MyNews24 is a user-generated section of The stories here come from users.

Comments: 41
Article views: 980
Latest Badges:

View all RodinsThinker's badges.

Who Would Jesus Bomb?

11 May 2012, 08:29

Two weeks ago, the US United Methodist Conference (UMC) in Tampa, Florida considered two key votes. The first was whether to endorse a boycott of Israeli companies operating in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT); it called for “all nations to prohibit the import of products made by companies in Israeli settlements on Palestinian land.” The second called for the UMC to divest its own pension funds from three US Corporations, Caterpillar, Hewlett Packard and Motorola Systems – all three of which have a presence there (you may recall it was an Israeli army-owned Caterpillar bulldozer that rode over 23-year-old anti-Occupation protestor Rachel Corrie in March 2003 and killed her).

Dozens of Jewish Rabbis noted in an open letter to the UMC: “There is in fact a growing desire within the North American Jewish community to end our silence over Israel’s oppressive occupation of Palestine. Every day Jewish leaders – we among them – are stepping forward to express outrage over the confiscation of Palestinian land, destruction of farms and groves and homes, the choking of the Palestinian economy and daily harassment and violence against Palestinian people. Members of the Jewish community are increasingly voicing their support for nonviolent popular resistance against these outrages – including the kind of cautious, highly-specific divestment such as the United Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church (USA) are preparing to undertake.” (Source:

Well, that vote has been and gone, with an interesting result. The boycott call was strongly endorsed (558 votes to 367), but the pension fund move failed (246 votes to 685 against) – in essence a vote to continue supporting the Israeli occupation of Palestine, despite the very public knowledge of the atrocities being perpetrated there by Israel. Also, sadly, an apparent decision based on self interest.

Now for those readers who don’t know, AIPAC is the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the largest pro-Israel lobby group in the US, responsible for sponsoring and driving pro-Israeli legislation through Congress. It works closely with the US military. AIPAC also lobbies for financial aid from the United States to Israel, helping to procure up to three billion [dollars] in aid yearly, making Israel "the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II." (wikipedia, referenced). In 1997, Fortune magazine named AIPAC the second-most powerful influence group in Washington, D.C. AIPAC also supported the U.S. congress in rejecting the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict's paper, written by (Jewish) South African Judge Richard Goldstone, which condemned Israel for atrocities committed there.

In 2008 Christians United for Israel (CUFI) held their “National Night to Honor Israel”. CUFI’s pro-Israeli stance is underwritten by its biblical beliefs, specifically Chapter 12 of Book of Genesis, which states that God blesses those who bless the Jews and curses those who curse them, and that Christian faith can't exist without the foundation of Judaism. One of the main attendees at the 2008 bash was one Senator Joseph Lieberman, who opened his speech by saying "I am your brother Joseph." Lieberman re-affirmed his support for CUFI, Israel and CUFI Chairman Pastor John Hagee.

Now, here’s the thing – Joe Lieberman is also a favourite friend of AIPAC – he speaks at their conferences, he has for many years been a close ally of theirs in congressional matters. He was a keynote speaker at their Washington D.C. conference in March this year and, as a neoconservative, is something of a hawk on the Iran question.

So we have a situation here that implicates AIPAC as a manipulator of the Christian Right in the US, playing on the biblical allusions to the Israelites as something of a “chosen people” on whose coat-tails Christians can ride into heaven. The Christian Right tends to vote Republican, and… well, you should be able to work out the rest – Republican neocons, wars in the Middle East, and so on.

Now the Jews-as-God’s-chosen-people idea has surfaced once or twice on this forum, which is not surprising as it is quite a central biblical principle, as is the notion of Palestine being their promised land. I’m not going to debate the merits of that one here – however the key point is that by blindly accepting the principles laid out in the bible, Christians are clearly endorsing these two fundamental ideas. The United Methodist Council vote to keep pension investments in Israel-based companies must be seen against those principles, given the visible and extreme human rights violations that have been visited upon Palestine by Israel (it could only be a biblical principle that is powerful enough to dissuade compassionate people from taking a right and moral action, and as Reverend Scott shows – Methodists know their bible).

