WASHINGTON (Christian Examiner) – President Barack Obama's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, said at Louis Farrakhan's "Justice, or Else!" rally in Washington, D.C., that Palestinian land had been stolen by Europeans and should be returned to its original inhabitants.
The pastor, known for his controversial remarks following the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, in which he said "God damn America," claimed in his addressed that Palestine is "illegally occupied" by Jews who believe "their God" told them to take it.
"The same issue is being fought today and has been fought since 1948, and historians will carry it back to the 19th century. Biblical historians will carry it back to the Book of Judges where the original people, the Palestinians – and please remember, Jesus was a Palestinian – the Palestinian people have had the Europeans come and take their country, ignoring United Nations resolution after resolution after resolution – over 40 resolutions," said Wright, emeritus pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ, where the president was a member prior to his election.
Nowhere in the Bible is Jesus described as a Palestinian. He is described only as an observant Jew.
Wright said he was pleased to attend the rally promoted nationwide by the Nation of Islam and the Black Lives Matter movement and was excited to see the "original people" of the country, now known as the United States, on the platform. A number of Native Americans spoke at the event.
"They came here to remind us of the fact that this was their country before the Europeans decided their God had given them this country," Wright said.
Wright said he only wanted to address the plight of Palestinians from the podium, but he said the youth in Ferguson, Mo., and the youth in Palestine "have united together to remind us that the dots need to be connected."
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Wright said, believed "injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
"That has implications for us as we stand beside our Palestinian brothers and sisters who have been done one of the most egregious injustices in the 20th and 21st centuries. Boycott, divestment and sanction is how we fought non-violently to bring an end to apartheid in South Africa. Apartheid is going on in Palestine as we sit here," Wright said.
He said a wall "twice the height of the Berlin Wall" was built to keep Palestinians "off illegally occupied territories." However, the Israelis built the wall Wright referenced after a long string of terror attacks and suicide bombings launched from the West Bank during the Second Intifada. The attacks stopped as a result of the wall being built.
Wright also said King described minorities as fighting a three-headed demon: racism, militarism and capitalism. He applied that idea to the current situation between Israel and the Palestinians to conclude "Palestinian lives matter."