Many on the Left have long attempted to reframe the Christmas story to push their political agenda. They urge lax enforcement of immigration law by insisting that Jesus was a refugee. Now, they claim Jesus would be Palestinian today to undermine support for Israel’s response to Hamas’ massacre of innocents on Oct. 7.

On Christmas Eve, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the latest in a line of leftists to declare that Jesus, if born today, would be Palestinian.

“In the story of Christmas, Christ was born in modern-day Palestine under the threat of a government engaged in a massacre of innocents,” Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat who has called on Israel to halt its campaign in Gaza, said on Instagram. “He was part of a targeted population being indiscriminately killed to protect an unjust leader’s power.”

She seems to have been referring to the slaughter of the innocents when King Herod ordered the killing of babies in Bethlehem due to a prophecy that a king would be born there. Christians commemorate this event on Dec. 28.

“Thousands of years later, right-wing forces are violently occupying Bethlehem as similar stories unfold for today’s Palestinians, so much so that the Christian community in Bethlehem has canceled this year’s Christmas Eve celebrations out of both [fear for their] safety and respect,” Ocasio-Cortez added.

AOC was far from alone. On Christmas Day, Father Edward Beck, a Catholic priest in New York, claimed that Jesus is “a Palestinian Jew born into a time when his country was occupied.”

“What I’m so struck by is that the story of Christmas is about a Palestinian Jew,” Beck said on CNN. “How often do you find those words put together? A Palestinian Jew born into a time when his country was occupied, right? They can’t find a place for [Jesus’ mother, Mary] to even give birth. They’re homeless. They eventually have to flee as refugees into Egypt, no less. I mean, you can’t make up the parallels to our current world situation right now.”

Over on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, Democratic presidential candidate Cenk Uygur also claimed that Jesus is “technically a Palestinian.”

“Since Jesus is from Bethlehem, he’s technically a Palestinian,” Uygur wrote. “Remember that the next time you hear a death toll from the Palestinian territories. If Jesus returns to the place of his birth, could he survive the night? Or would he be just another Palestinian casualty?”

Each of these public figures used the fact that the Palestinian Authority controls Bethlehem today to imply that, if born today, Jesus would be Palestinian. Therefore, Christians should support the Palestinian cause against the Jewish state of Israel, which is fighting for its life after the worst slaughter of Jews since the Holocaust. Therefore, Christians should support a cease-fire that would enable Hamas to regroup and rearm, rather than an Israeli campaign to neuter the terrorists’ military capabilities.

The argument is absurd on its face.

Jesus is Jewish, descended from the line of King David. David conquered the city of Jerusalem and made it his capital. He fought against the Philistines, the people who may have given “Palestine” its name. If Jesus were to be born today, leftists such as AOC, Beck, and Uygur would condemn him as a “settler colonialist,” not celebrate him as a “Palestinian Jew.”

More insidiously, however, these public figures are attempting to twist the Christmas story out of its historical context to distract Americans from the fact that Israel’s current military acts in Gaza represent a response to a horrific incident of mass rape, slaughter, and hostage-taking.

Jesus was born in a humble stable in Bethlehem, in an Israel suffering under Roman rule, and Mary and Joseph did flee to Egypt to escape the massacre of the innocents. Yet the modern state of Israel doesn’t have any parallels with Rome or with King Herod. The Israel Defense Forces is not targeting a baby who has been prophesied as a future king—it’s targeting Hamas militants who intentionally slaughtered babies.

Bethlehem isn’t even administered by Israel—as one would expect if Israel were “occupying” it—but by the Palestinian Authority.

Christmas was “canceled” this year in Bethlehem—but not by Israel. Local leaders called for a hushed celebration of the holiday in solidarity with the innocents suffering in Gaza, to draw attention to the casualties of war.

The deaths of innocents in Gaza and the West Bank are tragic, but they represent unintentional collateral damage as Israel responds to intentional terrorist attacks on civilians.

If anyone is responsible for canceling Christmas in Bethlehem, it’s the Hamas terrorists who crossed into southern Israel and slaughtered parents in front of their children and children in front of their parents. It’s the terrorist who gleefully called his parents to report, “I killed 10 Jews with my bare hands!” It’s the evil men who kept two babies crying for hours, just to mercilessly slaughter anyone who dared to come help the screaming infants.

An intentional massacre of the innocents already happened this year, and if any parallels to the first Christmas are apt, AOC is taking the side of King Herod.

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