Op-Ed: Obama Praises Jew-Free Indonesia
Yarden FranklYarden Frank lives in Neve Daniel, Gush Etzion and blogs at http://www.crossingtheyarden.com.
“Obama heralds Indonesia’s political, religious diversity in latest outreach to Muslims.
The U.S. President heaped praise upon Indonesia as the model of what an Islamic Country can be. He especially noted the incredible religious diversity of Indonesia when he remarked:
"Across an archipelago that contains some of G-d’s most beautiful creations, islands rising above an ocean named for peace, people choose to worship G-d as they please. Islam flourishes, but so do other faiths."
Are other faiths in Indonesia “flourishing?” According to the latest statistics (from the U.S. government), over 86 percent of Indonesians are Muslim. That makes 209,000,000 practicing Muslims in the country. Let’s see about the other “flourishing religions”:
5.7 percent of Indonesians are Protestant
3 percent are Roman Catholic
1.8 percent are Hindu
.00001 percent are Jews
That’s right, 209,000,000 Muslims and 20 Jews.
If this is Obama’s definition of “flourishing religious diversity,” I am really worried.
Of course it’s not a problem for me. See even if I wanted to, I could never even visit Indonesia let alone live there. That’s because this “model of democracy” does not permit those with Israeli passports from entering the country. Really gives you a good feeling about Obama’s vision of Middle East peace, doesn’t it?
Yet the President does not seem to feel there is a problem with a country that is almost free of Jews. I guess he can praise the country because there is little anti-Semitism there.
There is not a single synagogue that holds services among hundreds of thousands of mosques in Indonesia, not even a Chabad House. That’s saying a lot. There are Chabad Houses in almost every nation in the world. From Kathmandu to Nigeria, there are Chabad Rabbis making cholent and holding Shabbat services. Not in this diverse nation of 242,000,000 people though.
Yet while standing in this virtually Jew-free Muslim nation, Obama choose to chastise Israel for allowing Jews to build homes in Jerusalem. According to the President, this is the real problem in the Middle East.
If he wanted to find a city where different religions really “flourish,” all he would have to do is take a closer look at Jerusalem — where hundreds of mosques, churches, and synagogues provide religious services in the city every day. Walk around the Old City of Jerusalem and you can hear church bells, Jewish public prayer, and the Muslim calls from the minarets. Think you will hear that anywhere in Indonesia? Not a chance.
For my liberal friends, how can you believe in freedom of religion and support a President whose model of “religious diversity” means a mixture of Shite and Sunni Muslims with a handful of Christians and no Jews? If you believe in freedom of religion, how can you believe that the Holy City of Jerusalem should be divided again?
The last time there was Islamic control of the city, all the Jews were driven out, all the synagogues were burned down, and ancient Jewish graves were dug up and used to build latrines.
Was that an example of the religious “diversity” that we should return to?
If not for the liberation of the city in 1967, there would be fewer Jews in Jerusalem than there are in Indonesia.
Sound like a good plan?
While there are those who delude themselves into thinking that Jew-less countries are to be admired and praised, I will stick with Jerusalem. Whatever faith you believe in, thanks to Israeli control, you can practice it freely her