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Posts tagged ‘Holy Land’

Jonathan Feldstein: Jesus Was a Palestinian? Really?.

The Palestinian Authority has attempted to spread the deceit that Jesus was a Palestinian. (The Jesus Film)

Just in time for Christmas, the world was treated this week to the latest offense from the “Palestinians” with the declaration by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas that Jesus was a “Palestinian.” Abbas’ offensive Christmas greeting called Jesus “a Palestinian messenger who would become a guiding light for millions around the world,” and suggested Israel was to blame for the exodus of Christians from the Holy Land.

With a reference to Luke 23:34, Israel’s foreign ministry spokesman noted, “He should have read the gospel before uttering such offensive nonsense, but we will forgive him because he doesn’t know what he’s doing,” adding that Abbas’ remarks are an “outrageous rewriting of Christian history.”

I’m no theologian and, as an Orthodox Jew, certainly no expert in Christianity or the gospel. However, I know a dangerous and offensive ambush on both Judaism and Christianity when I see it, and when those called “Palestinians” today erase and rewrite whole sections of Scripture that are the foundation of Judaism and Christianity, it must be called for what it is: a dangerous lie that is a hybrid between Palestinian nationalism and the ultimate Islamic replacement theology.

There are many, many examples of this, but one of the best is when “Palestinians” say (often) that there was never a temple on the Temple Mount, the focal point of biblical Jerusalem whose central architectural landmark was destroyed, rebuilt, destroyed again in the year 70 and replaced by two mosques hundreds of years later, as if to spread the dominance of Islam over Jerusalem as an Islamic city, which is never even mentioned in the Quran. Of course, any Jew or Christian knows that the Temple was a reality, and the denial of its very existence also denies those of us who share so much in common—literally, the foundation of our respective faiths.

This is one egregious example, but one doesn’t have to look to hard to find plenty more, the same way one doesn’t have to dig too deep in Jerusalem to find archeological remains, evidence of the reality we know from the Bible.

Of course, denying the underpinnings of Judaism and Christianity are no problem in “Palestinian” society, but stating the inconvenient truth that Islam is the main threat to both, particularly to Christians living among Muslims and the primary cause for the Christian exodus, would be a PC no-no. For instance, Abbas also mentioned Palestinians “trapped under siege” in Gaza, “who are prevented from worshipping in Bethlehem,” conveniently overlooking that it’s his good friends from Hamas who control Gaza and who make life for Christians there a living hell. The same is true among Christians in Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Iran, and the list goes on.

Why do I care? Why write this? It’s simple. Israel is the birthplace of both Judaism and Christianity. Jews and Christians have a common bond that’s based biblically and has never been more important. True, thousands of years of history from Jesus’ time until the last century have displayed a less enlightened, less kind and certainly not a gentle approach by what’s loosely referred to as “the church” to Jewish neighbors and Judaism as a whole.

But the awakening in the last century of Christians who understand the biblical injunction to bless Israel and who know that Israel’s rebirth is fulfillment of prophesy, period, needs to be met with open arms by Jews and reciprocated. So when a Palestinian leader refers to Jesus as a Palestinian, it’s an affront to the foundation of Christianity, making one want to imagine Jesus dying not on a Roman cross but with a suicide belt packed with explosives at a 2,000-year-old Jerusalem café, and must be challenged at every turn.

Why refer to “Palestinians” in quotes? The name Palestine in modern use initiated with the League of Nations and the British. Native residents of what’s Israel today were referred to as “Palestinian,” but the term was used by the British to refer to Jews. My father, for instance, born in Haifa, was a “Palestinian.” Only decades after Israeli independence when Jews (and what’s grown into about 1.5 million Arabs) became Israeli, did the term Palestinian morph to refer to Arabs.

There is ample historical documentation to prove that while there were indigenous Arabs in Israel as well, Arab migration to Israel exploded as the land flourished with Jews returning from exile and corresponding economic opportunities, drawing many whose origins are still unmistakable by their names as being from Egypt or Syria and that are still evident today. But while Jews returned en mass, fulfilling prophesy, there was always an unbreakable and majority of Jews in the land.

So while there is legitimate evidence to show that many of today’s “Palestinians” are, in fact, not indigenous to Israel and that “Palestinian” nationalism was born more as a way to delegitimize and destroy Israel, I, for one, understand that there is a reality on the ground that must be dealt with today, and I am all for coexistence and peace, if the latter is even possible.

