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Thursday, December 11, 2008

The other day I hooked up with CAMERA's Christian Media Analyst, Dexter Van Zile, to make a little video of Dexter discussing the Mennonites, and what their problem with Israel just might be. Here is a search at CAMERA, and here as well. The Mennonites have been one of the primary denominations pushing divestment and recently dined with Ahmadinejad.

He begins by bringing up the UN's Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann (not a Mennonite), and takes off from there:


27 Comments

Excellent work. Fascinating information. All along I thought that hatred to the point of endangerment was an active process and invariably intentional. Based on this, it can clearly be passive as well as unintentional. Fascinating. Terrifying, but fascinating.

At one point Dexter Van Zile calls the Mennonites naive after describing situations where somebody else fought for the Mennonite safety.
From my point of view using somebody else to do something one refuses to do oneself, and then crowing about how they adhere to their rules, is just sheer hypocrisy.

Thanks, Solomon!

I misspoke when I said that Nahum Barnea spoke about the "Lynch Test" in 2007. Actually he said it in 2000.


Cynic:

I think you have a point. The Mennonite community has a huge problem in the UCC. Their sacred canopy (Cf. Peter Berger) of belief is challenged.

By participating in modern American life, while at the same time attempting to distance themselves from the violence used to create and protect this society, Mennonite practitioners of nonresistance have created a system of structural hypocrisy which requires them to betray the very principles they claim to affirm. If American society and the global economy are based on structural violence, as Mennonite peace activists have so often claimed, then how can they in good conscience enjoy the fruits of this society and economy, as they undeniably do? This contradiction, this unknown fault, lies at the heart of Mennonite identity like an asymptomatic heart defect that shows up during a high school basket ball game. Under normal circumstances, this fault remains hidden only to cause a collapse in times of stress. And Jewish and Israeli history reveals this fault.

In particular, Jewish and Israeli history challenges Mennonite assumptions about adult baptism – the sine qua non of Anabaptism – on its head. Under Anabaptist teachings, baptism is not administered at birth as it is with most other Christian groups, but is a rite only given to adults who have assented and committed themselves to a particular understanding of the Christian religion – especially adherence to radical non-resistance. Mennonites and other Anabaptists have held that this commitment must be made voluntarily by mature adults and cannot be thrust onto infants or children. Consequently, baptism is more than an initiation into the community of believers, but is a rite of passage from childhood into adulthood in the Anabaptist community – a sign of maturity and responsibility.

The transformation of the Jewish people in 1948 from a non-sovereign people dependent on others for their safety into a people who took responsibility for their security (and in the process, lost their innocence) represents a challenging coming-of-age that threatens Mennonite pacifists, who have long been buffeted by charges of irresponsibility and parasitism (leveled for example by Protestant theologian Reinhold Niebuhr). If the charges of irresponsibility are true, as Jewish history suggests, then baptism in the Mennonite community is not a right of passage, or a marker of adulthood, but a signifier of a refusal to mature, to see the world for what is and act responsibly in the face of reality. Mennonite theologians have asserted time and again that pacifism is a credible and effective response to the existence of evil in the world, but Jewish history challenges these assertions.

Great interview! Mennonites, like the UN and other passively destructive groups based on pacifism are proof that pacifists are not a force for good in the world.

Of the Jews in Nazi Germany, the famous pacifist Gandhi said:

