Committee members displayed "mutual forbearance toward one another"
Aug 03, 2010
As Presbyterians opened their eight-day General Assembly on the Fourth of July weekend, they faced a bitter debate over a report on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. It appeared to some leading participants that the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) would reenact a bruising version of Mideast confrontations “within its own body, so divided were we on all sides.”
Former president Jimmy Carter is calling Israel’s two-year-old blockade of Gaza an “atrocity” and saying that people there are being treated like animals. “Tragically, the international community largely ignores the cries for help, while the citizens of Gaza are being treated more like animals than human beings,” said Carter in a June 16 speech.
At the height of the second Palestinian intifada, Richard Griffiths, the editorial director of CNN, admonished me: “You have to remember, Walt, there are two standards of reporting at CNN, one for Israel and the other for the rest of the world.” Like many in U.S.
When Congress returns from its month-long vacation in September, President Bush will ask members to agree to a package of more than $63 billion in military aid and weapons to our “allies” in the Middle East. Why such generosity?
Prior to the Allied campaign in North Africa, GIs were issued handbooks designed to prepare them for the strange new lands in which they would fight: “Don’t refer to the people as heathen, they are very religious.
Before the Israeli-Palestinian conflict plunges even further into its cycle of violence, we should pause to examine one day in July when peace almost broke out. After weeks of intense discussions, diplomats from the European Union and the U.S.
A popular Middle Eastern joke insists President Bush’s recent speech on a Palestinian state was delayed for a few days, waiting for a translation from the original Hebrew. The joke reflects Arabic anger that U.S. policy is driven by what the current Israeli leadership thinks is good for Israel.
On the long climb to Jerusalem I notice two kinds of trucks. One kind is carrying huge battle tanks still muddy from combat in the West Bank. The other is carrying tents sent from America for Palestinians who have lost their homes in the fighting.
A senior Israeli official, listening to President Bush’s June 24 speech outlining U.S. policy on the Middle East, kept waiting to hear what pressure the U.S. was going to apply to Israel. He never heard it mentioned. “I thought all the way through the speech: this is the carrot, now comes the stick,” said the official. But “there was no stick.”