Monday, July 28th, 2014

Simon Wiesenthal Center ‘PCUSA Divestment Resolution Bolsters Anti-Peace Extremists’

simonFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                      June 20, 2014

SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER: PRESBYTERIAN VOTE TO ‘RECONSIDER’ TWO-STATE SOLUTION ALIGNS CHURCH WITH THOSE SEEKING END OF ISRAEL

PCUSA Divestment Resolution Bolsters Anti-Peace Extremists

 The Simon Wiesenthal Center denounced today’s  votes of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) (PCUSA) in Detroit to reconsider its long-standing support of a two-state solution in the Holy Land, and to divest from a number of American companies doing business with Israel.

“We are shocked beyond words. With the crimes against humanity occurring in Syria and Iraq, with the Middle East in chaos, with African Christians regularly selected by terrorists for murder because of their faith, PCUSA chooses to flex its moral muscles by aiding and abetting those pledged to do away with the Jewish State,” said Rabbi Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center

“The vote to ‘reconsider’ a two-state solution – the cornerstone of US foreign policy and negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority is actually a recommendation to drop it. They call the two-state solution ‘unrealistic … when no real possibility of that seems to exist’,” he added.

“We are witness today to an ugly spectacle of righteous hypocrisy, as an American church punishes the sole Middle East democracy for the sin of safeguarding its securitywhile some of its Palestinian neighbors pass out sweets to celebrate the abduction of Israeli teenagers,” Rabbi Cooper concluded.

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein, the Center’s director of interfaith affairs, was not surprised by the floor votes.”Church leadership ensured that only anti-Israel voices were given extended testimony time during the crucial committee hearings, while the pro-Israel Presbyterian Friends of Middle East Peace were told to contain their remarks to 90-second statements, with no questions from committee members. This was what we expected.”

“Earlier, we were correct for breaking off relations with this church – whose numbers have dwindled to the point that the denomination has become irrelevant – because of the administration’s unequivocal hostility to Jews and Israel.  The church published a study guide a few months ago that stripped Israel of its millennia-old continual physical stake in the Holy Land, coddled terrorism, and called the very idea of a Jewish state illegal and racist,” Adlerstein continued.

“The church continues to tolerate overt anti-Semitism on its website without even bothering to dissent.  Ironically, as others get ready to celebrate 50 years of productive interfaith relations since the Catholic Church’s Nostra Aetate document, Presbyterians have reverted to the pre-Holocaust stance of an adversarial relationship with the Jewish community. Jews should stop and reflect on who their friends are – and who are not, Rabbi Adlerstein concluded.

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7 comments

  1. Martha Damsky says:

    I resigned as ruling elder of my church here in Brooklyn NY as soon as I found out. I am finding out PCUSA members all over the country are feeling the same shock and shame and dismay I am.

  2. Frank Allen says:

    I spoke against divestment at the General Assembly in the strongest possible terms. Here is how I ended my minority report.

    “Divestment will link us to a global divestment group that does not share the aims and goals of the Presbyterian Church. The Presbyterian Church’s good name will be used to promote an agenda that is not our own. We say that we are divesting from these American companies to encourage ethical corporate behavior. This is not how it is being reported.

    For example, the 1700 rabbis who sent you a letter say that we are divesting from Israel. BDS is claiming that the General Assembly is acting on divesting from Israel. The AP and other news sources have reported that our committee’s vote was “another step closer to divesting from Israel.” We are already losing control of our message.

    Divestment pressures Israel to take action without expecting a Palestinian commitment to peace. It also disregards Israel’s legitimate security concerns, concerns affirmed by previous General Assemblies. If Israelis are forced to choose between putting the lives of their families at risk and being boycotted by the PC(USA), they will choose being boycotted.

    Divestment will not end the conflict and bring peace. Divestment will create dissension.
    Dialogue and relationship building will lay the groundwork for true peace.”

  3. Peter Gregory says:

    Anti-semitism is, as anti-semitism does. Drop the PCUSA as identifier. The organization should be called the Little Church of Hate.

  4. neversink says:

    Shame on them. They do not speak for all Presbyterians. This divestment seems to say that Presbyterians now support terrorists in Gaza and the West Bank who train children to carry out attacks. This resolution supports the continuing persecution of women in the Mideast outside of Israel. Israel is the only multicultural democratic nation where you can practice any religion you want. Go to Tel Aviv beaches and you will see Jews, Muslims and Christians all enjoying the same beach. Israel’s last reigning Miss Israel was black. Israel is the only country in the MidEast that tolerates people who are gay, people of different view points.
    Their are many occasions where Israel has opened its hospitals to residents of Gaza and the West Bank for long-term emergency care only for the patients to spew hatred toward after they are cured.
    The divestment act is just a fraud orchestrated by sheep of terrorist organizations whose propaganda machine of lies and anti-semitism continues unabated.

  5. J D Miller says:

    Many, many delegates at the General Assembly are grieved by this action. The vote was 310-303. The PCUSA GA is increasingly a very tiny political activist group that is completely out of touch with most Presbyterians in the pews….

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