Can the Jews resist this organized and shameless persecution? Is there a way to preserve their self-respect, and not to feel helpless, neglected and forlorn? I submit there is. No person who has faith in a living God need feel helpless or forlorn. Jehovah of the Jews is a God more personal than the God of the Christians, the Musalmans or the Hindus, though, as a matter of fact in essence, He is common to all the one without a second and beyond description. But as the Jews attribute personality to God and believe that He rules every action of theirs, they ought not to feel helpless. If I were a Jew and were born in Germany and earned my livelihood there, I would claim Germany as my home even as the tallest gentile German may, and challenge him to shoot me or cast me in the dungeon; I would refuse to be expelled or to submit to discriminating treatment . And for doing this, I should not wait for the fellow Jews to join me in civil resistance but would have confidence that in the end the rest are bound to follow my example. If one Jew or all the Jews were to accept the prescription here offered, he or they cannot be worse off than now. And suffering voluntarily undergone will bring them an inner strength and joy which no number of resolutions of sympathy passed in the world outside Germany can. Indeed, even if Britain, France and America were to declare hostilities against Germany, they can bring no inner joy, no inner strength. The calculated violence of Hitler may even result in a general massacre of the Jews by way of his first answer to the declaration of such hostilities. But if the Jewish mind could be prepared for voluntary suffering, even the massacre I have imagined could be turned into a day of thanksgiving and joy that Jehovah had wrought deliverance of the race even at the hands of the tyrant. For to the god fearing, death has no terror. It is a joyful sleep to be followed by a waking that would be all the more refreshing for the long sleep.

Gandhi's 'resistance' against the pacifist-friendly British empire is often portrayed as a success, but the resulting partition of India and Pakistan and the resulting millions of deaths are just one of the disasters that came from listening to the advice of pacifists.

Pacifists have never fought for good, they fight against violence. This is not an objectively 'good' fight. It's a fairly lunatic idea that denies reality and natural law.

Violence is necessary for life. Even vegetarians can't eat without committing some form of violence against some living thing. Happy, shiny organic farms kill thousands of bugs and mice during harvest. If the lion did lay down with the lamb, if all meat-eating beasts magically renounced violence, they would die of starvation.

No living being can survive without the ability to defend itself. Like reproduction and food consumption, self defense is essential to survival. Like the Shakers who believed that reproduction was a sin, like the Muti worshippers who believe that organs harvested from live children will bring good luck, Pacifists follow a faith that is not based on reason, pragmatism or natural law.

We shouldn't expect good to come from pacifists, and there is no reason to respect their opinions. It's right to tolerate their opinions, but not to respect them. We need to dispose of the idea that pacifist intentions are good, and that they serve as the conscience of a society. They don't.

Also, since the pacifist Mennonites seek to eliminate 'violence', they probably persecute and relentlessly criticize the Jews because the Jews are willing to listen to them. If the Mennonites could convince the Jews to renounce the intentional use of violence, then they will have achieved their goal - eliminating intentional violence somewhere in the world, spreading their 'Word'. That's their primary goal.

If genocide resulted from Mennonite actions, their attitude would probably be the same as Gandhi's, and they wouldn't feel any guilt at all.

Although the UN is a secular pacifist group, their attitude is similar.

Mary,

I think I might disagree with you. As critical as Reinhold Niebuhr was of pacifism, he did assert that Christians needed to be reminded that the relative goods they supported were just that -- relative goods that needed to be judged in the light of the cross.

The problem, Niebuhr said, was when pacifists start to impose their absolute standards on the rest of us, who have decided to wrestle with the world as it is, and make decisions between relative goods. People who are trying to bring relative justice, to choose between a lesser of two-evils have to be reminded that they are making a provisional, not absolute, commitment to these causes.

The problem is that when pacifists expect absolute good and impose a blinding utopianism on human conduct, they make it impossible for imperfect people to defend themselves against evil.

Pacifism is a spiritual discipline, a form of ascetism, Niebuhr said, and as such, is a "parasite" on the sins of the rest of us. Acknowledging that will allow pacifists to serve as a witness to the absolute good by which we are judged.

Unfortunately, the Mennonites have failed to acknowledge and accept the limits of their teachings. Consequently, the MCC is attempting to place a burden – the burden of radical nonresistance – on the shoulders of Israeli Jews that its Mennonite supporters in North America do not carry (Matthew 23:4). And yet, for some reason, the MCC and its activists enjoy a prominent place of honor in the world of Christian peacemaking (Matthew 23:6). Maybe the place of honor should be given to the Israelis, who have been attacked from virtually every bit of territory from which they have withdrawn since the 1990s in hopes of achieving peace.

