Thursday, May 22, 2008

A Frightening Perspective: Let's see what this blog's readers have to say

Contempt for the Jewish nation
To the Editor

In their many letters to the editor, the enemies of Israel continue their campaign against God's chosen people, the Jews. They are mostly godless atheists who are unable to hide their contempt for the Jewish nation.

The reason they give for their hatred of Israel is the plight of the Arabs on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. There is no doubt that these people are in a bad way. However, they brought it on themselves. They could have lived in peace with their Jewish neighbors but chose not to.

As soon as the Star of David was raised above the reborn nation of Israel, the entire Arab world rose up to destroy her. Their aim was to drive the Jews into the sea. The question is how could a few million Jews withstand the onslaught of Arab armies time after time after time? The answer can be found in Zechariah, chapter 12, verse 2 where God says, "Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem," and again in verse 9 God says, "And it shall come to pass in that day that I will seek to destroy all nations that come against Jerusalem."

One would think that after 60 years of war, the world of Islam would realize that when it attacks Israel, it is attacking the apple of God's eye.

Atheists would do well to remember this, also. In a recent letter to the editor, the writer said Israel is a fascist country and from the very beginning, it has been expelling the Palestinians from their homes, killing defenseless civilians and engaging in continuous ethnic cleansing of the once peaceful people of Palestine. This is a monstrous lie and only demonstrates how deep the hatred for Israel some people have.

Israel is a democracy. It has free elections. The Knesset has both Jews and Arabs as its members. We have been to Israel twice and were invited to visit the Knesset by the Israeli government, which we did. As we traveled about Israel, we saw a nation under siege, a people living in constant fear of the next rocket attack or a suicide bomber.

On our way to Bethlehem, a young policeman was shot dead; his blood was still in a pool on the street. His only crime was that he was a Jew. The Arab world claims the land of Israel is Arab land. Here again is a monstrous lie. God himself set the borders of the land of Israel in Deuteronomy, chapter 11, verse 24, and Joshua, chapter, 1 verse 4. The fact of the matter is, Arabs are trespassing on Israeli land.

On the front page of the Des Moines Tribune Friday, May 19, 1939, the headline was "Palestine Jews Battle with Police." Right below the headline, there is a map of Palestine and below the map it says, and I quote, "this map shows where rioting took place following Britain's decision to make the homeland of Jews an Arab-dominated independent Palestine." The map shows that all of Palestine at that time was the homeland of the Jews.

In Ezekiel, chapter 36, verse 24, God says about his people Israel, "I will take you from among the heathen and gather you out of all countries and bring you into your own land." One must notice here that God says I will bring them back to their own land, not Arab land. The return of the Jews to their homeland is the last great sign that we are fast approaching the end of this age.

The stage is set. The final act of this Christ-rejecting world is about to begin. The four riders of the Apocalypse are in their saddles. Even now, their shadows can been seen across the world. In Luke, chapter 21, Jesus said, "There will be wars, great earthquakes, famines and pestilences, fearful sights in heaven, men's hearts failing them for fear, the power of heaven shall be shaken and then shall they see the son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory." Even so, come Lord Jesus.

Sam and Darlene Erickson

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Betsy's Latest Plea for Peace

Letter to the Editor

I was so pleased to see the letter to the editor statement published in The Trib, 5/16/08, from Jeremy Ben-Ami, executive director of J Street, a new Israeli lobby and political action committee in Washington, that I zipped off a thank you, thank you, thank you to the paper’s staff worthy of personal note, but not for publication. I was grateful that The Trib provided us all with another option for examination of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. For me, Palestinian supporter to the core, it’s fantastic to be able to have this new group on the radar, because J Street provides a reasonable and hope-inducing alternative to friends of Israel’s “be-for-us-a-hundred percent or die” ideology expressed by the more famous Israeli lobby, AIPAC, and their off local offshoots. The latter group supports the long standing attitude of some Zionist folk who bow to the pain of the Holocaust in a way that makes similar holocausts certain if not for Jews (but, them, too, actually), for those who oppose their religious state plunked down in the Holy Land as an inevitable right. Thank you J Street. If your views are fair enough and supported enough to slant public opinion, Israel may, indeed, get what they’ve fought 60-years and still counting to have and the Palestinians will get a chance for freedom unknown through centuries of foreign occupation. J Street has offered a perspective that endorses the idea of doing what’s right and just for all concerned, not only what’s desired by the most mighty and ruthless set of Zionists willing to wage war no matter how long (100 years, maybe?) and no matter who suffers as a result.

Presenting an excellent example of the difference “between the ideology” of, say, AIPAC and “the foreign policy realism” of J Street,” David Brooks’s Trib column, 5/18/08, took the words in quotes from our potential US statesman, Barak Obama. To whom do we owe appreciation for sharing these thoughtful and more “nuanced” rhetorical presentations: none other than our Tribune. We should be proud to have a local paper that makes us think. In these two articles, we have the premises needed for making politics “the art of the possible.” For those of you who believe that consideration of “a just policy realism” is weak, please remember that choosing or even just suggesting violent reaction simply because you can may be fear inducing, but is not real strength. As we saw in the movie, Schindler’s List, knowing you can be violent and choosing not to be is the kind of powerful choice that can diminish governmental corrosion-within. The ones who will stabilize the world for generations to come need to have the strength of will to face our problems with cautious and calculated trust. This takes the ability to “know” our enemies and ourselves. It takes monumental bravery to choose a path that can stabilize the world rather than destroy it. Will this happen? It sort of depends on whether or not we are tired enough of war and violence to rethink the methods we need to use to win and to let others win, as well?