Thousands of Christian and Jewish supporters of Israel have bombarded CBS executives with complaints about a "60 Minutes" segment that blamed Israel for the decline of the Palestinian Christian population in cities such as Bethlehem and Jerusalem.
The Jewish Federations of North America and Christians United For Israel asked their members to send messages to CBS executives to complain about the segment. JFNA's action alert, sent before the segment aired, read: "We hope that CBS will be flooded with responses through their inboxes, Facebook, Twitter and mail after the program to express discontent if it is as biased as we anticipate."
CUFI told its supporters in a Twitter message Monday that "Sunday night '60 Minutes' blamed Israel for Christian flight from the Middle East. Join me in telling them the truth." CUFI tweeted later in the day that more than 22,000 supporters had contacted "60 Minutes" over the segment.
In the segment, Simon says that "Palestinian Christians, once a powerful minority, are becoming the invisible people, squeezed between a growing Muslim majority and burgeoning Israeli settlements. Israel has occupied the West Bank for 45 years."
Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren is quoted as saying that Christians are leaving the West Bank due to Islamic extremism. The segment takes Oren to task for calling Jeff Fager, the head of CBS News before the segment ran to make sure that the story would not be a "hatchet job."