No failure so tragic than an idea that never should have been that seeks to replace a Reality and idea thats already succeeded, especially that which is exploited by those who lead.
– Paul Marcel-Rene 11/22/12
When I wrote this original statement, I was referring to the tragic idea of a “palestinian” state besides Jordan (which already was established as a state of palestinians) that never should have been and that has led to countless deaths due to the exploitation of the displaced arabs erroneous classified as palestinians by their leaders, that seeks to replace the idea and reality of the State of Israel.
More Jewish blood libel from Muslim media: Photos of Syrian Massacres Recycled as Gaza Atrocities
It’s Goebbels one better. Unlike the Muslim world, the Nazi propaganda war machine didn’t have a supplicant world media eager to advance their monstrous blood libels.
Yet another fake “Gaza” photo has incited a flurry of comments on Facebook against Israel during the fifth day of Israel’s Pillar of Defense operation in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. An Arab news site called Alarab Net released the photo, which shows a family who was allegedly ‘massacred’ in Gaza on its Facebook page on Sunday, November 18.
The caption in Arabic roughly translates into English as “martyred massacred family in Gaza shortly before…”Thanks to Tazpit News Agency’s investigative work, it was found that the photo had been originally published on a news site based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates called Moheet one month earlier on October 19. On the Moheet website, the photo was titled “Syria killed 122 Friday…Assad Used Cluster Bombs.”
Israel Defense Forces’ The Israeli Experience: Life Under Fire set…
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Afraid of Terrorists, Egypt To Continue Demolishing Border Tunnels – International Middle East Media Center
Egyptian security sources reported that the army and the police, operating against criminal armed groups in Sinai, will start in the coming days, a large operation that is meant at resuming the demolition of border tunnels with Gaza.
See on www.imemc.org
Iran is working at speed to give the Jihad Islami, its radical Palestinian arm in the Gaza Strip, a strong military edge over the ruling Hamas which it no longer trusts, DEBKAfile’s exclusive military sources report. Tehran is motivated by two objectives:
1. Because of its growing distance from the Assad regime in Syria, Hamas can no longer be relied on to support the Islamic Republic’s cause and strike Israel or US Middle East targets if the latter go to war on Iran’s nuclear program.
One of Tehran’s top strategic priorities now is therefore to set Jihad Islami up as the spearhead of a potential attack on Israel instead of Hamas from the Gaza Strip and its Mediterranean coast.
2. Partly also as a rejoinder to the Qatari and Saudi arms shipments channeled to the Syrian rebels through Turkey, Iran is matching the level and quality of those arms deliveries by its own consignments through Sinai or by sea to the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian extremist group continue reading
Fatwa On Islam
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The Christian Communities of Israel
The history of the Christian communities in the Land of Israel begins with the life and ministry of Jesus of Nazareth. After his death the early Apostolic Church, at least that in and around Jerusalem, remained Judeo-Christian until the rebuilding of Jerusalem (c. 130 CE) by Hadrian as the Roman city of Aelia Capitolina. Since this date the local Church has been entirely gentile in composition. It was also one and undivided, until the early Ecumenical Councils. By the time of the Muslim conquest the Church in the East was already subdivided into various sects, although they seem to have continued to share in the use of the Holy Places. It was only with the Crusader Kingdoms, and the paramountcy (praedominium) enjoyed by the (Latin) Church of the West, that contention arose regarding the Holy Places and continued unabated through the Mamluk and Ottoman periods until the declaration of the Status Quo in 1852.
Of the 6.5 million people living in Israel today (September 2001), Christians constitute 136,000 or 2.1% of the population (Muslims constitute 15.2%, Druze – 1.6%). This data does not include the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, where no census has been conducted since 1967. At that time, the Christian population of these areas was roughly estimated at 33,000. (The data given below is based on estimates provided by the different communities, with reference to their areas of jurisdiction, which may include Judea, Samaria, Gaza, Jordan and other neighboring countries). It may be noted, however, that the Christian population in Israel has increased, while in Judea, Samaria and Gaza the number of Christians has decreased.
The communities may be divided into four basic categories – Orthodox, Non-Chalcedonian (Monophysite), Catholic (Latin and Uniate) and Protestant – consisting of some 20 ancient and indigenous churches, and another 30, primarily Protestant, denominational groups. Except for national churches, such as the Armenian, the indigenous communities are predominantly Arabic-speaking; most of them, very likely, descendants of the early Christian communities of the Byzantine period.
