Bill Warner promotes a new approach to counter jihad activism.
Here is the website where you can download the religious persecution brochure: http://a-voice-for-the-voiceless.com/
Bill Warner promotes a new approach to counter jihad activism.
Here is the website where you can download the religious persecution brochure: http://a-voice-for-the-voiceless.com/
In this exclusive report to the Religious Freedom Coalition Andrew Harrod reveals the feelings toward Muslims and the Assad government in Syria by high ranking members of the Syrian Christian clergy. Christians in Syria refer to the “golden age” of freedom they have had since 1970 that now is threatened by the installation of a Saudi style regime by the United States government. – Editor
By Andrew E. Harrod
“There will come a time when there will be no more Christians in Syria,” the Syrian Presbyterian Rev. Dr. Riad Jarjour, former General Secretary of the Middle East Council of Churches, warned recently onJanuary 27, 2014, at Washington, DC’s Heritage Foundation. Jarjour explained Syrian Christians’ “stage of hopelessness” while “boxed in” by Muslim sectarian fighting in Syria’s civil war during two successive presentations by a Syrian Christian delegation.
The Heritage event and the previous day’s panel at McLean, Virginia’s St. John the Beloved Catholic Church clearly showed the “tragedy of the church in Syria” described at St. John by Dr. Patrick Sookhdeo. Sookhdeo, chairman of the Westminster Institute and international director of Barnabas Aid, the Syrian delegation’s sponsors, described a “Gethsemane that leads to a potential Calvary.” One-third of Syria’s two million Christians had fled the country during “perhaps the single greatest humanitarian disaster in the world today.” During a slide show, Syrian Orthodox Church Metropolitan Bishop Dionysius Jean Kawak at St. John noted United Nations estimates of ten million Syrians needing assistance by the end of 2013. Food, water, and electricity shortages afflicting the Syrian population marked a “lost generation.”
Jarjour at Heritage, meanwhile, discussed how Syrian Christians are “pressured to leave” by Sunni jihadist groups fighting for the overthrow of Syria’s Shiite-backed dictator Bashir Assad. Jarjour recalled one funeral of a Christian beheaded by such jihadists as well as the severed heads of two Armenian Christians sent to children as a threat. Jihadists also used Christians as human shields in the Syrian town of Homs. Kawak at Heritage also referenced the kidnapping by jihadists of Syrian nuns and bishops.
Such “very radical Islamist groups” entering Syria meant that local Christians had abandoned their support for opposition groups initially given when protests for reform of the Assad regime began in March 2011. Many of these groups were linked to Al Qaeda that, “contrary to popular opinion…is alive,” Sookhdeo noted at Heritage. Jarjour at Heritage saw a worrying precedent in Syria’s neighbor Iraq, where Muslim intimidation had expelled 70% of that country’s Christian population following Saddam Hussein’s overthrow.
Rev. Adib Awad, General Secretary of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon, explained at St John how such Muslim repression of Christians is not new. Jews and Christians are “second-class citizens in a religious state” under orthodox Islamic laws, he explained. While not always enforced in the past, these laws mandated distinctive clothing for Christians and low door construction in Christian dwellings so that Christians would humiliatingly bow upon entering. Muslim repression also resulted in destroyed churches while Ottoman Empire rule in Syria enslaved Christian youth as soldiers in the Janissary Corps or as haram concubines.
While non-Muslims have had some freedoms under past Muslim rule, “it can change anytime,” Adib said to this author at Heritage. Christians in the region have thus endured “different periods of fear for their future,” Kawak observed at Heritage. As a result of such centuries-long repression, modern Syria’s population is only 10% Christian while the region was essentially completely Christian before Islamic conquest in the seventh-century.
Yet the Syrian church is “one of the oldest in the world,” Sookhdeo at St. John noted. Christians are not “outsiders” in Syria, Damascus Armenian Church Primate Bishop Armash Nalbandian similarly affirmed at St. John. Rather “Christianity belongs to Syria,” a “cradle of Christianity.”
Read more at Religious Freedom Coalition with video
by Raymond Ibrahim:
Prominent indicators confirm that the U.S. is the chief facilitator of the persecution of Christians around the world today.
According to the recently released 2014 World Watch List, which ranks the 50 nations where Christians are most persecuted, Syria is the third worst nation in the world in which to be Christian, Iraq is fourth, Afghanistan fifth, and Libya 13th. All four countries receive the strongest designation, “extreme persecution” (other designations are “severe,” “moderate,” and “sparse” persecution).
Aside from being so closely and harshly ranked, these four nations have something else in common: heavy U.S. involvement. Three—Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya—were “liberated” thanks to U.S. forces, while in the fourth, Syria, the U.S. is actively sponsoring “freedom fighters” against the regime, many of whom would be better labeled “terrorists.”