However, by claiming Jesus was a “Palestinian,” since everyone knows he was a Jew, what they have done is debunked the myth of a “Palestinian” people as the term is abused today. The latest “Palestinian” lie underscores the reality that if Jesus were a “Palestinian,” it is the indigenous Jews who have the rightful claim to Israel, going back to those lived in here in Jesus’ time, with its center in Jerusalem established by the Jewish King David 3,000 years ago, in the land God promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob long before that, and documented in the Bible.

But those who read and understand Scripture—and don’t try to erase and rewrite it—knew that already.



Jonathan Feldstein is the director of Heart to Heart, a unique virtual blood donation program to bless Israel and save lives in Israel. Born and educated in the U.S., Feldstein emigrated to Israel in 2004. He is married and the father of six. Throughout his life and career, he has been blessed by the calling to fellowship with Christian supporters of Israel and shares experiences of living as an Orthodox Jew in Israel. He writes a column for Charisma’s Standing With Israel. You can contact Jonathan

Crowds Throng Bethlehem for Christmas Eve Celebrations.

BETHLEHEM, West Bank — Thousands of Christian pilgrims from around the world packed the West Bank town of Bethlehem for Christmas Eve celebrations Tuesday, bringing warm holiday cheer to the biblical birthplace of Jesus on a cool, clear night.

The heavy turnout, its highest in years, helped lift spirits in Bethlehem as leaders expressed hope that the coming year would finally bring the Palestinians an independent state of their own.

“The message of Christmas is a message of peace, love and brotherhood. We have to be brothers with each other,” said Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal, the top Roman Catholic cleric in the Holy Land, as he arrived in town.

Excited tourists milled about the town’s Manger Square, stopping in restaurants and souvenir shops and admiring a large, illuminated Christmas Tree. Marching bands and scout troops performed for the visitors in the streets, and on a stage next to the tree.

Will Green of New York City, along with his wife, Debbie, and their 2-year-old daughter Daphne were among the crowds of people who greeted Twal’s motorcade as he entered town from nearby Jerusalem.

Green said that being in Bethlehem for Christmas was a dream come true. “All the stories that we grew up with. It’s here. It’s part of our life. We heard them in the family, school and church. This is the birthplace,” he said.

Green slowly pushed a stroller and his wife held their daughter as they followed a crowd toward the Church of the Nativity, built on the site where Christians believe Jesus was born.

Palestinian dignitaries greeted Twal at the entrance of Bethlehem. His motorcade crawled through the town’s narrow streets as he stopped to shake hands and greet the throngs of visitors. It took him nearly 90 minutes to make the short trip to the Church of the Nativity compound, where he celebrated Midnight Massachusetts.

Hundreds of people packed the compound for the service. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, and Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh were among the dignitaries in attendance.

In his homily, Twal addressed Abbas, telling the president he prays for a “just and equitable solution” for the Palestinians. Twal, himself a Palestinian, also expressed sympathy for the plight of the Palestinians, particularly families with relatives imprisoned by Israel or those who have suffered as a result of the conflict with Israel.

“The world is living through a long night of wars, destruction, fear, hate, racism and, at the present time, cold and snow,” he said. Lamenting strife in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, he also urged worshippers “not to forget our own problems here: the prisoners and their families who hope for their release, the poor who have lost their land and their homes demolished, families waiting to be reunited, those out of work and all who suffer from the economic crisis.”

Yet Twal called on people not to despair. “We are invited to be optimistic and to renew our faith that this land, home of the three monotheistic religions, will one day become a haven of peace for all people,” he said.

“Oh Holy Child, God of goodness and mercy, look with kindness on the Holy Land and on our people who live in Palestine, in Israel, in Jordan and all the Middle East. Grant them the gift of reconciliation so that they may all be brothers — sons of one God,” he said.

The number of visitors to Bethlehem remained below the record levels of the late 1990s, when Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts were at their height.

Following a Palestinian uprising that began in 2000, the numbers plunged. But thanks to a period of relative calm, they have been steadily climbing in recent years — and got an extra push this year thanks to the resumption of peace talks.

