In the glow of fulfilled Bible prophecy, the British General Edmund Allenby entered Jerusalem’s Jaffa Gate in 1917, having defeated the Ottoman Turks. This momentous event paved the way for the establishment of the state of Israel three decades later. No longer were the Moslems in control of the area then known as Palestine.
One of the hallmarks of prophecy, though, is the promise of a “storm before the calm.” If the entrance of Allenby marked the entrance of a certain period of calm in that region, it follows that another cycle of storms would occur before a Final Calm ushered in by the Prince of Peace.
That period of storms is upon us now.
Just this week, a 19 year-old Palestinian man, with ties to Hamas, left his home in east Jerusalem and rammed his car into a group of Israeli soldiers, who were waiting at the very gate — Jaffa — used by Allenby a century before.
This location is in the middle of tourist hotels, and a busy thoroughfare. Last year, in celebration of the 40th year of the reunification of Jerusalem (by Israeli forces during the Six Day War), a giant, blue “40” neon sign was affixed to Jaffa Gate. It was a beautiful sight.
However, we are reminded that before true peace can be achieved in that golden capitol, tough times are upon us. The terrorist act that mowed down more than a dozen soldiers is indicative of the wider hate war conducted against the Jews.
In Genesis, we are told that Ishmael would be a “wild donkey of a man,” and no one would be able to contend with him. This is further proof that the Bible is spot-on, since the Arab culture is dominated by men who cannot or will not control their emotions. The killer at Jaffa Gate allegedly was upset that a young woman had rejected his marriage proposal. I have my doubts. He then decided to release his rage by killing Jews?
Whatever his motivation, he was connected to that bastion of brutality, Hamas. It is difficult for us to imagine that terrorists could lurk near our homes and families. Yet this is what Israel deals with daily.
This comes on the heels of the resignation of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Elevated to the top job, for the moment, is Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni. If she cannot form a government within 45 days, the country will go to early elections and would most likely pit Livni against former political ally Benjamin Netanyahu.
The most important question is not whether Livni or Netanyahu will emerge, but how best to deal with hostile and brutal neighbors. I repeat what I’ve said before: no self-respecting country anywhere in the world — in the history of the world — would tolerate the situation that the Arabs have forced on Israel.
Supposedly, Palestinian “President” Mahmoud Abbas will leave office in January. If media reports can be believed, American and Israeli negotiators believe Abbas — in “his heart” — wants to achieve a real peace deal with Israel.
Personally, I can’t see that Abbas is anything other than an unrepentant terrorist, a founding member with Yasser Arafat of Fatah, an arm of the PLO. It is almost incomprehensible that a man as experienced as Dennis Ross thinks Abbas has genuine intentions toward peace.
Ross, interviewed this week in the Jerusalem Post, has been a long-time peace negotiator for a succession of U.S. presidents. He is smart and appears to be a decent man.
How then can we account for his refusal to recognize the Palestinians for what they are? Every shred of evidence we have tells us that the Palestinians are generally the young man who plowed through a crowd of soldiers and not a well-intentioned diplomat.
Now Israel is being “asked” to recognize the shabby treatment of the Arab refugees, from wars launched by and lost by…Arabs! This kind of political madness assures us that real peace is but a dream. Reality is sometimes very tough to deal with, but not facing reality is much worse.
At Jaffa Gate, you can enter (after having a delicious Middle Eastern meal) the fabled Old City of Jerusalem, with its rough, high walls. You can walk past Christ Church, the oldest Protestant church in the Middle East. You can linger at the trinket tables and shops of Arab merchants, who profess their love for America. You can flag-down one of the numerous cabbies anxious to take you to tourist-starved Bethlehem.
Or, depending on the whims of a deranged Arab bred and raised on hate, you can find yourself flattened under the rampaging car of Palestinian terrorism.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus.