The Nerve Touched and Not Released
I was hoping to move on from the general spat centering around some comments that Instapundit made regarding Vatican anti-Semitism. However, a couple hours ago, I noticed that he'd upped the ante, as it were, by linking to a post by Meryl Yourish. As one whose main objection was that Mr. Reynolds referred to Vatican behavior "lately" with only a photo from last April for justification, citing Yourish's evidence to be charitable moves the discussion to a new level at which any sort of accord becomes less likely.
Most of Yourish's points can be addressed, in part, by reading the links that she provides. Overall, however, not one of the instances is from after the Church of the Nativity debacle. Furthermore, many of the controversies, such as apologies, canonizations, and crosses at Auschwitz, seem to me inextricably submerged in an environment of misunderstandings and mutual suspicion that is to be expected after centuries of discord. Indeed, Yourish writes:
This is the point where she and I agree and then disagree. Mr. Reynolds didn't call "those actions anti-Semitic." He specifically referred to recent actions, and none of Yourish's points qualify. Her only point addressing current events is the Vatican's "[i]ssuing statement after statement in support of the Palestinians while also issuing statements against Israeli." This, however, overlooks statements condemning terrorism and suicide bombing specifically, which can be found even among the links that she provides.
If there is a story of what's happened "lately" between the Vatican, Israel, and Jews, it is positive and indicative of further progress. For this reason, I scrapped a point-by-point response to Yourish that I'd spent a few hours putting together. I don't think it is worth arguing over; in fact, I think it counterproductive and recalcitrant. It is much better, in my opinion, to look at recent happenings. Here's one from early December, when the Pope met with Israeli President Moshe Katsav:
Condemning anti-Semitism and saying "God bless Israel" are not indicative of hatred for Jews. But any Catholic knows that part of reconciliation is admission of sins, and toward that end, in February, the Vatican released its archives from the controversial period leading up to World War II. Certainly, the picture that emerges will be good and bad, from the Catholic perspective, but at least it may be addressed:
Lastly, today there was an historical meeting that resulted in joint condemnation of terrorism:
Of Yourish's links, Mr. Reynolds says, "I thought that most people in the blogosphere knew all this stuff, but maybe not." Well, since nobody cited these more recent events, I guess even fewer knew about them.
Posted by Justin Katz @ 12:51 AM EST