Pope Francis is in the Middle East and currently in Israel. As he drove through Jerusalem, the pontiff halted by the Wall which separates Jews from Palestinians. He halted and uttered some words of peace. “In this birthplace of the Prince of Peace, I wish to invite you, President Mahmoud Abbas together with President Shimon Peres to join me in heartfelt prayer to God for the gift of peace. I offer my home in the Vatican as place for this encounter of prayer.” The Wall that he mentioned if for every Jew in the world a Wall of Shame because its presence symbolizes failure on the part of Muslims and Jews to work in a cooperative manner for the cause of peace. Wall separate, they do not join conflicting peoples in peace.
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could only argue that the Pope’s visit was “an opportunity to present to the world the real Israel-the advanced, modern, and tolerant Israel.” His words simply reflect the problem. Seizing land from Palestinians is NOT an act of tolerance of that of peace. Israel is home to both Jews and Muslims, thus Israel is NOT a Jewish state, anymore than mainly Christian America is a Christian state. Israel IS a democratic state and must behave as one-for all who dwell in it!