Archive for the War Category

Hamas shows why Islam can’t be trusted

Posted in Arabs, Hate, Islam, Israel, Israeli, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, Uncategorized, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , , , on March 18, 2009 by Michael Burks

GAZA, March 18 (Xinhua) — A senior Islamic Hamas movement announced on Wednesday that the indirect talks, mediated by Egypt, with Israel on the release of captive Israeli corporal Gilad Shalit have stopped.

    Salah el-Bardawil, Hamas parliamentary block spokesman, told a news conference in Gaza that “Israel is the one which is fully responsible for the collapse of the talks to finalize the prisoners’ exchange deal.”

    “We had presented a list of the prisoners’ names to Israel through Egypt thirty months ago. We didn’t change it and we didn’t add to it anything new,” he said in response to Israeli claims that Hamas has elevated its demands.

    He added that the captors of Shalit “insist that 450 prisoners with high sentences terms should be released at a first stage, and then children, women, lawmakers and ministers would be freed in a second stage.”

    Hamas armed wing al-Qassam Brigades, and two minor armed groups abducted Shalit in the summer of 2006 during an armed attack carried out against an Israeli army base southeast of the Gaza Strip.

    “Israel has been all the time following the policy procrastination and thwarting the Egyptian efforts aimed at finalizing the deal,” said el-Bardawil, who mocked the Israeli threats to tighten the blockade on the Gaza Strip.

    Indirect intensive marathon talks held between Israel and Hamas in Egypt had failed to reach an agreement to free Shalit for the release of 1,450 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails.

    A Hamas sources closed to the dialogue, who spoke on condition of anonymity had earlier said that the disagreement was on 90 prisoners that Israel wanted to exile them to Syria, Yemen and other Arab countries.

    El-Bardawil called on Egypt to official declare who was responsible for thwarting the deal, adding “We call on our prisoners and our people to be more patient to face the Israeli threats.”


Chances for imminent return of Israeli captive dim

Posted in Arabs, Hate, Islam, Israel, Israeli, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, Uncategorized, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , , , on March 17, 2009 by Michael Burks

JERUSALEM (AP) — The prospects for the outgoing Israeli government to clinch a last-minute deal to bring home a soldier held in Gaza looked bleak Tuesday as efforts to reach a prisoner swap with Hamas appeared all but over.

As Israeli Cabinet members discussed the faltering prisoner deal, the parents and brother of Gilad Schalit sat outside Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s office, wearing T-shirts with the soldier’s picture that said “help.”

Officials close to the talks said Olmert was not expected to instruct negotiators to resume their efforts to reach a deal with Hamas militants in Gaza who took Schalit captive nearly three years ago. Instead, he was expected to turn the matter over to incoming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

They spoke on condition of anonymity because the Cabinet meeting had not concluded.

Earlier however, Hamas leaders left open the door to a deal.

“There was some movement on this issue but not to the point of reaching an agreement,” Moussa Abu Marzouk, Hamas’ No. 2 official, told a Hamas Web site. “We are waiting for the Israeli Cabinet meeting to see whether they are going to approve the demand of the Palestinian factions that captured the Zionist soldier.”

The Islamic militant group is seeking the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in exchange, including dozens convicted in deadly attacks on Israelis.

Late Monday, Olmert, who will leave office as early as this week after a new government is formed, said no deal had been reached. He spoke shortly after Israeli negotiators returned from two days of Egyptian-brokered talks in Cairo.

As ministers arrived for the meeting, hundreds of demonstrators gathered outside, urging the government to find a way to bring home the 22-year-old Schalit.

The Schalit family, which has been camping outside Olmert’s official residence for more than a week, did not speak to reporters.

Israel is holding an estimated 8,000 Palestinian prisoners in its jails, and Hamas wants some 1,200 freed, including 450 who masterminded or were otherwise involved in suicide bombings and other deadly assaults.

Israel balked at approving the entire list and wanted to deport some of the more notorious prisoners, fearing they would resume their militant activity if they returned home, Israeli officials said.

“The Zionist occupation is trying to maneuver on the number of the prisoners, trying to exclude some of the names we listed, or to deport dozens of them, and this is rejected by Hamas,” Hamas official Salah Bardawil said.

Hamas officials say the list includes the Palestinians’ highest-profile prisoner, Marwan Barghouti, considered a likely successor to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. Barghouti has spent the past seven years in an Israeli prison for his role in attacks that killed four Israelis and a Greek monk.

