You can always tell when your opposition is feeling truly threatened – when it vehemently objects to your actions. This is happening in Israel. An increase in the number of Christians joining the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) has Israeli Arab politicians up in arms. Father Gabriel Nadaf, a leader of the movement to help unite Christians and IDF soldiers, and spokesman Shadi Halul are definitely targets.
Via Uri Perednik at Mida:
In their struggle for equal rights, Christian Israelis have discovered that it is not the State that stands in their way. On the contrary: Christians have full backing from the Israeli Government members and Prime Minister Netanyahu. Who, then, is fighting their integration into Israeli society? Arab politicians, members of Communist and Nationalist political parties and Arab MKs, who fight ferociously against Christian enlistment, all while fanning the flames of incitement and hatred against Christians.
One of the leaders of this campaign is Dr. Azmi Hakim, head of the Orthodox Church Council, a long-time political opponent of Father Nadaf. Hakim is supported by MK Mohammad Barakeh and is a member of the Israeli Communist Party. Hakim’s arguments amount to standard clichés such as “the IDF is the army of occupation and killing,” and that “the Palestinian Christians within the Green Line are an inseparable part of the Palestinian people.”
In the true spirit of Bolshevism, Hakim attacks Father Nadaf personally. He even declared on his facebook page that “Father Nadaf will end up in the trash heap of history, with the rest of the garbage.” In an interview to Israeli Channel One, Hakim argued that “because I am the Chairman of the Executive Committee, only I have the right to speak for the Christian community of Nazareth and Upper Nazareth.”
These arguments amuse Shadi Halul: “It’s known that a communist can’t be a Christian, there’s no such thing as a communist Christian, after all the communists have no religion,” he said. “We are the true Christian voice, and only when we started to have ourselves heard did pan-Arab and communist activists suddenly start to identify as Christian. They never did so before; they’re only doing it to torpedo what we’re doing.”
Much of the Palestinian Christian movement isn’t really Christian at all. It is a movement with a political agenda that has hatred for Jews as a central premise. In the past, this has been an effective tactic in alienating Jews even further by pitting Christians and Muslims against them. This current movement in Israel suggests that as Christians become the new Jews relative to Muslim persecution in the Middle East, such tactics by Arabs are proving less effective.