(The Hindu) - In a July 24, 2002 meeting, U.S. Acting Deputy Chief of Mission George Frowick and Archbishop Antonio Veglio, Secretary of the Congregation for Eastern Churches, shared worries that “the Eastern Churches — the 22 Christian Rites that are not Roman Catholic but are in communion with Rome — face a number of challenges that cast long shadows over their future” (3387: confidential, dated July 26).
According to the [WikiLeaks] cable, Archbishop Veglio told Mr. Frowick that his “congregation, as elsewhere in the Holy See is deeply troubled by Israeli policies vis-à-vis the Palestinians,” which they viewed as a potential threat to Catholics in West Asia.
“The congregation will remain active in seeking to support the Palestinians as a means of preserving the remnants of the Catholic presence in the region,” the cable says....
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(The Times) - Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Israel yesterday to make an appeal for peace in the Middle East, calling for the creation of a Palestinian homeland alongside the Jewish state.
In his address after stepping off an aircraft from Jordan, the Pope — on his first trip to the Holy Land — made the first of a series of speeches calling for peace, justice and security.
He has tried to avoid politics in what he says is a spiritual pilgrimage, but his call for a Palestinian homeland set him at odds with the right-wing Israeli Government, which has refused to back a two-state solution...
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(CNN) - Roman Catholic bishops for the Middle East concluded a two-week conference with a call for the international community, especially the United Nations, to work "to put an end to the occupation" of Palestinian territories.
"The Palestinian people will thus have an independent and sovereign homeland where they can live with dignity and security," the group said in a statement Saturday at the end of a meeting headed by Pope Benedict XVI. "The State of Israel will be able to enjoy peace and security within their internationally recognized borders.
"The Holy City of Jerusalem will be able to acquire its proper status, which respects its particular character, its holiness and the religious patrimony of the three religions: Jewish, Christian and Muslim. We hope that the two-state-solution might become a reality and not a dream only."
The pope first publicly endorsed a two-state solution to the Middle East crisis during a visit to the region in May 2009. At the time, he assured Palestinians of the Vatican's support of a sovereign Palestinian homeland. It was a concept that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu resisted.....
When it comes to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, President Barack Obama has received much flack for his recent policy stand. The president effectively "reversed" U.S. policy on the matter last week, siding with the Palestinians on return to the pre-1967 borders, much to the chagrin of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who met with Obama shortly after, and conservative ideologues across the United States. For decades, Israel has been considered America's closest ally in the Middle East, in spite of occasional clashes between the CIA and the Mussad, along with Israeli spies apprehended in the United States. This close relationship between our two governments has led to the sharing of vital intelligence information and untold billions of dollars in American foreign aid to the Israeli government. The alliance has been more than political. At times it has taken on a religious fervor. American Evangelicals have for decades supported Israel unconditionally. This is because of the purely Evangelical Protestant belief system called Dispensational Theology.
To summarize, Dispensationalism is the doctrine that God has two "chosen peoples" not one. His first chosen people are the Jews and this relationship to them is codified in the Old Testament. Therefore the Jewish people should have their home in the promised land of the Old Testament and should be permitted to occupy all of it (because God wills it) and rebuild their ancient civilization, including their religious temple for sacrificial purposes. God's second chosen people are the Christians, which is codified by the New Testament, who live within the spiritual entity called "the church" and this is entirely separate to the nation-state of Israel. The job of the church in these latter times, according to Dispensationalism, is to peach the gospel and support the nation-state of Israel. Since preaching the gospel and supporting the nation-state of Israel are virtually synonymous, according to Dispensationalism, they are really one in the same purpose. So as far as Evangelical Protestants are concerned, a good Jew migrates to Israel, while a good Christian supports him. This is God's plan for the latter times, as far as contemporary Evangelical Protestantism teaches today. For Christians, the motive is to await the "rapture" and Second Coming of Christ. For Dispensationalism teaches that once all the Jews have finally migrated back to the nation-state of Israel, settled all the land, and rebuilt their temple, then Jesus Christ will return to "rapture" the church and usher in the End Times. This is why Evangelical televangelists can be seen every Sunday morning expressing their unwavering support for the Zionist state and proclaiming that failure to do so is tantamount to a lack of Christian faith.
The Catholic Church teaches that Dispensationalism is heresy. I have explained this in detail in my article entitled "The Catholic Church IS Israel." Catholics would do well to ponder this deeply before reading on.
The Evangelical position on many doctrines clash with Catholic teaching, and in this case, the Evangelical doctrine of Dispensationalism is so much at odds with the teachings of the Catholic Church that no Catholic can subscribe to it in good faith, and any political belief that might even remotely relate to it must be questioned. To build political policy based on a religious heresy is to set nations up for war, and it looks like that is exactly what has happened with America's unwavering support of Israel to the point of virtually giving them a blank check to do whatever they want.
Two political entities are at work here.