I can see why you think pacifism is inherently evil, which is why I say I *might* disagree with you. Mennonite-supported institutions have provided a lot of the raw-materials needed by the anti-Zionist movement in North America -- stories of Jews behaving badly.

That's a failure on the part of the Mennonites. Is it a failure on the part of pacifism? I dunno. Maybe.

I don't think pacifism is inherently evil, it's just not inherently good.

Our belief that this illogical and unnatural idea is inherently good, and our willingness to give it credence, has and will cause unnecessary misery and death.

The place of honor should be given to the Israelis, but it won't because, in defending themselves, the Israelis commit intentional acts of violence.

Well done, very well done throughout. Refreshingly balanced, articulate, insightful, probing to requisite depths, avoiding any ideological fervor or exaggeration. Obviously, a great deal to be mined there as well, e.g. the cossetted structures/environment provided by the U.S. and the west in general, variously exploited, both naively and more consciously, not only by pacifists but by all manner of activists.

Dexter, I wholly agree with you.
In his THE POLITICS OF JESUS, John Howard Yoder rejects my realist POV on Jesus & violence. I responded to him that it took no courage to defend his Anabaptist heritage, but courage is needed to face the changing world. My 1967 United Ministries in Higher Education pamphlet - "VOLENCE: No resort or last resport or...?" - from a speech I delivered in the Church Chapel to the United Nations - did require courage: it was the chief document in my dismissal from the national staff of the United Church of Christ. (But God always opens doors of new life. I became the first professor added when Bill Webber became president of New York Theological Seminary.)

Real interesting interview.

I have always thought that there has been a certain amount of infiltration into Mennonite peace groups by outsiders with far left agendas.

Mary,
If you can get hold of what Gandhi practiced in South Africa (quite a few Indian sites have discussed at length his behaviour) at the turn of the 19th century you will realise that he was just another hypocrite using his pacifism when it best suited him and resorting to state violence (going to war against the Zulu on behalf of the British Army) in other circumstances.
He certainly wasn't above describing the native South African as savage etc.

Here is a link which while not exactly on topic brings up the Palestinian, Christian, Israeli "menage a trois" (please excuse the sarcasm; while not sensual it is certainly intense)
Analysis: Cruelty and silence in Gaza

Since the Hamas coup of July 2007, this position has become increasingly untenable. Islamist organizations, empowered by the indifference of the authorities, have begun to target Christian institutions and individuals in Gaza with increasing impunity. Intimidation, assault and the threat of kidnapping are now part of daily reality for Christians.
The trend became noticeable with a series of attacks on the Palestinian Bible Society's "Teacher's Bookshop" in Gaza City last year. The shop was the subject of a bomb attack in April 2007. Its owner, Rami Khader Ayyad, was abducted in broad daylight, and found dead on October 7, 2007.

Where are the Mennonites and other Christian organisations; those not in the service of Ateek and Desmond Tutu?
Deja vu; Just like what we witnessed in the middle 70s when the Vatican and Orthodox churches were supporting the PLO in Lebanon even as they slaughtered Christian communities in Lebanon (such as Damour 1976) and Hilarion Capucci was smuggling arms in his Official Mercedes from Lebanon to the West bank.

One of the comments, No.3, for example, 3. As a Palestinian Christian
displays, if he really is a Christian, the dhimmi attempt to assuage the threat he still feels from his former Muslim overlords, facts be damned.

Dexter,

You and I have had many hot discussions and oddly I must say I miss them. I think you have touched on something here that Reinhold Niebuhr would affirm. I have much respect for the Christian Peacemaking Teams but one must realistically affirm that the sins of the nation of Israel in bulldozing homes is not on the same level as the suicide bombers and the rocket attacks on non-combatants. Taking on the responsibility of nationhood is not easy.

