Friday, January 09, 2009

Vatican: Gaza is ‘a big concentration camp’

Well, that scuppers Cranmer’s plan. Just as the time was becoming ripe for the world’s most respected theologian – who understands both Judaism and political Islam – to undertake some religio-political mediation between Israel’s opposing factions, Cardinal Renato Martino goes and puts his feet in it. He condemned the the use of violence by both Israel and Hamas – as though they were immorally equivalent – and, as a consequence, relations between the Vatican and Israel – which have ever been fragile – have become a little strained.

The Cardinal is President of the Vatican's Council for Justice and Peace, and is described as a ‘senior aide’ to Pope Benedict XVI. As far as the media is therefore concerned, the Vatican has spoken. The perception is unavoidable. It is precisely the same as an opinion expressed by one Labour minister becoming the policy of Government, or an attack by one shadow minister upon any group (no matter how justifiable) being perceived as the official position of the Conservative Party.

The term ‘concentration camp’ is so irrevocably fused with ‘Nazi’ that the mention of one evokes the spectre of the other. Both terms are thereby subject to Godwin’s Law. The Nazis were not the embodiment of an ultimate evil which can never be manifest again: there is nothing wrong with comparing people to Nazis if they act like Nazis. The irony is that the ‘Nazi’ label could be more legitimately applied to Hezbollah, Hamas or the government of Iran.

The Cardinal could not say that Israel is behaving like the Nazis, but the inference is clear: Ehud Olmert’s Israel is behaving like Adolf Hitler’s Germany: the IDF are Nazis.

And the Pope cannot be best pleased with this. As one who has visited concentration camps, and, as a member of Hitler Youth, had first-hand experience of life under the Nazis, he would know that the comparisons are fatuous.

But the damage has been done.

Israel's foreign ministry has accused the Vatican of ‘using the propaganda language of the militant Islamic Hamas’. Israel's ambassador to the Vatican, Mordechai Lewy, has his work cut out. He has said that Cardinal Martino 'clearly has never been in a concentration camp'.

Quite so.

But he has met a Nazi. And he ought therefore to know that they are not all the same.

42 Comments:

Blogger McKenzie said...

Being a member of the BNP, I can say that we hear this Nazi shit all the time. Its like when you are a kid and someone shout "the last one to the top is a big stinker", and everyone runs like their life depends on it.

Grow up for God's sake.

9 January 2009 at 10:28  
Anonymous Andre said...

I cannot believe this is happening in England. I was born eleven years after the end of the second world war. I have worked on an Israeli kibbutz and a moshav. As a journalist I feel constrained from writing in the press about these things and about my Christian catholic faith. The country I once knew is seeping away, the forces of evil - whether secular or islamo-fascist - advance by the hour. Have these people never heard of the holocaust? Have they forgotten the machinations of the Nazis - and their fellow traveler the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem? Are we really prepared to tolerate islamic sharia law which outlaws alcohol, free press and basic human rights? Israel's struggle is our struggle, the attacks on orthodox jews are attacks on our freedoms too. Shabbat shalom

9 January 2009 at 11:12  
Anonymous stanley Jerusalem said...

The reactions of the political classes in the UK to Israel strongly remind me of the late and hardly lamented Neville Chamberlain's dismissal of the Nazi attacks on Sudetenland and the then Czecheslovakia:-
Munich Conference (September 1938)
Neville Chamberlain, the British Prime Minister mused how terrible it was that war should be threatened by a "... quarrel in a far away country by people of which we know little." A prominent member of the British parliament displayed even more ignoramce when he told the press, "Why should we bother with those gypsies in the Balkans?", meaning the Czechs who were of course not located in the Balkans. It looked in September as if war was imminent. Chamberlain appealed to Hitler for a conference in a last minute effort to prevent war (September 28, 1938). The conference was held at Berchegarten, Hitler's mountain top refuge. Hitler and his ally Mussolini met with Primeminister Chmberlain and Premier Daladier. The Czechoslovak government was neither invited nor consulted about the discussions. The British and French gave in to Hitler's demands. The result was the Munich Agreement which was signed by Germany, Italy, France, and Britain (September 29). The Czechoslovak government, deserted by its allies, capitulated the following day and agreed to abide by the agreement forced upon (September 30). Chamberlain flew back to London and stepping off the plane waved the agreement signed by Herr Hitler which he assured the waiting reporters guaranteed "Peace in our time." Churchill was apalled. The British and French people were relieved. One European leader, Soviet Marshall Stalin, who was not invited to attend the conference drew the inescapable conclusion that the British and French could not be trusted as potential allies against Hitler.

