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Comments for entry From the people who brought us the Spanish Inquisition...
From the people who brought us the Spanish Inquisition...
Pope's aide sparks fury in Israel by comparing Gaza to concentration camp
Published Date: 09 January 2009
A SENIOR aide to the Pope has sparked a serious diplomatic row between the Vatican and Tel Aviv by describing Gaza as "a big concentration camp".
In an interview with Italian media on Wednesday, Cardinal Renato Martino, president of the Vatican's Council for Justice and Peace, said "Defenceless populations are always the ones who pay. Look at the conditions in Gaza: more and more, it resembles a big concentration camp."
A spokesman for Israel's foreign ministry said: "We are astounded to hear from a spiritual dignitary words that are so far removed from truth and dignity.
"The vocabulary of Hamas propaganda, coming from a member of the College of Cardinals, is a shocking and disappointing phenomenon."
Jewish leaders in Germany also condemned Cardinal Martino. "He is either trying to nefariously disseminate anti-Israeli propaganda or he doesn't have the faintest clue about the murderous conditions inside a concentration camp," Stephan Kramer, general secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, told a newspaper.
Tension has been simmering between the Vatican and Israel since Pope Benedict's decision last October to press ahead with the canonisation of the wartime pontiff Pius XII. Israel has questioned the role Pius played during the Second World War and claimed he did not do enough to speak out against the Holocaust.
Author: Von Cello Eintrag from 11.01.2009
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