The Syrian situation alone indicts U.S. foreign policy. According to Reuters:
Open Doors, a non-denominational group supporting persecuted Christians worldwide, said on Wednesday it had documented 2,123 “martyr” killings, compared with 1,201 in 2012. There were 1,213 such deaths in Syria alone last year, it said. “This is a very minimal count based on what has been reported in the media and we can confirm,” said Frans Veerman, head of research for Open Doors. Estimates by other Christian groups put the annual figure as high as 8,000.
While most Americans are shielded from the true nature of the war by the U.S. media’s reluctance to report on it, Arabic media, websites, and activists daily report and document atrocity after atrocity—beheadings and bombed churches, Christians slaughtered for refusing to convert to Islam, and countless abducted for ransom or rape—at the hands of those whom the U.S. supports.
It’s enough to point out that “the largest massacre of Christians in Syria,” to quote a top religious leader, was left wholly unreported by any major U.S. news network.
At any rate, the statistics speak for themselves: Syria, which used to be religiously tolerant, is now, in the context of the United States’ trying to bring “democracy” to it, the third worst country in the world in terms of “extreme persecution” of Christians.
The Blaze reports that Dr. David Curry, president of Open Doors,
charged that the Obama administration has essentially declined to make the protection of religious minorities a priority . . . “There are many instances where the vacuum of leadership and spokesmanship has created a real problem,” said the human rights leader. “I would say that every significant data point on this year’s ‘2014 Watch List’ is worse—and I think a factor in it is a lack of leadership from Western governments including . . . the U.S. in terms of religious freedom.”
But it’s worse than that. Far from taking any action or providing leadership—or simply ceasing to support the terrorists responsible—the Obama administration recently tried to go to war with Syria on behalf of the “freedom fighters,” amazingly, in the name of “human rights” (Apparently theunsubstantiated rumor that Assad massacred people is enough for the U.S. to go to war, but the ongoing and well-documented massacres of Christians and other civilians at the hands of the opposition is not enough for the U.S. to stop supporting them.)
What’s worse, even the most misinformed mainstream-media-watching American today knows that the so-called “Arab Spring,” which was hailed to justify U.S. support for “rebels” of all stripes—in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood (which months ago destroyed some 80 churches); in Libya, al-Qaeda, which has turned Benghazi into a terror zone; and now the “freedom fighters” in Syria—is not what it was touted to be.
In other words, at this point, whenever the U.S. intervenes in an Islamic nation, Islamists come to power. This is well demonstrated by the other three nations to which the U.S. brought “democracy” and where Christian minorities suffer “extreme persecution”:
Read more at Front Page
On October 21 in Syria, the U.S.-supported Islamic rebels invaded and occupied the ancient Christian settlement of Sadad for over a week, till ousted by the military. During that week, “the largest massacre of Christians in Syria,” in the words of Orthodox Archbishop Alnemeh, took place. Among other things, 45 Christians—including women and children—were killed, several tortured to death; mass graves were discovered; all of Sadad’s 14 churches, some ancient, were ransacked and destroyed; the bodies of six people from one family, ranging from ages 16 to 90, were found buried at the bottom of a well (an increasingly common fate for “subhuman” Christians).
The jihadis even made a graphic video (with English subtitles) of those whom they massacred, while shouting Islam’s victory-cry, “Allahu Akbar” (or “Allah is greater,” which John McCain equated to a Christian saying “thank God”). Another video, made after Sadad was liberated, shows more graphic atrocities.
The day before rebels invaded Sadad, on Sunday, October 20, the Church of the Virgin Mary in Warraq near Cairo, Egypt, was attacked during a wedding ceremony, leaving four dead and nearly two dozen wounded. According to a report issued by forensics, two of those murdered were young girls, each named Mary: 12-year-old Mary Nabil Fahmy, who took five shots in the chest, and 8-year-old Mary Ashraf Masih (“Masih” meaning “Christ”), who took a bullet in the back which burst from the front.
As happens frequently in Egypt and other Islamic nations, the security forces charged with protecting the church were seen leaving their posts immediately before the massacre began. Similarly, in the words of Asia News, “Eye-witnesses of the al-Warraq attack confirm that despite numerous distress calls, police and ambulances only arrived on the scene two hours after the shooting.”
Both the massacres in Syria and Egypt received scant attention and even less condemnation by Western media and government. Instead, people like Mohamed Elibiary, an Obama administration Homeland Security adviser, condemned Copts who raise awareness of anti-Christian violence in Egypt as promoting “Islamophobic” bigotry.
Similarly, although Christians are habitually killed in Muslim countries—as this monthly series attests—with little condemnation or even acknowledgment by the U.S. government, when five Muslims were killed in western Burma, the United States, according to Voice of America, formally condemned it, “urging authorities to do more to address the long-standing sectarian tension there.”