Methodism is probably one of the “tamer” Christian denominations – there are plenty of more right-wing churches in the world that are now gaining profile and numbers. I would suggest that their recent pro-occupation vote is a pretty standard action in Christian circles, and that other groups take a far more visible stance in favour of the criminal Israeli occupation (I’ve seen them standing outside Parliament in Cape Town waving Israeli flags).

The more deluded variant of the Methodist action is that of CUFI chairman John Hagee (Joe Lieberman’s “brother”): in March this year Hagee prayed while holding hands with Benny “No Amputees” Hinn: “Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus, I pray for our president tonight… I pray that you would give him the Wisdom of Solomon to lead this nation into war against the enemies of righteousness”.  You can catch this at I suggest that anyone who doesn’t find this at least a little shocking should perhaps examine their ethics.  What we see so little of in the little spiritual backwater that is South Africa is how the Christian Right are incestuously intertwined with the politics of the Middle East conflict.

But there is hope - what’s Occupy AIPAC? You’ve heard of Occupy Wall Street… the Occupy movement is a protest effort focused on various injustices in the world, such as the huge economic disparities and the gross financial mismanagement and hubris demonstrated over the past few years by Wall Street bankers. Well, Occupy AIPAC saw throngs of people lining up outside the AIPAC conference in March, protesting at the Palestinian occupation and the ever-louder drumbeat of war on Iran. It included Christians, Jews and Muslims, demonstrating that they share common human values not distorted by the fog of their respective faiths.

So the questions I put to all Christians, and especially prospective believers, are these: do you fully understand what you are endorsing when you preach the bible? Are you aware of the impact of the beliefs you hold so dear in the world today? Do you appreciate the magnitude of the oppression and warmongering that is being carried out in the name of your God and his “chosen people” – those that you regard so highly and whose spiritual passport you are so desperate to hold for yourselves? Do you not realize that far from your faith being a sacred and sweet personal relationship with your personal God, it is in reality a medium for dissemination of imperialist and nationalistic ideals?

Can you see why non-believers are perhaps a little more critical than you’d like of blind adherence to this faith and extremely wary of its impact on society? Please give it some thought. Read the papers, research on the web, and open your eyes to the reality that is the world of religion.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Adv Sphamandla Blose
Our heritage, our culture

Celebrating the importance of the Heritage month, Xhosa traditional clothing is one of the most recognised attire that symbolises the rich culture which brings its own vibrancy to our diversity. Read more...

7 comments 334 views
Submitted by
Vulcan Trekkie
What makes you African? Tackling ...

So what makes you African? Is it the colour of your skin? Is it the continent you where born on? Is it your culture, your language or something else? Read more...

16 comments 286 views
Submitted by
Kalos eidos
Obama's UN Speech. How can we bel...

His speech smacked of a New World Order bent, without resorting to the term outright, he used words and phrases like unity, collective, an interconnected world; enforce international norms and so on.  Read more...

29 comments 965 views
Submitted by
Blind loyalty

What is it that Zuma has that instils the blind loyalty we witness from his most senior appointees in his Cabinet? Read more...

9 comments 304 views
Submitted by
Angela Ford
People just don't care anymore

I was on the train. As it started pulling away, it suddenly came to a stop again. We weren't sure why but a couple of minutes later, we heard that someone was "under the train".  Read more...

17 comments 2783 views
Submitted by
Njabulo Mndebele
Following your heart

I have a question why love is so difficult to understand and why we always chose people wrong people to love them?  Read more...

4 comments 543 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now! - shop online today

Deal of the week!

20% off Afrikaans books, music and DVDs. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Hot gaming titles – available for pre-order!

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Day Zero Edition, Far Cry 4, Grand Theft Auto 5 and more. Pre-order now!

Get a free eBook

Buy 3 eBooks and get the cheapest FREE. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25



E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

Interactive Advertising Bureau
© 2014 All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.