A continued impasse over Schalit could have far-reaching consequences for war-battered Gaza.

Israel has said it would not ease its crushing blockade of the territory, home to 1.4 million Palestinians, before Schalit returns home.

As long as the blockade is in place, Gaza cannot import the construction materials and equipment it desperately needs to rebuild after the Israeli offensive early this year.

A prisoner exchange accord might also shore up efforts to clinch a sustained truce between Israel and Hamas. Although Israel’s three-week military campaign ended in an informal truce, Gaza militants continue to fire rockets at southern Israel, drawing Israeli airstrikes in retaliation.

Developments on these two fronts might give a boost to Palestinian reconciliation talks, which are vital to Gaza reconstruction and have been going on in Cairo for nearly two weeks without any reported breakthroughs.

World donors are ready to contribute billions of dollars to rebuild Gaza. But they won’t funnel reconstruction funds through Hamas, which is branded by the West as a terrorist group.

Hamas overran Gaza in 2007 after trouncing forces loyal to the Fatah movement of Abbas, Israel’s Western-backed peacemaking partner.

Winning the soldier’s release would give Olmert a diplomatic victory in his final days as prime minister. Schalit was captured early in his administration and Olmert’s inability to free him has dogged his tenure.

Netanyahu is putting together a hawkish government that might be less receptive to Hamas demands.

Catholic Murder of Jews – the facts

Posted in Christianity, cults, Hate, Israel, Israeli, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, Uncategorized, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , on March 5, 2009 by Michael Burks


Here is a short portion taken from David Goldstein’s 1943 book, “LETTERS Hebrew-Catholic to Mr. Isaacs”. It is valuable not only because it clears up the many lies that have been formed over the years regarding the Spanish Inquisition and the Church, but also because the author himself is of Jewish extraction, having converted to Catholicism; in 1955 he was named a “Knight of St. Gregory” for his apologetic works by Pope Pius XII.

        Catholics should no more feel ashamed when they hear of the “Spanish Inquisition” than when they hear of the convening of an historical General Council, or even the denial of St. Peter. The former being beneficial and necessary for the Church, the latter being an abuse that cannot be attributed to the Church Herself. Let us spread the truth about the Spanish Inquisition so as to counteract the libelous things being spread about the Church to the public by means of school books and the Mass Media.


        A student of prejudices once said,

The mind is like a sheet of white paper in this, that the impressions it receives oftenest and retains longest, are the black ones.

        The truth of this observation is never more apparent than when considering the Jews and the Spanish Inquisition. If the teachings of the Old Testament were dinned into the minds and hearts of Jews as continually as is this historic calamity, the rabbis would not have to bemoan the lack of interest in religion on the part of children of Jewish parentage as they did lately at their Atlantic City Conference. Jewish book after book, weekly and monthly publication after weekly and monthly publication, so incessantly harp upon the Spanish Inquisition that it has become a Jewish “persecution complex,” as Maurice Fueurlich said in the “Forum” (Sept., 1937). In writing on “Children of a Martyr Race,” this writer says, that “the Spanish Inquisition has been dinned into my consciousness so deeply that it became a basic element in my emotional life.”

        The Jewish version of the Spanish Inquisition, which took place four hundred and fifty years ago, is the source from which has emanated much Jewish fear of the Catholic Church, and much hostility towards Jews who enter her communion. This is true even among rabbis who seek a union of forces with Catholic priests against the injustices of our time that afflict the Jews. They hold that as long as Christianity is divided; as long as Catholics are in the minority there is no fear. But should the Catholic Church ever become the only Christian Church, as she was during the middle ages, then beware of the Auto-da-Fe (Act of Faith), a solemn religious ceremony that the uninformed and the misleaders hold to have been a place of torture and burning at the stake.

        Those in Jewry who speak or write about the Spanish Inquisition, with minor exceptions, have received their knowledge of it from prejudicial sources, or from persons whose data concerning it were taken from poisoned sources of information. That accounts for your prodding me, as have many others, with the query:

“How can you join a church that inflicted the cruelties practiced upon your own people during the Spanish Inquisition?”

