I had really high hopes for this photo. Orthodox Christmas in Bethlehem, Palestinian soldiers, the steeples of all the denominations that scuffle over the Church of the Nativity lit up for the holiday in the background. But it just doesn’t do it for me.
You know what did do it for me? This book. 512 pages describing conflict over Jerusalem since King David. Did you know that a fight over the keys to this church led to the Crimean War? 1,700,000 soldiers, 500,000 casualties. Did you know that none of the denominations in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher have keys to it? None of them trust that they wouldn’t be locked out. A local Muslim family has been in charge of the keys since 1192, ever since Saladin gave them that responsibility.