Christians United for Israel hosts Israeli soldier to talk on the middle east at Northern Colorado
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 23:11
Throughout history, the Middle East — more specifically in Israel and Palestine — has seen more turmoil and religious conflict than some regions will ever face. The student-led club on campus, Christians United for Israel, focuses its events and meetings on supporting Israel into becoming its own country.
The purpose of the group is to educate students and show Christian support for the State of Israel while still being active students in a campus community. Membership in Christians United for Israel at UNC is open to all students and faculty.
Christians United for Israel invited Sgt. Benjamin Anthony, a soldier for the Israel Defense Forces, to speak Tuesday night in room 1060 of Ross Hall. All through Anthony’s presentation, he kept reiterating he was not affiliated with any political group and that all the views he expressed were his own.
Anthony had everyone in the room during the presentation turn off their phones so nothing he said would be recorded. Anthony also was accompanied by security and police officers when he entered the building.
The primary issue that Anthony touched on was that some Palestinians do not agree Israel or the land of Jerusalem should be all for the Jewish people. Frequently throughout history, Palestinians have tried to compromise or chip away at the land that many Jewish people believe to be the land given to them directly by God.
The mood in the room was far from light, and many of the audience members agreed with some of the points or views that Anthony expressed.
“I liked Sergeant Anthony’s presentation because it gave a realistic view and that you can’t always trust the media,” said Samantha Smith, a freshman nursing major. “There were so many moving aspects of his story. No one can truly understand what he’s seen and had to do.”
At the end of the presentation, Anthony held a Q-and-A session for audience members. Audience members tried to get a better insight on what it was like being a soldier in a war that was based solely on ideologies and beliefs. Students were moved to do anything they could in support of Israel.
“I truly believe that if America stands behind Israel that then the Jewish people whose home is being threatened by the Palestinians can be saved,” said Amanda Jones, a sophomore English education major. “I’m not only joining the student-led group, but I want to hold more speaker series and hear what more people have to say about this issue.”
A majority of the students who attended the event did so out of necessity for school assignment but were happy that they attended because not only did it educate them on what was going on in Israel, but they also saw it as a great experience.
The club will be presenting an event each month over the course of the school year to get the word out about its organization and also about Israel.
“What we’ve done so far is shown documentaries, we’ve hosted the Taste of Israel, which showcased authentic Israeli food,” said Shayna Galasso, the president and founder of Christians United for Israel. “Next semester in January or February, we’re going to host an event showing a documentary about what’s like inside Israel. In April, we’re going to honor Israel and Holocaust survivors.”