        Your query could be dismissed with the simple declaration that my journey to the baptismal font of the Catholic Church was conditioned upon my belief in her principles, and not upon agreement with everything done by Catholics during the Spanish Inquisition, or any other intense historic period. But the import of your query, considering that the Spanish Inquisition is a bugbear that closes the Jewish mind to things Catholic, prompts me to deal with the subject at length, and without any equivocation.

Properly to understand this question, it is necessary to bear in mind the fact that:

  1. an inquisition is a court of inquiry; that all societies, including your Masonic lodge, have temporary or permanent trial courts, under different names, to examine members charged with violating their principles. If adjudged guilty, such members are punished, though not by “having their throats cut across, their tongues torn out by the root, and their bodies buried in the sands of the sea,” as you “solemnly swore” to permit your lodge to do when you became a Master Mason, in the event that you revealed its secrets. If secular societies may legitimately institute such courts, and impose sentences, then why has not the Catholic Church a greater reason for the institution of an inquisitorial court, considering that to violate her sacred principles is to violate the principles God taught man through Moses and His Son Jesus, the Messiah?
  2. the Inquisition was instituted in Spain for persons who professed to be Catholics and not for practicing Jews. It was to unearth, and to bring to penance, not merely heretics, as many Jews believe, but also bigamists, adulterers, blasphemers, and other violators of the principles of the Church to which they, as baptized men and women, were obligated to be true. George E. Sokolsky, publicist, of New York City, says in “We Jews,”

    “The task of the Inquisition was not to Persecute Jews but to cleanse the Church of unorthodoxy. The Inquisition was not concerned with infidels outside the Church but with heretics within it” (N.Y., 1935, p. 53).

            The Spanish Inquisition was instituted to weed out those baptized Jews and Moslems who pretended to be sincere Catholics, while they secretly adhered to the practices of Judaism and Mohammedanism, which is a most serious sacrilegious offense. They were also enemies of the State, which was Christian in principle and carried the Cross in battle against the Crescent. As further evidence, consider what Dr. Salo Wittmayer Baron, one of America’s foremost Jewish historians, has to say about this matter. I quote from “A Social and Religious History of the Jews” (N.Y., 1937, VOL 2 p. 58) –

    “It appears to be a fact as well as a theory that Jews who never ceased professing Judaism were, on the whole, left undisturbed. – In the fourteen years of the activity of the Spanish Inquisition, from its establishment in 1478 to the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, we hear of only one persecution directed against a Jewish community, where the Jewry of Huesca was accused in 1489 of having admitted conversos (pseudo-converts from Judaism to Christianity) to the Jewish fold. It was precisely the inability of the inquisitorial courts to check Jewish influence on the conversos that served as a decisive argument for the Catholic monarchs in banishing Jews from Spain……

  3. Spain was at war for more than a half dozen centuries against the Mohammedans with whom the Jews were lined up against the Spaniards. It was a battle of the Cross against the Crescent. This is vouched for by Graetz’s “History of the Jews,” the “Jewish Encyclopedia,” the “Encyclopedia of Jewish Knowledge,” “Vallentine’s Jewish Encyclopedia,” and other authorities of foremost standing in Jewry. The two last named say,

    “The Spanish Jews welcomed, it is even said that they invited, the Arab invasion. Under the Caliphate (Mohammedan ruler) of the West, with its capital at Cordova, their members (the Jews) grew and they attained great influence in the State” (Dr. Cecil Roth, in Vallentine’s J.E., p. 612).”It is admitted that the African Jews aided the Arabs in the capture of Cordova, Malaga, Granada, Seville, and Toledo and these cities were placed under Jewish control by the conquerors” (Ency. J. Knowledge, p. 531).

  4. as far as the abuses of the Inquisition are concerned, the Catholic Church is no more responsible for them than she is for the Spanish bull fights which she condemned. Those abuses were committed, with a few exceptions, by the civil power, and they were condemned by Popes Leo X, Paul III, Paul IV, and Sixtus IV who reigned during that period of history. That is very likely news to you, as it is to most Jews, who have been “fed up” with stories of the Auto-da-Fe that are as far from being true as are the stories about Jews slaughtering Christian children to use their blood for ritual purposes.
  5. the popes were the protectors of the Jews, and not their enemies. Rome was a haven of refuge for the persecuted Jews when the Eternal City was ruled by the popes, to which many of the Jews driven out of Spain migrated. You need not take my word regarding the friendliness of the popes, as it is confirmed by Dr. Cecil Roth of London, Jewry’s leading present-day historian on the middle ages. He said a few years ago, while addressing the Zionist Forum in Buffalo, N.Y.