The rest of October’s roundup of Muslim persecution of Christians around the world includes (but is not limited to) the following accounts, listed by theme and country in alphabetical order, not necessarily according to severity:
Read more at Gatestone Institute
World Watch Monitor (WWM), a service that provides news on worldwide persecuted church, on December 16, 2013 reported on a visit with Pakistani Christian Adnan Prince (or Adnan Masih) at his jail cell in Lahore.
Prince, aged 26, was arrested under the dreaded charge of blasphemy, Pakistan Penal Code’s Section 295, parts A, B and C – for allegedly outraging religious feelings, defiling the Koran and defaming Mohammed. This easily-manipulated charge, under which so many Pakistani Christians (not to mention many Muslims) have suffered, carries a sentence of either life imprisonment or execution.
WWM reported that the accusation came when Prince found a copy of a book written by Maulana Ameer Hamza, the leader of Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a political arm of the jihadi organization Lashkar-e-Taiba, which claimed responsibility for the Mumbai bombings, while he was filling in for his brother at the Diamond Glass shop in Lahore on October 7, 2013.
Prince, who has a Master’s degree in English literature and training from United Pentecostal seminary, began to read Hamza’s book entitled I asked the Bible why the Qur’ans were set on fire (Urdu: Mein ney Bible sey poocha Qur’an kyun jaley), and take notes inside it.
Literature majors the world over will know the impulse to underline and take notes while reading a book. If, however, one is in Pakistan, and particularly if one is Christian, one should be very circumspect about writing in any book, let alone a book with the word Qur’an in the title.
Sure enough, a Muslim co-worker saw him, and, says WWM – using the phrase repeated o’er and o’er — “took offense.” The man, Abid Mehmood, reported Prince to the local police station for marking the book with “abusive words against the Prophet of Islam,” Prince recounted to WWM. Morning Star News, another Christian news service, reported that Mehmood also notified the JuD, who issued a fatwa against Prince.
The young Christian, who is married and the father of two little girls, told WWM that he had done nothing wrong. He explained, “I found the book quite erroneous, giving incorrect information about Christianity. So I wrote comments with Biblical references in several places, but no abusive language was used.”
Once the declaration of blasphemy has been made in Pakistan, no amount of factual evidence, rational thought, or logic ever seems to make a difference in how things play out. Prince fled for his life, but returned to Lahore on November 6, after police arrested his mother, brother, aunt, and uncle and warned they would not be released until he turned himself in.
Read more at Juicy Ecumenism
Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX-01) spoke on the House floor about religious persecution, namely Christian persecution in the Middle East. He read tragic stories of Christians, murdered, trying to peacefully assemble at church. He also noted a startling statistic: Every 11 minutes, 1 Christian is killed because if their faith.
By Bill Warner:
The most persecuted group in the world today is Christians. Christians in Nigeria, Egypt, Syria and other nations are murdered, raped, kidnapped, enslaved and persecuted on a daily basis. The reason for the vast majority of all of this violence is that they are Christian among Muslims.
But their abuse does not stop with the violence. The perpetrators of violence are measured in the thousands, but the greatest abuse is at the hands of those who should demand that the violence stop. The silence in the face this persecution is denial and justification. The persecutors are few, but the deniers are in the billions.
Christians are enjoined to care for all persecuted people, but in particular, they are to care for their own brothers and sisters. They manage to ignore the persecution by doing good works, such as care for the poor. Christians have compassion but no courage to face the enemy who kills them. In Nashville, TN (the buckle on the Bible belt) the favorite indoor sport for those who should be dealing with the enemy, Islam, is going to Family of Abraham events and bridge building dialogues where they dance to the tune of Muslims. There is no problem of meeting with Islam, but the rules of engagement are that nothing will be said that offends Islam.
In the parable of the Good Samaritan, an injured man is on the side of the road. Two religious leaders pass him by on the other side of the road. They don’t harm the injured man, they just ignore him. This is the same thing that Christian leaders do at dialogues such as Family of Abraham. They meet with Muslims who adhere to a doctrine that includes killing Christians. But, the leaders will not bring up the Islamic persecution to them. The Christian leadership response to murder of their brothers and sisters is silence. They pass by on the other side of the road. Their silence is consent.
But Christians are not the only deniers. Normally, Jews are quick to step forward in the area of charity and support of victims, but not so with persecuted Christians. Some of this denial may be due to a dislike of Christianity, but Jews are no quicker to help their own.
