecturers and plunges Jewish-Christian relations into a crisis.
Although the ACC softened its final position by weaselly caveats designed to produce deniability, the fact remains that the Anglican communion has now lined up behind those who are waging war against the Jews.
The Anglican Peace and Justice Network report on which the decision was based is a farrago of inflammatory lies, libels and distortions. It presents the Arab perpetrators of mass murder as victims and their real victims in Israel as oppressors merely for trying to defend themselves. Despite disingenuous pieties about opposing terror against Israelis, the document demonises Israel and supports policies that would lead to its destruction.
It claims that Israel 'systematically and deliberately oppressed and dehumanised the people of Palestine' and deplores 'the continuing policies of illegal home demolitions, detentions, checkpoints, identity card systems and the presence of the Israeli military that make any kind of normal life impossible.' But the only reason normal life is impossible is that the Arabs in the territories are intent on ending as many Israeli lives as possible.
It writes the Jews out of the historic script by claiming that the Palestinians were removed from their 'historic lands'. But Judea, Samaria and Galilee are the historic lands of the Jews, not the Arab colonisers who drove them out.
It claims there is 'little will on behalf of the Israel government to recognise the rights of the Palestinians to a sovereign state to be created in the West Bank - which includes East Jerusalem - and Gaza.' Yet Israel offered precisely such a state at Camp David and at Taba, and the only response was the terror war waged against its citizens.
The report's visceral anti-Jewish prejudice is expressed most starkly when it compares the 'concrete walls of Palestine' with 'the barbed-wire fence of the Buchenwald camp'. Thus to these Anglicans, the Jews have turned into Nazis - and all because they are trying to prevent themselves from being wiped out in another genocide.
The scale of this moral inversion and the singling out of the Jews for such racial libels amount to incitement to hatred against Israel and a deadly propaganda weapon aimed by Christians at the heart of the Jewish people.
This hatred is being fuelled by the viciously distorted accounts of Israel's history and present circumstances which pour out of Christian aid agencies and church newspapers in an unstoppable torrent, and by the very close links between senior Anglicans and radical Christian Arab clerics.
The report praises, for example, the Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem, Riah Abu El-Assal and Canon Naim Ateek. Both these figures are key exponents of replacement theology, the doctrine that underpinned centuries of Christian anti-Jewish hatred by claiming that the Jews have forfeited all God's promises to them because they denied the divinity of Christ. Bishop Riah, for example, has claimed of Palestinian Christians: 'We are the true Israel