Israel - Palestine peace process

Frisbeetarian

Frisbeetarian

Legendary Member
Absolutely.

In fact, I hope, that Jews are only the very first people who begun fighting for freedom and against Arab oppression.

Entire North Africa and most of the Middle East are occupied by Arabs, there is much work to be done.
How are you going to liberate North Africa when you can't even claim and cleanse Gaza and the West Bank from the vile usurping two headed monsters?
 
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  • Frisbeetarian

    Frisbeetarian

    Legendary Member
    It depends on who posted, what was posted and comments added to a post.

    Still, with which part of Kerry's remark do you agree and which one do you disagree?
    We already know who and what was posted. There were also no comments attached to the quoted article.
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

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    We already know who and what was posted. There were also no comments attached to the quoted article.
    Actually if you were to read following post from the same author you would've understood it better.
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

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    Interestingly enough you cannot even understand that you cannot think like Zionist if you are not Zionist.

    All you can do is to express your own thoughts while trying to pass them as somebody else's (Freid called it "projection").
     
    Lebmonage

    Lebmonage

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    Disturbing photos show militarization of Israeli children

    Some of these disturbing images of Israeli children being put through military-style training displays at Efrat, an illegal Israeli colony in the occupied West Bank, have been circulating widely online and were published in Haaretz and other media.

    A repeated theme of pro-Israeli, anti-Palestinian propaganda is to circulate images of Palestinian children taking part in such militarized displays in order to advance the belief that Palestinian culture is inherently violent and “teaches children hate” and that therefore Israeli violence is a justified defensive response. But these pictures are remarkable because they reveal the extent to which Israeli culture has been militarized and how Israeli children are not immune to this – a key theme in Max Blumenthal’s book Goliath.


    An Israeli boy wearing a military vest throws a mock grenade during a traditional military weapon display to mark the 66th anniversary of Israel’s “independence” at the occupied West Bank settlement of Efrat on 6 May 2014.(Gali Tibbongali / AFP)

    On 6 May, Israelis celebrated their “independence day,” which they mark according to the Jewish lunar calendar.

    Traditionally Israeli Jews hold public celebrations and picnics, especially in “national parks” typically built over the ruins of ethnically cleansed and destroyed Palestinian villages.

    Meanwhile, with broad support from the Israeli Jewish public, Palestinian public commemorations of the Nakba – the ethnic cleansing of Palestine – can be punished by law.

    Many of the Israeli festivities are celebrations of the so-called “Israel Defense Forces,” better known to Palestinians as the army that occupies them, arrests and kills their children with impunity and helps settlers to steal their land.




    An Israeli child holds a rocket launcher as another holds her doll during a traditional military weapon display to mark the 66th anniversary of Israel’s “independence” at the occupied West Bank settlement of Efrat on 6 May 2014.
    (Gali Tibbongali / AFP)

    Some of these disturbing images of Israeli children being put through military-style training displays at Efrat, an illegal Israeli colony in the occupied West Bank, have been circulating widely online and were published in Haaretz and other media.

    A repeated theme of pro-Israeli, anti-Palestinian propaganda is to circulate images of Palestinian children taking part in such militarized displays in order to advance the belief that Palestinian culture is inherently violent and “teaches children hate” and that therefore Israeli violence is a justified defensive response.

    But these pictures are remarkable because they reveal the extent to which Israeli culture has been militarized and how Israeli children are not immune to this – a key theme in Max Blumenthal’s book Goliath.

    There is no doubt that both Israeli and Palestinian children have been subjected to this kind of brutalization by adults. It is horrifying whenever children are given guns and encouraged to imagine themselves as killers.

    Such activities are arguably in violation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that member countries “shall refrain from recruiting any person who has not attained the age of fifteen years into their armed forces.”

    As I wrote on a previous occasion when such disturbing images of Israeli children appeared:


    Children live with the consequences of Israel’s violent occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people, whether it is Israeli children indoctrinated to continue this oppression as adults, or Palestinian children brutalized and traumatized by the organized violence of occupation, colonialism and apartheid that pervades their lives.

    This is never a reflection on the children, but on the adults who subject them to such ugliness.