9 January 2009 at 11:15  
Anonymous melanie phillips said...

I wrote below about the frightening thuggery on display at the anti-Israel demonstrations in London. Here is what a reader tells me of his recent experiences as a British Jew, including what happened to him after attending the pro-Israel counter demonstration, and how he feels therefore about the way in which the Gaza conflict and its implications are being reported in Britain:

It was shocking to hear on Radio 4 at about 7:15am a Muslim woman called Fatima supposedly representing some 'moderate' Muslim organisation who basically said that the threat of Muslim radicalisation should force Britain to shift its foreign policy direction in the Middle East. This was followed by a poor rabbi in Paris speaking about the awful situation with attacks on Jews and their property. What shocks me most is that the BBC is prepared to recognise that these things are happening in European cities but not right here at home! They report on their website about a synagogue in Toulouse being fire-bombed, but what about the similar incident that happened this week in Brondesbury? [The attempted fire-bombing of a London synagogue].

From my own experience as an identifiably Orthodox Jew, since the beginning of the operation in Gaza I have had things shouted at me like ‘death to the Jews’, ‘Hamas should finish where Hitler left off’ along with the usual spitting and angry looks which I've become accustomed to. However, yesterday it went a bit further. I attended the demo in Kensington High Street. Walking back to Gloucester Rd tube as was suggested by the Community Security Trust and Metropolitan Police, there was visibly high security on the route. I saw two friends to the tube station and decided I would walk to a friend's house a mere 3 or 4 minute walk away since he had told me to stop by to say hello to him and his wife.

As usual, I wasn't holding any kind of political symbol, flag, banner or placard and was just wearing my yarmulka. As I was about to ring on the doorbell I was set upon by two Asian youths (one wearing a keffiya and one wearing a badge with the Palestinian flag on his jacket) who punched me in the head, threw me to the ground and continued to kick and punch me in the head and other parts of my body until I managed to shout loud enough causing them to flee. I bashed on the door of my friend’s house, sat on the kitchen floor with blood coming out of my head and badly bruised elsewhere. Thank G-d, my injuries were not serious and the paramedics were happy for me to go and stay at a friend's house until the morning so someone would be able to keep an eye on me. As for my friend who is living with his wife and 10-month old baby, the police have suggested that they go away for a couple of days since there are lots of 'unknown' people in the area who could make the place unsafe.

Anyhow... this is what it is like to be Jewish in Britain today. The BBC wants to portray that it is only places like France or Belgium that have problems with crazy Muslims attacking Jews. In classic BBC myopia, they can't see that London is no different.

9 January 2009 at 11:16  
Blogger Christian-Jedi-Alliance said...

Nazi seems to have become a word that you use when you throw a tantrum because you can't get your own way using your usual bully boy methods.

9 January 2009 at 11:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From David Lonsdale

Your Grace,
The way Roman Catholics have treated the Jews over the centuries is abominable. If the current Pope had wanted to say something positive about the Israeli actions in the light of ongoing rocket attacks from Hamas he would have done so by now. Perhaps the Cardinal has made his ambivalent statement with the full backing of the Pope, given his closeness to the Pope.
Perhaps the Pope should study the scriptures regarding God's plans for Israel and then he may have something to tell the World. Unless he knows the mind of God, as revealed in the scriptures, his advice will be no better than that of any other secular leader.
Your Grace, I am surprised that you are disappointed at the reaction of the Vatican. They departed from the scriptures centuries ago. Indeed your own faith in the Word of God caused them to burn you at the stake. Even now, in spite of the overwhelming evidence of Bible prophecy, they cannot see where God is going with Israel. There are none so blind as those who will not see, so nothing that the Vatian says about Israel is any more valid that the inane utterings of David Milliband

9 January 2009 at 11:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From David Lonsdale

Your Grace,
Forgive my carelessness on your esteemed blog. I meant to write, "than the inane utterings...."

