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Christmas Turf-Battle at Bethlehem

Updated on December 30, 2011

Clash of the Christmas Clerics

The Salvation Army has rung its bell, carolers have sung their songs, and Santa has made his rounds. Once again, Christmas has come and gone.

Yet, what is Christmas without the occasional family dispute? American families are much too familiar with the sibling battle over the latest Xbox gadget, or the, big-sister little-sister argument over which Bieber track to play first.

Surely this Christmas did not ride off into the night with Santa, and Rudolph leading the way, without mom and dad arguing over the new 3G kindle the jolly fat man left for them.

Well, in Bethlehem (Jesus' birthplace) Christmas has not even begun and the fireworks are already blazing.

However, disputation is not over how many lights one should decorate the Christmas tree with, or even, how much money we should spend on little Timmy this year. No, in Bethlehem the beef is about - what else? Turf!

Yes, not even Christmas preparations can evade the never ending battle for Middle Eastern turf in that region of the world. And who are those behind this Christmas-turf battle? One would suspect Al-qaeda up to no good again. Or the Muslim Brotherhood, long on Santa's naughty list.

Well, one would be wrong. Behind this Bethlehem-brawl is not some reviled terror network. Or some political party with disconcerting associations. No, responsible for the Christmas clash, reports the Associated Press, were Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Apostolic Armenian priests and Monks.

Wielding brooms as weapons, the holy men guarded their turf within the West Bank Church. A Church, which all three sects apparently share. It is "a trivial problem that ... occurs every year," police Lieutenant-Colonel Khaled al-Tamimi told Reuters.

There were no arrests, said the Lieutenant-Colonel "because all those involved were men of God."

Men of God indeed. And we thought we had it rough around the dinner table come Christmas? Think again.

God bless

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Clash of the Christmas Clerics


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      H C Palting 6 years ago from East Coast

      Men of GOD can also be arrested, perhaps it would put the "trivial problem that occurs every year" into perspective?

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      David 6 years ago

      Its sad to see this but it shows a sense of ownership