King's Evangelical Divinity School

24 January 2011

Remembering Christians in Gaza

The Egyptian authorities investigating the recent bombing of a Christian church in Alexandria, which killed 21 worshippers, have stated the attack was carried out by a Palestinian Islamist group working out of Gaza. Details of the story can be found in the New York Times (Google it and you'll also find it reported from different angles cross various news outlets). Is it true? Quite possibly. Several observers suggest Egypt is simply trying to ease sectarian conflict in the wake of the attack, while the group has denied the story. But of some things we can be quite sure. For example, the Gaza-based group is definitely Islamist in nature, with links to the extremist Abu Qatada, currently imprisoned in the UK. The group belongs to the Dagmoush clan (a Hamas rival in Gaza), which operated in true mafia style. They held the BBC reporter Alan Johnson and participated in the kidnap of the Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit. Meanwhile, the group has been linked with the attack on a Christian bookstore in Gaza. More details about the clan be found in a Spiegel report here and an early Guardian analysis here.

7 January 2011

Press report on our recent Israel and the Church conference

Just came across this piece published by Christian Today reporting on our recent Israel and the Church: A Common Heritage and Uncertain Future conference, jointly organised by Chosen People Ministries/ Chosen People (UK) and King's Evangelical Divinity School and held at London School of Theology in October. Further details of the conference, including how to obtain recordings and videos, can be found here. A detailed conference report is due imminently, which will be published on both the King's and Chosen People sites. Meanwhile organisers are currently negotiating publication of both the conference's and additionally related, solicited papers in several volumes.

5 January 2011

Bravo BBC!

This week I watched a repeat of the BBC's six part documentary Auschwitz: The Nazis and the 'Final Solution' on one of the repeat entertainment channels on Sky. Originally broadcast in 2005, the series traces the establishment and history of the Auschwitz death camp using various documentary sources and eyewitness accounts of the atrocities committed there. The result is a series which is both compulsive and repulsive, as one seeks to grapple with the concept of how humans could plan the systematic murder of millions of fellow humans in that manner, and what went through their minds as they engaged in the most unspeakable acts of cruelty and horror. The problem is, we forget so easily, which is why the BBC is to be commended for making a quality documentary like this.

4 January 2011

From One Leftist Paper to Another

Happy New Year to you all! I trust you enjoyed the opportunity to relax, spend time with family and charge your batteries in preparation for yet another (hectic) year.

A report in today's online Haaretz, a left-leaning Israeli newspaper, reminds us how the close of an old and start of a new year marks that season of surveys and summaries of the outgoing year. Thus Haaretz reports on how the Guardian, a UK newspaper also on the political left, analysed its tags for 2010 to discover Israel ranks fifth in the newspaper's stories on foreign countries, leading the Guardian to ponder if it is "disproportionately preoccupied" with Israel. Surely not!