9 January 2009 at 11:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace,
I am drawn constantly to Tocqueville, namely "Muhammad brought down from heaven and put into the Koran not religious doctrines only, but political maxims, criminal laws, and scientific theories.The Gospels, on the other hand,deal only with general relations between God and man and between man and man.Beyond that, they teach nothing and oblige none to believe anything. That alone, among a thousand reasons, is enough to show that Islam will not be able to hold its power long in ages of enlightenment and democracy, while Christianity is destined to reign in such ages, as in all others".
As a Roman Catholic I sometimes despair of such as Cardinal Martino and Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor who insist on generating so much heat and so little light with their ill conceived comments and seeming ignorance of their own principles of faith.

9 January 2009 at 12:03  
Anonymous Preacher said...

Your Grace.
In the light of scripture, I have to agree with David Lonsdale regarding the eventual outcome of this present crisis. what we are witnessing now are the beginning of the birthpangs spoken of by the Lord.True prophecy can not be altered by the will of man, power & politics will not prevail as has been proved time & again. When Israel became a nation again in 1948 this was an amazing fulfillment of prophecy, how many other dispersed races have been gathered back to their origins in such a unique way? Then risen to be a power in their own right? The rights & wrongs commited by both sides are awful to see, as are the fanatical attacks throughout the rest of the World, these are the outcome of sin by rebels against The Almighty, fuelled by men Drunk for gain & power. But The Lord's will shall be done, the only real answer is to put the toys of war back in the toybox & ALL men to repent & seek God with all their hearts while He still may be found.

9 January 2009 at 12:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like posts 2, 3 & 4 have been copied'n'pasted from Melanie Philips blog over at the Spectator site. And what has Chamberlain got to do with this?

9 January 2009 at 13:10  
Anonymous Shaven-headed tattooed knuckledragger said...

Our Lords and Masters are in deep denial about the true nature of Islam . They are too far down the hole to stop digging.

9 January 2009 at 14:19  
Anonymous Shaven-headed tattooed knuckledragger said...

What the Muslims have got planned for Rome, the Pope and the rest of us - after they've first come for the Jews, of course

9 January 2009 at 14:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Voyager, on the previous post, said "The main factor in the region is hatred - hatred of each other which can only be diluted by hatred of someone else."

So, if not the Pontiff, then who could that be? Which political figure, with a global profile, has the proven capability to inspire such loathing? And where would one find such a person? (Clue - Connaught Square)

9 January 2009 at 14:51  
Anonymous judith said...

I am inclined to wonder, Your Grace, about what would happen were the State of Israel indeed to disappear - the Jews dispersed once again, all the State apparatus ceded to Hamas, Fatah, Hizbollah, vacated homes and settlements and kibbutzim and moshavim given to the Palestinians from Gaza and the West Bank.

Am I being too cynical when I conclude that in short order, Hamas, Fatah, Hizbollah, the Shi'as and the Sunni's would start killing each other?

9 January 2009 at 15:22  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Stanley Jerusalem should learn some history before giving us Ladybird versions. Daladier's France was bound by treaty to protect Czechoslovakia, Poland and Hungary by treaties signed in the 1920s - Britain was not.

Chamberlain was roped in by Daladier to help him renege on French treaties just 15 years after France had last invaded and occupied Germany - yes 1923.

Why should the British Empire fight to honour French treaties ? Why should Chamberlain commit Britain to do what France would not ?

