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Church-State Relations and the Book of Revelation
An Introduction to The Parousia: A Careful Look at the New Testament Doctrine of the Lord's Second Coming
by James Stuart Russell (1878) // Written by
Todd Dennis, Curator

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Control of US Policies by the Israeli Lobby

By Paul Findley

Because of the gross, longstanding bias in U.S. policy in the Middle East, the world teeters on the precipice of widening conflict focused on religion– sadly, unnecessarily, dangerously. Christendom versus Islam.

Despite the efforts of many brave people to bring about just reform, the bias continues—more flagrant and costly each year. America ignores this injustice because misdirected, religion-based passions at home override even vital national interests.

Our bias is created and sustained by extreme elements of both Christianity and Judaism. Both have a deep-seated, passionate attachment to the State of Israel, no matter how outrageous its behavior becomes. Both are represented powerfully in Washington. Together, they burden our country year after year with an Israel-centric foreign policy that has led America into a deep abyss.

The bias is also sustained unwittingly by suicide bombers, professed Muslims who engage in frantic violence delivered as protest against foreign occupation of their land. In doing so, they defy the rules of Islam by taking their own lives and the lives of innocent people.

Most Americans are blind to reality. They are unaware of the flagrant bias in our policies and the price we pay for this bias. Despite the wonders of the Information Age, the public is not informed about how these harmful policies are established. Among those who know the truth, almost all remain totally silent, afraid to speak out. This self-imposed censorship unwittingly has led us into great trouble, even into the ultimate in wrong deeds– initiating wars.

The more experienced of the religious lobbies is headed by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee [AIPAC]. It consists almost exclusively of Judaic Zionists, activists whose behavior is disapproved– although very quietly– by the majority of those affiliated with Judaism. My book, They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel’s Lobby, details the history and tactics of their lobbying.

Hardcore members of this group are buttressed by political pressure of ultra-Orthodox followers of Judaism who believe their messiah will not arrive until Greater Israel– Biblical Israel– comes into being. Their common goal is the take-over of all the West Bank and East Jerusalem into Israel proper, a vision that excludes even a tiny independent Palestine.

In both Israel and the United States, such Zionists exert great political power. They are supported by immense U.S. financing, both public and private, and are a primary force that establishes, populates and expands the illegal settlements that now consign Palestinians to isolated enclaves like those that once existed in apartheid South Africa.

Christian Zionists are not as tightly organized as the Judaic ones, but they are vastly more numerous. They total 50 million Americans, perhaps more. Although they constitute a minority of U.S. Christians, they have attained great political power as prominent supporters of George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns.

The two groups make strange bedfellows. Judaic doctrine makes no mention of Jesus Christ. Christian Zionists, in a radical interpretation of the Bible’s Book of Revelations, believe that on the Second Coming of Christ, all people of the Judaic faith will instantly be destroyed or converted to Christianity. They are bound tightly together by an immediate interest– survival of a strong, expanding Israel as an essential precondition for the arrival on earth of their separate messiahs.

Together, they control U.S. policy in the Middle East. They are so powerful that Congress dutifully approves massive aid to Israel every year with no discussion worthy of the term debate. The intimidation they foster effectively blocks any mention of Israel’s its wanton destruction of Palestinian society through military conquest, assassinations, and wholesale destruction of lives, homes, and means of livelihood. Aid to Israel is unconditional. No strings are attached. The only substantial U.S. aid to Arabs goes to Egypt, a reward for establishing full diplomatic relations with Israel years ago.

This unconditional aid actually lures Israel into sustained defiance of international law, UN resolutions, and the provisions of the UN Charter with impunity. Because of self-imposed bias in major U.S. media coverage, few Americans are aware of this law-breaking or U.S. complicity in it. But Muslims follow this bias with mounting anti-American outrage.

In his campaign against terrorism, President Bush fails to recognize that 9/11’s real Ground Zero was never Manhattan or the Pentagon. It was always Palestine, and remains so today. Nine-eleven was grisly payback for America’s support for Israel’s bloody assault on Arabs over the years, especially its attack on Palestinians and its slaughter of innocent Arab civilians in Lebanon in 1982.

In the summer of 1982, using U.S.-donated weapons, Israeli forces killed more than 18,000 innocent Arabs in Beirut and its suburbs. Although U.S. media gave the massacre scant attention, it provoked worldwide anti-American fury that became white hot when Congress immediately voted funds to restore the inventory of munitions Israeli forces consumed in the assault. I know. I was a Member of Congress when approval was voted.

