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December 29, 2015 10:46 am

UK Paper Outdoes Itself; Says Israel Worst Place for Christians on Christmas — Ahead of Syria, Iraq, North Korea and Others

avatar by Adam Levick

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A Catholic procession on Christmas Eve in Bethlehem. Photo: Darko Tepert.

A Catholic procession on Christmas Eve in Bethlehem. Photo: Darko Tepert.

It sometimes seems as if the UK media truly can’t help themselves. Not only do news sites fail to acknowledge the undeniable truth that Israel is the only state in the Middle East that fiercely protects the rights of their Christian population, but they also insist — every holiday season — on repeating false narratives suggesting that Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus Christ, are hampered by “the occupation.”

However, some UK news sites go even further, and suggest that Israel is actually oppressing its Christian population.

One of the more egregious examples of this entirely erroneous claim can be found in the British tabloid Daily Express in a report published on December 26.

Remarkably, Israel is atop their list of worst places to be Christian this Christmas, ahead of Syria, Iraq, North Korea, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Indonesia, Sudan, Yemen, Somalia and Gambia.

To see the absurdity of their decision to include Israel on the list at all, note how the worst persecution they could find “in Israel” is Christians being told (by the Palestinian Authority, let’s remember) to “tone down their Christmas celebrations.” In Syria and Iraq, on the other hand, Christians face “abduction, torture and murder” and ethnic cleansing by ISIS.  While hundreds of thousands of Christians have been forced to flee ISIS-controlled territories in recent years, the indigenous Christian population in Israel has increased 300 percent since its founding.

In fact, quite tellingly, the Daily Express failed to note that the PA had to beef up security in Bethlehem, and “tone down celebrations” — due in part to intelligence reports indicating that Salafists affiliated with ISIS may have planned to launch an attack.

Contrary to the message conveyed in the Daily Express article, Christians are thriving in Israel — a country that represents a beacon of religious freedom in a region awash in intolerance and extremism.

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  • FJO

    The Daily Mail UPDATED the article on Tuesday 29 December.
    Correctly now NO reference to Israel anymore.
    Well done Algemeiner!

  • A Zionist

    The Daily Mail Updated its article on Tuesday 29 December. I cannot see any reference to Israel.

    Well done Algemeiner!

  • I’ve just looked at the report Wednesday 30th Dec 15.00) and Israel was not mentioned. Maybe they removed Israel from their list?

  • The article seems to have been edited and there is no mention of Israel at all. Do you have a copy of the original?

    Also even if Israel was originally first in this list there is nothing to suggest that it was compiled in order of worst-ness. Your headline is misleading and this post should be appropriately updated to acknowledge the changes.

  • VictorMc

    The Daily Express is a Mickey Mouse rag- read my morons.

  • Michael Dar

    Also the car of Bishop from Jerusalem (don’t recall his name)was stoned when arriving in Bethlehem on Christmas for celebration! And not by Jews…

  • marta mikey frid

    Adam, you seem to be trying to understand their kind of logic with yours. You are wasting your time.

  • Markus Elkana Brajtman

    Can anyone expect the truth from any British news paper?
    they have alwys been anti Semitic and anti Israel.
    They know thatthe worse lies, the more the people will hate the Jews and Israel.

    I wonder how many on the editorial staff are Muslim, like we have in South Africa?

  • Markus E Brajtman

    cCan one expect anything better from the Briish press, which has always been anti semitic?

  • It is obvious that Israel gives full freedom to Christians. The UK news sites that are reporting the damnable lie that Israel is the worst place for Christians show that they are puppets for the devil. They speak his voice.

  • steven L

    It is obvious that antisemitism exudes from “every pore of the skin” of the Brits mass media. This confirms that “Nazism” is very healthy in GB.

  • Actually, PLO-occupied Bethlehem is one the worst places for Israeli and Christian tourists to visit on any day — ahead of the United Kingdom, Syria, Iraq, North Korea and others.

  • George Werther

    Interestingly, the linked article in the Daily Express now no longer mentions Israel. The opening paragraph on Israel appears to have been deleted. I wonder if this comes with an apology from the newspaper.

  • Paul Grad

    The Daily Express is well known for yellow journalism, which is another name for Propaganda.

  • Ronen

    Here is the article:
    The intelligent reader can read and compare The Times’ article to what is written in the title of this article. Shame on you!

  • Ronen

    Why you spreading nonsense and hatred. Show us the full article of The Times of London

  • rob schwartzman

    Ironically, when those anti-Semitic newspapers makes such allegations about challenges for Christians in Judea and Samaria, they are supporting the inclusion of those areas in Israel proper, in opposition to their stated support for a two-state solution. They can’t have it both ways: either the land belongs to the state of Israel that supposedly makes it hard for Christians, or the land belongs to an inchoate state of “Palestine” that makes it hard for Christians.

    • Naomi

      Absolutely right, but unfortunately they do not see the irony in this and the vast majority of people are not intelligent enough to be discerning. No doubt, this and other newspapers nowadays just repeat Al Jazeera’s reporting. This channel is a source of great evil and injustice. What is Israel doing to stop its lies? Nothing much. Freedom of press should not mean freedom to lie; by not ostracizing Al Jazeera and letting their journalists operate within Israel we effectively endorse their interpretations and take on events. Enough of complaining – take action now to ban Al Jazeera!

    • Shoshie Borchardt – Migdal

      I can remember many years ago when the Pope made his first visit to Israel, he was visiting Ramallah with the then Terrorist President Arafat – the pope stood up to speak in reply to whatever, and Yasser Arafat had given instructions that the call to prayer should be on the loudest it could be, drowning out the poor Pope. Which was extremely rude and with no finesse. (why am I surprised?)