Stop ranting on about the NSDAP. You imply that German speakers in Central Europe after Versailles were not persectuted - they were - even the League of Nations had to warn Czechoslovakia and Poland. Hitler got a hearing because he exploited a legitimate grievance - he miscalculated in the end by humiliating Chamberlain who was arrogant, proud and incredibly ruthless as Prime Minister.

This however has no bearing on the Vatican today and none on events in Gaza. The analogy is false and the military metaphor is dangerous - in 1938 the most powerful airforce on earth was the Luftwaffe and following reintroduction of conscription, Britain was puny when set against the power of the Wehrmacht.

The most powerful airforce and army in the Middle East is Israeli so you can make facts on the ground and others listen. Do you really think Western Europeans are weak-kneed and lily-livered kow-towing to military might in the region ? Please say you do not

9 January 2009 at 15:54  
Anonymous jeremy hyatt said...

Diddums...

Did the nasty man say 'concentration camp'?

There there...

So perfunctory weasel words of sympathy for the civilians butchered by the I'D'F and a hissy fit about the use of the term 'concentration camp'. What else is Gaza apart from literally a concentration campn - okay it's Palestine's Guernica but I suppose that will offend some ass as well.

Grow up and get a conscience.

9 January 2009 at 16:25  
Blogger Theresa said...

Guys, can I point out something here? The Jewish diaspora happened in 40 AD, when the Romans went mad in Jerusalem. Since then, people other than the Jews have been in charge there. 1900 years later, the European Jews fleeing from persecution go to Jerusalem and claim right of sovereignty to Israel. If I can give a comparison, that would be like people of Viking descent going and laying claim to Scandinavia. It's ridiculous. Israel has caused more trouble in the Middle East than any other country, especially in terms of the number of people they displaced into Jordan, Syria and the Lebanon. How would we like to receive 1.8 million refugees from a neighbouring country, let alone a country like Jordan that only has a population of 6 million? Or even 400 000 (Syria and the Lebanon have received 400 000 each?)And to justify this by saying that they are the Chosen People, is even worse. I don't like Islamic milants either, but Israel has been a fertile breeding ground for them, because if you are displaced, have no job and nothing to live for, what else is going to happen? And as for justifying this by saying they are the Chosen people; for sure they are, but because they are, it is all the more incumbent on them to obey God's law and not be unjust.

A wee word on Chamberlain; Chamberlain was not trying to sue for peace with Hitler. Britain was not ready for war in 1938 and Chamberlain was playing for time. While he was in Munich negotiating with Hitler, collapsible coffins were being delivered to every town hall in Britain. And if he hadn't got an agreement and Hitler had attempted to invade Britain in 1938, the chances are that we would have been defeated. I think history has been very unfair to him.
I think i'll go and have a wee cup of tea and a lie down..

9 January 2009 at 16:49  
Anonymous John Reid said...

Glad to see the pope has blown his chances of ruling Jerusalem.

Terrible scenes in US with shouts of "Go back to the oven" shouted at the Jews.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3Xl68kP4wo
This shows who the Nazi's are .. Funny that catholics in Ulster call their seperated brethern the same name. Did you see a leading DUPer depicted in Nazi uniform on Sinn Fein web site

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/northern_ireland/foyle_and_west/7815169.stm

9 January 2009 at 17:20  
Anonymous John Reid said...

Should have put link to Sinn Fein blod site

http://ograshinnfein.blogspot.com/2008/07/gregory-goebbels.html

9 January 2009 at 17:25  
Anonymous not a machine said...

anon 12:03
beautiful :"generating so much heat and so little light"

9 January 2009 at 17:55  
Blogger dizzyfatplonka said...

Israel cannot become a Nation why it is trying to be a Country, trouble is even the Jews who express this logic are rebuked by the Zionists as traitors.

Pity the religious dogma we call enlightenment requires death and mutilation, to acheive its goals.

But its in the good book, yes so it must be right.

God forbid we grow up and think for ourselves, at the penalty of death, because he is a jelous God.

9 January 2009 at 17:55  
Anonymous bugs bunny said...

That's is Ógra Shinn Féin, the youth wing.

