Author Archives: Marc H. Ellis

About Marc H. Ellis

Marc H. Ellis is retired Director and Professor of Jewish Studies at Baylor University and author of Future of the Prophetic: Israel's Ancient Wisdom Re-Presented.

Handling holy hypocrisy at holiday season

If Passover cannot really be celebrated without Palestinians being free – and since Palestinian freedom isn’t on the immediate or even long-range horizon and ironically Passover has become a time for punishing Palestinians for asserting their right to be free – should we suspend our celebration of Passover?

Posted in American Jewish Community, Israel/Palestine | 9 Comments

Passover for Palestine

The Passover experience for Jews has been distorted beyond recognition. While the New York Times debates whether mobile phones should be used to enhance the Passover experience, it ignores the obvious question: How can Jews celebrate Passover when we are oppressing another people? The plaintive cry – “Next year in Jerusalem” – has already occurred. The results are devastating for Palestinians. In the long run, are they less disastrous for Jews?

Posted in American Jewish Community, Israel/Palestine | 17 Comments

The Two-State SodaStream Solution

Why doesn’t Netanyahu doesn’t break from his right wing pack and accept Mahmoud Abbas’s offer for an American-led NATO occupation of Palestine? He would take almost all of Palestine while leaving a cheap and subservient labor pool of millions of Palestinians for Israeli and Palestinian kingpins. Call it the SodaStream solution.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Will there be an empowered Palestinian collective?

John Kerry seems to be talking about an “internationally funded ghettoized entity” for Palestine, says Marc Ellis

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

The demand for a demilitarized state is telling Palestinians to give away the right to be free

Progressive Jews have been arguing for a demilitarized Palestinian state for decades. It’s a staple of progressive Jewish discourse. I, for one, am not climbing on the demilitarized state bandwagon. It is a disingenuous act. It means you are giving away the right of Palestinians to be free.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 16 Comments

Celebrity justice

Before she quit Oxfam, I’m sure Johansson thought about the issue deeply – with her publicist. No doubt Oxfam did as well – with its publicists. –Marc Ellis is cynical about the relationship between the celebrity and her (former) cause.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 11 Comments

(Their) State of the Union

Not a word on tyranny in Egypt, and barely a line about Syria’s descent into extremism, as Obama champions the U.S. role in the world.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 4 Comments

The US charade in Egypt, Syria and Palestine

The charade is empowering – for the powerful. The charade is a disaster – for the suffering.

Posted in Egypt, Israel/Palestine, syria, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 2 Comments

Are we all Egyptians?

Democracy wears military fatigue, not just in Egypt, but in the US and Israel. Can’t Jews understand that they were wrong about the “liberation” of 1948?

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 19 Comments

Kerry’s Syrian illusion

Is Kerry pursuing regime change in Syria or is he posturing for the world community? Kerry should get off his anti-Iran soapbox and get on with helping to end the suffering of the Syrian people.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

Kerry’s Saudi recipe for Palestinian homelessness

News reports say that John Kerry has the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signed up to provide housing for Palestinian refugees in foreign countries

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

Israel’s castle

The New York Times promotes Israel’s “bad neighborhood” reason for never making peace with Palestinians. But the castle and the ghetto have always failed Jews

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 17 Comments

The (Jewish) N-Word

Trivializing Nazi and the Holocaust. Ethnically cleansing a people to create a state, placing permanent settlements to expand the state and then building a wall around the remaining occupied population – that’s the ultimate trivialization of Jewish suffering.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation | 27 Comments

After Sharon

Call and response from the altar: a litany of Israel’s human rights violations. Never again, we say. Yet there is no ending, even after Sharon

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 4 Comments


Ariel Sharon’s Lebanon adventure in 1982 precipitated the isolation of Israel in the international community, as well as a civil war within the Jewish community over Israel that continues to divide Jews today. That war was an instigator for the new Israeli historians and their subversive narrative of Israel’s origins which is now accepted around the world. In the long run, Sharon diminished support for a Jewish state even among mainstream Jews. That support will never be recovered.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 13 Comments

Sharon’s debris

At Sharon’s funeral today, not a word was heard about how progressive Jews loathed Sharon, and how he did not belong in “our” dream of a Jewish state. Israel has conquered Palestine– that is what Sharon left behind. And he left Jews the debris of a religion and a culture that once wrestled with the ethical.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 27 Comments


Miko Peled on Sharon: He possessed an insatiable appetite for power, glory and fortune. His tendencies as a cold-blooded, merciless killer were evident from early on in his career. Says Marc Ellis: Simply put, Sharon was a thug.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 84 Comments

Disillusioned with a Jewish State

Israeli soldiers are the Jewish boots on the ground. But the larger question is often deflected. Who sent them on their mission? What is the American Jewish community’s responsibility for Israel’s wars and occupation? Marc Ellis asks at Mondo.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 16 Comments

Is the time right for a palace revolution?

The question before BDS is whether there is an occupation tipping point. If so, Israel would have to admit defeat and withdraw at least to all the places it now controls. That is, Israel will get everything it has but will be unable to get everything it wants. Whether BDS can get what Palestinians need is debatable.

Posted in Activism, BDS, Israel/Palestine | 18 Comments

Infiltrating the New Year

Not long ago, Jews were seen as infiltrators. Jews were the prototypical fifth column, Marc Ellis writes at Mondo. Now it’s critics of Israel who are infiltrating

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 4 Comments

What Would Jesus Do (on his birthday in Jerusalem)?

The Dormition Abbey is enabling the occupation so long as the abbot there fails to rail against the occupation with the Israelis who are attending midnight mass

Posted in Israel/Palestine | Tagged , , | 29 Comments

Unintended consequences

oday mainstream Christian denominational support is for various forms of BDS. This shift has to do with the unintended consequences of Israel’s military success. Large parts of the Christian world have undergone a de-colonial shift precisely at the time that Israel has become a major colonial power.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | Tagged , | 8 Comments

A Palestinian messenger

If John Kerry’s latest reported proposal to truncate Palestinian freedom doesn’t cause the Palestinian Authority negotiators to walk, well not even Jesus can save them, the man Mahmoud Abbas has called “a Palestinian messenger”

Posted in Israel/Palestine | Tagged , , , | 26 Comments

One London church goes on the record with ‘Bethlehem Unwrapped’

Check out this London church’s “Bethlehem Unwrapped” happening. They built a real Wall – in the middle of London – with a series of events to boot. Quite an undertaking. Talk about going on record.

Posted in Activism, Israel/Palestine, Occupation, US Politics | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments

Snowden’s Christmas address

I just couldn’t resist, after my own Jewish Christmas message, another unexpected Christian message – from Edward Snowden no less.

Posted in US Politics | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments