Darkness from the West

The Catholic Church, the biggest apostolic church in the US, is under heavy attack. The plotters had united media effort and legal machinery, utilized American obsession with money, and given the Church the treatment they gave tobacco industry, that is, suing it to oblivion. For their chance to get thirty pieces of silver (over a million dollars, in present prices), hundreds of American Catholics denounced their church.

This attack, followed by the ill-considered surrender of Los Angeles Catholic bishops in the ‘abusing priests’ campaign, is a clear sign of forthcoming war. This soap opera had a good run in the US media before the Iraq invasion. It actually started while Sharon was besieging Bethlehem and destroying Palestine in 2002. Then, all of a sudden, hundreds of men and women in their forties had remembered that they were abused some twenty years ago. It rose to a hysterical shriek in advance of the Iraq invasion in 2003, and now it is playing again as a harbinger of new hostilities. Whenever the forces of darkness prepare a new attack on mankind, they use their considerable artillery to shut up the potential resistance forces, starting with their avowed enemy, the Church. This was the practice of the Third Reich as well: before starting the war, they began their campaign of ‘priests as sex fiends’, to force the church’s silence. Now this is the turn of the Fourth Reich: the Church was against the war in Iraq; the Church was steadfast in her defence of Palestine; the Church is certainly against the impending attack on Iran; so she has to be put on defence. The same people who control the US media call for war with Iran, and they are behind this campaign against the Church.

Our enemies and the enemies of the Church concocted, through their control of the media, a phantom of “abusive priests” and succeeded in convincing the LA Bishops to take the bait of “final settlement”. Very soon the bishops will discover that nothing is final when you submit to their wishes. Surrender gets you nowhere. They could learn from the Germans, who agreed to settle all Jewish claims for $1 billion (as described by the chief Jewish negotiator Nahum Goldmann in his book The Jewish Paradox, New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1978), eventually paid $60 billion to find out that they still own $180 billion, and now there is a new suit to provide the children of the wartime sufferers with full coverage of their shrink sessions. If there is a sucker who agrees to pay, he won’t get a break from these fellows.

The very construction of the claim is faulty, to say the least. If a man abused a boy, while being a priest, this is still his crime, and he should bear responsibility – if and when the crime is proven by criminal court beyond any reasonable doubt. Likewise, if a man abused a boy while serving in the army, or working in the fire brigade, the responsibility is his, not of the army, nor of the fire prevention services. The bishops had no right to agree to such a suit; if an anti-Christian judge accepted such a suit, the church should rather disband than agree. The bishops are not the church, nor are the clergy: the Church is the mystic body of all worshippers, the Bride of Christ, and she is not a subject to any suit for misdeeds of individual believers. The Church is always right, though her bishops, priests or laymen may be wrong individually.

On the second thought, this model can be useful. If one can sue the Catholic Church, certainly one should be able to sue her traditional competitor, the Jews. If the Church pays for “abusing priests”, maybe Jewry should pay for “cheating Jews”? A full list of claims by people cheated by Jewish financiers, real estate developers, bankers, insurance agents would run to trillions. One Enron case (a clear-cut case of Jewish cheating) would be enough to offset the “abusive priests” bounty. Let them sue Jewry in the same court where the Church is sued; there are enough assets to seize from the Jewish organizations. Maybe that will leave them with less money to pour into bribing politicians and killing Palestinians.

A little bird told me that the Jews would never agree to accept collective responsibility. They are ready to act as a collective in order to collect, but not to pay. And until they agree to accept collective responsibility, the Church should not either. If the Pope in Rome still holds some sway over his LA bishops, he should retire them, void the settlement, proclaim that the church will never agree to be hold responsible for any individual’s misdeed and excommunicate and anathemise everyone who participated in this circus. Greed should not be encouraged: however right or wrong originally, by trying to destroy the church for their pecuniary gain, the claimants are totally in the wrong.

The odd custom of the late Pope John Paul II – asking forgiveness for historical sins – was liable to cause this sort of event: he was not entitled to ask such forgiveness for this would imply that every Catholic, even a five year old Brazilian girl, was guilty of mistreating the church’s enemies of some 500 years ago. The church should be mightily happy if she is not sued for the damages incurred in all the cases where her titular head has asked for forgiveness, including the Crusades, the Sack of Constantinople and the blood libel cases.

