Father Gabriel Naddaf: "To label Israel is to betray your Christian values"

"To label Israel is to betray your Christian values", it is with these words that on December 2, Father Gabriel Naddaf, Israeli Orthodox priest, said accused Europe of losing its moral and spiritual values by discriminating against Israeli products with specific labeling for products from Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights.

Il launched and edited with a group of Israeli Christians an anti-BDS manual to help Christians not give in to anti-Israel positions supported by various major Christian churches around the world. "Boycott, divestment and sanctions" (BDS) is an international campaign calling for various economic, academic, cultural and political pressures to be exerted on Israel in order to achieve three goals:

  • The end of the occupation and colonization of Arab lands
  • Complete equality for Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel
  • Respect for the right of return of Palestinian refugees

Father Gabriel Naddaf heads the Independent Christian Council which works for the integration of the Christian communities of Israel into Israeli society and actively supports the incorporation of young Christians into the Israeli army.

“The labeling of Israeli products is a terrible, racist and anti-Semitic decision,” insisted Father Gabriel Naddaf during a meeting at the European Parliament in Brussels.

This call for a boycott even proves, in various aspects, unfavorable for the Palestinian people themselves. In fact, the Palestinians benefit from a large number of products, some graciously, from Israel such aselectricity, gas and diesel. Should they boycott these resources? In addition, factories and businesses in the settlements provide work for hundreds of Palestinians like this was the case for SodaStream, forced to close under BDS pressure. This company hired 500 Palestinians who will have no other choice than precariousness and poverty.

These calls for a boycott in the West are above all ideological, they do not take into account the reality on the ground. We cannot give in to a simplistic and Manichean ideology of this situation. There are not the nice Palestinians who defend their country on one side, and the nasty Israelis who come to invade them on the other side. Joseph Farah, an Arab journalist, himself asserted that

“Palestine as an autonomous entity has never existed in history”.

Father Naddaf recalled that Israel was the only democracy in the Middle East and that it should be protected rather than discriminated against.

“While you discriminate against Israel, Christians are being persecuted all over the Middle East and beyond. Israel is the only country in the Middle East where they live their faith in peace. They have the same rights as all of their fellow citizens. Israel is the only place in the region where the Christian population is increasing ”.

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