    “Only in Rome has the colony of Jews continued its existence since before the beginning of the Christian era, because of all the dynasties of Europe, the Papacy not only refused to persecute the Jews of Rome and Italy, but throughout the ages popes were protectors of the Jews.”Some Jews have the feeling that the Papacy has a policy of persecuting Jews. But you must remember that English history is definitely anti-Catholic’ and your views of Catholicism may have been colored by English history. We Jews who have suffered so much from prejudices, should rid our minds of prejudices and learn the facts. The truth is that the popes and the Catholic Church from the earliest days of the Church were never responsible for physical persecution of Jews and only Rome, among the capitals of the world, is free from having been a place of Jewish tragedy. For this we Jews must have gratitude” (Feb. 25th, 1927).

  6. many, many centuries before the Catholic Church came into existence the Jewish Church put to death violators of the Mosaic Law, for infractions of that Law which were not as serious as the offenses of which Jews were guilty in Spain. This was done by the priests of Jewry, whereas the extreme penalties during the days of the Spanish inquisition were imposed by the state, as heresy was considered to be a crime in those days. That abuses took place at times on the part of the inquisitors is not denied. The Catholic Church, while divinely protected from error in defining matters of faith and morals, does not claim to be immune from acts of abuse of power on the part of some of her children, even in high places. Such an abuse on the part of officials of the Church caused Pope Leo X to excommunicate the Catholic tribunal at Toledo, and to have the witnesses who appeared before its inquisitorial trial arrested for perjury. This was during Spanish Inquisition days. But such an abuse of power was rare, as the spirit of charity dominated those historic inquiries regarding heresy. Persons called before the inquisitors who repented were released after promising to mend their ways and to do the penances enjoined, such as fasting, wearing a special penitential garb for a time, and imprisonment, which very often was in the houses of the penitents themselves. Torturing and burning were no part of the solemn religious ceremony called the Auto-da-Fe, where the penitents abjured their errors and made public recantation, by making an Act of Faith.
  7. extreme punishments meted out during the middle ages, such as burning at the stake, which you and I abhor, were common throughout the world at that time. They did not originate during the middle ages, having been the law before the Christian era. Such punishment did not shock the people then any more than the people of our country are shocked at the present time by the lethal chambers, hanging, lining men up against the wall before firing squads, and electrocution, penalties imposed for kidnaping and sometimes burglary, as well as for murder and treason, Please do not conclude from this that the people in former times were less merciful than we are. Such punishments were meted out more often, and for lesser offenses, in Protestant England (the source from whence most anti-Catholic history emanated) than in Catholic Spain. As evidence, I recommend reading “The Protestant Reformation,” by William Cobbett, a Protestant historian.
  8. Jewry inflicted the same sort of severe punishments long before the Christian era, when blasphemy was rightly considered to be a major offense, being directed against Almighty God. It is for that offense, falsely charged, that the Sanhedrin, under the direction of the high priests, declared Jesus to be worthy of death, for claiming to be the Messiah. In answering the inquiry, “What are the types of capital punishment according to Jewish law?” the “Oracle,” a Jewish publication, replied,

    “According to the Jewish law there are four kinds of execution, stoning, burning, the sword and strangling. Death by strangling is not in the scriptures, but the rabbis interpreted that wherever death is mentioned without specific mode, strangling is generally meant” (Carl Alpert, Boston. 1935, p. 77).

            Such capital punishments were inflicted in Jewry not only for blasphemy, but for Sabbath-breaking, witchcraft, idolatry, refusal to submit to the decrees of the priests or judge, and for a dozen other offenses, as well as murder.

  9. the Catholic Church can no more be judged by the abuses of the Spanish Inquisition, which ended in the deportation of about 160,000 Jews (including many who were not guilty of offenses against the Church or the State), than Judaism can be judged by the persecution of the people of Edom, descendants of Esau. Jewish minds have been poisoned against the Catholic Church through stories about the Inquisition; whereas it is most difficult to find Catholics who have even heard the story of Jewish persecution of the Idumeans. I quote it from “The History of the Jews,” by Graetz, though the same thing can be found in the life of Josephus, the Jewish Encyclopedia, and many other authoritative Jewish publications,

    “After the victory over the Samaritans, Hyrcanus marched against the Idumeans, laid siege to their two fortresses, and after having demolished them, gave the Idumeans the choice between acceptance of Judaism, and exile…. For the first time Judaism, in the person of its head, John Hyrcanus (high priest), practiced intolerance against other faiths, but it soon found out with deep pain how highly injurious it is to allow religious zeal for the preservation of the faith to degenerate into the desire to effect violent conversion of others….”

