Here is the first paragraph of article in today\’s Washington Times:
The Virginia State Bar Association has canceled a trip for its members to learn in Jerusalem later this year after some members campaigned against it, accusing Israel of “unacceptable discriminatory policies and practices” in how it ensures its border security.
Since Israel has been at peace with Egypt for 36 years, and been at peace with Jordan for 21 years, and since there is no current military activity with Syria or Lebanon, I assume this means border security between Israel and Gaza, and Palestinian Arab-held territories in Judea and Samaria (also known as the west bank).
For your information, and for the information of the Virginia State Bar Association, Palestinian Arabs in both those areas are currently governed under the hamas charter, which specifically calls for Israel to be obliterated (first paragraph, before the introduction), wiped out by jihad (article 12, among others), for the death of all Jews both in and out of Israel (article 7), and, since all of Israel is Islamic land for eternity (article 11 and 12), specifically rejects all peace talks and negotiations as worthless (article 13).
I\’ve provided the link above, and urge you to read it so you can see for yourself. But just in case you don\’t feel like doing so….
From first paragraph: . Surat Al-Imran (III), verses 109-111 Israel will rise and will remain erect until Islam eliminates it as it had eliminated its predecessors.
From article 7: Hamas is one of the links in the Chain of Jihad in the confrontation with the Zionist invasion. It links up with the setting out of the Martyr Izz a-din al-Qassam and his brothers in the Muslim Brotherhood who fought the Holy War in 1936; it further relates to another link of the Palestinian Jihad and the Jihad and efforts of the Muslim Brothers during the 1948 War, and to the Jihad operations of the Muslim Brothers in 1968 and thereafter. But even if the links have become distant from each other, and even if the obstacles erected by those who revolve in the Zionist orbit, aiming at obstructing the road before the Jihad fighters, have rendered the pursuance of Jihad impossible; nevertheless, the Hamas has been looking forward to implement Allah\’s promise whatever time it might take. The prophet, prayer and peace be upon him, said: The time will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews (and kill them); until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him! This will not apply to the Gharqad, which is a Jewish tree (cited by Bukhari and Muslim).
From article 11: The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine has been an Islamic Waqf throughout the generations and until the Day of Resurrection, no one can renounce it or part of it, or abandon it or part of it. No Arab country nor the aggregate of all Arab countries, and no Arab King or President nor all of them in the aggregate, have that right, nor has that right any organization or the aggregate of all organizations, be they Palestinian or Arab, because Palestine is an Islamic Waqf throughout all generations and to the Day of Resurrection.
From article 12: Hamas regards Nationalism (Wataniyya) as part and parcel of the religious faith. Nothing is loftier or deeper in Nationalism than waging Jihad against the enemy and confronting him when he sets foot on the land of the Muslims. And this becomes an individual duty binding on every Muslim man and woman; a woman must go out and fight the enemy even without her husband\’s authorization, and a slave without his masters\’ permission. This [principle] does not exist under any other regime, and it is a truth not to be questioned.
From article 13: [Peace] initiatives, the so-called peaceful solutions, and the international conferences to resolve the Palestinian problem, are all contrary to the beliefs of the Islamic Resistance Movement. For renouncing any part of Palestine means renouncing part of the religion; the nationalism of the Islamic Resistance Movement is part of its faith, the movement educates its members to adhere to its principles and to raise the banner of Allah over their homeland as they fight their Jihad
And that is only the tip of the iceberg. The entire charter takes maybe 10 minutes to read, and it will raise the hair on the back of your neck.
Again: these are precepts that Palestinian Arabs are currently bound by. And these are the folks that the Virginia State Bar Association wants Israel to liberalize its border with.
My advice – and fervent hope – is that individual members of the Virginia State Bar Association tell the overall organization to screw off, form their own travel group, and go to Israel anyway.
If they do, they will enjoy the religious, historic, cultural and social offerings of a country which just had the only free, multi-party elections in the entire middle east; elections in which Arabs and Jews – men and women both – participated equally, and which resulted in a Knesset (Parliament) with 17 Arab members – about 15% of its total.
But, since that is too discriminatory for the Virginia State Bar Association, maybe it can suggest a few alternatives in he Middle East for members to visit instead. I\’m sure they\’ll all be much more open, much more democratic, and have much more diverse governance than that discriminatory hellhole of Israel.