New claims will surely pour in. This is human nature: show one man of a way to get a million by saying he was fondled by a priest, and hordes will queue up with their claims. Some will be outright liars and cheats. The name of Lori Haigh comes to mind. This lady collected a $1.2 million abuse payment from the Los Angeles and Orange County Catholic archdioceses in 2002, alleging that she was abused by a clergyman while being driven to and from music practices more than 20 years earlier. Afterwards, she tried to play an abuse victim on several other occasions, until she was stopped by police as a liar and impostor.

Others will use their false memory to make it up. False memory is a very real thing: I have noticed that I ‘remember’ events I never witnessed because I was told of them so many times. It calls for quite an effort to regain one’s true memory and to dismiss the false one. Every Jerusalemite will tell you of horrors of 1948 siege of the city, but the newspapers of the time witness that there was no siege at all, as an Israeli historian Dr Uri Milstein recently proved.

Sex cases generate a lot of claimants. A few years ago, a Sephardic Jew, General Itzik Mordechai got close to receiving the crown of Israel’s Prime Ministership. The ruling Ashkenazi elite did not cherish the idea. They found a girl who claimed that she was raped by the lusty General. After the claim was publicized, dozens of women came up with similar claims. The claims came to naught, but there was enough dirt to bury Mordechai’s chances to govern. The trick was repeated against the Sephardi President Moshe Katzav and worked: the first claimant failed, but the police could find some positive evidence out of the dozens who came to claim. In the US, the waves of would-be claimants rise to tsunami heights, with hundreds and thousands coming to claim they were abused – in average, 20 years ago, in some cases 40 years ago.

I do not feel sorry for these late claimants. Why did they wait for 20 years? If a boy or a girl is being attacked, he or she may scream and run to parents or to police. If they did not do it, just forget it. Consider it a clumsy pass, an unpleasant experience, a result of misunderstanding. Blame yourself for indecisiveness. Proceed with your life. Join mankind: every one of us, even your mommy and daddy, suffered an unwanted kiss or an undesired embrace. The laws should be reasonable, – allowing 20-year old claims for such events is not reasonable. Only an immediate complaint should be considered valid, and 24 hours is as long as should be allowed, in some extreme cases.

If a crime occurred, the criminal should be punished, but the denouncer may not profit by his report of the crime. This is the necessary rule of justice. Otherwise we are back at the time when a denouncer could claim a third of denounced man’s property. An honest abuse victim should kick the temptation offered by the US legal system which encourages suing for huge sums of money, and return his winnings to the church. Anyway only the lawyers, the Dershowitzes, win. Out of billions collected by the Jewish lawyers on behalf of the holocaust survivors, hardly a drop reached actual ex-prisoners, while the rest remained in the lawyers’ coffers.

Expensive damage suits are immoral and counterproductive. A woman collecting a million for being burned by hot coffee in McDonalds, a man collecting a million for smoking too much, – this is just an incitement to litigate. Lawyers’ fees should be capped to the extent of a working man’s salary, so they could not turn justice into roulette. The Americans may consider revamping their legal system for it is a travesty of justice: the US judges have refused every claim by tortured Palestinians, but have awarded Israel and American Jews with billions of Palestinian or Iranian moneys.

The rest of the world lives well without these enormous damage suits. Money is only money, and this pursuit of dollars is extremely unattractive. Freud considered money to be the psychological equivalent of shit. Babies do show their feces with the same pride grown-ups flash their gold ringlets. An Arab book of seventh century tells of shit competition between two tribes, where the winner is one who produces the biggest pile. This is probably a better and a saner way of competing than the one offered by the Forbes.

