|code: 321586||Date: 2012/06/12 - 09:27||source: IQNA|
Christ church senior pastor: 'Judaization is a Form of Racism' / 'Attack on Iran is a threat to viability of Israel'
(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - This is according to Revd Dr Stephen Sizer, the vicar and senior pastor of the Christ Church, the community church of Virginia Water in Surrey, UK, who in an interview answered the following questions regarding the occupation of Palestine.
Q: As you know, the Palestinians are suffering from continued occupation and people in the Gaza Strip are facing barbaric and atrocious aggressions and brutal massacres. What’s your view on that?
Sizer: The condition of the Palestinians is very bleak in the West Bank, in the occupied territories, and in East Jerusalem, but it’s much worse in Gaza. The Israel regime has been quite brutal in the military occupation of the territory. They control the borders, the air, the sea, and everywhere else. The Palestinians cannot fish without permission, they cannot leave Gaza without permission, and even the Israel regime authorities have restricted the amount of aid the United Nations can bring into Gaza. So in the west, civil society has created Viva Palestina, an organization that is seeking to bring supplies into Gaza to break the siege. It’s a siege basically, an open prison for a million and a half Palestinians living in the most densely populated piece of land on the Earth. The conditions are very bad. Statistics show about eighty percent unemployment in this territory. The Israel regime has restricted the concrete, the electricity, and other basic necessities of life, and therefore they should not be surprised that the Palestinians resist the occupation.
Q: How do you see the future relationship of Egypt and the Israeli regime?
Sizer: My hope and pray is that with the change of leadership in Egypt, Egypt will put pressure on this regime to improve the conditions in Gaza. I think the relationship is different now, and will become more different. Giving Egyptians freedom to choose the leaders means that the views about the Israel regime must be taken into account. Until recently the Egyptian leadership depended on US funding to suppress the people in Egypt. Now that those leaders are changing, their attitude to America and also the Israel regime is changing. I hope that Egyptian civil society which is very sympathetic to the Palestinians will influence their own leaders to put pressure on this regime to make the conditions easier for the Palestinians. It’s absolutely intolerable and unacceptable. The more we can expose what’s happening through the media, the better.
Q: What’s the role of Egypt Military Council in this respect?
Sizer: The army does run Egypt, they own large proportion of industry and business, and sooner or later, there will be a transition; but it may take time and it may need civil disobedience, because the army may not want to give away power, unless it’s forced to.
Q: Given Egypt’s revolution, what do you think about the future of Camp David Accords?
Sizer: Camp David was like a mountain top. You got to the top and you saw the world differently. Two states and 1967 borders. The United Nations, Russia, Europe, and North America, all agreed two states, non-negotiable. What happened? Israel said: “NO way”, and everyone says: Okay, that mountain top is downhill from there on in. If Russia, the United States, Europe, and UN cannot get Israel to agree, then there is no point having more negotiations. We are talking about talks, talking about piece, while Israel takes more lands, demolishes more homes, and throws more Palestinians out. For me, the most discouraging moment was when the United States vetoed the UN resolution giving Palestine statehood. If America stands for two states, why veto the right of one state? (One of the two). It shows how hypocritical they were. So I’m discouraged and I think the tensions with Iran are a way of deflecting people’s opinion and views away from the reality in Palestine. Another war is another convenient way of Israel getting away with more justice.
Q: Another issue which has raised concerns among both Christians and Muslims is the excavations at Al-Aqsa Mosque. What are your thoughts on that?
Sizer: By these excavations, the Israel regime tries to demolish the historical layers which show the Muslim era and Al-Aqsa Mosque connection with the Muslims in the past. So I can see the danger of them exploring underneath, and it’s obviously a tense problem. My personal view is that they should stop all excavations.
Q: How do you view efforts for Judaization of Jerusalem?
Sizer: Judaization is a form of racism. The Israel regime has forced the Palestinians to leave their land, while they have lived there for hundreds of years. It is absolutely illegal in international laws. Under the Geneva Conventions, it is prohibited for an occupying power to transfer its population into occupied territory. In this regard, the West Bank is the occupied territory. So the Judaization process must be seen as a form of racism which is intolerable. Such ethnic cleansing did not work in Serbia, Crovasia, and Bosnia either. Jerusalem in the Bible is always seeing as an inclusive city, a place for all nations and races.
Q: How do you see Israeli regime's threats against Iran?
Sizer: If the Israel regime did attack Iran, then the viability of Israel would be under threat much more than the viability of Iran, because Iran is a large country. So I think it will be so much foolish.