        These forced conversions of the people of Edom did bring a painful experience upon Jewry from which it never recovered. It robbed Jewry of more than Esau (of whom the Idumeans are descendants) robbed his brother Jacob. It gave Jewry the Herods (Idumeans) who ruthlessly ended the Judaean Maccabean dynasty and its Hasmonaean high priestly family; the Herods who “appointed the high priests (including Caiaphas and Annas) – and took over the government of the Jews,” as Josephus says, and finally lined up with Titus in the siege of Jerusalem.

        After all that has been said, the fact remains that the Spanish Inquisition was a much to be regretted calamity; it was necessitated by the conditions of the time, and it cannot be rightly understood by the conditions of our time. Our “third degree,” drastic though it is, cannot be compared to the in. human methods in the world during inquisition times, and for many centuries before the Christian era. Deportation, which climaxed the Spanish Inquisition in 1492, is always to be deplored irrespective of the cause of it or whom it afflicts. It was resorted to because, as Dr. Baron the Jewish historian said, “the inquisitorial courts could not check the Jewish influence on the conversos,” the fake converts from the Synagogue to the Church, “who,” the Encyclopedia of Jewish Knowledge says, “were the direct cause of the inquisition” (p. 331).

        Whatever may be said about the abuses of the Spanish Inquisition, which are to be deplored, the following two simple facts ought to remove from Jewish minds that historic obstacle to an open-minded examination of the teachings of the Catholic Church. First, the Catholic Church has as legitimate a right to weed out pseudo converts from Judaism as the priests and Sanhedrin in Jewry had to bring to book the members of their Church who violated the Mosaic Law. The Catholic Church had a much sounder right to do so than had the descendants of the deported Spanish Jews to excommunicated Spinoza and other pantheistic Jews from the Synagogue in Amsterdam, finally driving them out of Holland. Heinrich Graetz says,

“The Amsterdam rabbis introduced the innovation of bringing religious opinions and convictions before their judgment seat, of constituting themselves a sort of inquisitional tribunal, and instituting autos-da-fe which, even if bloodless, were not less painful to the sufferers” (“History of the Jews,” Vol. 4, p. 684).

        Secondly, if our country may rightly put men through the “third degree”; into concentration camps and prisons; deport them, as well as line them up before firing squads, for sabotage, espionage, “fifth column” activities and other treasonable acts during our short wars; then was the Spanish Government doubly warranted in so doing, considering that she was at war for centuries.

        To come back once more to your query, if “what is good for the goose is good for the gander”; if I should not have become a Catholic on account of the injustices perpetrated upon the Jews by the Catholics of Spain, then ought you to refuse to remain a Jew on account of the injustices of the Jews in Edom. Such logic, which follows from the sentiment expressed in your query, is strongly against yourself, because the abuses of the Spanish Inquisition were committed by the State; whereas the forced circumcision of the Idumeans was the work of official Jewry.


        …I called to see Mr. C… F…..

        His understanding of Judaism, like that of most Americanized Jews, was limited to knowing that Jews are circumcised, barmitzvah, keep the Saturday Sabbath, Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah, refrain from eating pork, & etc. When it came to principles that are Jewish, he was so lacking in knowledge of them that it was necessary to talk Judaism to him, for without that knowledge it is impossible to understand that Judaism in its fullness is Christianity. Ah, he did know of the Spanish Inquisition. He wanted to know if “the Catholic Church still holds non-Catholics to be heretics, as she did the Jews and Moslems in Spanish Inquisition days.” This was not a surprise, because of all things related to the Catholic Church during the twenty centuries of her existence, the Spanish Inquisition is foremost in the minds of Jews. Considering that my conversation with your friend came right after I had written to you about the Spanish Inquisition, a word regarding heresy and heretics will add to your understanding of the subject, as I hope my outline of it last night enlightened Mr. C… F…..