II

The Americans over-simplify the question of sex with minors, when they present it as something monstrous. This is not so. Are you revolted by Romeo and Juliet? As a good American citizen, you should be; Juliet was 14, and thus Romeo today would be tried and locked up as a “paedophile”, together with his accomplice the good Friar Laurence, in the United States. Friar Laurence would surely be considered as an “abusing priest”, and a Dershowitz would collect a million from the Verona diocese for his sin of arranging the lovers’ tryst. Not only the lovers from Verona: Edgar Allan Poe married a 14-year old; and if the present laws were in force, the American poet would hearken to his Raven’s “nevermore” in jail. Prophet Muhammad married a nine year old Aisha, but Jacob, a Biblical patriarch, bettered him and married Rachel who was 7. In modern world, Jacob and Muhammad would be hunted down, extradited and jailed. It is possible that even better placed persons would not fare well facing our most enlightened justice: the Mother of our Saviour was just 14 at Annunciation…

Mature women ready to share their experience with young boys were always approved. In the Greek classic book Daphnis and Chloe, two young shepherds find love (they would be imprisoned in the US), but before that, an experienced and mature lady Lycaenion taught young Daphnis how to attend to his girlfriend – to their mutual satisfaction. Nowadays, in England, a 26-year old woman teacher was persecuted for having sex with her 15-year old pupil. Even the prosecutor admitted that it’s “every schoolboy’s fantasy to have that kind of attention from a young, attractive member of staff”, but pushed for conviction all the same. In the US, Pamela Rogers was sentenced to many years of jail for having sex with a young boy as tall as you and me, who was full 13 at the act – the age my great-grandfather was successfully married. If Mrs Rogers would rather abuse and humiliate the boy, she could have a successful career in the school. Who knows, she could become even a State Secretary…

A man who maims or kills a child will go to jail, serve his time and go out a free man. A man who had sex with a 14-year-old girl will serve his time and will be placed on a roll of sex offenders; his name and address are made available to every Internet user. In the UK and the US, these neo-liberal transatlantic twins, a special service allows you to locate every sex offender in your vicinity. The state in these super-liberal countries is a Peeping Tom who allows the pursuit of happiness in the stock market only.

The Americans and the Brits invented a silly concept of “statutory rape” as if a state prosecutor knows better than boys and girls what they want. The great French thinkers Sartre and Derrida, Foucault and de Beauvoir, called in 1977 for skipping this legal invention altogether. Wise Spaniards established the age of consent at 13, while the even wiser Muslims have no such age limit for marriage at all, while disapproving of extramarital relations. Equally wise Jews were guided by the Talmud which stipulates the permitted age of marriage for girls at ‘three years and one day’ (though the safer age of nine was preferred), while strictly forbidding sodomy.

Indeed, almost all cases of alleged abuse are homosexual; the alleged victims should sue the gay rights organizations rather than the Church. But the Church is not allowed even to utter these words. They can’t say “pederasty”, they should pretend this is “paedophilia”. They may not defrock a homosexual priest, for they would be attacked for their “homophobia”. In the US, the strong defence of homosexuality is inbuilt into their official dogma. The taboo on “being less than fond of homosexuals” (homophobia) may stand next to the taboo on “being less than fond of Jews” (antisemitism). These two taboos are so well entrenched in the US, that even mentioning them became a taboo, and two secondary offences have been created, “racism”, an antisemitism spill-off, and “paedophilia”, a homophobia spill-off.

In Israel we feel there is no better way to show allegiance to American democracy and liberalism than to emasculate the man and de-womanise the woman. In our smaller Jewish state, in Israel, things have changed since the macho days of Six Day War, when homosexuality was banned, the one-eyed Defence Minister Dayan screwed every female conscript and the Israeli army kicked three Arab armies in a week. Now the gay tendency is no snag, ministers are sued for kissing a girl, and the army is beaten up by a few bearded Lebanese. Once Israeli girls served in the army as non-combatants. Their main job was to look smart and cheerful, and thus encourage the boys to fight well. Now they follow the example of Judith and Jael, don helmets, do combat duty and look like East German swimmers on anabolic steroids.

After ending her tour of duty, with scalps of Palestinians at her belt (instead of their foreskins, as was Samson’s wont) this new breed of a female sabra is unsuitable for normal mating; and she ends up in the growing lesbian colony of Tel Aviv. While male homosexuals are often meek, the females have a drive for leadership and they lead the majority of gay organisations. Tsippi Livni, the Foreign Minister and an ex-Secret Service agent, allegedly has some lesbian background, and thus she passed millions of dollars to gay organisation led by her patriotic sisters. Traditionally over-independent, Jewish women became even more so as they now serve in the combat units, earn as much as men do, are protected from a flirtatious look by ever-alert police. They grew balls and became like men but even more so, encouraged by the movies showing decisive executive women and wimpy, obedient, good-for-nothing and admiring men.