As a Reformed Christian I also strongly affirm Total Depravity. I worry about the danger of everyone of us trying to find righteousness in our various forms of social justice actions when the scriptures teach that Christ is our righteousness. I, as a left leaning Democrat, understand the great feeling one has when one thinks one is on the correct side of a justice issue. One must be very careful because it is hard for humans to understand their own motives.

You have an interesting insight into the history of the Jewish people and the fact that they stepped up to the plate to become a nation when Europe was basically in the position of the American administration after the Civil War in wanting to send the African Americans to any other place than America.

Being a fan of WITNESS I also loved your illustration.

Where we always seem to disagree is that one cannot forget to hold up to the light Israel's actions in bulldozing Palestinian moves, though I applaud the court's decision recently concerning the settlers. And such things should also come into the conversation.

I hate to say it but I miss you.

Chris Anderson

I hope it doesn't seem too arcane or put anyone off, but given the topic it seems relevant to quote extensively from R.J. Neuhaus, touching (very lightly) upon the theological aspect and foremostly upon the social/political and personal responsibility aspects of the discussion. What is perhaps most intriguing is that pacifists in the mold of the Mennonites are essentially proposing a theocratic resolution, therein obviating the dialectical "tension" referred to in the following excerpt:

"Many pacifists urge us to emulate “the historic peace churches,” meaning such as the Mennonite, Brethren, and Quaker movements. Dr. Scott Holland, who teaches peace studies at Bethany Theological Seminary (Brethren) and Earlham School of Religion (Society of Friends) in Indiana, contends that pacifism is a minority position in those communities. Abandoning a “nuanced two-kingdom theology,” modern pacifists betray a desire for one kingdom, and they want it now. Holland writes: “The Christian theological imagination has a long and diverse tradition of thinking about God, world, self, and others within the contexts and categories of a two-kingdom theology. Although the theological constructions of Tertullian, Augustine, Luther, the Anabaptists, Bonhoeffer, or Niebuhr differ greatly on how the kingdoms of this age and the Kingdom of our Lord and God might be imagined in their interrelationships, a productive theological and political tension between the two kingdoms remains in these diverse proposals. This tension helps guard against all easy theocratic temptations by reminding the faithful that although the world is blessed, it remains broken. It likewise signifies that although God’s kingdom has in one sense come into history, it also remains a future hope waiting for fulfillment, inviting the believer to live in the creative tension of the ‘already but not yet’ eschatological reality of God’s presence—and absence—in space and time. Classical Christianity in its many denominational expressions can thus proclaim a vision of the reign or kingdom of God with a surplus of meaning: ‘The kingdom has come; the kingdom is coming; the kingdom will come.’ This assertion functions as a creative limit—language, reminding us that no historical theology or political theory can contain the fullness of God’s kingdom. All doctrines, ideologies, and institutions are thus subject to a process of constant critique and revision.” It is not sufficient to cry, Peace! Peace! when there is no peace. Holland addresses the uneasy conscience of today’s pacifists: “The decision or the historical necessity to become more personally and professionally engaged in broader cultural expressions of life creates an intellectual and spiritual dilemma for most modern sons and daughters of Menno Simons, Alexander Mack, and George Fox, especially around the ideal of pacifism. Many find it intellectually dishonest to live happily in the company of the mass of humanity with the full benefits of citizenship, and then pretend to be ‘married monastics’ only when it comes to the doctrine of pacifism. One cannot live fully in the midst of the art, industry, education, institutions, and civility of the commonweal and then retreat to a cultural-linguistic cave to drag out a sectarian, nonresistant deity to speak on behalf of a pacifist public ethics. Many are finding such a strategy for voicing their peace concerns and witness increasingly irrelevant, even irresponsible.” All people of good will desire peace. People who have something relevant and responsible to say on questions of war and peace know that peace is the product of a good, or approximately good, order that is grounded in justice and freedom, and that that order must be protected, sometimes by military means."