The Orthodox Church (also termed Eastern or Greek-Orthodox Church) consists of a family of Churches all of which acknowledge the honorary primacy of the Patriarch of Constantinople. Historically, this Church developed from the Churches of the East Roman or Byzantine Empire.
The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate considers itself to be the Mother Church of Jerusalem, to whose bishop patriarchal dignity was granted by the Council of Chalcedon in 451. Since 1054 it has been in schism with Rome. However, in 1964 a historic meeting between Pope Paul VI and the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras, was held in Jerusalem.
After 1099 and the Crusader conquest, the (Orthodox) patriarchate of Jerusalem, already in exile, was removed to Constantinople. Permanent residence in Jerusalem was not reestablished until 1845.
Since 1662, direction of Orthodox interests in the Holy Land has rested with the Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulcher, which has sought to safeguard the status of the Orthodox Church in the Holy Places, and to preserve the Hellenistic character of the Patriarchate.
The parishes are predominantly Arabic-speaking, and are served by Arab married priests as well as by members of the Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulcher. The community numbers about 120,000 in Jerusalem, the Galilee, Judea, Samaria and Gaza.
Two other historic Orthodox national churches also have representation in the country: the Russian and the Rumanian. Being in communion with the Greek Orthodox Church, they are under the local jurisdiction of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate.
The Russian Orthodox mission was established in Jerusalem in 1858, but Russian Christians had begun visiting the Holy Land in the 11th century, only a few years after the Conversion of Kiev. Such visits continued over the next 900 years, eventually growing into the great annual pilgrimages of the late 19th century, which continued until World War I, and ended with the Russian Revolution.
Since 1949, title to Russian church properties in what was by then the territory of Israel has been held by the Russian Orthodox Mission (Patriarchate of Moscow); title to properties in areas then under Jordanian control remains with the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission representing the Russian Orthodox Church in Exile. The two missions are each led by an archimandrite, who is assisted by a number of monks and nuns.
A mission representing the Rumanian Orthodox Church was established in 1935. It is led by an archimandrite and consists of a small community of monks and nuns resident in Jerusalem.
The Non-Chalcedonian churches are churches of the East – Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopian and Syrian – that rejected the teaching of the Council of Chalcedon (451) on the double (divine and human) nature of Christ. The non-Chalcedonian churches hold the Monophysite doctrine that in Christ there was but a single, divine nature.
The Armenian Orthodox Church dates from the year 301 and the conversion of Armenia, the first nation to embrace Christianity. An Armenian religious community has been present in Jerusalem since the 5th century. Armenian sources date the first Patriarchate to a charter given by the Caliph Omar to Patriarch Abraham in the year 638. The Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem was established in 1311.
Throughout the 19th century and during and immediately after World War I, the local Armenian community grew with the absorption of survivors of the Anatolian massacres, particularly those of 1915. Before 1939 the community numbered more than 15,000, and was the third largest Christian group. Today, the community numbers about 4,000 – in Jerusalem, Haifa, Jaffa and Bethlehem.
The Coptic Orthodox Church has its roots in Egypt, where most of the population became Christian during the first centuries. They claim to have arrived in Jerusalem with St. Helena, mother of the Emperor Constantine. This church had an early influence on the development of desert monasticism in the wilderness of Judea. The community flourished during the Mamluk period (1250-1517), and again with Mohammed Ali in 1830. Since the 13th century the (Coptic) Patriarch of Alexandria has been represented in Jerusalem by a resident archbishop. The community numbers just over 1,000 members-in Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Nazareth.
The Ethiopian Orthodox Church has had a community in Jerusalem since at least the Middle Ages. Early Church historians mention Ethiopian pilgrims in the Holy Land as early as the 4th century. What is certain is that during the centuries that followed the Ethiopian Church enjoyed important rights in the Holy Places, but lost most of them during the Turkish period, prior to the declaration of the Status Quo.
Today the Ethiopian Church in Israel is a small community led by an archbishop and consisting mostly of a few dozen monks and nuns (although the lay community is growing), living in the Old City and around the Ethiopian Church in West Jerusalem. Since the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and Ethiopia pilgrimage has increased – with almost 1,000 Ethiopian pilgrims participating in Holy Week observances in 1995.