The men got the message. If the girls are as hard as boys, but more demanding and more likely to sue – who needs them? Some statistics claim 20% of Tel Aviv is homosexual, others quote even higher numbers. Gays and lesbians have full rights: they adopt children, their “marriage” is recognised if performed abroad, they inherit, they are positively discriminated in favour of as employees and tenants, for they have more disposable income and do not become pregnant. They are quite patriotic: a leading gay poet of Tel Aviv called on Israel to erase Gaza and Beirut, and break Arab skulls. They insist on their right to serve in the occupation army. They derive an extra benefit from the occupation: cheap young Arab bodies. Well-to-do gays shack up with a boy who escapes the blockade and deprivation of refugee camp, and the authorities do tolerate this breach of apartheid, though an across-the-barriers union of man and woman is not tolerated.

A similar process takes place in the larger Jewish state, the US. Girls are being pushed into military service, they become hard as nails; and as a result, more and more men turn to other men, and naturally to younger men, or boys. Priests are probably no exception. The ultimate guilt is not that of the church, but of the feminist and lesbian movement which supports women’s military service; and of the media that promotes this attitude.

Now, sexual violence towards a small boy or girl by an adult man is a repulsive and criminal act, but this is extremely infrequent. One can stretch it a bit and agree that this is quite a repulsive act even if no violence is used, though one should be aware that this is a question of culture rather than an invariably correct judgement.

III

We can’t remain indifferent to the travail of the Church for she has a potential to change the US from the predatory neo-Judaic state it is today into a peace-loving Christian one. Her bishops went too far trying to accommodate their enemy, but they have discovered now that this way leads to perdition. Next time they may be braver, if there ever is a next time. We should defend her against these attacks whether in the “abusive priests” cases, or in the insinuations regarding the late pope Pius and the German Reich. Only the innocent and gullible will try to ponder the hard facts behind the setup, for there are none relevant. This is all hype, as Philip Jenkins, an Episcopalian Professor of History and Religious Studies at Penn State University, proved in his book Pedophiles and Priests, while the name of Pope Pius was exonerated many times over.

The latter accusation is a mirror image, or a parody of the accusation of Caiaphas just as the Holocaust religion is a parody of the Christian faith. In the Christian dogma, Caiaphas gave Christ into the hands of the Romans to be crucified, and this implied the inherent hostility of the Judaic leadership and priesthood to the Christ. In the Holocaust dogma, Pope Pius surrendered the Jews to the Germans, affirming the eternal enmity of the Holocaustians to the Church. It does not matter that on a factual level, the accusations have been refuted many times over. Our tenacious enemy never gives up, never acknowledges his defeat, never accepts the facts unless they suit him.

Who is the enemy? Some people refer to the Israel Lobby with their great control over media. In the famed tract, they were called the Elders of Zion. Others call them Illuminati. I called them the Masters of Discourse, the operators of the integrated machine of public disinformation and indoctrination, from the Wall Street Journal to the Wikipedia. Thousands of networks, newspapers, journals, books, films and ideas are being united and guided by their invisible hand, while free thought still survives in the far reaches of the web. The fearsome AIPAC is just the visible tip of the iceberg, below which are miles and miles of solid ice: media lords, chief editors, their pundits – in short, the Masters of Discourse. Their power base is in the media, in their ability to create a false presentation of reality and mislead people. Recently John Pilger described it as The Invisible Government.

When the Masters of Discourse fought against Communism, they had a few faked ‘facts’ they were never tired of brushing up. They played with stupefying numbers: Communists killed thirty, no, fifty, no, sixty million, though the freely available demographic figures of the Soviet Union made it as miraculous as feeding of the multitudes by five loaves. They invented Soviet anti-Semitism, though Soviet government and security always had a lot of Jews in high places. They invented Soviet totalitarianism, though the Soviet people freely supported their government. Instead of the Holy Grail, they had Raul Wallenberg, who was supposed to have survived miraculously and to have been kept in some far-away jail. No research would ever move them to recognize their inventions for being what they were, namely, lies.

