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Dec-24-2013 14:45printcommentsVideo

Iran And The Season of Peace and Goodwill

The pro-Israel senators in this discussion have chosen s path against the vulnerable nuclear peace agreement...

Modern day Bethlehem
Modern day Bethlehem - Wikipedia, also a modern development.

(CHICAGO) - This is the season which celebrates the hope of peace and good will among humankind. The New Testament testifies to this hope in Luke 2:8-20.

    “Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.

    Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

    And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:8-20 New KJV

The key to this passage is the announcement, “You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

The Babe is Jesus, born of Mary, in the town of Bethlehem (modern city shown above). In the time recorded by Luke, the Babe lies in a manger, helpless and vulnerable. When we speak of the Babe we see him as an embodiment of future hope, a promise of what could be.

Today, in the land where Jesus was born, there is another fragile and vulnerable hope for peace. A nuclear peace agreement between Iran and major western powers waits to grow into a mature reality. Unlike the child described by Luke, this peace agreement is not perfect; it was created by political leaders, not by God.

Israel stands in strong opposition to the agreement on the grounds that it believes Iran is moving toward developing a nuclear arms system that Israel feels threatens its security. Israel is known to have at least 200 nuclear warheads; Iran has none.

Israel stands alone in this belief, except for its allies in the United States Senate, 27 of whom are sponsoring the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act, a Senate proposal designed to undermine the Iranian peace efforts by President Obama.


The leaders of this effort are Senators Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) (pictured at left on the right) and Mark Kirk (R-IL). (also at left).Their bill is described by a release from Senator Menendez’ office as “bipartisan legislation proposing prospective sanctions on Iran should the regime violate the interim Joint Plan of Action agreed to in Geneva or should Iran fail to reach a final agreement.”

Co-sponsors of the bill are Senators Menendez, Kirk, Schumer, Graham, Cardin, McCain, Casey, Rubio, Coons, Cornyn, Blumenthal, Ayotte, Begich, Corker, Pryor, Collins, Landrieu, Moran, Gillibrand, Roberts, Warner, Johanns, Hagan, Cruz, Donnelly, Blunt and Booker, an “honor roll” of pro-Israel senators, politicians who do not hesitate to stand against the U.S. President when his policies are opposed by Israel.

The last name on the “honor roll” list is newly elected New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, who entered the Senate this fall with strong pro-Israel credentials. He and his fellow senators who have offered the new sanction bill have begun their Christmas break with the full awareness that in this season of “peace and good will” they have called for a nuclear agreement action already rejected by Iran.

Jay Carney, Obama’s press secretary, told reporters that should the Senate pass the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act, President Obama would veto the bill.

A veto may not be necessary because while the hard line pro-Israel senators from both parties are standing against the President’s sanctions agreement, he has strong Senate support.  Senate Democratic committee chairs have sent Obama a letter of support.

In their letter they indicate that they are opposed to imposing new restrictions on Iran. They also ask the President to inform them “before any attempt is made to pass sanctions legislation.”

This is procedural protection from senators who often try to pass legislation by a unanimous consent vote at the end of long work periods or at the end of the year.

The letter that supports the current Obama-Kerry negotiated agreement is signed by Senate Banking Chairman Tim Johnson of South Dakota, Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein of California, Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin of Michigan, Appropriations Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski of Maryland, Environment and Public Workers Chairwoman Barbara Boxer of California, Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, Homeland Security and Government Affairs Chairman Tom Carper of Delaware, Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Energy Chairman Ron Wyden of Oregon and Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Chairman Tom Harkin of Iowa.

During a recent press conference, President Obama spoke to his support for the original negotiated agreement:

The pro-Israel senators in this discussion have chosen s path against the vulnerable nuclear peace agreement, thereby working to kill the agreement.  They may think they are the Wise Men in this discussion, but given Israel’s increasing isolation on the world stage, alongside its decreasing ability to stave off international economic boycotts, it would appear their wisdom is flawed.

They may soon find that they have listened to the wrong voices when they rejected the Obama-Kerry nuclear agreement.

Please visit James Wall's Website, Wall Writings


Journalism was Jim Wall’s undergraduate college major at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. He has earned two MA degrees, one from Emory, and one from the University of Chicago, both in religion. An ordained United Methodist clergy person; he and his wife, Mary Eleanor, are the parents of three sons, and the grandparents of four grandchildren. They live in Elmhurst, Illinois.

Jim served for two years on active duty in the US Air Force, and three additional years in the USAF (inactive) reserve. While serving with the Alaskan Command, he reached the rank of first lieutenant. He has worked as a sports writer for both the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, was editor of the United Methodist magazine, Christian Advocate for ten years, and editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine for 27 years, starting in 1972. Time magazine wrote about the new editor, who arrived at the Christian Century determined to turn the magazine into a hard-hitting news publication. The inspiration for Wall Writings comes from that mindset and from many other sources that have influenced Jim’s writings over the years, including politics, cinema, media, American culture, and the political struggles in the Middle East. Jim has made more than 20 trips to that region as a journalist, during which he covered such events as Anwar Sadat’s 1977 trip to Jerusalem, and the 2006 Palestinian legislative election. He has interviewed, and written about, journalists, religious leaders, political leaders and private citizens in the region. You can write to Jim Wall at Visit Jim's Website: Wall Writings


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Change Iran Now December 27, 2013 5:32 pm (Pacific time)

It is beyond comprehension that the US is prepared to relax sanctions on this terrorist nation. Just this Thursday Camp Liberty was the target of a barrage of dozens of missiles, which killed three pro-democracy residents and left more than 50 wounded. Thursday attack was the fourth such missile assault on Camp Liberty this year. A total of 13 residents have been killed and more than 220 wounded in attacks in February, April, June and December this year. This Missile Attack on Camp Liberty was Act of Favor-Trading Between Iraqi Prime Minister and Iran Regime's Supreme Leader. The attack reflects a desperate attempt by the Iranian regime's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to confront the crisis of overthrow facing the vulnerable theocracy. Khamenei is trying to salvage the regime through the massacre of the pro-democracy members. Without pressure from the negotiating powers to improve the human rights situation, the Iranian government is likely to continue its current record terror in the region

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