Why Is Pope Francis Downplaying Hamas’s Murderous Rampage Against Israel?
What is the appropriate response to the vicious assault Islamic terrorist group Hamas unleashed against the unsuspecting people of Israel? The leaders of Britain, France, Germany, Italy and the United States have unequivocally condemned these attacks, calling them “acts of terrorism” with “no justification.” Yet the leader of the world’s largest Christian denomination, whom many look to as a moral authority, has not condemned Hamas in such stark language.
The day after Hamas’s initial assault, Pope Francis expressed sorrow at what is “happening in Israel” before noting that “every war is a defeat” and asking for people to pray for “peace in Israel and in Palestine.” He said nothing about Hamas being the aggressor in this conflict. The Israeli Embassy to the Vatican called the pope out on his “linguistic ambiguities” and false “parallelisms.” But Francis took only a sentence to recognize “the right of those who were attacked to defend themselves” before voicing concern over “the total siege Palestinians in Gaza face.”
In other words, the pope laments the Israel-Hamas war, but he wants the world to think Israel and Hamas are equally guilty for the conflict. The Latin patriarchate of Jerusalem (which oversees the Catholic Church in Israel, Jordan and Cyprus) issued an even more morally ambiguous opinion, criticizing both Hamas and Israel in the same breath: “The operation launched from Gaza and the reaction of the Israeli Army are bringing us back to the worst periods of our recent history.”
A few priests, like Benedict Kiely, have condemned Hamas’s slaughter of men, women, children and babies. Yet most Vatican officials seem to be prioritizing politics over morals. There are far more Palestinian Catholics than Israeli Catholics, so the Vatican does not want to say anything that will jeopardize official recognition of a Palestinian state. Pope Francis spoke with Joe Biden over the phone on October 22, and the two leaders pledged their commitment to getting humanitarian aid into Gaza and pursuing a two-state solution.
Support for a Palestinian state is usually couched in peaceful language, yet the Vatican’s endorsement of Palestinian statehood is actually cover for Catholic ambition to wrest control of Jerusalem from the Jews. The pope is content to let the Palestinians do a lot of the dirty work to weaken Jewish control over the city.
Last month, the Vatican’s foreign minister called for an internationally guaranteed statute on Jerusalem to ensure “the equal rights and duties of the faithful of the three monotheistic religions.” Who would enforce such an agreement? That has not been decided yet, but enforcement would undoubtedly involve more Catholic control.
In the October 1951 issue of the Plain Truth, Herbert W. Armstrong highlighted a prophecy in Daniel 11:45 indicating that the Vatican will move its headquarters to Jerusalem just before Jesus Christ’s return. In reference to the leader of a revived Holy Roman Empire, this verse says: “And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.”
“There it is!” Mr. Armstrong wrote in “The Pope Plans to Move the Vatican.” He continued:
As the Communist red hordes roll 200 million strong over Europe, destroying everything in their path, the capital of this revived Roman Empire, along with the Vatican, will make a lightning move to Palestine—probably Jerusalem! That shall be the last abomination to be set up there! Notice, in Daniel 11:45, “tabernacle” is a place of worship, and “palace” the residence of a king.
Pope Francis may not be the pope who fulfills this prophecy, but the linguistic ambiguities and false parallelisms he draws regarding Israel and Hamas are signs that the Vatican secretly despises Israel and covets Jerusalem.
Keep watching Roman Catholic involvement in the Middle East. Bible prophecy tells us that neither Jew nor Arab will come out on top in the peace process. Rather, Jesus Christ will have to liberate the city from a revived Holy Roman Empire.
To learn more, read “The Dark Side of the Pope’s Visit to Jerusalem,” by Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry.