B’nai B’rith International is pleased to commend a statement issued by a recently established group, the Protestant Consultation on Israel and the Middle East.
The group, comprised of figures associated with diverse churches in Europe, North America and Africa, released a statement on Dec. 4 to express its support for pluralism in the Middle East, and its solidarity with Israel and all those who face persecution and violence in the region.
Too often, Israel has been unfairly demonized and delegitimized. B’nai B’rith is grateful to all those who recognize Israel for what it is—the only proven democracy in the Middle East.
We look forward to working with friends in the Christian community to encourage genuine fairness and constructiveness in considering both the challenges facing the Middle East and meaningful interfaith relations.
In the statement, the Protestant Consultation on Israel and the Middle East writes: “We see the modern State of Israel as a hopeful sign... Israel’s citizens are free to criticize failings of their government and there are mechanisms to correct those failings... [Israelis'] propensity for self-criticism is a legacy of the prophetic tradition that Jews and Christians share...
“We believe it is possible to pursue justice and peace in ways that attend to the rights and needs of all peoples of the region.”
The statement continues: “We are distressed to see how certain European and North American church officials approach the Israeli-Palestinian dispute as if it were a zero-sum game. They fall in line with the international campaign that purports to help the Palestinians by delegitimizing Israel... They target Israel alone for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS). This approach is unjust, and it is unhelpful to the cause of peace.
“We are committed to stand with Israel and the Jewish people, as we also stand with persecuted Christians and other minorities in the region.”
Download the full statement here.