Despite differences, the "two kingdom" theme and dialectical tension is pronounced, indeed is bedrock and fundamental, within virtually all orthodox Christian communities (that I, as a layperson, am aware of). Once such basic underpinnings are obfuscated or denied altogether a similarly bedrock doubt, concerning that denial, will necessarily result on the part of any more orthodox Christian.

Again, I trust and hope this more explicit mention of a theological subject will not offend in any sense, but at that level it does serve as a general and a positive corrective to the limp, reductionist creed of pacifism as offered by the Mennonites and others, in substantial part upon a putatively sound theological grounding.

Just finished watching the movie. The dirty cop does NOT commit suicide at the end of the movie. He just gives up.

George Orwell minces no words on pacifism and war.

not a surprise groups like the american friends and other so called pacifists side with violent groups like hamas and the plo aginst Israel because the ideal is to be murdered for your cause, we had that experence during ww2 and found it to be evil.

if Israel wins arabs will live in peace
if israel loses jews will get the peace of the grave.

"I don't think pacifism is inherently evil, it's just not inherently good."

And yet, considering pacifists employ a gross double standard, condemning Israel and America while finding excuses for their thuggish enemies, I think you can make a good case that pacifism is evil and most of its adherents are morally depraved.

Interesting ideas, Dexter.

What do you think of the conduct of groups such as the Quakers, and other pacifist or anti-state groups such as the Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, Sabbatarians etc.

The Quakers (which I believe are represented by the American Friends Service Committee) are part of the historical peace churches, as are the Mennonites.

I have not paid as much attention to the AFSC as I should have and will eventually get to them, but to the best of my knowledge they have adopted a similar stance toward Israel that the MCC has --a narrative in which Israel is portrayed as having control over the violence directed at it.

The other groups you mention -- The Seventh Day Adventist's and the Jehovah's Witnesses do not express the same animus toward Israel, and I think it has something to do with their realization that they are confessing to a utopian vision that cannot be brought about by human effort, and understand that they can witness to this vision because of the tolerance of their neighbors in the U.S.

The Jehovah's Witnesses in Europe by the way, ended up in the death camps during the Holocaust.

To the best of my knowledge, the Mennonites in Germany were able to escape that fate. If they did end up in death camps, it was not in large numbers. According to the stuff I've seen the record of Mennonite opposition to the Nazi regime was, how shall I put it? ... mixed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Hello,

My brother-in-law (a Mennonite) sent me this link because he was quite upset with MCC's stance on this issue. I felt compelled to comment here to let you know that MCC does not represent the whole of the Mennonite community in some of it stances, including this one. In fact, there are many, many Mennonites who are not in agreement with MCC's statements on this issue. There is quite an assortment of Mennonites. Many are nonresistant, some are not. Some believe in war in some situations, many do not. Some are quite liberal politically and theologically, and many are quite... not.

I love the Jewish people and admire them greatly!
I often pray for peace in Jerusalem as do other Mennonites. I thought you might enjoy reading this quote taken from my church's bulletin this morning:

"Mellinger Mennonite Church and The Shofar Ministry invite you to a celebration of Purim Saturday evening, March 7, 6:30 p.m. Purim is a remembrance of the Lord's deliverance of his people as told in the book of Esther. After a brief time of welcome and worship with the Star of David messianic dance troupe, the movie "Esther" will be shown. The evening will conclude with prayer for the Jewish people. Admission is free and all are welcome."

When it comes to non-resistance, I understand that we who are non-resistant look like leeches. And I can see how we could appear ungrateful for the enormous sacrifices many wonderful, brave people have made for the sake of our country's security and freedom. I also acknowledge that there are some unanswered questions in the non-resistant's position. After hearing from others of differing viewpoints, I see that there are unanswered questions in opposing viewpoints as well. In thinking it through, I have asked myself the question repeatedly: "What would Jesus do?" I can never picture Christ shooting a bullet in someone's head. And I cannot envision Him dropping a bomb on the people He created. I think He'd rather die for them first.