    An Israeli boy wearing a military vest crawls on the sand during a traditional military weapon display to mark the 66th anniversary of Israel’s “independence” at the occupied West Bank settlement of Efrat on 6 May 2014.
    (Gali Tibbongali / AFP)



    An Israeli man shows his son how to work a machine-gun during a traditional military weapon display to mark the 66th anniversary of Israel’s “independence” at the occupied West Bank settlement of Efrat on 6 May 2014. (Gali Tibbongali / AFP)

    Indoctrinating children

    Rela Mazali is the founder of New Profile (newprofile.org), an Israeli organization that supports conscientious objection and advocates for individual refusers.

    In this video (check link below for the video) with The Real News’ Lia Tarachansky, she explains how Israeli culture normalizes military conscription so that people do not even regard militarization as a policy choice but rather as a natural feature of life. The report also includes an interview with refuser Alex Cohn who discusses how Israeli Jewish children are indoctrinated through popular media to look forward to their conscription into the army and to disparage skepticism and refusal.

    Mazali also discusses sexual violence in the Israeli military and how the culture has managed to make sexual harassment and assault invisible to its victims.

    http://electronicintifada.net/blogs...ren?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

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    There is not thing unusual about the fact that Jew can go to Israel.

    However, if Arab cannot go to Arabia, then all decent people of the World must protest this unfair treatment of Arabs by their own brethren.
     
    EuroMode

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    Calls to class far-right Jewish settlers as terrorists after Israeli soldiers attacked

    Senior ministers Tzipi Livni and Yitzhak Aharonovitch condemn 'price-tag' attacks as author Amos Oz calls militants neo-Nazis


    The acclaimed Israeli writer Amos Oz said: 'Our neo-Nazi groups enjoy the support of numerous nationalist or even racist legislators.' Photograph: Isifa/Getty



    Calls are mounting for hardline Jewish settlers to be classified as terrorists after a spate of attacks on Palestinian property in the West Bank and Israel, and threats of violence towards Israeli soldiers.

    Last week, the justice minister, Tzipi Livni, and the internal security minister, Yitzhak Aharonovitch, both argued that rightwing extremists should be classified as terrorists following attacks on soldiers at the hardline West Bank settlement of Yitzhar.

    And on Friday, the Israeli prize laureate author Amos Oz described the hardline Jewish settlers that carry out so-called "price tag" attacks on Palestinians as neo-Nazis.

    "Our neo-Nazi groups enjoy the support of numerous nationalist or even racist legislators, as well as rabbis who give them what is in my view pseudo-religious justification," the 75-year-old said at an event in Tel Aviv.

    It is not the first time that politicians and public figures in Israel have called for the branding of rightwing settlers as terrorists, but recent events have coalesced into something of a perfect storm.

    A spate of vandalism in Jerusalem and Galilee has seen rightwing groups target Christians ahead of the visit of Pope Francis, including a graffiti attack on the Vatican building where he is due to stay later this month.

    Meanwhile, in the hardline settlement of Yitzhar, police arrested a woman for inciting violence towards the IDF, just weeks after Israeli soldiers were attacked when they attempted to dismantle a settler outpost.

    It also coincides with the failure of the recent round of peace talks, with senior politicians and peace-talks negotiators in the US, Israel and Palestine attributing the breakdown to settlement activity, among other factors.

    But in the hillside West Bank village of Asira al-Qibliya, which is just 300 metres from Yitzhar, Palestinian villagers see the recent backlash as a case of too little, too late.

    "It is only words. We don't want words, we want deeds," said Bassem Salah, 50, a construction worker.

    His neighbour Ibrahim Makhlouf, 52, a teacher, also dismissed the comments of Israeli politicians, given the support that the Israeli state provides to settlements in the West Bank.

    "They say it is a minority, but it is a minority supported by both the government and the army – they receive free water, free electricity, the government spend millions of dollars on them. Who are they trying to kid?" said Makhlouf.

    His two-storey home is the closest in the village to Yitzhar, and last year a French NGO installed a metal grate across one side of the building after his windows were broken regularly by stone-throwing radical Zionists.

    He says that the situation has improved since 2012, when villagers were given cameras to document the attacks. In the past, settlers would tell the IDF that they were provoked, he said, but faced with video evidence the soldiers have been forced to act.

    But the father-of-four still believes that settlements such as Yitzhar remain the biggest barrier to peace between Israel and Palestine.

    "As long as there is a settlement here I don't see a future. This settlement needs to be evacuated. We don't want Palestine from the river to the sea, we just want them to leave our home town," he said.

