Archive for December 30th, 2006

“PALESTINE: PEACE, NOT APARTHEID” a Book Review by Fern Sidman

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

Since it’s release several weeks ago, Jimmy Carter’s new book, “Palestine: Peace, Not Apartheid”, has received enormous publicity as well as a litany of reviews, both critical and praiseworthy. After reading this book, one can begin to understand why Jimmy Carter’s place in presidential history will be not be one of the “great peacemaker” in the Middle East, but rather of the president who holds the dubious distinction of bearing the most animus towards Israel and the Jewish people.

In this one-sided, totally skewed and highly subjective piece of Arab propaganda, Mr. Carter presents a premise and thesis that reeks of vacuity, while presenting ostensibly specious arguments that obfuscate both fact and truth. According to Mr. Carter’s gospel on the Israeli-Palestinian debacle, the blame for the continued tensions between these two peoples rests squarely on the shoulders of Israel. His use of the word apartheid in the title says it all. Carter makes it abundantly clear that his accusations of racism and systematic oppression of the Palestinians is tantamount to the South African version of apartheid, which has been universally condemned.

According to Carter, “‘The book is about Palestine and what is happening to Palestinian people. Which is a terrible affliction and oppression of these people. There is no doubt that in Palestine, the people are treated with, in many cases, much more harsh treatment than existed in South Africa, even in the apartheid years.”

Carter fails miserably in presenting his argument because his book is riddled with gross historic inaccuracies, colossal factual errors, glaring omissions and a plethora of distorted statements. This book also lacks any footnotes or scholarly references and the miniscule amount of research done does not buttress his claims. The publication of this book was followed by the resignation of Professor Kenneth Stein of Emory University and the Carter Center.Professor Stein had a long-standing association with the Carter Center in his capacity as an expert in Middle East politics and history. Professor Stein was in fact the first director of the Carter Center (1983-1986). Professor Stein is apparently terminating his association with the Carter Center, solely as a result of Carter’s new book, Palestine: Peace, Not Apartheid. The reaction of Professor Stein — a formerly close associate and collaborator of Carter — to Carter’s new book is as follows:

“President Carter’s book on the Middle East, a title too inflammatory to even print, is not based on unvarnished analyses; it is replete with factual errors, copied materials not cited, superficialities, glaring omissions, and simply invented segments. Aside from the one-sided nature of the book, meant to provoke, there are recollections cited from meetings where I was the third person in the room, and my notes of those meetings show little similarity to points claimed in the book. Being a former President does not give one a unique privilege to invent information or to unpack it with cuts, deftly slanted to provide a particular outlook. Having little access to Arabic and Hebrew sources, I believe, clearly handicapped his understanding and analyses of how history has unfolded over the last decade.

Falsehoods, if repeated often enough become meta-truths, and they then can become the erroneous baseline for shaping and reinforcing attitudes and for policy-making. The history and interpretation of the Arab-Israeli conflict is already drowning in half-truths, suppositions, and self-serving myths; more are not necessary. In due course, I shall detail these points and reflect on their origins.”

Carter devotes many chapters of this book to lambasting Israel for constructing the security wall dividing the Palestinian population from the Israeli population. He mentions nothing about Israel’s right to defend herself against Palestinian suicide bombers, nor does he mention the clear and present danger of a Hamas government. Carter displays no understanding or sympathy for Israelis whose lives have been snuffed out by Palestinian terrorists and even justifies such actions as a result of Israeli tyranny.

As Carter takes us down his own personal memory lane, he speaks of his thorny relationship with former Israeli Prime Minister, Menachem Begin. He blames Begin’s “instransigence” for his failed peace making attempts at Camp David and insists that Palestinian claims of land ownership are indeed factual. It is clear that Carter is a man who is seething with anger that his political career came to a demise when he was not re-elected. Rather than taking personal responsibility as a failed leader during the Iranian hostage crisis, her turns to Begin, making him the scapegoat for his shortcomings. It is clear that Carter couldn’t manipulate Begin nor coerce him to make even greater territorial compromises, so he concludes that it was Begin who was at total fault for not guaranteeing him his place in history as the “great peacemaker” in the Middle East Carter obviously feels threatened by the “pro-Jewish” lobby in the United States which he claims stifles any debate on the Middle East. He strongly asserts that a countervailing political force is necessary for assuring long lasting peace. It is noteworthy to mention that Simon and Schuster, Carter’s publishers, delayed releasing the book until after the mid-term elections that saw an upsurge in the Democratic party at the polls. Surely, releasing this book prior to that, might have jeopardized the Democratic candidates chances for a victory. He aims his diatribes against the Jewish lobby to Christian evangelicals, whose support of Israel has been unwavering. He implores them to reconsider and re-think their position on Israel and points out the secular nature of the Israeli government and its lack of religious committment. He mentions nothing of the religious devotion and committment of the Jewish settler movement as well as other Orthodox religious organizations. He also chides President Bush for not forging ahead with his “Roadmap To Peace” and for his support for Israel.