If you go to thereligionofpeace.com you will find an amazing data base of jihad attacks since 9/11. The current number of attacks is in excess of 22,000 attacks. It is very instructive to parse the data and see what are the top four nations of jihad attacks. When you put the data on a per capita basis, you get the following countries: Israel, Thailand, Philippines and India. Or by religion: Jews, Buddhists, Christians and Hindus. So Jews are the victims of violence by Islam, but the Jews of America love to go to Family of Abraham events and be as silent as the Christians.
But what about the most sensitive victim group – the black American? Victim-ology is the dogma of a myriad black “civil rights” groups with their high priests of race hustles such as Al Sharpton. The most persecuted Christians are in Africa. But the civil rights hustlers of America just love to hang with Muslims as their brothers. All of those dead Africans? Not a problem for African Americans.
It is surprising how many Buddhists are being killed in jihad, but is it a surprise that Buddhists never talk about it? And aside from a few Hindu activists, never a word is heard from the Hindu community about their deaths by jihad.
The deaths in the Philippines are Catholics and what does Pope Francis say about Islam? He says,
Faced with disconcerting episodes of violent fundamentalism, our respect for true followers of Islam should lead us to avoid hateful generalizations, for authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.
Oh, I see. Over 1400 years of Christian deaths at the hands of jihadists means that they were not true Muslims and that the 22,000 jihadic attacks since 9/11 are not authentic. The annihilation of Christianity in Turkey, Middle East and Africa is not the result of “proper reading of the Koran”. The Pope is the perfect candidate for magical thinking and idiot compassion. And notice the little hate speech riff: “avoid hateful generalizations”. Pope Francis, do you mean generalizations such as conclusions that result from reading the Koran, the Sunna, the Sharia and a 1400 year history of the murder of all kinds of Kafirs (non-Muslims)?
But, in his own way, Pope Francis is the leader of all Christians. He just happens to have on more elaborate clothing as he practices denial.
So, it turns out that Christians are not the most despised group of people in the world. They just happen to be the largest subgroup. The most despised group in the world is the victim of Islam. And whether it is a dead Christian congregation, a murdered apostate, a sad Muslim woman with FGM, or any other victim of jihad, no one will speak out for the victim and against the perpetrator. All leaders share in the shame of being ignorant cowards practicing idiot compassion.
How is this to stop? Well, being polite won’t help, because if polite worked, the problem would be solved. The key to our response is that we have the high moral ground. We must oppose the oppressor, Islam, and stand with the oppressed – Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and all others who are oppressed by jihad. Our opponents, the deniers, support the oppressor, Islam, and ignore and suppress the fate of the victims. The deniers are evil, period.
If you are a Christian, get some allies, and come up with a program about the persecuted church. The program could be bringing in some persecuted Christians, such as Copts, to speak to Sunday school classes or doing a long term study of the Armenian holocaust in 20th century Turkey. When you go to leadership, do not ask permission or make a request. Make demands and if those demands are not met, then some form of protest inside your church must be launched.
Stand up at services and protest, hand out brochures, do whatever it takes until “leadership” agrees to not pass by on the other side of the road and neglect the dead Christians. Point out their moral position is wrong and evil. Do not be shy. Ask them to use scripture to morally justify their denial and ignorance. Be respectful, but firm and do not stop until good prevails.
This is a moral battle and if you are not a Christian, you should do the same in other venues. A possible venue is the local media. Make demands to recognize the victims of jihad and if they are not met, make a protest. Public protest is a powerful tool for change. We must acknowledge the world’s largest human rights tragedy. Being nice is the road to civilizational annihilation.
by Raymond Ibrahim:
“We shall come for you…you are polluting our religion.” — Note apparently from al-Shabaab, Somalia
“It seems great crackdowns on churches and extraordinary waves of arrest of Iranian pastors and Christian converts have not been effective.” — Mohabat News, Iran
The same month that Obama tried to wage war on behalf of the jihadi rebels in Syria (citing “human rights” concerns), some of the war’s worst atrocities were committed against that nation’s Christian minority, most notably in Ma’loula, an ancient Christian region where the inhabitants spoke Aramaic, the language of Jesus.
There, al-Qaeda-linked jihadis fired mortars and missiles into at least two ancient churches before looting them; some 80 Christians trying to defend their homes were killed. Others who could not flee were forced, on pain of death, to convert to Islam.
One man’s last words before being slaughtered by the rebels were: “I am a Christian, and if you want to kill me for that, I do not object to it.” A nun involved with humanitarian relief said the man “is a Martyr in Christ in the full sense of this word, since he was murdered solely because of religious hatred!”
The Christian Post reports:
Jihadists reportedly forced one man to convert to Islam at gunpoint and slit the throat of another Christian woman’s fiancé and then [mockingly] told her, “Jesus didn’t come to save him.”…. “I saw people wearing Al-Nusra headbands who started shooting at crosses,” the Christian senior told the AFP. One of the shooters, he said, “put a pistol to the head of my neighbor and forced him to convert to Islam by obliging him to repeat ‘there is no God but God’ [Islamic shehada]…Afterwards they joked, ‘he’s one of ours now.’”
