I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised.  While I’ve not allowed but one comment related to the Israel-Palestinian Conflict on my reports of the ELCA Churchwide Assembly, I receive a steady stream of comment requests and even chastisement for not allowing the comments through (I have this blog set to only allow comments to be posted after I have reviewed them and determined whether or not to “approve” them.)

The perspectives couldn’t be more different.

“I’m disappointed that you did not publish my previous response…did I include any statements that were hateful or false? Was it my assertion of persecution of Christians by Palestinians? Or statements on the legality Israel’s “occupation” of various plots of real estate? Or was it simply that I did not address the “boycott”?  Please note that it is not possible to avoid products made in illegal settlements, because (as I mentioned previously) Jews have the legal right to settle anywhere in the Mandate territory. They may not have a moral right…it is arguable whether or not they have a divine right…but they DO have a legal right…which is the basis for much of the text of my previous response.  I apologize if my attempts at disseminating truth are offensive, but the legitimacy of Israel is important. If the ELCA (I am a baptized Lutheran, btw) chooses to boycott Israel for ejecting a Christian pastor accused of missionary work, I would support that…but one based on misunderstandings of legality of settlements and territories is hard to swallow. I hope you take the time to consider this post. Respectfully, ~GdB”

His blog has more.

Then, just hours later.

It’s interesting to read what Palestinians have asked of us. In July 2005, 171 Palestinian NGOs called: “… upon international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era. We appeal to you to pressure your respective states to impose embargoes and sanctions against Israel. We also invite conscientious Israelis to support this Call, for the sake of justice and genuine peace. These non-violent punitive measures should be maintained until Israel meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law by:

1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall;
2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194. ”

The blog has more, with disturbing photos.

This is why I don’t open the debate in the comment field.

Pondering Pastor


One response to “Israel-Palestine

  1. Thank you for your time and consideration, and for explaining your position.

    You have my respect.


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