The first political entity is Zionism, and the second is the Republican Party. Neither has the best interest of Evangelical Christians in mind, but both use the Evangelical doctrine of Dispensationalism to their advantage. Zionism is a worldwide political movement. Zionism and Judaism are not the same. Judaism is just a religion. While as Zionism is the political mindset that Jews (both religious and non-religious) should have the right to retake their ancestral homeland and rebuild the glory that once was Zion (ancient Israel). Zionists have been at work to accomplish this goal for about a hundred years, and initially this was against the teachings of their most prominent Jewish rabbis, who had always previously taught that the promised Messiah must come first. The bulk of their dreams were realized in 1948 when Israel was declared a "Jewish nation." Prior to that, Jews living in the region, were at peace with their Arab neighbors. Conflicts between Jews and Muslims were minimal and insignificant. After the creation of the State of Israel, immediate war followed. Israel has been in a state of perpetual war ever since with no end in sight. A few Jewish rabbis have remained faithful to their ancient teachings regarding the Messiah and their ancestral homeland, and they say the reason why Israel is in a state of perpetual war is because Zionists have thwarted the will of God. They say God does not want the Jewish people to retake their ancestral homeland until AFTER the Messiah comes, and that the Messiah will lead them back to their ancestral homeland without conflict and strife. These Jewish rabbis say the reason why the nation-state of Israel suffers so much conflict today is because it does not have the blessing of God and that Jews in the region should work toward dismantling the "Jewish state" in favor of creating a secular state that is more hospitable to Jews, Muslims and Christians. Of course these few remaining faithful rabbis are virtually ignored by the Zionists, who rely heavily on American support in the Republican Party.
The second political entity of the Republican Party is heavily supported by the oil industry, freemasons and Western globalists. To understand this relationship we need to understand just a bit about "peak oil." When it comes to the Republican Party it all comes back to money. You see "peak oil" is defined as the time when consumption of oil matches and surpasses the amount of oil that can be extracted from oil reserves. This is not to say the oil reserves are exhausted -- far from it. In fact, there is evidence to suggest that these oil reserves are not "fossil fuels" but are in actuality a byproduct of continental plate tectonics. Thus oil may very well be a renewable energy. However, in spite of that, it can only be extracted from the earth so fast, due to limitations in technology. That being said, the United States hit it's "peak oil" production for American soil back in the 1970s. This is when we heavily shifted to foreign oil consumption, and it is also why we refuse to explore new oil reserves in Alaska. We are saving Alaskan oil reserves for when we hit the worldwide "peak oil" production. When that happens, gasoline will quickly jump to $10/gallon and our politicians hope our Alaskan oil reserves will keep our military operational while the world seeks another source of energy. In the mean time, we hope to exhaust everyone else's oil reserves. The only problem here is that Russia, Europe and China are competing with us on this. Our close alliance with Europe causes us to help each other in opposition to Russia and China. This explains our foreign policy in the Middle East. It really is all about oil. You see, our corporations in the United States and Europe try to make business deals with Middle Eastern regimes. If they cooperate with us, we make them rich. If they decide to do business with Russia or China instead, we send in CIA operatives to stir up a revolution against that regime. If it works, we deal with the new regime that takes over. If it doesn't work, then we send in our military under the pretense of "fighting terrorism" and "defending democracy." We erect a new regime using our military and then cut oil deals with them. It really has little to do with either terrorism or democracy. But it does have everything to do with positioning ourselves for the coming worldwide "peak oil" economy. Now don't blame the Republicans for this entirely. The Democratic Party plays this game too, as is evidenced by the actions of President Bill Clinton in the 1990s and President Barack Obama today. However, the Republicans are the architects to be sure, as they are mostly aligned with the oil companies. The Bush father-son presidential duo is a perfect example of this. Now if you want to understand American foreign policy in the Middle East, you only need to look at the list of nations we have intervened in either covertly or militarily. For example; Syria is now guilty of all the same human rights violations as Libya, yet it is Libya we bomb with our NATO partners. Why is this? The answer is simple. Syria produces almost nothing in regards to oil, but Libya supplies large quantities of oil to Europe. So the United States helps Europe secure it's oil supply by helping to orchestrate regime change in Libya, meanwhile Syria slaughters it's own people left and right, for the exact same reasons as Libya, while the United States does nothing. Again, oil is the reason. Syria doesn't produce hardly any oil and doesn't sell a drop to Europe or America anyway. So strategically speaking, it's useless. Now, all that being said, where does Israel fit into all of this. For nearly four decades Israeli geologists have been telling the United States that a vast oil reserve lies somewhere deep beneath Israeli soil. The massive level of geologic activity in this region seems to confirm this. We know for certain there are large deposits of natural gas in Israel, based on historical accounts of "fireballs" erupting from the Temple Mount when the Jews tried to rebuild the Temple under the reign of Caesar Julian (the apostate) back in the 4th century AD. Where there is natural gas, oil usually follows. Likewise, the Israeli geologists swear it's there, but getting to it is the trick. We are told Israel may actually have the largest oil reserve in the entire Middle East, and so you can begin to see why American politicians, particularly the Republican Party, back Israel unconditionally. However, when it comes to politics, oil is the last thing American politicians want to talk about. It doesn't look good you see, when certain groups of Muslim and Christian Arabs are being forced out of their homeland so Israeli Zionists can plunder their land and potential oil reserves. So both the Zionists and the Republican Party turn to religious fervor among Evangelicals, promoting their Dispensationalist theology for the purpose of supporting the Israeli government unconditionally.