        It is commonplace for non-Catholics to assume that the Jews in Spain were all held to be guilty of heresy; that both Jews and Protestants are considered by Catholics to be heretics. This is a false notion, based upon failure to realize that heresy charges by the Catholic Church are brought against Catholics, and not against persons who openly profess to be Jews, Moslems, or Protestants, though they may believe in some things that are heretical….

        The Maranos were tried, and rightly found guilty of heresy. They were under the jurisdiction of the Catholic Church through baptism, hence their public declaration that they were Catholics, while they were secretly following Jewish practices, was heretical. It was their action that caused the Inquisition to be instituted in Spain in 1480, which lasted until 1492….

        Heresy is a sin. It is so declared in Jewish as well as Christian law. St. Paul enumerates heresies among “works of the flesh” (Gal. 5:20). A Catholic who denies one or more of the teachings of Christ is held by the Church to be a heretic. The Catholic Church teaches with absolute authority in matters of faith and morals, hence she is obligated to declare, as did St. Paul,

“Even if an angel from heaven should preach a gospel to you other than that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema” (Gal. 1:8).

        This applies to the denial of a single basic Christian teaching, for to deny one of God’s teachings is to deny God. Hence a Catholic who proclaims belief in only nine of the Ten Commandments, for instance, is a heretic, as the denial of one of the Commandments is a denial of God, its Author. The same thing applies to every article in the Apostles Creed, and other teachings of the Church.

        Heresy, properly understood, is worse than murder. Murder robs man of his physical life, which at best is limited to a short term of years; whereas heresy robs man of his spiritual inheritance; it murders the soul, with the result that the heretic is deprived of an eternity of happiness, in the event of dying unrepentant.

        Trial and punishment for Heresy is of Jewish and not of Catholic origin, its objective being to keep pure in hearts the teachings of God; and to safeguard the attainment of eternal life. Look under “Heresy and Heretics” in “Vallentine’s Jewish Encyclopedia” for an understanding of the Orthodox Jewish concept of the subject. This is what you will find,

“The term ‘heretic’ in connection with Judaism may conveniently be applied to any one who does not accept the two Torahs-the Written and Oral-in which Jewish teaching is contained. Apart from the idolaters of ancient times, the Talmud knows four main kinds of such heretics, which however, it is not always careful to distinguish: (1) the Cutheans or Samaritans, who accepted only the Pentateuch and the Book of Joshua as inspired, and rejected the rest of the Scriptures; (2) the Sadducees and Boethusians, who rejected the Oral Law; (3) the MINIM – Judaeo-Christians (that is converts from the Synagogue to the Church) and Gnostics-who desired to supplement the TORAH Of Moses with some other TORAH Of superior authority; (4) the APIKORSIM, who denied the divine origin of the TORAH. The Karaite heresy, which appeared later, was essentially the same as that of the Sadducees” (p. 279).

        Charges of heresy are not so frequent among non-Catholics today as they were in the religious past, on account of religious indifference, and theological incoherence. In our country, in which about one-third of the Jews of the world reside, a man may believe anything or nothing and be designated by sons of Israel as a Jew. Rabbi Stephen S. Wise could stand up in his “Free Synagogue,” in Carnegie Hall, and shout out,

“I do not believe that the Ten Commandments were given by God on tablets of stone and handed to Moses on Mount Sinai. If that be heresy, then banish me from the Synagogue.”

        This sensational statement obtained the desired front page in the public press throughout the country. Of course, no one can be charged with heresy in a Synagogue that is “Free” from dogma, and from control of any one but the Rabbi himself. Heresy assumes an authoritatively defined belief and practice, such as obtains in the Catholic Church. Hence I asked at the time, “Who has any right to try Rabbi Wise for heresy, in a pulpit where he may speak on any thing he desires, in any manner that suits him personally? The Rabbi was only making a ‘stageplay’ when he challenged any one to try him for denying the Mosaic miracle.” The so-called Jew of Jews, Einstein, went a step further. He denied belief in a personal God, while speaking in a Jewish Theological Seminary. Was he tried for heresy? Not at all. He would very likely have been, and rightly so, were he a member of an Orthodox Synagogue.