In al-Thawrah, Syria, Christians were also singled out for attack by jihadi invaders. In one incident, they stopped three residents, released two who identified themselves as Muslims, and bludgeoned to death the third after he identified himself a Christian (graphic image). They also destroyed, among other churches, the Antiochian Orthodox church of Sts. Sergius and Bacchus.
In Raqqah, a city in northern Syria, the al-Qaeda linked “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant” broke the crossesoff the area’s two Christian churches and placed on them al-Qaeda’s Islamic flags. They also set the contents of the Church of the Annunciation and the Church of Martyrs aflame. In one video, a Muslim “freedom fighter” smashes a statue of Virgin Mary to shouts of Islam’s war-cry cry, “Allahu Akbar!” ["Allah is Greater!"]
These latest attacks come in the context of yet another fatwa that appeared in September, and issued by 36 Islamic scholars who legitimized “the right of the faithful Sunni Muslims to seize and take possession of goods, homes, property belonging to Christians, Druze and Alawite and members of other religious minorities ‘who do not profess the Sunni religion of the Prophet.’” (Earlier, before the “sex jihad” solved the problem by luring Muslim women from Tunisia and elsewhere to provide their sexual services to jihadis in Syria fighting to make Allah’s word supreme, another fatwa permitted jihadis to rape all non-Sunni women.)
Meanwhile, when publicly asked about the jihadi nature of the rebellion and that the rebels often shout Islam’s supremacist war cry, Allahu Akbar (such as when firing at Chrisitan churches), U.S. Senator John McCain insisted that shouting “Allahu Akbar!” is equivalent to a Christian saying “Thank God,” and that the rebels in Syria are “moderates and I guarantee you they are moderates.”
Similarly, when U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was also asked in September about the jihadi and al-Qaeda elements of the Syrian rebels, he argued that, “The opposition has increasingly become more defined by its moderation … more defined by its adherence to some, you know, democratic process and to an all-inclusive, minority-protecting constitution”—an assertion that prompted Russian President Vladimir Putin openly to call Kerry a liar.
Read more at Gatestone Institute
by Raymond Ibrahim
November 21, 2013
One of the worst Christian massacres—complete with mass graves, tortured-to-death women and children, and destroyed churches—recently took place in Syria, at the hands of the U.S.-supported jihadi “rebels”; and the U.S. government and its “mainstream media” mouthpiece are, as usual, silent (that is, when not actively trying to minimize matters).
The massacre took place in Sadad, an ancient Syriac Orthodox Christian habitation, so old as to be mentioned in the Old Testament. Most of the region’s inhabitants are poor, as Sadad is situated in the remote desert between Homs and Damascus (desert regions, till now, apparently the only places Syria’s Christians could feel secure; 600 Christian families had earlier fled there for sanctuary from the jihad, only to be followed by it).
In late October, the U.S-supported “opposition” invaded and occupied Sadad for over a week, till ousted by the nation’s military. Among other atrocities, 45 Christians—including women and children—were killed, several tortured to death; Sadat’s 14 churches, some ancient, were ransacked and destroyed; the bodies of six people from one family, ranging from ages 16 to 90, were found at the bottom of a well (an increasingly common fate for “subhuman” Christians).
The jihadis even made a graphic video (with English subtitles) of those whom they massacred, while shouting Islam’s victory-cry, “Allahu Akbar” (which John McCain equates to a Christian saying “thank God”).Another video, made after Sadad was liberated shows more graphic atrocities.
What happened in Sadad is the most serious and biggest massacre of Christians in Syria in the past two years and a half… 45 innocent civilians were martyred for no reason, and among them several women and children, many thrown into mass graves. Other civilians were threatened and terrorized. 30 were wounded and 10 are still missing. For one week, 1,500 families were held as hostages and human shields. Among them children, the elderly, the young, men and women…. All the houses of Sadad were robbed and property looted. The churches are damaged and desecrated, deprived of old books and precious furniture… What happened in Sadad is the largest massacre of Christians in Syria and the second in the Middle East, after the one in the Church of Our Lady of Salvation in Iraq, in 2010.
In the Iraqi attack of 2010, al-Qaeda linked jihadis stormed the church during service killing some 60 Christian worshippers (see here for graphic images of the aftermath).
While the archbishop is correct that this is the “largest massacre of Christians in Syria,” it is but the tip of the iceberg of the persecution the nation’s Christian minority has suffered—including beheadings, church bombings, kidnappings, rapes, and dislocation of hundreds of thousands of Christians—since the war broke out (see Syria entries in monthly persecution series).