    "Abu Mazen [Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas] should stop security co-operation, he should stop negotiations. Before the [1994] Oslo Accords the settlement was 9km away, now it is 300 metres. What have we received from the peace process? More settlements."

    "There is no compromise," added Salah, "it is us or them."

    A spokesperson for Yitzhar did not reply to requests for comment.

    source Guardian
     
    EuroMode

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    Video: Palestinian Youths Killed by Israeli Army on Nakba Day, Posed no Threat to Soldiers

    Video of the two Palestinians killed last Thursday at an annual Nakba Day protest outside of Ofer prison show the youths did not pose a threat to life to Israeli soldiers. And a photo set reveals one medic was shot in the head while aiding a wounded youth.

    The CCTV footage released by Defense of Children International-Palestine captures Nadim Siam Abu Nuwara, 17, standing with a group of youth before he collapsed to the ground. Mohammed Mahmoud Odeh Salameh, 16, was also killed in the demonstration, along with one other protester critically wounded from live-fire. Abu Nuwara is hit at 48 seconds into the video.

    On Friday after a funeral procession in Ramallah, I rode to an outdoor prayer ceremony with a Palestinian journalist who photographed Abu Nuwara’s final moments, the youth in the video footage. Sitting in the car with Samer Nazzal, 28, from Raya FM, I was shown a series of images where a medic lifting Abu Nuwara is being struck in the head with a rubber bullet. Nazzal circled the rubber bullet to outline it before the moment of impact. In the following picture, the medic is seen cradling his head.

    “Yesterday it was really difficult—they [the Israeli Defense Forces] used real bullets from the start. They were aiming to push protesters back they were aiming to kill,” said Nazzal. “It was bizarre because the clashes were normal,” continuing, “I want you to write they weren’t holding Kalashnikov’s or M16s or RPJs, they were just throwing stones from far, far away and never did the stones strike a soldier,” he said.


    Nazzal took the pictures while taking cover with other photographers from live-rounds fired by the Israeli army. Nazzal careened from behind a building and saw Abu Nuwara throwing stones, but by the time live-fire struck him, the youths had stopped. “He was so alive and the next minute he was lying on the street and put his hand on his chest.” Nazzal then snapped probably the most circulated photo of Abu Nuwara just before death. He kept photographing as a group of youth and one medic moved to lift Abu Nuwara and carry him to an ambulance. Then Nazzal noticed the medic.

    “I saw him holding his head like he had been shot. But after I went back to my office and I saw a rubber bullet in the frame,” said Nazzal. Indeed Nazzal images confirm the Israeli army did fire at the first responder and others who were attempting to transport the lethally injured youth.



    The live-rounds used against the Palestinian protesters at the Nakba Day demonstration and the rubber bullet fired at the first responder comes two months after Amnesty International’s report “Trigger Happy: Israel’s use of excessive force in the West Bank” outlined how “reckless force” from the Israeli army and police since 2011. “In all cases examined by Amnesty International, Palestinians killed by Israeli soldiers did not appear to be posing a direct and immediate threat to life,”said the organization.

    Since the beginning of 2014, ten Palestinian civilians have been killed by Israeli fire. Last year Israeli forces killed 22 Palestinian civilians in the West Bank, 14 during demonstrations.

    source globalresearch
     
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    EuroMode

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    Israel condemns US for backing Palestinian unity government

    Decision to continue working with the Palestinian Authority is the latest in a series of diplomatic setbacks for Netanyahu



    An announcement by the US that it will continue working with a new interim Palestinian unity government backed by Hamas, which was sworn in on Monday, has been condemned by Israel.

    Israel's prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, had asked Washington not to rush into recognising the technocratic government, which is backed by two key Palestinian factions, Fatah and the Islamist group Hamas. He said on Tuesday he was "deeply troubled" by the decision.

    Other ministers allied with Netanyahu described the announcement by US state department spokeswoman Jen Psaki that the US "will work with this government" in far harsher terms.

    "Unfortunately, American naivety has broken all records. Any collaboration with Hamas – which kills women and children – is unacceptable," said the communications minister, Gilad Erdan, who is considered close to Netanyahu.

    "This American capitulation can only damage chances of resuming [peace] negotiations," he added in a statement.

    A futher blow to Israeli appeals came on Tuesday, when the European Union also announced it would continue working with the new Palestinian unity government, on condition it sticks to the principle of peace with Israel based on a two-state solution.