And comparing the DUP and the Nazi Party isn't entirely without warrant. Ian Paisley once opposed a Jew running for public office and not because he wasn't capable for the job but because "as a Jew, he rejects our Lord Jesus Christ, the New Testament, Protestant principles, the Glorious Reformation and the sanctity of the Lord's day. The Protestant throne and the Protestant constitution are nothing to him". He was a stuanch opponent of the civil rights movement and once abducted a 16 year old girl. He spoke very dehumanizingly of Catholics, stating that they "breed like rabbits and multiply like vermon". After some of his followers heard him lamenting that Catholics were moving into 'Protestant' parts of Belfast, they attacked their homes and property. When challanged on the effect of his speeches on his followers he stated that "Catholic homes caught fire because they were loaded with petrol bombs; Catholic churches were attacked and burned because they were arsenals and priests handed out sub-machine guns to parishioners". One of his most loyal followers, William Beattie told the DUP Youth Group that in 1986: "We must hire assassins to kill Catholics and pay them when the job is done."

9 January 2009 at 18:07  
Blogger Captain Haddock said...

An interesting point in all this is the way the BBC have portrayed the (admittedly) terrible suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza during this latest onslaught with something approaching disturbing relish at times. One might even begin to surmise they had a hidden agenda.

9 January 2009 at 19:32  
Anonymous John Reid said...

bugs - the youth wing - the same that is now glorifying terror by visiting the site of a massacre of British troops.

http://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/Fury-over-SF-visit-to.4854307.jp

you miss the point I am making. The Vatican and its adherents call prods and Jews Nazi's as it makes any attacks on them 'just'.
The Nazi party was made up of catholic adherents and boasted it carried out the high principals of the papacy. Hence the rat runs set up after the was. Remember Croatia.

When we see the propaganda attacks against Israel we remember the same attacks against the Unionist population of Ulster.

9 January 2009 at 19:40  
Blogger The last cause said...

As for me, Your Grace, I've always been curious as to the "why" everything unpleasant is compared to Nazism.

Stalin and his cruel Communists put far more people into misery and suffering and depredation then the Austrian Mad Man ever managed.

The Gulag System was as horrifying as the Concentration Camp, yet, one receives a pass, the other, a historical touchstone.

9 January 2009 at 20:44  
Blogger Unsworth said...

Your Grace

One might also question the unthinking and repetitive use by some commentators of the word 'Holocaust'.

9 January 2009 at 22:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suggest Cardinal Renato watch "The Ninth Day"...

9 January 2009 at 22:48  
Blogger Theresa said...

you miss the point I am making. The Vatican and its adherents call prods and Jews Nazi's as it makes any attacks on them 'just'.
The Nazi party was made up of catholic adherents and boasted it carried out the high principals of the papacy. Hence the rat runs set up after the was. Remember Croatia.


Can we have a wee reality check here ,John. The Nazi party was made up of all religions and none (excepting the Jews of course); not just Catholics. There was no love lost between Hitler and Catholics; he shut down all the Catholic schools in Bavaria when he became governer there in 1924. By 1931, the German bishops issued an excommunico decree against members of the Nazi party, which meant they could not even be buried on hallowed ground. Hitler retaliated by shutting hospices and charities run by the church and so many clergy were arrested for dissent that there was a special wing in the Dachau camp called the clergy wing. 50 000 priests and religious from the church ended up in concentration camps. Pius XII was lampooned in Nazi cartoons as a Jew lover and at one point, Hitler was going to have the pope kidnapped, because the church had set up an escape network for Jews and other refugees from the Nazis and the Vatican was sheltering Rome's Jews in its churches and in Castel Gandolfo, the pope's holiday retreat. At the end of the war it was estimated that 860 000 Jews had been saved through this network, which incidently had Monsignor Roncalli (John XXIII) as its second in command. Of course there were Catholic Nazis, but to understand Nazism as a Catholic phenomenon is completely wrong. If you want any more proof, look at this song of the Hitler Youth;



We follow not Christ, but Horst Wessel,
Away with incense and Holy Water,
The Church can go hang for all we care,
The Swastika brings salvation on Earth


Can't really imagine Benedict whistling that, can you?