The Syrian Orthodox Church is a successor to the ancient Church of Antioch, and one of the oldest Christian communities in the Middle East. Among its traditions is the continued use of the Syriac language (Western Aramaic) in the liturgy and prayers. They are also known as Jacobites (after Jacob Baradaeus, who organized the Church in the 6th century). Their patriarch is resident in Damascus. There have been Syrian Orthodox bishops in Jerusalem since 793; permanently, since 1471. Today the local Church is headed by a bishop, who resides in Jerusalem at the 7th century monastery of St. Mark. The community numbers about 2,000, most of whom live in Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
The Apostolic Church of the East (sometimes erroneously called Nestorians), originating from the border area between Turkey, Iran and Iraq, follows the liturgy and prayers in the Syriac language (East Aramaic). Since 1917, its patriarch resides in Chicago and Kerala (India). The church’s presence in Jerusalem was established in the 5th century. Today it is represented by an archbishop.
Whatever the relations between Rome and Constantinople, there was no attempt to establish a Western Church in the Holy Land independent of the Orthodox Patriarchate until the Crusader period, during which a Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem was in existence from 1099 till 1291. The office was again constituted in 1847. Until then, responsibility for the local church rested with the Franciscan Order, which served as Custodian of Latin holy places since the 14th century.
Today the Latin Church of Jerusalem is headed by a patriarch, assisted by three vicars (resident in Nazareth, Amman and Cyprus). The community in Israel numbers about 20,000 (with another 10,000 in the West Bank and Gaza).
The Maronite Church is a Christian community of Syrian origin, most of whose members live in Lebanon. The Maronite Church has been in formal communion with the Roman Catholic Church since 1182, and is the only Eastern church which is entirely Catholic. As a Uniate body (an Eastern Church in communion with Rome, which yet retains its respective language, rites and canon law) they possess their own liturgy, which is in essence an Antiochene rite in the Syriac language.
The Maronite community in Israel numbers about 6,700, most of whom live in the Galilee. The Maronite Patriarchal Vicariate in Jerusalem dates from 1895.
The Greek Melkite Catholic Church came into being in 1724, the result of a schism in the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch. (The term ‘Melkite’ dates from the 4th century and refers to those local Christians who accepted the Definition of Faith of the Council of Chalcedon and remained in communion with the “Imperial” see of Constantinople.)
A Greek Catholic archdiocese was established in the Galilee in 1752. Twenty years later, Greek Catholics of Jerusalem were placed under the jurisdiction of the Melkite patriarch of Antioch, who is represented in Jerusalem by a patriarchal vicar. The present population of the Greek Catholic diocese of Galilee is about 50,000; the diocese of Jerusalem, about 3,000.
The Syrian Catholic Church, a uniate breakaway from the monophysite Syrian Orthodox church, has been in communion with Rome since 1663. The Syrian Catholics have their own patriarch (resident in Beirut), and since 1890, a patriarchal vicar in Jerusalem has served as spiritual leader of the small local community there and in Bethlehem, which totals about 350. In July 1985, the community consecrated the new patriarchal church in Jerusalem dedicated to St. Thomas, apostle to the peoples of Syria and India.
The Armenian Catholic Church separated from the Armenian Orthodox Church in 1741, though previously an Armenian community in Cilicia (in southern Anatolia) had been in contact with Rome since the Crusader period.
The Armenian Catholic patriarch is resident in Beirut because at the time, Ottoman authorities forbade residency in Constantinople. A patriarchal vicariate was established in Jerusalem in 1842. The Armenian Catholic community in the Holy Land numbers about 900 members, living in Jerusalem, Bethany, Ramallah, Haifa and Gaza. Though in union with Rome, the church has good relations with the Armenian Orthodox Church, and both cooperate for the benefit of the community as a whole.
The Coptic Catholic Church has been in union with Rome since 1741, but only in 1955 did the uniate Coptic Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria appoint a patriarchal vicar to Jerusalem, where the community today numbers about 35.