        I told in my last letter of Spinoza, whose denial of belief in a personal God caused him to be excommunicated by the sons of Jews who were deported from Spain and Portugal on account of the heretical conduct of the Maranos. Spinoza was banished from Amsterdam, and to avoid assassination, after “a fanatic made an attempt on his life with a knife,” he left his native city where the “curses had been pronounced upon him” by the rabbis in their leading Synagogue. Gabriel da Costa, is another leading Jew whose tragic life and treatment by these Amsterdam Jews, on account of his heretical teachings, was most dramatic. It inspired Gutzkow’s tragedy, “Uriel Acosta”; and Zangwill’s “Dreamers of the Ghetto.” His denial of the immortality of the soul was rightly called a heresy. The Rabbis caused him to be arrested in Amsterdam, fined 300 guilders, and his “heterodox book to be publicly burned.” Let the Encyclopedia of Jewish Knowledge say a further word about him:

“He fled to Hamburg, but soon returned to Amsterdam, and in 1633 became, in his own words, ‘an ape among the apes’ offering his submission to the Synagogue. Formalist he could not be, and his contrariness resulted in his being made subject to the ‘great ban.’ For seven years he lived silent and solitary, boycotted even by his relatives. Then he yielded, made confession of error and suffered the ignominy of a public scourging and 39 stripes. He went home, wrote an impassioned sketch of his own life, ‘A Specimen of Human Existence,’ and shot himself” (p. II).

        That the charges against Spinoza and da Costa were warranted, no one can rightly deny, for the Jews of Amsterdam had a definite doctrinal code which they had a right to uphold, as did the Church and the State in Spain. Yet these Rabbis, who belonged to the Amsterdam community that was started by the Maranos (the pretended-to-be-Catholics), who cursed the Catholic Church and Spain for the deportation of their forbears, deemed it legitimate to curse, scourge, excommunicate, and drive from Amsterdam those of their fellow-Israelites who were guilty of heresy. To these Iberian descendents a Dutch Auto-da-Fe was perfectly legitimate, but not one in Spain or Portugal, where the welfare of the State as well as the Church was at stake.

        I carried a four page leaflet with me on my visit to the Copley Plaza Hotel, that was being distributed on the streets of Boston, called “Sucker Bait.” It told of “Rumors-Lies-Deceits” being circulated by agents of Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito. It called upon citizens to report such “fifth columnists” to the Massachusetts Committee of Public Safety. I asked Mr. C… F…., and I ask you, Mr. Isaacs, if it is proper during the present World War, as we three believe it is, to report such “whisperers,” who are trying to “Divide and Conquer”; to have them placed into concentration camps if found guilty, then why was it not perfectly legitimate to punish heretics in Spain who pretended to be Catholics in order to undermine the State as well as the Church? Remember that the Maranos were the fifth columnists of the fifteenth century.


        Other chapters from David Goldstein’s book can be found at the Catholic Dispatch web site [below].

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Israel urges Gaza aid efforts not break Hamas boycott

Posted in Arabs, Christianity, Hate, Islam, Israel, Israeli, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, Uncategorized, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , , on February 26, 2009 by Michael Burks


TEL AVIV, Israel (Reuters) – Israel urged world leaders on Thursday to provide aid to the Gaza Strip without breaking a diplomatic boycott of Hamas Islamists who control the coastal territory.


“There is a need to help in Gaza without granting legitimacy to Hamas,” Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said in Tel Aviv after talks with visiting U.S. Middle East envoy George Mitchell.


The United States, Israel and European Union, have shunned dialogue with Hamas, citing its refusal to renounce violence and to recognize Israel and past peace agreements.


But some Western officials have urged in recent days to include Hamas in peace efforts. On Wednesday, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said talking to Hamas was the “right thing to do.”


Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayypip Erdogan added his voice on Thursday, telling Mitchell who visited Ankara before Tel Aviv Washington should engage Hamas for the sake of peace efforts.


“Even though we do not approve Hamas’ methods, Hamas should not be excluded from the peace process and should be integrated into the political system and the peace process,” a Turkish official who was at the talks said.


Hamas violently seized control of Gaza in 2007 from Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, after winning a parliamentary election a year earlier.


Mitchell, preceding a visit next week by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, was in the region to explore ways to relaunch Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts and to rebuild Gaza after a devastating Israeli offensive against Hamas last month.


Clinton would also attend a conference of Western donors in Egypt next week that will seek ways to raise some $2.8 billion dollars estimated as needed for relief work in coastal Gaza.