“Our message is a message of justice and peace,” said Palestinian Tourism Minister Rula Maayah. “We Palestinians are seeking peace and we deserve to have peace and our children deserve to live in peace.”

Maayah said the number of visitors to Bethlehem was expected to jump by about 14 percent from last year.

A spokesman said 10,000 foreign visitors had entered town by the early evening, slightly higher than last year. Israel’s Tourism Ministry, which coordinates the visits with the Palestinians, said the number could reach 25,000 during the holiday season.

Despite the Christmas cheer, Mideast politics loomed in the background. In order to enter Bethlehem, Twal’s motorcade had to cross through the hulking concrete separation barrier that Israel built during the uprising.

Israel says the barrier is needed to keep attackers from entering nearby Jerusalem, but Palestinians say the structure has stifled the town and stolen their land.

Maayah said that the barrier, along with nearby Israeli settlements and Israeli control of archaeological sites in the West Bank, has made it difficult to develop the tourism sector.

In addition, few Palestinians seem to think that the current round of peace talks will bear fruit. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry relaunched the talks last summer, but there have been no signs of progress.

Israel carried out a series of airstrikes and other attacks Tuesday in the Gaza Strip in retaliation for the deadly shooting of an Israeli civilian who had been working along the border. The fighting, which left a 3-year-old Palestinian girl dead, was the heaviest in more than a year.

Christmas also serves as a reminder of the dwindling numbers of Christians who live in the Holy Land. Over the decades, tens of thousands of Christians have left, fleeing violence or in search of better opportunities overseas. Christians now make up a tiny percentage of the population.

Bethlehem is now only one-third Christian, with most residents Muslim. In an annual gesture, Israel permitted some 500 members of Gaza’s small Christian community to leave the Hamas-ruled territory and cross through Israel to attend the celebrations in Bethlehem.

But for one night at least, residents and visitors brushed aside their troubles to celebrate the holiday.

Nick Parker, a student from Georgia Tech University, said he was enjoying the food and making friends with local residents and fellow travelers.

“It’s special to be here where Jesus was born,” he said. “It’s a special opportunity, once in a lifetime.”

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Pope Francis on Christmas Eve Notes Jesus’ Humble Start.

Image: Pope Francis on Christmas Eve Notes Jesus' Humble Start

Pope Francis lauded Jesus’ humble beginning as a poor and vulnerable baby as he celebrated his first Christmas Eve Mass as pontiff Tuesday in St. Peter’s Basilica.

“You are immense, and you made yourself small; you are rich, and you made yourself poor; you are all-powerful, and you made yourself vulnerable,” Francis said of Jesus as he delivered his homily in the basilica, packed with faithful.

Francis has dedicated much of his nine-month-old papacy to drawing attention to the plight of the poor, of children, and of other vulnerable members of society.

He noted that the first to receive news of Jesus’ birth were shepherds, who in society were considered “among the last, the outcast.”

Francis, who turned 77 a week ago, walked briskly up the main aisle of the basilica for the ceremony, which began Tuesday 2 ½ hours before midnight. Keeping with the theme of humility he has set for his new papacy, Francis carried the statue instead of an aide, and kissed a knee of the figure of the newly born Jesus.

The Argentine-born pope has also encouraged his flock to be a joyful church, and he called Jesus “the Light Who brightens the darkness.”

In the world’s history and our own personal history, Francis said, “there are both bright and dark moments, lights and shadows. ” He added that “if our heart is closed, if we are dominated by pride, deceit, self-seeking, then darkness falls within us and around us.”

Francis has applied this same vision to the heart of the Vatican‘s own workings, saying in past remarks that there is no place for personal ambition in the clerical hierarchy. Rather, he has insisted, the Catholic Church must be one of service to those in need.

Earlier, in the Holy Land, thousands of Christian pilgrims from around the world packed the West Bank town of Bethlehem for Christmas Eve celebrations, bringing warm holiday cheer to the biblical birthplace of Jesus on a cool, clear night.

The heavy turnout, its highest in years, helped lift spirits in Bethlehem as leaders expressed hope that the coming year would finally bring the Palestinians an independent state of their own.

“The message of Christmas is a message of peace, love, and brotherhood. We have to be brothers with each other,” Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal, the top Roman Catholic cleric in the Holy Land, said as he arrived in Bethlehem.