9 January 2009 at 23:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Remember Croatia."

No one remembers Croatia, because of Yugoslavia, you have to directly learn about Nazi Croatia.

Yugoslavia was yesterday's multiculturalism. Did you know that it's success, it's "social cohesion" was predicated on Serbian silence about past injustice's visited on them?

Much like today. Today we have to remain quiet, for the sake of social cohesion, about the slow annihilation of Britain.

9 January 2009 at 23:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what's going on then? It's OK to demonstrate in favour of terrorists and moslems? But we can't say a dicky bird to get ourselves out of the Gulag, close the tunnel, and take back our culture?

I really think someone should analyse the water they're piping to conservative and indigenous communities!

Anon 2

10 January 2009 at 00:35  
Blogger Theresa said...

Sorry, that should have been in 1934 that Hitler started shutting them, and they were all shut by 1939.

10 January 2009 at 01:06  
Anonymous some bloke said...

To be fair, the term 'concentration camp' was coined by the British to describe the policy of containing groups of South African Boers to stop them running amok on the veldt as guerrilla commandos.
Concentrating those populations in camps was not intentionally meant to cause death but that is what happened, by disease.
I don't know offhand what word the Nazis used for their camps or if the English 'concentration camp' is a direct translation and neither do I know which version this prelate used. While my sympathies are very much with Israel, what better word descibes the fact that those Palestinians are indeed concentrated into those camps ?

That it is other Arabs who reduce them to this misery ( see reports of Egypt zealously guarding its Gazan border posts ) is getting too far off topic Your Grace and I shall desist.

10 January 2009 at 03:16  
Anonymous Voyager said...

I don't know offhand what word the Nazis used for their camps

"lager" - camp or holding facility known in German Civil Servant speak as "K.L." or Konzentrationslager - nowadays abbreviated to "KZ". Originally a form of "Protective Custody" beyond the reach of Courts and the legal system.


Concentration camps were originally Spanish from the Cuban War of Independence 1896

10 January 2009 at 07:00  
Anonymous Voyager said...

excepting the Jews of course

Robert Ley was of Jewish extraction as was Reinhard Heydrich

10 January 2009 at 07:02  
Blogger Arden Forester said...

This is interesting for two points. If one criticises a wrong done by Jews it seems that they can claim to be impervious to wrong because a bigger wrong was done to them.

Secondly, concentration camps, whether with barbed wire or not, have been around since clubbing heads days. The Americans rounded up Japanese-Americans during the second world war, the British had concentration camps in South Africa during the Boer wars, and so the list goes on. Armenians massacred by the Turks? That one is denied by the Turks and conveniently forgotten by the Jews.

I would have thought that beastliness against people is the same regardless of who they are.

10 January 2009 at 10:17  
Anonymous eagerbeaver said...

The Vatican has plenty of history of assisting fascists - the assistance provided to fleeing Nazi's at the end of WWII,, the collusion of the Spanish church with Franco and assorted Latin American cardinals who happily co-existed with nasty military juntas.

Mind you the RC church runs itself on authoritarian grounds - one boss and what he says goes (even to the point of an official doctrine of infallibility). The lower ranks and the congregation toe the line or else.

I should have thought they would have been quite experienced in spotting fascist behaviour.

10 January 2009 at 11:34  
Anonymous John Reid said...

Theresa - 'during the war' in croatia a priest made the comment 'kill them all God knows his own'. The little people do not matter in the eyes of Vatican policy. They (Vatican) never mourn as they have no family.

(Rev 18:7) "How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow."

Its the pursuit of power for the pope that dictates policy and actions.
Catholics really need to get their eyes open. What evils need to be committed for catholic men to stand up and take action against these evil dictators in holy garb.

10 January 2009 at 12:44  
Anonymous The recusant said...

And yet, as soon as Cranmer posted I thought to myself 'I wonder how long before John Reid rides into town with his ‘Beware of the Papists’ banner flapping behind him....