A month before Sadad, another ancient Christian region, Ma’loula, one of the world’s very few regions that still spoke Aramaic, the language of Jesus, was besieged by the jihadis, its churches bombarded and plundered, its inhabitants forced to convert to Islam or die. The last words of one man who refused were: “I am a Christian, and if you want to kill me for this, I do not object to it.”
The archbishop concluded his statement concerning Sadad by asking: “We have shouted aid to the world but no one has listened to us. Where is the Christian conscience? Where is human consciousness? Where are my brothers? I think of all those who are suffering today in mourning and discomfort: We ask everyone to pray for us.”
Serge Trifkovic—who hails from a European region especially acquainted with Islamic jihad—responds to the archbishop as follows:
That no “human consciousness” is to be found in the White House, or in the editorial offices of the leading Western media, is now a matter of well-established record. Just try searching for “Sadad” (or alternatively “Saddad”) on the websites of the Department of State or The New York Times. Ditto the leading European dailies, the CNN/BBC/RTF, the human-rights defending “NGOs” et al.
The problem, of which Archbishop Selwanos Boutros Alnemeh appears unaware, is no longer in the Western elite’s mere indifference to the impending demise of Christianity in the lands of its birth, but in its active, ongoing, and open contribution to that demise. Cyprus (1974) and the Balkans (1991-9) provided the test, Iraq (2003-today) the conclusive proof. In Syria the Obama administration remains committed to supporting the rebels—ah, yes, only the “moderate” ones, like the Christian-murdering “Free Syrian Army” (discretion advised again), not “even though” the result will be the same, but precisely because it will be.
In one of the Arabic videos documenting the aftermath of the Sadad massacre, as the mutilated bodies of one family are drawn from a well (around :30 second mark), a middle-aged male relative, in tears, says:
The most precious in the whole universe [his family], are now gone, leaving me alone, but thank God I am still surrounded by these loving people who remain. I want to say, let people [the jihadis] return to their minds. The problems of the world can only be solved by knowledge and brains. Enough insanity, the nerves of the people are shredded. Enough, enough—return to your minds; you people, you humans—return to your humanity, enough crimes.
As a sign of the times, here is a Syrian, an “easterner,” evoking rationalism and humanity, products of the Christian West, at a time when the post-Christian West is governed by anything and everything—propaganda, emotionalism, mindless indoctrination—but the twain.
Raymond Ibrahim, author of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (Regnery, April, 2013) is a Middle East and Islam specialist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum.
by Rueven Berko:
On November 3, 2013, Christian figures from around the Middle East gathered in Beirut to hold an emergency meeting. Most of them came from Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and Iraq, seeking to create a dynamic to improve and reinforce the defenses of Arab Christians, who are currently being persecuted by radical Islamists in their own countries.
The atmosphere at the meeting was one of extreme distress. The representatives reported that the so-called Arab Spring had led to the strengthening of violent Islamist movements which were now targeting the Christian sects in the Arab-Muslim world, especially in Egypt, Syria and Lebanon. Attacks on Christians reflected the refusal to recognize other religions, especially Christianity, as having the right to exist in the Arab-Muslim world, and damaged the delicate fabric of unity, “coexistence, forgiveness and dialogue,” according to Lebanese MP Michel Aoun, that had existed until now among the various religious sects in the Arab countries.
The conference was motivated by the increasing lack of tolerance displayed by violent Islamists in their efforts to deprive the Christian sects, which until now were part of the Arab national identity, of their right to religious and physical existence in the Islamic territories of the Middle East. Syrian novelist Colette Khoury said that Syrian Christians could no longer be silent. They would no longer be the victims of the situation in Syria caused by the Islamist takeover and its political agenda. She said that the Christians in Syria would do whatever necessary to prevent the disintegration of Syria as their homeland and keep it from falling into the hands of the Islamists. She accused the United States of apathy and indifference to the fate of the Christians, who had always been a target for Islamist extermination.
In fact, the spread of Islamism throughout the Middle East has accelerated since the days of Muhammad. In the seventh century, Islamic jihad fighters overcame the Persian and Byzantine Empires, after they had exhausted one another in battle, and conquered Christian Egypt as well. The Christians remaining in the resulting Islamic Caliphate were regarded as second class citizens, dhimmis, with their rights, especially political rights, restricted and paid taxes no Muslim had to pay (jizya), retaining that status for hundreds of years.
The Crusades temporarily bolstered the position of the Christians in the Middle East, once Jerusalem had been liberated from Islamic occupation. However, the Crusader state was abandoned by its supporters after less than a century and receded into the mists of Middle Eastern history. In the 12th century Saladin defeated the Crusaders at the Battle of Hattin, effectively ending European presence, and the Christians were subsequently beaten and returned to their historic status as dhimmis, dependent on the mercies of various Islamic rulers.