Carter’s book can be summed up as an ill conceived and egregious attack on Israel and the Jewish people. It is a shoddy attempt to present his own biased and anti-Semitic views in the form of an intellectual treatise. This book couldn’t be farther from anything pretending to be intellectual in nature. The Arab propogandists of the world must be thrilled. After all, an ex-president of the USA touting their line is something money can’t buy.

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Fern Sidman holds a B.A, in political science from Brooklyn College. She was the educational coordinator for the Betar Youth Movement in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was national director of the Jewish Defense League from 1983-1985. She was a researcher for several books written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTK”L. She was the managing editor of the publication entitled, The Voice of Judea, and is a regular contributor to its web site. She is currently a writer and journalist living in New York City. Her articles have appeared in The Jewish Press, The Jewish Advocate, The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and numerous Jewish and general web sites including, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Pipes and Michael Freund.
We are pleased to have Ms. Sidman as a regular contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

Saddam: Defiant to the very end By: Michael Mickey

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

Saddam Hussein, whose wicked hands cost many people their lives, literally thousands in fact, is now dead, having been executed last night. As horrific as his death by hanging is to imagine, it was nothing compared to where he finds himself today. Presently, Saddam is in hell where he is awaiting his resurrection to be judged by Jesus Christ at the Great White Throne Judgment.

In the days leading up to Saddam’s execution and even last night, in total agreement with author Joel Rosenberg who said we, as Christians, should pray for the salvation of Saddam Hussein, I hoped and prayed to hear that he’d come to faith in Jesus Christ, but it wasn’t to be.

Having been an evil man his entire life as far as I know, an Associated Press report states the following of Saddam’s execution (in part, emphasis added mine):

Saddam Hussein struggled briefly after American military guards handed him over to Iraqi executioners. But as his final moments approached, he grew calm. He clutched a Quran as he was led to the gallows, and in one final moment of defiance, refused to have a hood pulled over his head before facing the same fate he was accused of inflicting on countless thousands during a quarter-century of ruthless power.

Sami al-Askari, the political adviser of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, told The Associated Press that Saddam initially resisted when he was taken by Iraqi guards but was composed in his final moments.

He said Saddam was clad in a black suit, hat and shoes, rather than prison garb. His hat was removed shortly before the noose was slipped around his neck.

Shortly before the execution, Saddam was asked if he wanted to say something.

“No I don’t want to,” al-Askari, who was present at the execution, quoted Saddam as saying. Saddam repeated a prayer after a Sunni Muslim cleric who was present.

“Saddam later was taken to the gallows and refused to have his head covered with a hood,” al-Askari said. “Before the rope was put around his neck, Saddam shouted: ‘God is great. The nation will be victorious and Palestine is Arab.'”

Rather than repent of his nearly immeasurable sins, Saddam chose instead to go out of the world with the Quran in his hand, cursing the nation of Israel’s existence in outright defiance of Almighty God.

Isaiah 14:4-6, 9-11 comes to mind as appropriate in this instance:

4. That thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!

5. The LORD hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of the rulers.

6. He who smote the people in wrath with a continual stroke, he that ruled the nations in anger, is persecuted, and none hindereth.

………

9. Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations.

10. All they shall speak and say unto thee, Art thou also become weak as we? art thou become like unto us?

11. Thy pomp is brought down to the grave, and the noise of thy viols: the worm is spread under thee, and the worms cover thee.

Last night hell rose up to meet the mighty Saddam Hussein at his coming – the one who blasphemed God and wished until his dying breath to see the lands that God gave His chosen people handed over to those determined to destroy Israel. It didn’t have to be that way.

Saddam could’ve chosen to bless Israel as God commanded, but he didn’t. He chose to curse Israel throughout his life, even with his final words spoken.

Genesis 12:3: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Game over, Saddam

Saddam Executed

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

After three years in prison, Saddam Hussein has finally been put to death.

Saddam Hussein, the ex-Iraqi dictator who probably supported al-Qaida during its preparations for the 9/11 attack on the U.S. and then abandoned Baghdad in front of advancing American military forces to retreat to an underground bunker, has been executed for ordering the deaths of his own countrymen.

Al Arabiya TV reported Hussein was hanged shortly before 10 p.m. Eastern. along with his half-brother Barzan al-Tikriti and former judge Awad al-Bander.

He had been sentenced to hang by the new democratic judiciary in the nation he once ruled with not only threats but actual executions and exterminations. Iraqis also had told how he once ordered the use of poison gas on Kurds, killing an untold number.

He had been in custody since he was found hiding in a pit near Tikrit in 2003, eight months after his government disintegrated and fled Baghdad, and American soldiers had been posted as guards over him so there would be no breach of security.

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