I’m writing to inform you that our embassy’s representative will not be able to participate in Saturday’s panel on the security barrier. As you know, our intention has always been to conduct an open dialogue with Church institutions, and it is rare that we turn down an invitation to participate in a church event, especially when it concerns Israel.
However, we have closely followed the unfolding of the ‘Bethlehem Unwrapped’ event this past week, and have been brought to the inescapable conclusion that this is not an event which is intended to deepen understanding, or promote reconciliation but rather is a transparent attempt to incite against Israel and Israelis.
A prominent quote on the homepage of the event states
“The most unhelpful thing you can do is be pro one side; it just adds to the conflict”
This week’s event has proven to be exactly that, a one-sided affair that unfortunately does nothing to bring the sides together.
One of your event speakers, Jeff Halper, spoke in front of the replica will stating it had nothing to do with security, while much of the writing on the wall, contrary to our previous understanding, is clearly political and divisive in nature
Where we feel that there is an openness to genuine discussion, we are committed to participating and engaging in genuine debate. However, to participate in an event of this nature would in our view be a disservice to the hundreds of Israelis. Jews and Christians alike, murdered in acts of suicide terrorism, which the barrier was established to prevent.
We believe that today, as Christians are being persecuted on an unprecedented scale across the Middle East, churches burned and whole communities forced to flee, to focus on a temporary defensive barrier built to prevent terror, is to do an injustice not only to Israel but to Christian communities across our region.
For these reasons, we will not the future on activities that truly promote understanding and foster peace building.
Kol HaKavod – well done
This is the link to the list of all names and address to contact at St. James’ Church whcih was kindly sent in by a reader.
Jeff Halper mention by the Embassy is what many of us call the ‘enemy within’