At the Vatican, the basilica ceremony is the pope’s only public Mass for Christmas. On Wednesday, Christmas Day, Francis will deliver his Christmas message, meant for the world, from the basilica’s central balcony overlooking St. Peter’s Square.
© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Pope Responds to Limbaugh, Conservatives: ‘Marxism is Wrong’.

Image: Pope Responds to Limbaugh, Conservatives: 'Marxism is Wrong'

By Elliot Jager

Pope Francis responded to criticism Sunday from Rush Limbaugh and other American conservatives that his apostolic proclamation “Evangelii Gaudium,” or the “Joy of the Gospel,” is “pure Marxism” by telling an Italian newspaper that “Marxist ideology is wrong.”

In a pre-Christmas interview, the pope said, however, that the economic stance he was espousing has long been part of the “social Doctrine of the Church.”

The Evangelii Gaudium declaration asks, “How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?

“How can we continue to stand by when food is thrown away while people are starving?”

It goes on to say, “Today, everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed upon the powerless. As a consequence, masses of people find themselves excluded and marginalized: without possibilities, without any means of escape.”

As for being labeled a Marxist, the pope said he had “met many Marxists in my life who are good people, so I don’t feel offended,”  CNN reported.

The proclamation issued in November chastises “the idolatry of money and the dictatorship of an impersonal economy lacking a truly human purpose.”

It says there is no evidence that “trickle-down theories” about economic growth tied to a free market “will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world.”

The proclamation exhorts an “ethical approach” to economics that favors human beings over conspicuous consumption, “unbridled consumerism” and inequality.

Limbaugh had characterized Evangelii Gaudium as “just pure Marxism coming out of the mouth of the pope.”

The conservative talk show host said the pope was practically dictating how financial markets should operate.

“He says that the global economy needs government control.”

In his response to the critics, Francis said he was not speaking “as a technician but according to the social doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church, and this does not mean being Marxist”. He said he was just trying to present a “snapshot of what is happening” in the world today.In another document last week, Francis said huge salaries and bonuses were symptoms of an economy based on greed and called again for nations to narrow the wealth gap.

Conservatives in the 1.2 billion member Church have expressed concern and disappointment about some of the pope’s pronouncements, such as when he said he was not in a position to judge homosexuals who are people of good will sincerely seeking God.

Asked about speculation that a woman could be among the new cardinals he will appoint early next year, he said: “I don’t know where that idea comes from. Women in the Church should be valued, not ‘clericalized’.”

In other parts of the interview, Francis also said a committee of eight cardinals from around the world who are advising him on changes to the Vatican structure would make its first formal recommendations to him in February but that reform would be a “lengthy task”.

He said that reform of the Vatican’s sometimes murky finances was “on the right path” and expressed satisfaction that last week a Council of Europe committee called Moneyval gave the Vatican a good evaluation of its efforts to abide by international financial standards.

He said he had not yet decided what to do about the Vatican bank, which has been touched by scandals over the decades. In the past he has not ruled out closing it.

Francis said he was “getting ready” to go to the Holy Land next year to mark the 50th anniversary of when Pope Paul VI became the first pope in modern times to visit there.

He has been invited by both Israel and the Palestinian Authority to make a visit, which is expected to take place in May or June.

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Christmas every day…

By Pastor Bobby Schuller

“Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” 
1 John 2:6

As I hear songs of the season playing on my radio and see Christmas lights going up on my neighbor’s homes, I remember a special Christmas Eve that I shared with Hour of Power viewers in the Holy Land in 1999. I was 18 years old. There were 500 people, Hour of Power viewers from all over the world all sitting on a hill above Bethlehem. It was nighttime in Shepherd’s Field, and the city of Bethlehem below was sparkling. As we sang beloved Christmas songs, we held these little lamps, and it was amazing. I stood up front with my grandpa. It was lightly raining, but when the service started, the rain ended. It was as if God stopped the rain and it was just beautiful.

Bethlehem was so beautiful and nice back then, but it doesn’t exist like that anymore. I went back to Bethlehem a number of years later and it had a wall around it now that Hamas was in control. All sorts of awful things have happened there since.