Since the collapse of the Crusader state and the reconquest of the region by Islam, Christians have lived in uncertainty, in an atmosphere of hostility and discrimination and in fear of extermination, new emigrating from the Middle East in an ever-increasing tide. Coptic churches in Egypt are torched by Muslims so often it is barely reported by the news, and the Copts themselves are subjected to deadly attacks by Muslim mobs that kill the men and violate the women. The same is true of Christian communities in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The artificial establishment of new states in the wake of the Ottoman Empire’s downfall of (creations of the Sykes-Picot Agreement of May 1916) was a new Christian illusion. The dissolution of the Ottoman Empire led to the renewed involvement of Christians in the political life of the newly created national Arab states, which came into existence by the stroke of pen to erase the Empire’s militant Islamic base and introduce a sense of pan-Arab nationalism to protect all the local sects, religions and ethnic groups.
The recent so-called Arab Spring shattered the illusion of the Arab nation (qawmiyya) and national Arab homelands (wataniyya) and restored the runaway horses of reaction, violent extremist Islamist nationalism (ummah) and the Caliphate. Extreme Islamists decided the time was right to settle accounts with the Christians who collaborated with the secular regimes in an attempt to create a national alternative to Islamist rule and its mission to take over the world. The Christians in the West Bank, mainly in Bethlehem and the Gaza Strip, suffered a similar fate after the United States brokered an Israeli withdrawal.
Read more at IPT
by Raymond Ibrahim:
According to Egyptian newspaper El Watan, a group of Egyptian lawyers has submitted a complaint charging U.S. president Barrack Hussein Obama with crimes against humanity at the International Criminal Court.
The complaint charges Obama of being an accessory to the Muslim Brotherhood, which incited widespread violence in Egypt both before and after the June 30 Revolution.
Along with Obama, the complaint reproduced by El Watan mentions several Brotherhood members by name, beginning with the leader of the organization Muhammad Badie, and other top ranking leaders such as Mohamed al-Beltagy, Essam al-Erian, and Safwat Hegazi, adding that “Obama cooperated, incited, and assisted the armed elements of the Muslim Brotherhood in the commission of crimes against humanity in the period from 3/7/2013-8/18/2013, in the Arab Republic of Egypt.”
According to the published text, the complaint begins by quoting Article 7/1 of the Statute of the International Criminal Court, titled “Crimes against humanity,” which is reproduced below:
Crimes against humanity
1. For the purpose of this Statute, “crime against humanity” means any of the following
acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against
any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:
(d) Deportation or forcible transfer of population;
(e) Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;
(g) Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced
sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;
(h) Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial,
national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other
grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international
law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime
within the jurisdiction of the Court;
(i) Enforced disappearance of persons;
(j) The crime of apartheid;
(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great
suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.
Next, the complaint shows how Muslim Brotherhood leadership violated some of the above definitions, for example, by torturing, mutilating, raping, and killing Egyptians in their “sit in” camps (first reported here), with a highlight on the role the Brotherhood played in inciting violence and the killing of peaceful protesters around Itthadiya Palace back in December.
Above and beyond the accusations of crimes against humanity that the lawyer-drafted complaint cited by El Watan levels against the Brotherhood, one need only look to the fate of Egypt’s Christian minority, who were especially targeted by the Muslim Brotherhood—and thus, by extension, their supporter, Obama—to see numerous examples of nearly every aforementioned definition of crimes against humanity, as follows:
Read more with video
Last month, at the Values Voter Summit, a gathering of conservative activists from around the country, Senator Rand Paul gave a speech on what he called “a worldwide war on Christians by a fanatical element of Islam.”
Anti-Christian persecution, violence, and “religious cleansing” have become common in many Muslim-majority countries. The media, as Paul pointed out, have turned a blind eye. So, too, have President Obama and European leaders.
The senator was careful not to paint all Muslims with the brush of fanaticism. He stressed that only a minority of Muslims read Islamic scripture as mandating an armed struggle against Christians and other “unbelievers.” But because the global Muslim population is so large — more than 1.5 billion — even a relatively small percentage translates into tens of millions of jihad supporters.
Paul cited a few of the atrocities not making the evening news: a priest shot in the head in Zanzibar; churches bombed in Kenya; the beheading of three girls on their way to a Christian school in Indonesia; converts to Christianity murdered in Cameroon; churches burned and worshipers killed in Egypt; a pastor in Iran tortured and ordered to renounce his faith.
In the ancient Christian city of Maaloula, in what is now Syria, “Islamic rebels swarmed into town” demanding everyone convert or die, he said. “Sarkis el Zakhm stood up and answered them, ‘I am a Christian and if you want to kill me because I am a Christian, do it.’ Those were Sarkis’s last words.”
