Vandals spray-painted the words “Death to Christianity” on the wall of the Baptist Narkis Street Congregation church. The graffiti included profanity about Jesus and the words “Price Tag,” a slogan used by Jewish extremists to protest policies they perceive as anti-settlement. The vandals also slashed the tires of several cars parked in the church compound.
Police have launched an investigation into Monday’s attack, which is similar to a graffiti attack two weeks ago on the 11th-century Monastery of the Cross, also in west Jerusalem. “Officers are investigating a strong possibility of a nationalist motive, but no one has been apprehended yet,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told Ynet News. It is unlikely that Muslim vandals would have denigrated Jesus, who is considered a holy prophet in Islam.
When asked for comment on the attack by a local reporter, a VOM contact in the region said, “Jesus told us persecution would happen, and he told us to forgive when it does happen. So that’s what we think about the incident.”
“Price tag” attacks are carried out all over Israel by Jewish extremists. The term is used to suggest that vandalism is the “price” that must be paid by non-Jews for the evacuation and demolition of Jewish settlements. The extremists have targeted mosques, Palestinian homes and Israeli military installations in the West Bank.