I remember when I went back to Bethlehem for a fourth time, I spoke to a man who said, “Bethlehem used to be mostly Christian, about 90%. Now, most of the Christians have left, fleeing for their lives.” This is still fresh in my mind because of everything that’s happening in Israel, even today. We’re praying for the peace of Israel and Palestine. And this is what I want you to walk away with:

The man said, “In Bethlehem, it’s Christmas every day. Not because Bethlehem is Christmas town, but because we believe that Jesus is born in the hearts of Christians in every moment. The ones of us that are left, the Christians that are still here support each other and love each other. I know that I see Jesus in my kids, I see Jesus in my neighbor, I see Jesus in my parents. Because of that, it gives me the strength to endure anything. I will never leave Bethlehem because I believe that Jesus is here with me in the physical bodies of other believers. That means that Christmas happens every day right here.” Christmas is every day.

Prayer: Dear Lord, I want to live every day as if it were Christmas. Each day I will worship you and your sacrifice through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Reflection: How could you celebrate Christmas, not just through this Christmas season, but every day?

Netanyahu Heads to Rome for First Talks With Pope.

JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu left for Rome on Sunday for a two-day official visit during which he will meet Pope Francis for the first time.

The Israeli leader took off around midday accompanied by six of his ministers, including his newly reappointed Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, public radio said.

During the visit, Netanyahu would also meet with his Italian counterpart Enrico Letta, and hold a joint session with the Italian Cabinet, it said.

On Monday, he will be granted his first audience with Pope Francis, who took over as the worldwide head of the Catholic Church in March.

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Six weeks ago, Netanyahu’s office had said he would meet the Pope during a visit to Rome in late October, but the meeting never happened — with a diplomatic source telling AFP it would not happen because it had not been coordinated in advance with the Vatican.

When the two meet on Monday, they are likely to discuss the Iranian nuclear issue and the ongoing peace talks with the Palestinians.

And they are also likely to discuss the Pope’s planned visit to the Holy Land early next year.

Pope Francis has already been invited to visit the Christian holy sites by Israeli President Shimon Peres in April, and by Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas, who met him on October 17.

Israeli sources say the visit is likely to take place before Peres ends his term as president in July. Although no date has been made official, sources on both sides say it is likely to take place on May 25-26.

The papal visit will reportedly begin in Jordan, a senior Vatican official said on Saturday, according to Jordanian state news agency Petra.

“The Pope’s visit to the Holy Land will begin in Jordan,” Vatican foreign affairs official Dominique Mamberti said in Amman after meeting Jordan’s Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh.

Israel and the Holy See first established diplomatic relations in 1993.

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© AFP 2013

Jonathan’s Fate In Stella’s Hands By Sonala Olumhense.



Sonala Olumhense

President Goodluck Jonathan slipped out of town last week, smart man.   With Abuja increasingly hotter over the Stella Oduah corruption allegations, his spokesman issued a statement disclosing that the Nigeria leader was heading for Israel.

The State House statement was a curiously-worded statement, outstanding for an admixture of wordiness and wordlessness.

For instance, rather than say Jonathan would tour the Holy Land or visit Holy Sites or undertake a holy pilgrimage, as Christians usually say, the statement said he would “undertake a tour of some locations in Israel which are revered by Christians because of their association with the earthly mission of Jesus Christ.”

But Jonathan was also going to be doing a spot of work, meeting with Israeli leaders, the presidency said.

“Talks between President Jonathan’s delegation and Israeli government officials are expected to focus on the enhancement of bilateral relations between Nigeria and Israel in areas including trade, economic development, infrastructure, transportation, agriculture, communications, culture, education and tourism.”

If those were the areas slated for discussion, it was curious that the official delegation included Rtd. Col. Sambo Dasuki, the National Security Adviser.  The statement suggested Nigeria would not be discussing security or terrorism with the Israelis.  Perhaps Dasuki would simply tour the Christian sites with Mr. Jonathan and sample the luxuries of presidential travel.

The presidency took care to list members of Mr. Jonathan’s delegation, but it disingenuously omitted Mrs. Oduah.  The embattled Minister was sent to Tel Aviv ahead of the Nigeria leader perhaps because someone felt Nigerians would be offended if she were to be seen entering the presidential jet with the President.

But she was part of the delegation, present in Israel to sign a bilateral air agreement on behalf of Nigeria that some other official could have signed.  I have seen the Jonathan presidency do some pretty filthy things, but smuggling Mrs. Oduah into Israel at the height of the corruption uproar against her at a time she was supposed to be facing an investigating panel is one of the dirtiest.

