Chris Katulka is the host of the radio program, 'The Friends of Israel Today'. He also serves as a speaker, writer and blogger for The Friends of Israel and writes for 'Israel My Glory' magazine. He also leads annual tours to Israel. The Friends of Israel is a worldwide Christian ministry communicating biblical truth about Israel and the Messiah, while fostering solidarity with the Jewish people.
When you consider that after 2,000 years of Jewish people being spread throughout the world, as of May 14, 1948, they had the right to return home to their ancient homeland and defend themselves. This is God fulfilling what he pronounced in the Scriptures.
Chris indicated that after 8 years of not really knowing where the administration of the U.S. stood regarding Israel, it's nice to have a president in Washington that is unashamed to say that we stand with Israel. One way he's showing this is his promise to move the U.S. embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem. In fact, yesterday, Vice President Mike Pence said that President Trump is giving serious consideration to this idea.
Chris noted that the moving of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem is written in congressional law because during the Clinton administration, they set it up so that by 1999, America had to move its embassy to Jerusalem. This was a bi-partisan decision. The problem is that every six months a waiver was signed to prevent this from happening. So all President Trump needs to do is not sign that waiver.
Even amidst Israel's celebration of 69 years of independence, UNESCO was at it again. UNESCO is the cultural agency within the U.N. At the end of 2016 and early in 2017, they were pushing a resolution that removed any cultural identity of the Jewish people to Jewish sites in Jerusalem.
In a recent draft resolution that was put forward, Israel was identified as an occupying power within East Jerusalem where all the Jewish holy sites are. It also says they should stop building and having a presence in Hebron. Hebron is a new site for the U.N. that's causing controversy because there's a small number of Jews in ancient Hebron, a Palestinian community. These Jews want to be close to the ancient tombs of their forefathers.
Last Thursday all 100 U.S. senators signed a letter asking U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres to guarantee that Israel receives fair and equal treatment by the U.N. Chris feels this shows that at the heart of the issue, these senators support Israel.
Back in Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu announced that due to UNESCO's actions, Israel will be deducting one million dollars in funds to the U.N. and the U.S. is also planning to pull funds of their own. Chris believes this shows how the U.S. and Israel are 'done playing games' in the U.N. In the case of the U.S., Chris sees Ambassador Nikki Haley as one of President Trump's greatest assets. She's been very forward about the position the U.S. will take within the U.N. and the no-nonsense approach to America's support for Israel as well as how the world should view them.
Chris is not optimistic right now that a peace deal will be reached. He feels the Palestinians have a long way to go as it pertains to their understanding of peace with Israel and it starts with how they educate their young adults. Their curriculum is anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist, anti-Israel and promotes lies about history. So if they started today to promote peace, it would be a generation before people would be able to say that they are ready to exist alongside a Jewish state.
On the other hand, in Israel, the Israeli Jew, the Israeli Muslim and Israeli Christian learn the value of Shalom in school. This is the value of peace. This entails what it means to promote peace and to exist in peace, even with their enemies.
There's much more to learn including the latest statistics regarding anti-Semitic activity here in the U.S., why there's such anger toward Israel, information on the upcoming anniversary for Jerusalem and numerous comments from Crosstalk callers.