As the Bible teaches us, we should love all our "neighbors," including all people, everywhere, with special attention in thought and action to show love to the "neighbor" in need. In the present Gaza conflict, we should love all the Palestinian people and all the people of Israel at the same time.
Tragically, the hate-filled policies of Hamas, the group that rules Gaza, are very destructive both to the people of Gaza (by using its own women and children as shields) and to the people of Israel (by viciously targeting its civilian population centers). In spite of some of the general media's efforts to gauze-over the Gaza realities, in this on-going mortal conflict there is no moral equivalence between the two side's policies. Nevertheless, at time of the writing of this essay there is peace, and we are grateful.
Along with love and peace, patience and endurance are taught in the Bible, too as well as "turning the other cheek" when attacked on "one cheek." With remarkable public consistency, the present nation of Israel has for seven years endured an incessant storm of over 11,000 missiles and mortars raining on its people from the terrorist residents of Gaza.
As a nation desiring to live at peace with all people, it has mostly restrained itself and rarely responded with violence to years of deadly violence against it. Now as the vicious, violent attacks upon all the Israeli people have been dramatically increased with a missile launched against Israel averaging every 6 minutes for seven days, starting November 14, 2012 Israel has had to respond strongly.
As President Obama observes, absolutely no one can blame Israel for defending itself. The absurd verbal attacks against Israel by the media and by many American Muslim leaders defy credibility, defy basic humanity. All people should now stand strongly with Israel and for its right of self-defense and to defend all its diverse citizens including Muslim, Druze, Christian, Jewish and all others. (continue reading...)