    Other countries that voiced backing for the new unity government include China, Turkey and India.

    In a statement, the EU said: "We welcome ... the declaration by President Abbas that this new government is committed to the principle of the two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, to the recognition of Israel's legitimate right to exist.

    "The EU's engagement with the new Palestinian government will be based on its adherence to these policies and commitments," it said.

    Psaki told reporters after the signing ceremony on Monday that "at this point, it appears that president Abbas has formed an interim technocratic government that does not include ministers affiliated with Hamas. With what we know now, we will work with this government."

    The comments were an embarrassing setback for Netanyahu, who had reportedly told fellow ministers that he had received assurances from Washington over the weekend that the US would not hurry into recognising the new government.

    Also weighing in with criticism on Tuesday was fellow Netanyahu loyalist and intelligence minister Yuval Steinitz, who told Israel Army Radio: "I have to say I do not understand this American announcement. You cannot present it as a Hamas government internally, then present it publicly as a government of technocrats."

    The decision by the US to continue working with the Palestinian Authority is the latest in a series of high-profile setbacks for Israeli diplomacy with Washington, its closest ally, including the criticism of Israel in unusually strong language by senior US officials following the collapse of the US-sponsored peace talks in April.

    The US secretary of state, John Kerry, was then forced to apologise after saying in off-the-record remarks that Israel was at risk of becoming "an apartheid state" if it could not reach a peace agreement with the Palestinians to end the occupation.

    The US response comes amid a growing sense that Netanyahu's government has backed itself into a corner since the collapse of the peace talks and is struggling to find a response to initiatives announced by the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, both on the domestic and international stage. That includes Abbas's reconciliation deal with Hamas and his unilateral application to join a series of international bodies and treaties.

    Although Israel has threatened punitive sanctions against the Palestinian Authority, including reducing contacts and holding back tax revenues, its room for manoeuvre is limited by the fact that Israel appears to have no real desire to push for moves that would see the Palestinian Authority collapse and force Israel to take over the day-to-day running of the occupied territories.

    Israel, too, is the main beneficiary of the joint Israeli-Palestinian Authority security coordination arrangements on the West Bank, which has seen Palestinian security forces arrest and jail members of Hamas and other militant groups.

    Netanyahu does not seem keen on the notion being advocated by the rightwing economy minister, Naftali Bennett, that Israel annex a large proportion of the West Bank where the main settlement blocks are located, which would inevitably attract international condemnation.

    Reports from Monday's Israeli security cabinet – described as heated – suggested that more cautious voices including the justice minister, Tzipi Livni, won the day when the issue was discussed. Bennett and his allies were placated with the future promise of a committee that might examine changes in sovereignty in parts of the occupied territory in the future.

    source guardian
     
    Joe tayyar

    Joe tayyar

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    LULZ

     
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    Red Cross refuses to call on Israel to release Palestinian children held by army

    The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is refusing to call on Israel to immediately and unconditionally release almost two hundred Palestinian children held by the Israeli army.

    “ICRC doesn’t usually call for the release of detainees in general. We monitor their condition and if we have any concerns we discuss with the authorities issues regarding their treatment,” Nadia Dibsy, the organization’s spokesperson in Jerusalem, told The Electronic Intifada in relation to these children.

    Dibsy’s comments came one day after the ICRC released a statement calling for the “unconditional release” of three Israeli settlers, two aged 16 and one aged 19, reportedly abducted from the occupied West Bank by unknown persons on 12 June.



    “We are very concerned by the fate of the teenagers. International humanitarian law prohibits abduction as well as the taking of hostages,” Robert Mardini, head of ICRC operations in the Middle East, said in the statement. “They must be treated humanely, and their lives and dignity protected and respected.”

    Children tortured

    As of the most recent figures in April, 196 Palestinian children, 27 of whom were under the age of 15, were in Israeli military custody according to the monitoring group Defence for Children International – Palestine Section.

    Human Rights groups including B’Tselem, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have all recently condemned Israel’s routine mistreatment of these children, including the practices of solitary confinement, torture and denial of contact with family.

    Last year, for instance, Israel’s B’Tselem issued a report that found Palestinian children held by the army are regularly tortured and threatened with rape in order to force confessions.

    Double standard favors settlers

    “The issue that we’re discussing is abduction which is illegal under international law,” Dibsy told The Electronic Intifada in relation to the missing settlers.

