Faith & Social Justice: In the spirit of Richard Overton and the 17th C. Levellers

Israeli Public Begin to Rally for Peace

The web is invaluable if we want news that gets self-censored in the U.S.A. You’d never know just by watching the U.S. news, for instance, that the near-unanimous support in Israel for the war with Lebanon (understandable given that missiles are landing all around them!) has begun to break. In the on-line English edition of Ha’aretz, Israel’s most respected mainstream newspaper, I found that some 10,000 Israelis protested in the streets yesterday, calling for an end to the war. They included both Arab and Jewish Israelis, with 5,000 marching in Tel Aviv alone.
See http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArtVty.jhtml?sw=5%2C000+march+in+Tel+Aviv&itemNo=746637

(The Ha’aretz editors did not share the view of the peace protestors, by the way.) More on this can be found at the blog of the National Council of Churches’ Interfaith Relations.
See http://www.nccinterfaith.blogspot.com/

Even more amazing, but true, is that while the secular political parties in Israel are still calling for more war, the Ultra-Orthodox Degel ha-Torah, one of the most rightwing of Israeli religious parties in the Knessett (parliament), has become the first political party in Israel to support an unconditional and immediate ceasefire while taking steps for a permanent peace. Degel ha-Torah has even reminded the Knessett that Israel is not a law unto itself and must listen to world opinion. See http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArtVty.jhtml?sw=Degel+Ha+Torah&itemNo=746186

Now we need Muslim leaders to say the same thing to Hezbollah and Christians–many, many Christians–to say the same thing to Pres. Bush and the U.S. Congress.

Report these stories to your local papers so that we broaden the coverage in the U.S. mainstream media.


August 6, 2006 Posted by | Israel, peacemaking | 2 Comments

Nagasaki 1945

On this Hiroshima Day, I had no pictures of the aftermath of Hiroshima. This is Nagasaki, Japan 1945. (Courtesy of angevoix who runs the blog, Inexpugnable, at http://inexpugnable.blogspot.com/ ) As I mentioned yesterday, Nagasaki was the center of Christianity in Japan. Ground Zero was the St. Mary’s Cathedral of the Catholic community and both pilot and bombadeer were practicing Catholics–National loyalties trumping the supposedly greater ties of sisters and brothers in Christ.
Tonight, I will attend in Louisville a candle/paper lantern lighting ceremony, a traditional Japanese prayer for peace. The point is not who was right or wrong in that terrible war or any war. The point is to mourn the dead and work to make certain such evil never happens again.

O God Whom we crucified anew in the fires of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and Whose Image and Likeness in humans is even now being repeatedly destroyed in Iraq, Israel, the Gaza Strip, and Lebanon, give us wisdom and courage to find a better Way, a Way to stop the bloodshed and make peace. Amen.

August 6, 2006 Posted by | peacemaking, the tragic | Comments Off on Nagasaki 1945