First of all, I confirm that Zionist’s propaganda is very effective. I believed everything they said, including that bloodthirsty Arabs wanted to finish off all Jews in Palestine and that Zionists were simply defending themselves. However, I simultaneously imagined an inhabited land where just nomadic Bedouins were living and I felt the Jews had a full right to settle this empty land. If I had any hesitations about that, there was another layer of propaganda- well, they were just dirty, primitive Arabs. Jews, the nation of people chosen by God, had many more rights to this land than these barbarians. Does it even matter who inhabited this land before?
The propaganda’s answer, of course, is no, it doesn’t matter. However, it does matter. Even if the previous inhabitants would have been dirty, primitive, and barbarian, this wouldn’t have been justification for invading their land by force. It would have been similar to the history of America’s conquest when natives were decimated and exiled in the name of progress. Well, murder is not a sign of progress.
I didn’t even realize there were Christians, from the 1st century, still living in Palestine. I imagined a desolated land, depopulated by centuries of bloodshed among different nations and religions.
Elias concludes that the real enemy of peace is not Jews or Arabs, but militarism. I don’t exactly agree. There certainly is a place, on this earth, for armies. Now tell the Ukrainians that they didn’t need an army.
I think that this kind of sick militarism, which support regimes, despite any moral consideration, is just the facet of materialism. The words of Elias’ friend describe the modern world very aptly:
“People in the West seem so taken with material things. It’s as if they have nothing in their spirits, so they need to surround themselves with nice comforts.”
If you take materialistic perspective, there are no humans, there are only heaps of proteins walking and breathing. There is no higher purpose, higher good, or higher order. There are just randomly assembled atoms which pretend to be something more.
This is the danger of the modern world. We are not above mayhem. Less than a century ago, the whole world was bathing in blood. The most “enlightened” and “sophisticated” cultures and nations were involved in bloodshed. And the story repeats itself with terrifying regularity: supposedly Christian Rwanda; Bosnia and Serbia in the most “civilized” part of the world – Europe…
Modern countries and societies are just using different tools of mayhem and control like exploitation. Everyone benefits from the labor of 2nd and 3rd world citizens. The armies and guns are not necessary to create unjust and suffering.
Enough rambling. I shall go back to the Blood Brothers. I’m a Christian, I study the Bible everyday, and I enjoyed Elias’ insights into scriptures. They were so authentic and personal. I wish more Christians would read the scriptures and relate them to their lives in a way he did.
He truly is an amazing person. The story of when he closed the whole village in the church and told them the harsh truth about themselves? Surreal. Amazing. I think it was the best illustration of his attitude and his way of dealing with enmity.
Great book, I recommend it wholeheartedly.