I know Christ is a warrior- a warrior for certain things and since I have only one life, I have chosen to put my energy into fighting for what I think is most important to Him. I understand why others have chosen a different path and I know that my position does not answer some really tough questions. It's just that the questions that hold the most weight in my mind are these, "What would Jesus do? What did He do? What are His absolute top priorities?" That is where I want to be walking. That is where I want to be pouring out my life.

Maybe someday we will sit at His feet together and ask Him all our unanswered questions. I'm sure I will be amazed at how wrong I was in some things. But in the meantime, I want to do my best to follow Him and build His kingdom the best I know how and with everything I have.

God's best to you as you do the same,
Mim Herr

I agree that the Mennonites are being heavily influenced by left wing politics which is rather strange when you consider that they have shown such a strong communist-phobia throughout much of their recent history.

The Mennonite 'Pro-Palestinian' and even 'Pro-Muslim' stance is also quite peculiar. What I realized the other day while looking at a map indicating the distribution of Mennonite missionaries was that there are many Mennonite missionaries in what could be considered 'Muslim Territories'. In conjunction with some of the comments made above about Christians getting attacked in Gaza I am forced to ask this question about the Mennonite-Muslim relationship: ARE MENNONITES BEING FORCED TO TAKE A PRO-PALESTINIAN STANCE BY TERRORIST-TYPE GROUPS UNDER THREAT OF VIOLENCE?

It stands to reason doesn't it? Are they scared to criticize Islamic radicals? If not, then why haven't they pointed out the glaringly obvious examples of Jihad around the world? Are they not in a 'safe' position to criticize based on where their missionaries are located? Would criticizing Islamic-Fundamentalism lead to violent action against international Mennonite communities?

To some extent it seems like the Mennonite media has been hijacked by Islamic Fundamentalists. I saw for example on the cover of an issue of the Canadian Mennonite a tractor flying a Palestinian flag across the front cover. How does one explain this blatant bias? I would like to propose a human rights inquiry to be launched against all Mennonite missionaries in or near Muslim lands. Growing up in a Mennonite home I know that Mennonites are often willing to suffer in silence in the face of violence. If something is going on I think it should be investigated. Perhaps Mennonites feel safer criticizing Israelis than they do Islamic-Fundamentalists. In any case we should try to get to the bottom of this bias against Israel.

I have noticed via discussions with various parties in my old Mennonite church that Mennonites seem to, above all else, wish to side with what they see as the 'underdog' or the disadvantaged. The underdog could be a disabled person, a poor person, or the losing party in a conflict. I'm not sure where this idea comes from, but it seems to be quite prevalent in the church. In the Israeli-Palestinian conflict it would seem that the Palestinians are often seen by the Mennonites as the underdogs. So naturally support would be biased in favor of the Palestinians. I always try to remind them(in a gentle, polite and loving way of course) that Israel is surrounded by over a billion people that want to kill them on all sides and that Israel is susceptible to ballistic missiles from Iran, Russia, China and North Korea and thus in some sense may also be viewed as an underdog. Unfortuneatly many of the pacifists I know don't understand statistics nor do they know anything about modern warfare.

I must correct one thing though. The Mennonites have suffered and have been slaughtered and have not always been under the protection of others. For example, Stalin killed over 1/3 of all Mennonites living in Russia before and during the second world war. It was in the midst of this slaughter that some Mennonites were rescued by the retreating Nazi army (the Mennonites were seen as German because they spoke German--even though few Mennonites are originally German). Even though only a handful of Mennonites were rescued in this fashion this Nazi-rescue operation was enough to put a very disturbing spin on Mennonite philosophy for a while. Of course when Hitler’s actions came to light, the Mennonite pacifism won out and you don’t see any Mennonite-Nazi’s today obviously (although I’m told that there is one 85 year old woman who lives in California who has some pretty disturbing things to say—I seriously doubt she could possibly consider herself a Mennonite if she held any Nazi-type ideology..boy would I ever love to give her a piece of my mind..then again.. she's 85..).

