Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Hamas Lose support for just Palestinian cause by cruel executions

The continuing occupation of Palestine by a cruel and unjust occupying Israel, the settler violence against Palestinians, the unjust laws and protocols that make Palestinian lives a matter of daily intimidation and harassment, the Israeli massacre in Gaza, - all of these have raised cries of protest from concerned people all over the world.

This cry of protest has no force of arms or physical power to change what is happening but is a human cry against injustice.  Its force is a moral one.  But for this it should not be disregarded.  From such moral outrage there often comes revolution and reform.  Without such moral outrage the revolution or reform, if it happens at all, will be either pathetically weak or itself unjust.

The news last week of three executions by the Gaza authorities, Hamas, makes sad reading for supporters of Palestinian rights.

Hamas who were elected to rule over all of Palestine have in effect been confined, by Israeli and international machinations to rule only over the Gaza peninsula - another injustice.

Hamas rule in Gaza has been under scrutiny by all supporters of Palestinian rights.  The fact that they have engaged in eleven executions since taking power there is a massive disappointment  for human rights supporters of Palestinians.

There is a particular sadness and outrage  about the three recent hangings - the names of the victims have not been revealed even in death.

No chance here of a Troy Davis style petition revealing the facts of the cases and trials before three human lives were taken.

No chance of the sad human face of the inhuman capital punishment being shown to the world. No chance for petitioners to ask for a reprieve.  No chance for humanity to enter the equation.

I appeal to Hamas to stop executions and abolish the death penalty.

Friday, 6 April 2012

The Pope is Wrong

Pope Benedict has again decided that women priests are not allowed in the Roman Catholic Church, that male priests must not marry (except for those who came en masse or separately from other religions because of decisions in their own churches with which they disagreed). 

The Pope is patently wrong on both counts. It is an injustice to 50% of Roman Catholics to exclude them from priesthood, the highest spiritual rank, power  and honour in the Church's gift.  It is also an injustice to demand compulsory celibacy from men on whom this same spiritual rank and power is conferred.  It is folly to make these two decisions in the name of the founder of Christianity.

The reasons given were usually about the fact that all the apostles were male, not female.  No mention that some of them were married, including the first Pope, Pope Peter.  Also "there were no women at the last supper".  Really?  The men did all the washing up?

But Benedict's reasons have more to do with obedience to him. 

Pope John Paul II (not to be confused with the smiling Pope John Paul I who was probably murdered in the Vatican) and Pope Benedict have stood like tigers against the ministry of women or relaxing the law of compulsory clerical celibacy.

They have not been as fiercely adamant about cleaning up the corruption that has pervaded the Vatican.