I don’t mind so much you being rabidly anti-catholic, you are not the first and won’t be the last, meh!, but do you have to tell untruths to support your prejudice, its not too cleaver especially when facts are so easily checkable on the interweb but you don’t even seem to have bothered with this, still any slander will do eh, especially if its against the Papists, what’s the flavour this month John, Whore of Babylon, Catholics are Idolaters, how about a bit of Pope Joan, I’ve not heard that one for a while, or Maria Monk is always good for a laugh.

As for your rubbish 'kill them …, you have the wrong war, the wrong century and the wrong protagonists. What is amusing is with all the sins of the Catholic Church over the centuries (and yes there are many) all you can do is make something up, how sad I that?

10 January 2009 at 17:20  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Recusant,

Are you addressing Mr Reid or His Grace?

10 January 2009 at 17:28  
Anonymous the recusant said...

A little reprimand and encouragement to Mr. Reid to exercise a modicum of erudition, a scintilla of intelligence and a lot more attention to detail which is self evidently missing from his diatribe. It goes without saying Your Grace invariably sources his quotes correctly and on the rare occasion something is amiss it is as a rule of no import

Your Grace would not mistake Beziers with Croatia (separated by 750 miles), the sack of Beziers in1209 with the Croatian War of Independence - 1991 to 1995 (separated by 782 Years), nor would he confuse some unidentified Croatian priest with Caesar of Heisterbach, Papal Legate, to Arnaud-Amaury, Abbot of Citeaux.

I don’t mind people having a pop at we Papists, we even deserve it sometimes (but very rarely). I do object though to this mindless kind of stuff and nonsense, unfortunately some of the more separated of the separated brethren seem to be burdened with an excess of both.

I have noticed on more than one occasion that enthusiasts proclaim the particular criticism of the day with such glee that they cannot conceive the specific pearl of great price has been laid at the door of the Catholic Church countless times before (even when they get the references right) and if they were to do a minimal amount of research, they would see that it has been either corrected, accepted, explained or dismissed by qualified apologists.

As for Cardinal Martino, well we all have our crosses to bear; I’m sure he means well. Let’s see how long he keeps his job, of course he was originally a JPII man and Pope Benedict seems to be replacing the old guard by degrees.

The Israeli ambassador to the Holy See Mordechai Lewy dismissed Martino's comments, saying that the cardinal was not in charge of the Vatican's diplomatic relations and had ''never seen a concentration camp in his life''. ''The relationship between Israel and the Vatican is as good as before,'' Lewy said and praised the pope for condemning violence in Gaza and appealing to both sides for peace in a traditional New Year's address on Thursday.

What may be of interest to Your Grace is that the Vatican has expressed alarm over the burning of Israeli flags by Muslims protesting against Israeli actions in Gaza during Muslim prayers staged outside Italian cathedrals.

Prayers held recently outside the Duomo in Milan and the Basilica of San Petronio in Bologna, with thousands of prostrate Muslims facing Mecca, had been accompanied by flag burning which is not only anti Israeli but anti Semitic, with protesters carrying banners depicting the Star of David alongside the Nazi swastika.

10 January 2009 at 23:54  
Anonymous Khaled Mechaal said...

Accuses Israel of committing Holocaust..

11 January 2009 at 10:34  
Anonymous Voyager said...

the assistance provided to fleeing Nazi's at the end of WWII

Actually the line to help displaced persons escape was used by the British and US Intelligence Services to help Nazis escape to South America....it was the British Embassy in Rome that worked with the future Pope Paul VI who worked in the office at that time helping emigres escape the Russians....Britain wanted its agent Klaus Barbie moved to South America so the Russians did not find out...the OSS/CIA similarly had operatives shipped through the offices of the Catholic Church.....in much the same way Britain relocated the 14 SS Galician Division to Canada and Australia using false identities as they were being held ready for the expected war with Stalin in 1954

11 January 2009 at 13:47  

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