In the aftermath of 9/11, Bush scrapped national sovereignty, for centuries bedrock of the nation state. He proclaimed his right to commit acts of war any place he alone found a threat to our security. He rammed through a panicky Congress an unpatriotic Patriot Act. He appointed himself police chief of the world and pledged to maintain U.S. military forces and foreign bases at levels sufficient for worldwide policing, a task no single nation state should attempt. It is the proper job for a multinational organization which our government should be urgently helping to create.

President Bush ordered wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and now hints at an assault on Iran, followed by Syria. Because all of these targets are Muslim countries, ominous lines are forming for a worldwide struggle between Islam and Christendom.

The 9/11 horror, as well as the wars our government has initiated are the ugly offspring of our longstanding bias in Middle East policy These calamities can be traced step by step to lobbies preventing free speech. If free speech and open debate had prevailed on Capitol Hill or even within non-partisan activities of American society, civilized discussion would have forced reform.

The religion lobbies contribute generously to candidates who do their bidding against those who do not. Their most powerful instrument of intimidation is the reckless charge of anti-Semitism. I know the sting. It works. Fear of being charged with anti-Semitism makes most people who know the truth about our complicity in Israeli policy and war-making cower in silence.

As a consequence, few Americans know that our governmental bureaucracy is thoroughly penetrated by Zionists. My book reports examples. Our government is truly Israeli occupied territory.

Today’s mess started a half-century ago on Capitol Hill when the lobby for Israel first promoted a heavy bias in U.S. policy in the Middle East. By the time I became a Member of Congress in 1961, the lobby’s activities had already thoroughly intimidated our political institutions. During my 22-year career on Capitol Hill, and since, I have watched intimidation grow deeper and more pervasive.

Former Ambassador George W. Ball said Congress behaves like trained poodles, jumping through hoops held by lobbyists for Israel. The lobby marshals great resources to defeat its critics and reward supporters. Senators Charles Percy and Adlai Stevenson and Representatives Paul “Pete” McCloskey, Cynthia McKinney, Earl Hilliard and I are among those defeated at the polls by candidates heavily financed by pro-Israel forces. With hardly a murmur of protest, Congress recently approved resolutions saluting the prime minister of Israel for building high walls and fences that keep Palestinians penned up on their own land like cattle.

Nationally, not just on Capitol Hill, the State of Israel is treated as sacrosanct. It is rare when a word critical of Israel is expressed even in private conversation anywhere in America. Silence pervades major media, academia, social circles, and business communities– even houses of worship.

Israel’s interests were a primary reason for Bush’s decision to invade Iraq, as noted recently by U.S. General Anthony Zinni, once Bush’s special emissary to the Middle East.

The raging insurgency against U.S. forces in Iraq is linked directly to the plight of the nearby Palestinians. We cannot expect Arab Iraqis to trust our promise of freedom for them when a few miles away we maintain our abject, decades-long complicity in Israel’s denial of freedom for Arab Palestinians.

I believe 9/11 would not have occurred if the U.S. government had refused to support Israel’s humiliation and destruction of Palestinian society. Any president of the past 38 years could have brought justice to the Middle East simply by putting firm conditions on all aid to Israel.

Our government must cease unconditional aid to Israel. Instead of financing Israel’s conduct, we must become the agent for justice. Our president must suspend all U.S. aid until Israel vacates illegal settlements it has established throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and withdraws from Arab land it has held illegally since June 1967.

In Iraq, our president must immediately order an end to aerial bombing and all other acts of war against insurgents, most of whom are native Iraqis who distrust U.S. intentions and want our forces to leave. Most sensible course is to pledge immediately total withdrawal from Iraq of U.S. military and contractor personnel by a specified date after the new government is organized. Only units exempt from withdrawal are those expressly requested by the new government and approved by the UN Security Council.

These two presidential announcements will sweep away the dark clouds of religious war and quickly dampen the Iraqi insurgency. Above all, we must temper these steps with understanding and good will. We must recognize that almost everyone is hurting, not just Arabs who bear the most extensive agony.

Americans are hurting. The toll of war in blood, tears and economic hardship hits us all. All concerned with the Middle East need justice, understanding and mercy. Let it fall broadly and gently.

Let us seek justice.


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