Since the inception of the latest explosion of violence between Israel and Hamas, American evangelicals have stridently supported Israel. They instinctively and automatically rush to Israel’s defense whenever Israel is attacked.
I condemn in no uncertain terms the October 7, 2023, Hamas terrorist attack on Israeli civilians. It’s beyond me how anyone can justify the rape, murder, mutilation and kidnapping of civilians, including children and babies.
And I accept that Israel has a right, indeed a duty, to respond to this atrocity be seeking to annihilate Hamas.
But Hamas isn’t synonymous with Palestine, Hamas enjoys the support of less than 50 percent of the population in Gaza, and the Palestinians in that enclave are as much victims of Hamas as are Israeli civilians.
Evangelicals see the Israeli Palestinian conflict in black and white terms, good vs evil, democracy vs terrorism. But the truth is more nuanced, Israel is an apartheid state where Israeli Palestinians face discrimination, and Palestinians in the West Bank live under military occupation and are treated like second-class citizens. As for Gaza it’s basically the world’s largest open-air prison.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is an indicted corrupt politician who entered into a coalition government with far-right racists in order to cling to power and avoid conviction and incarceration.
The Palestinian Authority that has nominal control of the West Bank under their Israeli overlords is politically corrupt and has never unequivocally denounced terrorism. If the Palestinian Authority wasn’t so corrupt, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist groups wouldn’t enjoy so much support.
America must advocate for the rights of the Palestinians to their own homeland as much as we condemn terrorist attacks against Israel. We must be concerned about the innocent Palestinians in Gaza who are being killed by the Israeli war machine as much as we mourn the death of Israeli civilian at the hands of the Hamas monsters.