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October 09, 2006

A Tale of Two Cities

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Katharine Jefferts Schori

On Nov. 4, Katharine Jefferts Schori will be invested as Presiding Bishop of the the Episcopal Church.

When she takes over her duties, one pressing issue she'll have to contend with is the one-sided anti-Israel narrative broadcast by so-called peace and justice activists of the Episcopal Church, whose idea of "justice" involves demanding Israel take down its security fence without asking the Palestinians to stop the suicide attacks that prompted its construction. Moreover, the resolutions these activists submitted to the Episcopal Church's General Convention did not ask the Hamas leaders of the Palestinian Authority even to acknowledge Israel's right to exist.

One place Rt. Rev. Jefferts Shori might want to look is her church's Web site, which is a veritable cornucopia of distortions, and in some instances outright lies, about the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Plug "Jenin" into the site's search engine (it's in the upper right-hand corner) and you will find a total of nine links, the first of which gains the reader access to an article that falsely accuses Israel of digging mass graves in Jenin to cover up "war crimes" in 2002.

Four years later, the Episcopal Church has failed to update or correct this article, even though it has been thoroughly discredited.

Jenin was the scene of a battle in 2002 in which 52 Palestinians, most of them combatants, and 23 Israeli soldiers were killed. The Israelis went into Jenin as part of "Operation Defensive Shield," which began in response to an unprecedented wave of suicide bombings that killed hundreds of Israeli civilians. One of the worst of these attacks took place at Netanya on March 27, 2002. That attack killed 30 Israelis and injured another 140. That attack, by the way, is all but ignored on the Episcopal Church's Web site. See for yourself.

To be fair, the Episcopal Church does obliquely acknowledge (without specifically mentioning) the Park Hotel Bombing of 2002 in a statement issued on April 10, 2002:

We are shocked by the escalating violence in the Middle East following the attacks during Passover and Easter. In this recent wave of violence, thousands of innocent victims have died or are suffering as a result of suicide bombings and the incursion of the Israelis army into the West Bank.

But make no mistake—this purpose of this statement was not to condemn Palestinian behavior, and it mentioned nothing about Palestinian "war crimes." Rather, the violence was mentioned as a hook for the Church's fund-raising effort on behalf of Palestinian medical centers.

Posted by CameraBlog at October 9, 2006 03:59 PM

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