The Chaldean Catholic Church is a uniate descendant of the ancient Nestorian (Assyrian) church. Its members still preserve the use of Syriac as their liturgical language. It was established in 1551, and its patriarch is resident in Baghdad. The community in the Holy Land numbers no more than a few families; even so, the Chaldean Catholic Church retains the status of a ‘recognized’ religious community. Since 1903, the Chaldeans have been represented in Jerusalem by a non-resident patriarchal vicar. Of major significance for the Catholic Churches in the Holy Land, was the signing, on the 30th of December 1993, of a Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel which lead to the establishment of full diplomatic relations between them a few months later.
The Protestant communities in the Middle East only date from the early 19th century and the Western missionary ‘re-discovery’ of the Holy Land. The intention of these missions was to evangelize the majority Muslim and Jewish communities, but their only success was in attracting Arabic-speaking Orthodox faithful.
The Jerusalem Bishopric of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East (Anglican) was founded in 1841 and became an Archbishopric in 1957. In January 1976 significant changes were made to mark the end of the Archbishopric and the creation of a new Diocese and Province in Jerusalem and the Middle East, with the election and consecration of the first Arab bishop. There are some 4,500 Anglicans in the Diocese (2,500-3,000 in Israel), making it the largest Protestant community in the Holy Land. The Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem has his seat in the Cathedral Church of St. George the Martyr in Jerusalem.
The roots of the Lutheran Church in the Holy Land date back to 1841, when the Queen of England and the Prussian king decided to establish a joint Protestant Bishopric in Jerusalem. In 1886, the English and the German parts separated. The German congregation attracted increasingly Arabic-speaking people. Since 1979, the Arabic-speaking congregations have their own bishop and both churches exist independently of each other on the premises of the Propstei on Muristan Road in the Old City. The Arabic community numbers about 500, and the German – about 200.
German Lutheran property, which had been confiscated by the British in 1939, was purchased by the government of Israel in 1951 as part of the reparations agreement with the Federal Republic of Germany.
In 1982, the Norwegian Mission to Israel transferred authority and administration of its two mission churches in Haifa and Jaffa to the responsibility of the local congregations.
The Baptist Church in the Holy Land began with the formation of a congregation in Nazareth in 1911. Today the Association of Baptist Churches has a total of ten churches and centers in the following places: Acre, Cana, Haifa, Jaffa, Jerusalem, Kfar-Yassif, Nazareth, Petah-Tikvah, Rama and Tur’an. The community numbers about 900, the majority of whom are Arabic-speaking.
The Church of Scotland (Presbyterian) sent out its first mission to the Galilee in 1840, and for the next 100 years was actively engaged in the fields of education and medicine. Today a small, mostly expatriate community, serving pilgrims and visitors, the Church of Scotland maintains a church and hospice in both Jerusalem and Tiberias. The independent Edinburgh Medical Missionary Society maintains a teaching hospital for nurses in Nazareth.
The Church of God (Pentecostal) has a small community in Jerusalem, Nazareth and the West bank (about 200 in all), with an International Center on the Mount of Olives.
Three Protestant communal agricultural settlements have been established in different parts of Israel in recent years. Kfar Habaptistim, north of Petah Tikvah, was founded in 1955, and besides farming provides conference and summer-camp facilities for the Baptist and other Protestant communities in the country. Nes Amim, near Nahariya, was founded by a group of Dutch and German Protestants in 1963, as an international center for the promotion of Christian understanding of Israel. Just west of Jerusalem, Yad Hashmonah, founded in 1971, operates a guest-house for Christian visitors and pilgrims from Finland.
In addition to those already mentioned, there are any number of other, numerically small, Protestant denominational groups present in Israel.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) established a small community in Haifa in 1886, and in Jerusalem in 1972. The membership of the church today numbers almost 200, with an additional 170 students of the Jerusalem Center for Near Eastern Studies – a branch of Brigham Young University of Provo, Utah (USA).
The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem was founded in 1980, to demonstrate worldwide Christian support for Israel and for Jerusalem as its eternal capital. It is a center where Christians from all over the world can gain a biblical understanding of the country and of Israel as a modern nation. The ICEJ international network includes offices and representatives in 50 countries worldwide.
The basic attitude of the state toward religious pluralism found expression in the 1948 Declaration of Independence:
The State of Israel . . . will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the Prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture . . . .
The document “expresses the nation’s vision and its credo,” and adherence to these principles has been assured by law. Each religious community is free to exercise its faith, to observe its own holy days and weekly day of rest, and to administer its own internal affairs.