    Asked whether Israeli military raids in which Palestinian children are routinely seized from their beds in the middle of the night did not constitute “abduction,” Dibsy insisted that the two cases were completely different.

    While acknowledging that military detention, torture and solitary confinement of Palestinian children by Israel are also violations of international humanitarian law, Dibsy insisted that the different treatment was justified.

    “We are monitoring where minors are detained in Israeli places of detention,” she said.

    “We look into persons who are detained and discuss with the authorities issues regarding their treatment.” Dibsy said that the content of such discussions was “confidential.”

    But when asked repeatedly, Dibsy would not call on Israeli occupation forces to release Palestinian children, a position that casts grave doubt on the organization’s claimed “neutrality.”

    ICRC offers obscure justifications rooted in “international humanitarian law” for its apparent double standard.

    But Palestinian parents will find it impossible to understand why ICRC appears content for their children to remain in the brutal custody of an occupation army while rushing to the defense of colonial settlers.

    source electronicentifada
     
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    Presbyterian Church votes to divest holdings to sanction Israel

    Most prominent US religious group voted to sell church stock in companies whose products Israel uses in Palestinian territories

    The Presbyterian Church on Friday became the most prominent religious group in the US to endorse divestment as a protest against Israeli policies toward Palestinians, voting to sell church stock in three companies whose products Israel uses in the occupied territories.

    The church's General Assembly, meeting in Detroit, voted by 310-303 to sell stock in Caterpillar, Hewlett-Packard and Motorola Solutions. Two years ago, the assembly rejected a similar divestment proposal by two votes.

    The American Jewish Committee, a policy and advocacy group based in New York, said the vote was "driven by hatred of Israel". But Heath Rada, moderator for the church meeting, said immediately after the vote that "in no way is this a reflection of our lack of love for our Jewish brothers and sisters”.

    The decision is expected to reverberate beyond the 1.8 million-member church. It comes amid discouragement over failed peace talks that have left activists desperate for a way to effect change and as the broader movement known as BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) has gained some momentum in the US, Israel's closest and most important ally.

    Presbyterians who advocated for divestment insisted their action was not part of the broader boycott movement. Israeli officials, along with many American Jewish groups, denounced the campaign as an attempt to delegitimise the Jewish state.

    Separately, the assembly also voted to re-examine its support for a two-state solution.

    In a statement on its Facebook page, the Israeli Embassy in Washington denounced the Presbyterian Church resolution as "shameful”.

    "Voting for symbolic measures marginalises and removes its ability to be a constructive partner to promote peace in the Middle East," the statement said.

    Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the BDS movement, praised the vote as a "sweet victory for human rights”. He said Presbyterian supporters of Palestinian rights have introduced divestment into the US mainstream and have given Palestinians "real hope in the face of the relentless and intensifying cruelty of Israel's regime of occupation, settler colonialism and apartheid”.

    Representatives of the Presbyterian socially responsible investment arm told the national meeting in Detroit that their efforts to lobby the three companies for change had failed.

    Carol Hylkema of the Israel/Palestine Mission Network, a Presbyterian group that advocates for Palestinians and spearheaded the drive for divestment, said their action was modelled on the divestment movement to end apartheid in South Africa. The 2012 assembly had endorsed a boycott of Israeli products made in the Palestinian territories.

    "Because we are a historical peacemaking church, what we have done is, we have stood up for nonviolent means of resistance to oppression and we have sent a clear message to a struggling society that we support their efforts to resist in a nonviolent way the oppression being thrust upon them," said the Reverend Jeffrey DeYoe, of the Israel/Palestine Mission Network.

    Two smaller US religious groups have divested in protest of Israeli policies: the Friends Fiduciary Corp, which manages assets for US Quakers, and the Mennonite Central Committee. Last week, the pension board of the United Methodist Church, the largest mainline Protestant group in the US, revealed plans to sell holdings worth about $110,000 in G4S, which provides security equipment and has contracts with Israel's prison system. However, the United Methodist Church had rejected church-wide divestment.

    Motorola Solutions said in a statement that the company follows the law and its own policies that address human rights. Hewlett-Packard said its checkpoints for Palestinians were developed to expedite passage "in a secure environment, enabling people to get to their place of work or to carry out their business in a faster and safer way”. Caterpillar has said it does not sell equipment to Israel, just to the US government.

