Christian Leader Backs Synagogue Council Stricture on Failure to Support Israel

The Rev. David R. Hunter, deputy general secretary of the National Council of Churches, said here that the Jewish community was “quite right in denouncing Christian Churches for silence during the threats of genocide” against Israel by the Arab states prior to last June’s Six-Day War. He added, however, that he thought the churches were justified in not urging the U. S. Government to do more than it did in defense of Israel because “we and they had to seek a proper balance in the area.”

Rev. Hunter’s remarks were in response of a statement issued yesterday by the Synagogue Council of America, which charged that Christian leaders had been morally lax in their failure to condemn the Arab threats. The Synagogue Council, representing Conservative, Reform and Orthodox rabbinic and lay bodies, warned that such a position “inevitably serves to abet the possibility of mass murder.” It called “on the moral leadership of the Western world to help create an atmosphere within which such threats of war and destruction are no longer tolerated.”

Rabbi Henry Siegman, executive vice-president of the Synagogue Council, noted that its statement reflected “our astonishment and puzzlement at the failure of the churches to speak out clearly when a group of states announced publicly that they were mobilizing to liquidate another nation state.”

NEXT STORY