The current discussion on divestment as it relates to the Middle East casts a new light on persistent themes in Christian-Jewish relations. We are on relatively new ground when we try to analyze the many peaceful options for pressing Israel to end the occupation - including constructive engagement, divestment, criticizing the positions taken by Jews and Israelis over the 38-year long occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, or querying the policies of the State of Israel.
I believe that most Christians are seeking a moral response to the occupation, looking for constructive engagement to end the statelessness of Palestinians by ensuring safety for both Israelis and Palestinians, most pragmatically by a two-state solution.
Many liberal and progressive Christians are stung by the lack of basic trust expressed by the organized Jewish community toward Presbyterians and other religious groups seeking a moral response to the occupation (see "Should Churches Divest?" page 22). Jewish organizations and many rank-and-file Jews assume that the mantle of the primary victimhood remains with and belongs to Jews/Israelis. There is very little comprehension of the Palestinians - their plight or their rights. Jews need to consider: Who will speak up on behalf of Christian Palestinians if not their co-religionists around the world? Who will speak up for Muslim Palestinians?