In Chronology

I read Tim’s letter “Israel Palestine: The ’no wins’ scenario” in the November edition of Yours several times before deciding to respond. I have no knowledge of Middle East politics or armed conflicts, other than what I’ve learnt over the years from careful study of information in the public domain. It’s important not to oversimplify the issues but also not to over-complicate them. The failure to live together in reasonable harmony has been a grave concern for decades, but it doesn’t help the millions of suffering people now by postulating on the causes. When I’m troubled about all that’s going on around us, I increasing say to myself WWJD – ‘What would Jesus do?’ I’ve done so frequently in recent weeks. Am I wrong in believing that He would call unequivocally for a ceasefire? Isn’t it possible for Christians of all denominations, and leaders of all religions, to loudly proclaim the same, justifying the appeal knowing that huge numbers of innocent people are being killed, family homes are being flattened, and community infrastructures are being destroyed? The sad fact is that peace lovers in this world are increasingly overwhelmed and outnumbered by those who seek domination and power without regard for common decencies and concerns for ordinary citizens. The first few words of the prayer in Tim’s article, assert there is a “God of compassion,…”; am I the only person who struggles to see how that is the case? And please don’t try to persuade me that God answers prayer, but not in the way we wish.

John Lander