Israel has many sites which are considered holy by the three Monotheistic Faiths (Judaism, Christianity and Islam). Freedom of access and worship is ensured at all of them.
“The Holy Places shall be protected from desecration and any other violation and from anything likely to violate the freedom of access of members of the various religions to the places sacred to them, or their feelings with regard to those places.” (Protection of Holy Places Law, 1967).
Among the holy sites which are of significance to Christianity are the Via Dolorosa, the Room of the Last Supper and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem; the Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth; and the Mount of Beatitudes, Tabgha and Capernaum near Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee).
By their own volition, the Christian communities have remained the most autonomous of the various religious communities in the country. In recent years, however, there has been an increasing tendency on the part of the Christian communities to integrate their social welfare, medical and educational institutions into state structures, without in any way compromising their traditional independence.
Though responsible for meeting the ritual needs of all communities, the Ministry of Religious Affairs deliberately refrains from interfering in the religious life of the Christian communities. The Ministry’s Department for Christian Communities serves as a liaison office with the governmental system to which the Christian communities can turn with problems and requests that may arise out of their situation as minorities in the Land. The Ministry also serves as a neutral arbitrator in ensuring the preservation of the established status quo in those holy places where more than one Christian community has rights and privileges.
Certain Christian denominations have the status of being a ‘recognized’ religious community. For historical reasons dating from Ottoman times, the ecclesiastical courts of such communities are granted jurisdiction in matters of personal status, such as marriage and divorce.
Currently, the “recognized” Christian communities are the Greek Orthodox, the (Melkite) Greek Catholic, the Latin, the Armenian Orthodox, the Syrian Catholic, the Chaldean Catholic, the Maronite, the Syrian Orthodox, the Armenian Catholic, and – since 1970 – the (Anglican) Evangelical Episcopal.
News, Mideast News: Kids at Islamic Jihad kindergarten celebrate end of year by demonstrating how Palestinian prisoners are ‘tortured’ in Israel.
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Mubarak slammed U.S. in phone call with Israeli MK before resignation
Radical Islam will be result of U.S. push for democracy, Mubarak told Israel’s Ben-Eliezer during a phone call on Thursday.
By Reuters 2/11/2011
Hosni Mubarak had harsh words for the United States and what he described as its misguided quest for democracy in the Middle East in a telephone call with an Israeli lawmaker a day before he quit as Egypt’s president.
The legislator, former cabinet minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, said on TV Friday that he came away from the 20-minute conversation on Thursday with the feeling the 82-year-old leader realized “it was the end of the Mubarak era”.
“He had very tough things to say about the United States,” said Ben-Eliezer, a member of the Labor Party who has held talks with Mubarak on numerous occasions while serving in various Israeli coalition governments.
“He gave me a lesson in democracy and said: ‘We see the democracy the United States spearheaded in Iran and with Hamas, in Gaza, and that’s the fate of the Middle East,'” Ben-Eliezer said.
“‘They may be talking about democracy but they don’t know what they’re talking about and the result will be extremism and radical Islam,'” he quoted Mubarak as saying.
U.S. support for pro-democracy elements in Iran has not led to regime change in the Islamic Republic, and Hamas, a group Washington considers to be a terrorist organization, won a 2006 Palestinian election promoted by the United States.
Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip in 2007 after a coalition government it formed with Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas collapsed in a power struggle.
Ben-Eliezer said Mubarak expanded in the telephone call on “what he expects will happen in the Middle East after his fall”.
“He contended the snowball (of civil unrest) won’t stop in Egypt and it wouldn’t skip any Arab country in the Middle East and in the Gulf.
“He said ‘I won’t be surprised if in the future you see more extremism and radical Islam and more disturbances — dramatic changes and upheavals,” Ben-Eliezer added.
Egypt in 1979 became the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel and has backed U.S.-led efforts to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Last week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned of an Iran-style Islamist revolution in Egypt should Mubarak’s Muslim Brotherhood rivals eventually take over.
“He repeated the sentence, ‘I have been serving my country, Egypt, for 61 years. Do they want me to run away? I won’t run away. Do they want to throw me out? I won’t leave. If need be, I will be killed here,'” Ben-Eliezer said.
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