More than 1,300 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed in the month of fighting in the territory that ended with a shaky truce in mid-January.


Israel, which controls most of Gaza’s crossings, has blocked the passage of cement and steel needed to rebuild since the war, allowing in only the most vital humanitarian supplies, saying this was aimed at preventing Hamas from rearming.


Jakob Kellenberger, president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, called on Israel to lift these restrictions on Thursday.


An ICRC statement from Geneva said some 2,800 homes were destroyed and a further 1,900 were damaged in the Israeli offensive and that many Palestinians there now lacked water, medicine and housing.


“The first and most urgent measure should be to end the isolation of Gaza, particularly by lifting restrictions on the movement of people and goods,” Kellenberger said.

Three British killed by Muslims

Posted in Arabs, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , , on February 25, 2009 by Michael Burks

LONDON (Reuters) – Three British soldiers were killed in an explosion in Afghanistan on Wednesday, the defence ministry said.


The blast happened in the central part of the southern Helmand province during an escort operation, the ministry said in a statement.


It takes the number of British soldiers killed in Afghanistan to 148 since the U.S.-led invasion in 2001.


The soldiers from the 1st Battalion The Rifles were pronounced dead by a doctor in an emergency response helicopter. No more details of the incident or those killed were released. The victims’ families have been informed.


Commander Paula Rowe, spokeswoman for the Helmand force, said in a statement: “Today has been incredibly sad for the whole of Task Force Helmand, and particularly for The Rifles. We will all feel the loss of these brave soldiers.”


Britain has about 8,000 soldiers in Afghanistan fighting an increasingly bold Taliban insurgency.


(Reporting by Peter Griffiths; editing by Elizabeth Piper)

Muslims attack Israel after truce

Posted in Arabs, Christianity, Hate, Islam, Israel, Israeli, Jewish History, Middle East, News, racism, Religion, War, Warfare, World News with tags , , , , , on February 25, 2009 by Michael Burks

JERUSALEM (AP) — Militants in Gaza launched rockets at southern Israel on Wednesday and Israeli planes attacked smuggling tunnels in retaliation as a stable truce between the two sides remained elusive.

The Palestinian prime minister said the international community will be asked to donate $2.8 billion to rebuilding Gaza after Israel’s offensive last month, and talks started in Cairo on a reconciliation of the feuding Palestinian governments seen as essential in securing the foreign aid.

No injuries were reported in either the rocket attacks or the airstrike.

Militants fired two rockets early in the day and Israeli aircraft struck seven tunnels in the southern Gaza town of Rafah several hours later in response, the Israeli military said.

Palestinians working in the tunnels under the Gaza-Egypt border evacuated before the strike after they saw Egyptian troops across the border pull back, presumably when they were warned by Israel, according to Hamas security officials.

The rocket attacks and retaliatory airstrikes have become routine in the aftermath of Israel’s three-week Gaza offensive, which left some 1,300 Palestinians dead and demolished or damaged thousands of homes.

The sides independently declared informal cease-fires on Jan. 18, but Egyptian-mediated talks on a longer-term agreement have been unsuccessful so far, and sporadic violence persists.

As separate talks approach next week on rebuilding Gaza, the Palestinian prime minister said the international community will be asked to donate $2.8 billion, but warned the money would do no good unless Gaza’s borders reopened.

Hamas wants Israel to open Gaza’s border crossings, but Israel says it won’t until Hamas frees an Israeli soldier held since June 2006. Hamas doesn’t want to link the reopening of the crossings to the soldier’s fate, saying he should be part of a prisoner exchange deal independent of the truce talks.

Adding to the tension are the recent rocket attacks. Smaller militant groups have claimed them, but Israel holds Hamas responsible as the ruling power in Gaza. A small faction calling itself Hezbollah Palestine took responsibility for Wednesday’s attack in a statement sent to reporters in Gaza.

Israel sealed its borders with Gaza after Islamic Hamas militants overran the territory in June 2007. The takeover resulted in the creation of feuding Palestinian governments, with Hamas in charge of Gaza and the West Bank controlled by the moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah.

Reconciliation talks between Fatah and Hamas started Wednesday with a series of “icebreaking” meetings, members said.

“We agreed on the mechanism to solve the issue of prisoners,” said Nabil Shaath, a top Abbas aide. “We agree to stop all media attacks against each other. This will be immediate.”