There was more.  The State House statement also said, almost in a whisper, that during his trip, Mr. Jonathan would also meet with Mahmoud Abbas, the President of the Palestinian National Authority.

Absent in the announcement was the highly significant detail as to whether Mr. Abbas would come into Israel to meet with him—which would be a major diplomatic statement on all three sides—or Mr. Jonathan would travel to the West Bank.  If it was the latter, it would have meant Mr. Jonathan was making three trips, not the two that the government told the Nigerian people.

Still, with a few hours left to his departure, Mr. Jonathan returned to the inescapable heat of Mrs. Oduah’s embarrassing corruption allegations, including illegally and corruptly buying two luxury cars for an incredible $1.6 million with the funds of an agency in her Ministry.

His unconvincing afterthought however raises two problems, one of them practical; the other, philosophical.

The practical: the panel, according to the government’s announcement, has two weeks to submit its report in what should be no more than a simple two or three-day enquiry.  But of the two weeks, a member of the panel, Col. Dasuki, was spending the first in the Middle East as part of Mr. Jonathan’s traveling party.  Is it possible that the retired colonel has been cloned so the faithful servant can be in two places running different errands for the same master?  Or has Nigeria run out of manpower?

The philosophical: first, by setting up an ‘administrative’ panel, Mr. Jonathan undermined Nigeria’s so-called anti-corruption agencies and the police, which have the expertise and the structures to undertake such a task expeditiously.  The President suggests that privileged Nigerians cannot be investigated by the same agencies that investigate the not-so-privileged, and casts doubt that the objective is justice.

Of equal importance, by setting up the panel, Mr. Jonathan steps over the see-no-evil-hear-no-evil-smell-no-evil altitude about corruption in high places he has adopted since he first bragged he would “fight” it.  In particular, he arrives in the stables of SaharaReporters, a website known for its relentless exposés about corruption.

By deciding to investigate Mrs. Oduah, one of his former campaign stalwarts, Mr. Jonathan acknowledges SaharaReporters, which broke the story, and all the journals and petitioners that have courageously reported corruption throughout his thoroughly ambivalent presidency.

But where does that acknowledgement end?  Even Mr. Jonathan knows he lacks a true anti-corruption bone in his body.  Is the objective to punish Mrs. Oduah for the same self-enrichment and impunity that has been the fare of the media in the past seven years?   With what credibility will Mr. Jonathan explain away the mountain of corruption reports and petitions he has ignored since he first took over leadership?

It looks more likely that the probe is only a ruse, part of a strategy aimed at keeping the game going.  After all, corruption allegations do not stick to anyone for long in Nigeria, especially if you are sufficiently close to the center of power.  James Ibori brushed them off his sleeves.  Several governors who faced them are now Senators and best friends of the Jonathan presidency. Dipreye Alamieyeseigha enjoys presidential pardon.

The point is that the Oduah matter, including the purported probe being undertaken the House of Representatives and the presidential panel, only makes good theatre.

That probe is no more than the latest in a growing trail of strategic errors that Mr. Jonathan has made as he gropes his way to 2015, highlighted last week by his irresponsibly taking of the beleaguered Minister to Israel.

Another such error is the National Conference Advisory Committee he announced on National Day.

Mr. Jonathan does not have a good track record of implementing reports, but even before this particular process could begin, he betrayed his own cause by clarifying he does not understand, or accept, that sovereignty belongs to the people, not the National Assembly.  It is the equivalent of stabbing your only son to death before his umbilical cord has even been cut.  He demonstrated he is only playing politics.

These are extremely significant developments, but also dangerous ones for Mr. Jonathan’s political future.  By making some of his recent choices, Mr. Jonathan may well have made Mrs. Oduah the new face of corruption and inadvertently given her control of his political destiny.

Next week, he will return from Israel with both a Minister he is probing and a man who is supposed to be probing her.

No matter how innocent Madam Minister may have been, it will be interesting to see how his storytellers convince the Nigerian people that during the trip, the President, the Minister and the National Security Adviser did not discuss the Minister’s fate.

Jonathan may be probing her now, but in the end, she may well determine how far he travels, and in what direction.


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