The Zionists in Israel know the cat is out of the bag as far as the international community is concerned. They've lost the support of the world a long time ago. Only the United States remains as the sole stalwart of Israeli supremacy in the region. The Israeli government has played the race card for decades now, claiming that were it not for the Israeli government, the Jews in the Holy Land would have been driven into the sea. Historical analysis tells a completely different story though. Because Jews lived in peace with their Arab neighbors in the Holy Land for decades prior to 1948. It was only after 1948, when Israel declared independence as a "Jewish state" that Arab forces sought to drive them into the sea. It's a classic example of cause and effect. The cause was Israeli Zionist independence, the effect was Arab rage against the Israeli Zionists. It was not the other way around. Now, thanks to decades if Israeli actions against Palestinian Arabs, what they say may actually be true. If the Arab Muslims ever do get the upper hand again, they may very well drive the Jews into the sea. This is not because Arabs inherently hate Jews, as many Zionists would like us to believe, but because they have for decades been rallied against the Israeli government and everything the Zionist state represents. Prior to 1948 the Arabs were relatively pacified in the Middle East. After 1948 extremists have been able to rally Arab Muslims into a frenzy that threatens to become a regional caliphate.
So now what?
We know what the Zionists and the Republican Party want. The Republican Party believes there is oil beneath Israel, and they will support Israel unconditionally so long as they believe that. We know the Zionists just want to rebuild their ancestral homeland for idealogical reasons. What we don't know is if the Israeli Zionists are lying to the Republicans by giving them bogus geological data. We don't know if oil really exists there or not. Even if it does exist, we have to ask ourselves if our unconditional support of Israel justifies the Israeli mistreatment of Palestinian Arabs (both Muslims and Christians). The United States government has already demonstrated that it doesn't give a rat's tail about Christians in the Middle East, and would gladly sacrifice them for access to Arab oil. This is evidenced by the plight of Christians in Iraq and Egypt right now. America caused the regime change in Iraq under G.W. Bush, while it supported the regime change in Egypt under Barack Obama. In both cases, Christians are now being subjected to a bloodbath, while American and European corporations are securing their oil deals.
The position of the Vatican has consistently been one of Christian charity. Regardless of the "peak oil" situation, Western nations should act according to their Christian heritage, by dealing with the Israel-Palestinian problem with fairness and objectivity. This is why the Vatican supports the two-state solution. While it was initially supported by Bill Clinton and George W. Bush (to their credit), the only point of contention has been the borders of this proposed division. The question remains as to whether the CIA had been working with terrorists in Israel to insure this agreement never really took place, and thus give the Zionists reason to take more land away from the Palestinian Arabs. That would be consistent with CIA actions in Egypt, Libya, and other Arab nations. We know that the United States would throw Israel under the bus just as soon as they cut an oil deal with the Palestinian Arabs. Maybe this explains Obama's recent actions of "switching sides" to favor the Palestinians' call for a return to the pre-1967 borders. There is no way to know what is really going on in the Whitehouse on this. I suspect the Whitehouse is growing impatient, however, on Israel's claim to a massive oil production that has not yet materialized.
What we as Catholic Americans should know is that we absolutely cannot trust our own government on this issue. Case in point, we were assured by the G.W. Bush administration that Christians would be safe in Iraq under American occupation and an Iraqi democracy. The opposite has proved to be true. We were given the same assurances by the Obama administration in regards to Egypt. Again, we were lied to. So when it comes to foreign policy in the Middle East, about the only thing Catholics (indeed all Christians) can really trust is the policy of the Vatican.
The Vatican's position is that in the name of Christian charity to both parties, there must be a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and this solution must be brokered soon. The issue of the borders will be settled by the parties involved, but naturally there is going to have to be some Israeli concession on illegal Jewish settlements. I'm not sure Obama's call to the pre-1967 borders is the right solution, but I do think he is trying to swing the pendulum in the other direction to compensate for previous American policy favoring Israel. One thing this does signal is that the Whitehouse will support whatever land for peace deal the disputing parties can agree on. That, ironically, puts the Whitehouse more in line with the Vatican's position than anything previously seen over the last four decades. Now readers of this blog know 'The Catholic Knight' is no fan of Obama, but regular readers should also know I always try to give credit where credit is due. On this one, I think Obama is leaning in the right direction, though his proposed pre-1967 solution is probably unrealistic.