Now they want to destroy Iran and cripple Russia, for these lands did not forget God. They do fight against the Church, against every church, be it Communism or Islam or Orthodox Judaism, or their traditional enemy, the Apostolic Church, for every church defends its flock against their robbery and resists their dark drive for domination. The church affirms the primacy of spirit, and of the godlike nature of man; this is anathema to the Masters. On a deeper level, the Church is their main adversary, for they are a competing church of sorts, the church of darkness, and they will not suffer a competitor.

Dominant as they are, they are not omnipotent. We should not be afraid of them. There is no magic in their incantations. They have no divine powers behind them. They are impostors. They exploit the old myths of mankind, forgetting that nothing works without God. The Masters are twins to Zionists; the Zionists decided to arrange for Israel’s return to the Promised Land as it was promised to their fathers. However, that return was to be done by God; while humans trying to do God’s work are necessarily rebels. Wannabe demiurges, they created their hellish regime ruled by their security forces, and destroyed the lovely land of Palestine. The result was so miserable, that Zionist prince Avrum Burg recently advised his countrymen to obtain a foreign passport and emigrate.

The Masters of Discourse are trying to create a pseudo-Judaic universe on a planetary scale. Their vision was grotesquely presented by the authors of the Protocols, but the reality they brought in is as unsuccessful as the one their brethren established in Palestine. The same rule of security forces, the same fear-mongering, the same ideological vise, the same destruction of nature, the same impoverishment of spirit, the same uprooting, the same discrimination, the same endless wars, – all quite removed from the Prophetic promises they tried to emulate.

As rebels against God, they will be defeated. As charlatans they will be dismantled. Their fall is imminent. But it won’t happen without our hard work, without our understanding being widely spread and generally understood. We should reject them completely, as completely as we are called to in our confession of faith.

IV

The Church is the mightiest tool for peace. The Church may yet lead us to peace – if we would vocally support her. With massive support of people united around the Church, the Middle East wars would become history. The Americans may look eastward for an example. While the biggest apostolic church of America is being bled for money, in the East there is a great upheaval of spirit. In Turkey, after 80 years of materialist dictatorship, people turned to God and voted for a party of faith. The same thing happened in Palestine, in the Lord’s Land, where Hamas won the elections. Everywhere in the East, from Cairo to Moscow, the East sheds the pragmatic cold shackles of godless regimes and turns to God.

The Americans may emulate this current. The Church – the Catholic one and her Orthodox sister – is the Islam of the West, and it is meant to be a compliment. There is positively a place for a Catholic Hamas rising in the US and changing the rules of the game, taking away the rule from the laic twins of Republicans and Democrats. If Islam succeeded in regaining its place of respect and glory in the recently and violently anti-religious society of Ataturk, if the Orthodoxy made it in Lenin’s land, the Christian Church may achieve the same in the US, by siding with people, and the people can defeat their enemy, by siding with the church.

The abusing priests’ case may eliminate the Catholic Church in the US altogether as an independent force: already five dioceses have declared bankruptcy. But the Church still may overcome: she can divest of all its property and transfer it to the local parishes, remove the collaborationists and survive — poor, lean and fighting, as she did in the days of the Apostles. She should not surrender but meet the challenge. She can lead America to peace and prosperity as the great positive moral force, she can demand from the Bush administration that America get out of Iraq now. If the church will become more active in the struggle for peace, she would attract more people. Yet, a new independent and autocephalous Church of America could spring forth from the American Apostolic Churches, the Orthodox and the Catholic, and her light would defeat the darkness of apostasy.

Alas, some of our friends fail to understand it and join in the attack on the Church. It is as if an infantry soldier were to join in the enemy attack on his tanks, just because he hates tankers.

The flagship of pro-Palestinian media is Counterpunch. This is one of the biggest friendly sites, and they do publish many articles produced by our friends. But in Counterpunch, one can’t say a good word about the Church, and for sure one can’t mention Christ. A Google search for “church” on their site shows that they are as harsh to the Church as the Jerusalem Post. (See for instance www.counterpunch.org/sexabuse.html , www.counterpunch.org/jensen09282006.html , www.counterpunch.org/smith03092004.html etc)

Recently they published a piece by a Badruddin Khan who did not stop at repeating brazen lies: “These hoary tactics were applied by Christians against Jews barely a century ago. The Catholic Church issues circulars that condemned Jews for using the blood of Christian children for Passover rites. All Jews (whether secular, converts, or intermarried) were marked and identified as sinister and worthy of apartheid. This state of apartheid allowed the organized evil of the Holocaust to be implemented.”

