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New York Jews Blast De Blasio Over AIPAC Speech

Rethinking Foreign Policy

A group of prominent Jewish leaders in New York have sent a letter to the city’s new mayor, Bill De Blasio sharply criticizing him for the fawning and kowtowing speech he secretly made to AIPAC. It’s short and to the point–AIPAC doesn’t speak for these Jews and, I’ll add, AIPAC doesn’t speak for most Jews or Israelis. It’s high time these people, who are not only causing immense harm to Palestinians but are also determined to lead Israelis over a cliff and US Jews to the end of the era of our history most free of anti-Semitism were confronted in no uncertain terms. They have money and hate, and nothing else. They represent no one but themselves.

Here is the letter:

View original post 302 more words

The Prayer Behind Leymah Gbowee’s Nobel Peace Prize

Leymah Gbowee

Leymah Gbowee (Photo credit: aktivioslo)

I love hearing women’s stories, especially when I can relate to them. Leymah Gbowee‘s story about bringing a peaceful revolution to Liberia is one I really connect with.  She recognized her weaknesses, her need for God, and she spoke truth to power.  Leymah Gbowee, mother and activist, is my kind of woman, and  she changed the course of an entire nation!

Leymah Gbowee is the narrator and central character in the 2008 documentary film Pray the Devil Back to Hell. This Nobel Peace Prize winner helped to bring down former Liberian President Charles Taylor, by among other things, organizing the women of Liberia to stop having sex with their husbands until they laid down their arms to stop killing for Charles Taylor’s terrible regime.  The women even threatened to strip naked in the public square (a terrible shame and a curse in their country), if the men refused to do this.

These tactics worked, and the women kept their clothes on!

Gbowee’s story is not a lovely one, and her doctrine seems hardly evangelical…but…I’m proud to say we share a special bond. She received her Masters from my first university, Eastern Mennonite, in Harrisonbug, VA…and I know the atmosphere there was filled with the peace of Christ.

This is where I began to understand what it meant to love God with my whole heart, mind and soul…and to love my neighbor as myself, and to follow Christ regardless of where He led me.

I like to think Gbowee and I may have shared some of the same sacred places at EMU; maybe a shade tree on the hill-top overlooking the dorms, where we prayed for our Lord to give us a loving “makeover”.

She is presently advocating for women in her campaign against female genital mutilation, FGM, a practice that is very common in Africa and many Arab nations.

The Ceasefire Prayer Behind Leymah Gbowee’s Nobel Peace Prize | Christianity Today | A Magazine of Evangelical Conviction.

Israeli PM Netanyahu: “Such behavior does not characterize IDF soldiers.”

Flickr - Israel Defense Forces - Suicide Bombe...

Flickr - Israel Defense Forces - Suicide Bomber Stopped in Gaza (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Israel's Special Forces in Camouflage

Israel's Special Forces in Camouflage (Photo credit: Israel Defense Forces)

I wish this title were true, or even wishful thinking. There are two sides to the Israeli/Palestinian Conflict and this incident illustrates it well.

I’ve heard that at this time when the Palestinians are increasing their efforts at non-violent negotiations and protests, the Israelis are increasing their aggressive behaviors.

As I watched the following short, YouTube clip sent by a Christian friend, several thoughts ran through my mind.

What is Done in Secret?  uL-GmYBNDqY

Sure, the young protesters were there to provoke a response, but they were non-violent. They were present in Israel to call attention to the violence and injustice done towards Palestinians, something seldom seen in the Western press, and not deemed important by American Christians.

That there are real security concerns in Israel is a fact.  The IDF is trained to suspect all Palestinians of the most egregious crimes and behaviors.  They do not differentiate. Imagine an entire nation labeled “Terrorist Killers”! This includes small children, pregnant women, old women and hard working farmers who are Muslim and Christian.

That there is an over diligence and over reaction often to the point of bullying on the part of the IDF and the Government is a well documented fact.

Let’s give the Lt. Col. who over reacted, the benefit of the doubt: PTSD, Family troubles, Stress, Depression, Economic problems may have entered in.  But, consider what happens in similar situations to a lone Palestinian farmer who doesn’t have a camera following him, when he argues with a soldier about the confiscation of his land?

Read what blogger Emily L. Hauser, who left Israel because of their policies toward the Palestinians, has to say.

Israeli PM Netanyahu: “Such behavior does not characterize IDF soldiers.” « Emily L. Hauser – In My Head.

Happy Birthday, Rosa

Booking photo of Parks

What is this demure, lovely young lady doing in a jail “booking” photo?


Rosa Parks Biography – Facts, Birthday, Life Story – Biography.com.

Thousands of Tunisians denounce Islamist extremism

English: A map of Arab Spring countries update...

A Map of Arab Spring Countries incl. Sudan

Perhaps the West is too quick to bemoan the Arab Spring, fearing the worst, without trusting that modern, educated Muslims will desire a better way!

Thousands of Tunisians denounce Islamist extremism – Yahoo! News.

Mustafa Tamimi Has Died

It is reported that Palestinian protester, Mustafa Tamimi, picked up and threw rocks at the IDF, thus compromising a Peaceful Protest. Of course, he was wrong to let his passion move him to throwing rocks.

For those who think, it is impossible for Palestinians to be “peaceful”, you should know that many of these peaceful protests have originated out of the Palestinian Evangelical Christian Church working alongside Muslims.

“Point is that the IDF should not use a tear gas canister like a projectile weapon. It should be aimed up into the crowd for dispersal, not in a protestor’s face. There are ways of dispersing crowds, and the IDF soldier will ultimately go unpunished.”

Warning: The video feed has a very gruesome scene.

Mustafa Tamimi has died | Mondoweiss.

“This Is What A Police State Looks Like”

Day 31 Occupy Wall Street October 16 2011 Shan...

Image by david_shankbone via Flickr

This is the chant we’re hearing from demonstrators outside Wall Street this morning.

I have to disagree.

In a real Police State, Demonstrators would be “disappeared”, never to be heard from again. Their GAP clothing (if they could afford it) and other valuables would be taken from them and distributed to the children of the Secret Police.

Their families would be threatened, their jobs and homes taken away. Some of them might be tortured or even murdered in cruel and unusual ways to keep them from talking to the press.

There would be no media coverage of the demonstrations, except that which was State sanctioned. Cameras would be confiscated, photographs of the demonstrators would not be allowed.

Interviews would be strictly along State or Party lines.

That’s why their complaints, though sincere, sound shallow and childish to me.

I’ve heard the same complaints from the other side, Tea Partyiers…who yell about Sharia Law…or a Police State…

I’ve lived and visited in several “Guided Democracies” which were more or less Police States…and assure you…we’re not even close.

With our Free Press, and Journalists who continue to search out the “story behind the story”, with individuals…on the right and left who have freedom to do so also…we are blessedly free.

For some comparisons and perspective, see the map of countries below for their free press rankings.