New push for anti-Israel investigation

Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Russ Jones (

The head of the IRD says a U.S.-based anti-Israel coalition is now asking its supporters to urge President Barack Obama to investigate Israel's alleged violations of U.S. weapons laws.

The call came after Israel retaliated against Hamas's ongoing rocket attacks on Israeli civilians. The Institute on Religion & Democracy (IRD) is concerned that some Christians demonize Israel.

Tooley, Mark (IRD)The U.S. Campaign to End Israeli Occupation equates Israel to the Apartheid in South Africa, advocates boycotts and divestments against Israel, and opposes U.S. support of any kind for the Jewish state. IRD president Mark Tooley says the mainline churches affiliated with the group seem to be single-minded about justice for Palestinians.

"They don't make any meaningful distinction between aggressive violence versus self-defense, or between a legitimate democratic government like Israel versus what is essentially a terrorist group, which is Hamas and its allied groups," Tooley gathers.

He also maintains the plight of Palestinian Christians would not concern the participating U.S. church groups if Israel were not depicted as a villain.

"We also have a situation where many of these anti-Israel church groups are very, very concerned about Christian Palestinians," the IRD president notes. "They make up somewhere between one and two percent of the population, but [those church groups] have little to no interest in other Christian populations in the Middle East who are under siege by repressive -- and in many cases Islamic -- governments."

The U.S. Campaign says it seeks to end military aid to Israel, which would leave Israel defenseless.

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