This is a lie and calumny one finds only in the cheapest Zionist textbooks. As a matter of fact, the Jewish converts were invariably well received by the church, and some of them rose within its ranks. The list would be too long, from St Paul and St Peter to St John of Cross and St Teresa of Avila to the leading bishops in the French church and elsewhere. The church indeed condemned those Jews who used the blood of Christian children for Passover rites or for any other purpose; would Badruddin Khan prefer her to approve of this unorthodox practice? And finally, the reference to the holocaust is absurd. Hitler’s regime was as violently anti-Catholic as any. They actually pioneered the “abusive priests” line copycatted by today’s American media. I have no doubt that Counterpunch would never dare to publish similar offensive lies about the Jews, but the Church may be attacked freely.

Our good combatants Bill and Kathy Christison went to demonstrate in front of a Catholic cathedral because of Prof Finkelstein’s refused tenure, as they wrote in the Counterpunch. I asked them, why they didn’t go to demonstrate in front of a Jewish institution, be it a synagogue or a Bnai Brith lodge or the ADL. They replied that “You are quite correct when you say that in the US it’s possible to be anti-anything except anti-Jewish or anti-Israel. The Israel lobby is so very strong and wields so very much political power that no politician, no commentator dares criticize Israel without fear of being labeled anti-Semitic and excluded from mainstream discourse. In the wake of the Holocaust (about which the lobby constantly reminds us), few people want to risk being thought anti-Jewish, so this is a powerful weapon, and becomes more and more powerful as time goes on.”

Demonstrating in front of a Catholic church is like looking under the lamp post for lost coin, which you have actually lost in the dark. It’s dark in front of the Jewish establishments, but we should venture into darkness to bring light. This is the way of our organisation, Deir Yassin Remembered who regularly demonstrate in front of synagogues. And in front of the cathedrals, we should demonstrate in support of the Church, not against her.

The Catholic Church is one of the greatest champions of Palestine. They have a Palestinian Patriarch, they do defend Palestine. All established churches support Palestine; with the apostolic churches taking the leading role, and the Catholics often lead them all. During the 2002 Bethlehem siege by the Jews, the Catholic Church led the actions and I participated in them (read http://www.israelshamir.net/English/Convoy.htm) I am not a Catholic, actually I belong to the competing native sister, the Orthodox Church of Holy Land, but in some ways, the Catholic Church is even more supportive of Palestine than our own.

Bill and Kathy disagreed: “The Catholic Church has certainly done some good things for the Palestinians, but not nearly enough. Where has the church been while Israel oppresses Christians, including Catholics, in Palestine? Have we heard any protests from this Pope over the walling in and devastation of Bethlehem, or from the last Pope when Israel besieged the Church of the Nativity during the 2002 reinvasion of the West Bank? Where was the Church when Israel ethnically cleansed numerous Christian Palestinian villages in 1948? And indeed, where has the Church been as Israel has oppressed members of another faith, Muslims, for 60 years, desecrating Muslim places of worship and killing and ethnically cleansing Muslim people–for the sole reason that they are not Jews?”

I replied: The Catholic Church is doing as much as she can, but she can’t do much, two hundred years after Voltaire. You ask, “Where has the church been while Israel oppresses Christians, including Catholics, in Palestine?” Forgive me, but it reminds me the standard Jewish line of “Where has the church been during the holocaust?” Stalin was more realistic when he noticed that the Pope has not too many divisions. Actually, the Church protested every Israeli crime. The Church could do more if she were not constantly attacked by the Jewish Lobby – and by the well-meaning people who do not understand that they undermine this defence of Palestine.

Once, the Church led the Crusade to liberate the Holy Land. Now, she can lead the Crusade of Peace for the same purpose.

Israel Shamir

Israel Shamir is a critically acclaimed and respected Russian Israeli writer. He has written extensively and translated Joyce and Homer into Russian. He lives in Jaffa, is a Christian, and an outspoken critic of Israel and Zionism.