Recently, at my workplace, I heard a colleague say the following about the State of Israel: “They were born into war”. She then went on to justify Israel’s cache of weapons because the are constantly under threat. It’s the old argument that Israel has a right to defend itself…and this woman calls herself a Christian.
As an aside, I find it interesting, that those who are the first to bring up Israel’s right to self-defence, never acknowledge that an Occupied People (meaning the Palestinians) have a right to resist their Occupiers. This is guaranteed to them under the Geneva Convention, which sets out the responsibilities an Occupying Power has to the people it is Occupying. Moreover, unlike the State of Israel, the Palestinians do not have an army or any military to speak of. Palestinians do not have an Iron Dome defence system nor do they have a Western world power guiding their missiles directly into civilian targets (ie. UN schools and hospitals). But Israel does.
Somehow Israel is able to convince people like the women that I work with, that its murderous attacks on the people of Gaza this past summer, attacks that left 501 children dead, are justified and are right. Moreover, these kinds of teachings are happening in cities across North America-ministers and pastors are preaching unending support for the state of Israel- while they promote fear and misunderstanding about Muslims and Islam.
I know just from listening to these two co-workers of mine that neither of them is cognizant about the creation of the State of Israel, nor do they understand the significance of Israel’s 47 year occupation of the West Bank, and how it violates every aspect of the Geneva Convention and international law. But who will tell them? Yet at the same time that these women are receiving all kinds of false information in their church sermons, countless numbers of churches have voted to divest from the state of Israel and boycott goods from the Occupied Territories. I know that many, many Christians have spoke out loudly against the State of Israel. Unfortunately I have yet to meet one of them.
In closing, these women are the first to sponsor children in developing countries through Christian organizations, but when it came to Israel’s attacks on Gaza this past summer and the war crimes committed they are silent because they continue to believe Israel’s attacks on the Palestinians are justified. They look away from the children left maimed and orphaned in Israel’s attacks. This is unacceptable.