    A church spokeswoman estimated the value of Presbyterian holdings in the companies at $21m.

    source guardian
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    Legendary Member
    Presbyterian Church votes to divest holdings to sanction Israel ...
    Does it mean PC decided to forgo all contacts with and visits to Holy Land, because this is what's coming if they are truly committed to boycott.

    And if not, then nothing changes except on paper.

    PS. I wish Israel were to take on this Presbyterian BDS challenge. Let's see if this guys will miss Via Dolorossa or not.
     
    Robin Hood

    Robin Hood

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    I guess for Zionists, civilization means ethnic cleansing...

    Netanyahu slams ‘disgracef​ul’ Presbyteri​an Church decision
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    Hymns for Home, in Arabic

    Upstairs in a small Brooklyn church, Christians of all denominations from the Middle East gather to pray in Arabic and share experiences. Many have fled conflict, violence and prejudice.

    By Ben Wolfgang

    -

    The Washington Times

    Sunday, June 22, 2014

    Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem Sunday, June 22, 2014. Israel's military says troops have shot dead one Palestinian, and a Palestinian medical official says another was killed, as the army searches for three missing teens and looks to dismantle the Islamic militant group Hamas. Meanwhile the military says a civilian vehicle has exploded near the Syrian frontier in the Golan Heights, and that there are several casualties. (AP Photo/Baz Ratner, Pool)

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    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blasted the Presbyterian Church (USA) on Sunday for the denomination’s “disgraceful” decision last week to disassociate with companies supplying equipment to Israeli armed forces.

    The denomination voted Friday to divest holdings in three companies — Caterpillar, Hewlett-Packard and Motorola Solutions — that the church argues supply Israel in its occupation of Palestinian territory.

    The vote was held at the church’s biennial general assembly meeting, with 310 members voting in favor of the move and 303 voting against. On its website, the church noted there were “audible gasps” from many in the crowd immediately following the step.

    But Mr. Netanyahu had a much more pointed reaction Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

    The prime minister said the move demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of the Middle East, and he said Presbyterian leaders cannot see how Israel differs from its often brutal and repressive neighbors.

    “It should trouble all people and of conscience and morality because it’s so disgraceful,” he said of the vote. “You come to Israel, and you see the one democracy that upholds basic human rights, that guards the rights of all minorities, that protects Christians.”

    Mr. Netanyahu, who lived for more than a decade in the U.S. over several stints as a boy and young man, then made a puckish suggestion for how the Presbyterian leaders could educate themselves about the Middle East.

    “I would suggest to the Presbyterian organizations — fly to the Middle East. Come and see Israel for the embattled democracy that it is, and then take a bus tour. Go to Libya, go to Syria, go to Iraq — and see the difference. And I would give them two pieces of advice — make sure it is an armor-plated bus and, second, don’t say that you’re Christians.”

    Presbyterian supporters of divestment analogized the action to the worldwide campaign of sanctions and boycotts against South Africa’s apartheid regime in the 1970s and 80s.

    “Because we are a historical peacemaking church, what we have done is we have stood up for nonviolent means of resistance to oppression, and we have sent a clear message to a struggling society that we support their efforts to resist in a nonviolent way the oppression being thrust upon them,” the Rev. Jeffrey DeYoe of the Israel/Palestine Mission Network told The Associated Press.

    The church seems to understand its vote — which reportedly will result in the divesting of about $21 million in investments — is highly controversial.

    “In no way is this a reflection for our lack of love for our Jewish sisters and brothers,” moderator Heath Rada said immediately after the vote.

    The church, which has about 1.8 million members and became the largest U.S. church denomination to divest itself of Israel-related holdings, also added a preamble to its motion, seeking to head off criticism that Presbyterians are abandoning Israel.

    The Presbyterian Church USA “has a long-standing commitment to peace in Israel and Palestine. We recognize the complexity of the issues, the decades-long struggle, the pain suffered and inflicted by policies and practices of both the Israeli government and Palestinian entities,” the preamble says.

    That defense hardly was enough for Mr. Netanyahu, who argued his nation goes out of its way to protect Christians.

    “Christians are persecuted throughout the Middle East. So most Americans understand that Israel is a beacon of civilization and moderation,” he said.

    Read more: Netanyahu slams 'disgracef
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    Netanyahu slams 'disgracef
     
    eLad

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