I am a Gentile South African. My wife is a Gentile Czech. Our five children are Jerusalem-born, but because they are Gentile they are half South African, half Czech. We are a Christian family; living our lives according to the teachings of that great Jewish Rabbi, Jesus of Nazareth.
And we wear orange [the color of resistance to the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza].
Our minivan has orange ribbons flying off every place we can tie them to. As often as I can get it washed and dried, I wear my orange t-shirt with the cry on its back admonishing that "Jews do not expel Jews."
"You're right," a religious Israeli woman said to me in Hebrew, gesticulating at my shirt in a Jerusalem pharmacy yesterday. "Yes I am," I said. "And I'm not a Jew. I am a Christian. It breaks my heart to see what you are doing to each other. It hurts to see where Israel is heading."
"I live in Samaria," she told me. "Next it will be us. It's awful. Awful!" "Yes it is." I said. "But." As if on queue, we both point our fingers at the sky. "There is a God in heaven," we finished together. We share a faith in the same God, and His sovereignty.
Other Israelis, understandably, take less kindly to our "interfering" in their affairs. A professional man I have known for years asked me mockingly last week whether I was not going down to Ofakim, site of an anti-Disengagement gathering. Why are you wearing orange? People want to know.
I answer simply: "We oppose the destruction of the Jewish state and the people of Israel."
For me, a Christian who knows something of the biblical and contemporary history of the nation of Israel, there are no questions in my mind, no reservations, and no doubts. The Disengagement Plan is wrong. It is unrighteous. It is unjust. It is foolish. It is exceedingly dangerous. And it is wrong.
"Disengagement" spells disaster for the Jews. The plan will not pave the way towards peace. It only marks the path toward unprecedented levels of terrorism, hatred, and more Israeli deaths. Already the exacted toll has been painfully high, taking internecine strife and division to unprecedented levels. If carried out, it will pose an existential threat to the state.
Syndicated U.S. columnist and long-time friend of Israel, Cal Thomas, believes its already too late. "Israel's slow disappearance from the region cannot now be reversed," he wrote darkly on August 4. "Assurances, agreements, promises and documents will not be able to bring her back.
Increasingly concerned Israelis in Gaza have also drawn comparisons between aspects of the implementation of the Holocaust and their looming forced removal at the hands of the Sharon government.
In terms of its purpose and how close it came to succeeding, the Nazi genocide of the Jews stands on its own. It is an incomparably evil event in the annals of humankind and will always be regarded as such.
But while we must be careful when it comes to contrasting events taking place in Israel since 1948 to those that unfolded in the decade and a half before, we should also not be paralyzed by our sense of awe at the uniqueness of the Holocaust so that we cannot see where lines do exist and can be drawn.