July 30, 2014

60 Minutes on the Plight of Palestinian Christians

bethlehem

Source: The Atlantic APR 23 2012, 8:46 AM ET 280 By Robert Wright Last night's 60 Minutes segment about the plight of Christians in the West Bank has gotten a lot of attention, in part because of the attempt by Israeli ambassador Michael Oren to intervene with CBS brass while the segment was being put together. (See the 11-minute point in the video below, where CBS correspondent Bob Simon confronts Oren with this fact.) You can see why Oren might rather the piece hadn't aired. Things that Palestinian Muslims routinely say about the Israeli occupation may get more traction in America when Palestinian Christians say them. Such as this, from a Christian clergyman: "The West Bank is becoming more and more like a piece of Swiss cheese, where Israel gets the cheese--that is, the land the water resources, the archaeological sites, and the Palestinians are pushed in the holes." Also, Oren clearly doesn't want this document, mentioned by Simon, to get attention. In it an … [Read more...]

The silence of the EP to events in world Orthodoxy

Several important events of the last week involve Orthodox Christians around the world including the protest by Palestinian Christians against the alleged corruption of the Patriarch of Jerusalem (see: Palestinian Christians jeer Greek Orthodox leader; also see: Patriarch could become persona non grata in Bethlehem) and the Muslim persecution of Coptic Christians in Egypt (see: 8 Coptic Christians in Egypt Shot Dead As They Left Christmas Mass). Notable is the silence of the Ecumenical Patriarch concerning these events. Not so with Rome. From the Assyrian News Agency: Pope Condemns Religious Attacks After Copt Deaths VATICAN CITY (Reuters) -- Pope Benedict called on political and religious authorities on Sunday to prevent violence against Christians, in an apparent reference to recent attacks on Coptic Christians in Egypt. "Violence against Christians ... has caused indignation among many people, particularly because it has taken place on the most sacred days of the Christian … [Read more...]

Obamakis and Bidenopoulos

Opa! Obama!

Political candidates follow a time-honored campaign strategy of reaching out to ethnic groups and religious communities, and Orthodox Christians have been courted this way for years. It works both ways, of course. Now, little more than a week after the election, we're getting a good look at how politicians and political operatives of Greek descent -- many of them prominent in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese -- have been working for years to promote President-elect Barack Obama and running mate Sen. Joseph Biden. The Greeks for Obama group, for example, developed this catchy slogan: "If you are Greek and love Obama, clap your hands." On Nov. 5, the National Coordinated Effort of Hellenes told supporters that it had raised $500,000 for Obama's campaign just weeks before the election. (full message appended at bottom of post). Andy Manatos, a public relations executive who also chaired last summer's GOA Clergy-Laity Congress, led the effort for this group. "Moving the huge American … [Read more...]