Paul added: “These rebels are allies of the Islamic rebels President Obama is now arming.
American tax dollars should never be spent to prop up a war on Christianity. But that is what is happening right now.”
Well, not precisely: Almost three years ago, Syrians began to peacefully demonstrate against Bashar Assad. The brutality of the dictator’s response sparked a civil war that was led by nationalists — not jihadists. They asked for American support and were turned down, in part because the administration saw Assad’s fall as inevitable with or without U.S. assistance.
That analysis turned out to be dead wrong — and there are now more than 100,000 dead to date. Iran’s rulers — who, as Paul noted, persecute Christians at home and, as he did not note, were responsible for hundreds of American deaths in Iraq, and who scrawl “Death to America!” on their missiles — sent Assad battalions of reinforcements, including elite fighters from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. They also arranged for combatants from Hezbollah, Iran’s Lebanon-based foreign legion — the murderers of 241 American servicemen in 1983 — to come to Assad’s rescue.
While this has been going on, al-Qaeda forces, decimated during the American “surge” in Iraq, were taking advantage of America’s withdrawal from that troubled country to regroup and rebuild. Volunteers streamed in from Algeria, Chechnya, and other corners of the Islamic world. They soon became strong enough to cross the border, declaring the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
Syrian Christians, more properly called Syriacs, are widely believed to be pro-Assad. But that’s not quite accurate. A recent newsletter of the European Syriac Union states proudly that they were among those asking Assad for “their rights.” As a consequence, they have been seen as “the enemies” of the regime that continues to “attack, arrest, torture and imprison Syriac people.”
Syrian Christians have appealed to the U.S. government for assistance and they, too, have been turned down. Paul argues: “We must work to ensure our country, our policies, our tax dollars, are on the side of ending this violence rather than encouraging those who perpetrate it.” But he never gets around to saying who or what he has in mind.
What he says instead: “How someone could believe that killing innocent people would further one’s cause is beyond me.” Is that really so hard to fathom? Both the Nazis and the Communists killed innocent people by the millions to further their causes. By now we should understand that totalitarianism is totalitarianism — whether it is based on race, class, or religion.
“Radical Islam will end only when Islam begins to police Islam,” Paul adds. Can you imagine Churchill saying Nazism will end only when Germans begin to police themselves? Can you imagine Reagan saying Communism will end only when Russians begin policing themselves?
Read more at National Review
by Raymond Ibrahim:
What’s worse than the silence of Western Christians concerning the Muslim persecution of their coreligionists in the Islamic world? Answer: Cynically exploiting that persecution for a political agenda—in the case of a recent Daily Beast article, to excoriate the state of Israel and its supporters.
Titled “Why Won’t the West Defend Middle Eastern Christians?” and written by Diarmaid MacCulloch, a Fellow of St. Cross College, the article touches on the persecution of Christians, but primarily as a springboard to attack American Christian support for Israel.
Consider the following excerpt:
… one of the silences which I find most frustrating is precisely the lack of noise from Western Christians about the fate of ancient Christianities in the Middle East. At the heart of the problems in the Middle East is seven decades of unresolved conflict between Israel and Palestine…
Yes, Western silence vis-à-vis the plight of Mideast Christians is as real as it is frustrating, but exactly how is MacCulloch able to jump to the conclusion that the Arab-Israeli conflict is “the heart” of the problem?
What about the well-documented Islamic doctrines that codify the suppression and persecution of Christians and other non-Muslims?
What about the documented fact that Christians under Islam have been persecuted for more than 1300 years before the existence of the state of Israel, in complete accordance to said doctrines?
BY: Daniel Wiser:
An U.S. pastor imprisoned in Iran for preaching Christianity has been moved to a facility housing Iran’s most violent criminals, sparking fresh concerns about his safety and calls for President Barack Obama to apply more diplomatic pressure on the Iranian regime.
American Pastor Saeed Abedini has been transferred from the Evin prison in Tehran to the Rajai Shahr Prison, about an hour-and-a-half away in Karaj, according to the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ). The Rajai Shahr Prison holds many of Iran’s most violent offenders, including convicted murderers and rapists.
Jordan Sekulow, executive director of ACLJ, said in an interview that it is common for prisoners in the death row ward where Abedini has been placed to kill each other. The Iranian regime has sent those it views as troublemakers there in the past to “have them executed without having to kill them on [their] own,” he said.
Sekulow noted that Abedini’s transfer comes as the United States and other world powers are set to discuss Iran’s nuclear program in Geneva on Thursday and Friday.
“By making this move it would appear that there are elements in Iran that are trying to undermine the negotiations,” he said. “We don’t know if we have until Thursday at this point—it’s that bad of a situation.”
Read more at Free Beacon