Catholic World News

Patriarch: Gaza a ‘factory of desperate people’

August 04, 2014

The blockade of the Gaza Strip, in force since 2007, has made the region a “factory of desperate people” and “extremists ready for anything,” according to the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.

Patriarch Fouad Twal told the Fides news agency that a truce “will not help if the conditions in Gaza remain those of a desperate land under siege, where only fear and frustration that feed hatred can grow.”

“If you put an end to this siege, if you open up the streets and allow freedom of movement of people and goods, if you allow free fishing in the sea in front of Gaza, then everything will be able to move on the surface and no one will need to dig underground tunnels to pass,” he added.

The death of so many civilians in the Gaza-Israel conflict, he said, suggests that Hamas, which began to govern Gaza in 2007, “did not think of building underground shelters for the people.”


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  • Posted by: John J Plick - Aug. 08, 2014 11:48 AM ET USA

    The only thing that separates the people of Israel from sharing the fate of the Christians in Mosul or the Yazidi on Mount Sinjar in Iraq is that Israelis are protected by F-16s, tanks, and trained troops. Iraqi Christians and Yazidi used to be. On a more basic level, however, Benjamin Netanyahu understands the evil he faces. President Obama? He refuses to understand. If he did, he wouldn’t have given a defeated enemy a second chance at genocide. Again, from ACLJ

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Aug. 08, 2014 11:42 AM ET USA

    "Second, relativism drives the quest for justifications. Since there is no way that Western culture can be superior to Middle Eastern cultures, when the Middle East boils, there has to be a reason located outside the jihadists’ own beliefs and pathologies... The roots of jihad are never in Islam or in the pure nihilism of the jihadist, but rather in the oppression or injustice...End the oppression, and you’ll end jihad.Yes, they’re angry — says the liberal-, but for good reasons." From ACLJ

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Aug. 04, 2014 11:44 PM ET USA

    "Hamas did not think of building underground shelters for the people." Maybe, just maybe... Hamas didn't want to build "underground shelters" for the people. Maybe, just maybe Hamas WANTED "the people" to die... so that "the Jews" could be blamed... Hatred works like that... "Hatred" doesn't care about life... And we in the United States should certainly know about THAT.

  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Aug. 04, 2014 10:39 PM ET USA

    Take a look at Ron Paul's speech before Congress regarding Israel's creation of Hamas on You tube. www.youtubecom/watch?v=Y63vF6Vcjr0 It's obvious that Hamas works to Israel's benefit. With every home made rocket they shoot at Israel, more Palestinians get killed and more of their land gets grabbed by Israel. If only the Palestinians could learn to "turn the other check" when being forced to suffer indignities!

  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Aug. 04, 2014 2:29 PM ET USA

    One comment the Patriarch makes here indicates he understands what has happened, viz. that concerning the duplicity of Hamas. The other, though, the bit about the "need to build" them, suggests he thinks perhaps these tunnels have some legitimate reason to exist beyond abetting terrorist activities. Both things, however, cannot be true at the same time. Extensive reading tells me there is validity only in his condemnation of the terrorist organization Hamas.