The Palestinian Authority is now paying the price for harboring, funding and inciting gang members and militiamen who until recently were hailed by many Palestinians as "heroes" and "resistance fighters."
Hamas's dream of extending its control to the West Bank now seems more realistic than ever -- unless Mahmoud Abbas wakes up and realizes that he made a big mistake by authorizing local and municipal elections.
The blood pouring out in Nablus and other Palestinian towns is proof that Abbas is on his way to losing control over the West Bank, just as he lost Gaza to Hamas in 2007. In an emergency meeting held on August 25 in Nablus, several Palestinian factions and figures reached agreement that it would be impossible to hold the vote under the current circumstances.
On August 18, two Palestinian Authority policemen were killed in an armed clash with gunmen in Nablus (left). In April of this year, a fierce gun battle erupted between Palestinian Authority policemen and members of the Jaradat clan in the refugee camp of Jenin (right). The clash started during an attempt to arrest a clan member.
Hours after his security officers lynched a detainee, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas urged Palestinian businessmen living abroad to support the Palestinian economy by investing in the Palestinian territories. The Palestinian Authority (PA), he asserted, was "working to provide security and safety to encourage investment."
According to Abbas, "The Palestinian territories are living in a state of security stability, which we are working to provide for residents and investors alike by enforcing the rule of law and enhancing transparency and accountability."
It must be nice to create your own reality, especially if your true reality is that of the 81-year-old Abbas.
In his speech before the businessmen, Abbas neglected any reference to the latest wave of "security chaos" in PA-controlled areas in the West Bank, specifically Nablus, the largest Palestinian city.
At the Lutheran assembly in New Orleans, there was one resolution to end all US aid to Israel, and one to divest from Israel. Both resolutions, de facto, intend the destruction of the State of Israel. The anti-Israel character of the resolutions fits the old-style Lutheran anti-Semitic diatribes.
The ELCA group "Isaiah 58" recommends two sources. One is the book by Bethlehem Lutheran pastor Mitri Raheb, Faith in the Face of Empire, which recommends Islamic sharia law as the remedy against Israeli occupation. The other is the 2009 Kairos Palestine Document of the World Council of Churches, which aims for the elimination of the State of Israel.
So who is interested in the anti-Semitic Lutheran resolution? The conclusion is that all those are cheerful about this resolution who like to see Israel disappear, be it with a one- or two-state solution; all those who distribute millions of dollars to Hamas in Gaza to enable the destruction of Israel while the intended recipients -- namely the children in Gaza -- remain deprived; all those who turn a blind eye to the education of Palestinian children in summer camps and schools where they are taught to murder Jews and to destroy the allegedly non-existent State of Israel; all those who fail to put the record straight about the just and right support that many Israelis give to Palestinians.
A generation ago, in 1994, the leadership of the Lutheran Church in the US condemned the anti-Semitism of Church founder Martin Luther (left), and expressed its desire to "love and respect" the Jewish people. Today's president of the Lutheran World Federation, Bishop Munib Younan (right), is known for not upholding the renunciation of anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism.
Lutheran Churches worldwide are getting ready to honor the 500thanniversary of their founder Martin Luther. Martin Luther's well-known anti-Semitic diatribes and biblical commentaries have been worked through and are in disrepute with many Lutheran Christians. A generation ago, in 1994, the Lutheran leadership in the US, "in concert with the Lutheran World Federation" (LWF) condemned Luther's anti-Semitism and expressed its desire to "love and respect" the Jewish people:
"In concert with the Lutheran World Federation, we particularly deplore the appropriation of Luther's words by modern anti-Semites for the teaching of hatred toward Judaism or toward the Jewish people in our day. Grieving the complicity of our own tradition within this history of hatred, moreover, we express our urgent desire to live out our faith in Jesus Christ with love and respect for the Jewish people."