All I can say as the member of a Mennonite family is: Damn Hitler and Stalin. Damn them right to hell. If there were ever any two schmucks that lived on this planet it was them. Jewish-Mennonite relations will never be the same because of these two monsters. Unfortunately Jewish-Mennonite relations have to be assessed with these two butchers in mind to understand the sentiment that exists between these two peoples. This rift, though it has shrunk with younger and more educated generations, is still apparent in modern day relations to some degree.

Another possible issue lurking behind Jewish-Mennonite relations is the fact that some Mennonites are apparently Jewish. I’m talking old Jewish—like the Semites that lived in Israel a thousand years ago. Like the ‘lost 10th tribe of Israel’. The weirdest aspect of Mennonite anti-Israel bias may thus be the fact that Mennonites may have actually descended from Jews who were kicked out of the land (which is now modern day Israel) by Islamic fundamentalists over a thousand years ago. It is certainly no secret that the Plaut-Deustch (Place German—aka familiar German) spoken by many Mennonites is very similar to Yiddish. I’ve even heard of old accounts where Mennonites and Jews travelled and lived together and even ate pork together (the pork was placed in water and taken out… and in this way the Pork would become quasi-Kosher—at least that’s how the story goes… of course back then the alternative was probably starvation so we can’t really blame anyone for violating the Kosher eating rules..but it is an interesting historical anecdote).

It’s thus very hard to describe the relationship between Mennonites and Jews, but if anyone asks or brings it up it’s probably safe to say that it’s…well.. very complicated…

In any case describing Mennonites as pacifist wimps certainly does not come close to approximating the truth nor the complexity involved in dealing with Mennonite-Jewish relations nor does it even begin to describe the motivations for the anti-Israel bias that the Mennonite church is displaying. There are simply so many factors to consider, perhaps there should be a university course offered on this topic.

I sincerely hope though that the Jewish-Mennonite relationship does not end up on the slippery slope of simple interpretation [as is so often the case with the modern day media] because the situation is very complicated, delicate and important to both peoples even though they may not fully realize it.

anyways,
thanks for reading my long post,
Peace (the sustainable-realistic kind),
Dave.

It is obvious that Dexter van Zile and those commenting have not been to the West Bank or Gaza. Those who have been there see things differently.

Listen to those who have been there.

(The earlist Christians were pacifists, but what would Jesus know?)

Ruth Walker, if you have been to the West Bank or Gaza, have you seen any PACIFIST Arabs?

Any Arab "Peace Now" (Salaam Now) groups that DENOUNCE racist hamas, racist hezbullah, racist fatah, racist islamic jihad, racist al qada, racist taliban, gay hanging, honor killing, woman stoning to death, plane hijacking, cruise ship hijacking, olympic hijacking, 9/11 celebrating terrorists?

Have you read the Hamas Charter? Search for the strings "freemason", "lions", "rotary", "pig".

That you for revealing to me how deeply wicked the Mennonites are.

Tho long after the last post, I would like to comment on this subject. Partially because this article has so much undeniability and the ring of truth, my wife and, together with about 40 anabaptists, mostly Amish, just returned from a journey to Israel . The express purpose was to begin the repentance process between our Jewish ' older brother' and those of Anabaptist perspective. Google --amish Israel- for tv & print coverage of our visit. Let the healing begin!Al Longenecker lewisburg, pa

Thank you, Al. I did indeed see and post that story. I congratulate you for your efforts.

"Syme: It's a beautiful thing, the destruction of words. You wouldn't have seen the [Newspeak] Dictionary 10th edition, would you Smith? It's that thick. [illustrates thickness with fingers] The 11th Edition will be that [narrows fingers] thick. Winston Smith: So, The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect? Syme: The secret is to move from translation, to direct thought, to automatic response. No need for self-discipline. Language coming from here [the larynx], not from here [the brain]" -1984 (film)


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