The five featured articles and the related links in this issue of the Middle East Notes focus on President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and especially the response of the Palestinians, the UN, and select nations of the world; the U.S. “peace processing” that has served only to entrench and legitimize Israel’s military occupation and colonization of Palestinian land; the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as a radical break with nearly 70 years of official United States policy and with the international community; the Israeli claim that its control over Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza is temporary, despite lasting longer than South African Apartheid by any measure; and timely links to CMEP and to other articles of interest.
The work of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns on peace is focused on identifying and eliminating the root causes of violence and conflict with a focus on specific regions, expressions of violence and areas of conflict affecting Maryknollers, and U.S. aggression and national security policy (e.g. war on terrorism and war in Iraq and Afghanistan).The nexus of violence and poverty is clear. Unless we dedicate ourselves to building true human security for all, nations – especially poor ones – will continue to fall victim to an unending cycle of economic, political and social violence.
Pope Francis’ message for the World Day Peace on January 1 calls on the world to view global migration not as a threat but as an opportunity to build peace. The following article was published in the January-February 2018 issue of NewsNotes. CLICK HERE to download our two-page flyer
Plan now to attend the Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) Advocacy Summit in Washington, D.C., June 17-19. The theme is “And Still We Rise: Transforming U.S. Policy Toward a Just Middle East.” And Still We Rise seeks to elevate the voices, contributions, and leadership of women peacemakers. http://cmep.org/werise2018/
Pope Francis, San Diego Bishop Robert W. McElroy, and Jesuit Father Drew Christiansen have each offered new understandings of the role nonviolence plays in the pursuit of peace.
Father Boniface “Bonnie” Mendes lives and works in the Diocese of Faisalabad in the eastern province of Punjab, Pakistan. Born and bred in Karachi, the 80-year-old priest is former executive secretary of the Pakistani bishops’ National Commission for Justice and Peace and former head of CARITAS Asia. The following is an interview with Fr. Mendes, conducted via email by Gerry Lee, Director of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, just days after the Dec. 17 suicide bombing attack on a church in Quetta in which nine people were killed and 57 injured.
Dr. Maria Stephan delivered a speech in October in which she named key factors proven to make nonviolent resistance twice as successful as armed insurgencies and the important role the Church and civil society plays.
In November the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development hosted a special symposium on nuclear disarmament at the Vatican.
For the first time, Congress is considering a bill that bars the United States from financially supporting human rights abuses of Palestinian children by the Israeli military.
The Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns released a statement on December 7 opposing the Trump administration’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.
The Catholic Nonviolence Initiative (CNI) is focused on promoting a renewed commitment to Gospel nonviolence at the heart of the Church, including the possibility of a new official teaching on nonviolence. The following article is an update from one of the CNI’s five “roundtables” made up of practitioners of nonviolence from around the world.
Pope Francis’ message for the World Day Peace on January 1 calls on the world to view global migration not as a threat but as an opportunity to build peace.
Join the National Week of Action to Close Guantanamo!
January 6 – 14
Washington, D.C. and various cities across the United States
(Find a list of locations at http://www.nrcat.org/post-911-detainees/close-guantanamo/january-11-2018)
Organized by the National Religious Campaign Against Torture:
- Churches for Middle East Peace
- CIDSE, an international alliance of Catholic development agencies working together for global justice
- Gapminder.org: For a fact-based world view
- JustFaith Ministries
- Maryknoll Fr. Gerard Hammond speaks on Korea reconciliation
- Pax Christi International
- Pax Christi USA
- Two million friends for peace in Afghanistan