Skip to comments.Forgetting The Christians
Posted on 08/12/2014 3:31:18 PM PDT by NYer
This past weekend, the United States began to intervene in the humanitarian crisis unfolding in northern Iraq. The Islamist group ISIS has made a lightning conquest of much of the region, persecuting religious minorities, and even some Sunni Muslims, everywhere it goes. In response, the U.S. has begun air drops of food and water to up to 40,000 Yazidi refugees stranded on Mt. Sinjar, where ISIS militants have them surrounded. And the U.S. undertook airstrikes against ISIS positions threatening the Kurdish city of Erbil, where hundreds of American advisers are stationed. Other Western nations are getting involved as well. The United Kingdom dropped supplies to the Yazidis on Mt. Sinjar, and Frances Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, visited Erbil to assess the situation.
In planning and delivering assistance to Iraqi refugees, the Westand particularly the United States, which has taken primary responsibilityshould not ignore the plight of Christians. It may seem odd to voice this concern. After all, President Obama specifically mentioned Christians in his statements about American action. But Mideast Christians are often an afterthought for the United States, and it seems they are in this situation again. A Wall Street Journal report, which quotes unnamed members of the Obama administration, indicates the threat of genocide against Yazidis was the primary factor in the American decision to intervene. This was qualitatively different from even the awful things that weve confronted in different parts of the region because of the targeted nature of it, the scale of it, the fact that this is a whole people, the official said.
That is a rather myopic view of the situation. Were offering assistance to 40,000 Yazidi refugees whom ISIS has driven from their homes and threatened to slaughter. Greatwe should. But in the weeks before ISIS turned on the Yazidis, it had displaced more than 100,000 Christians from their homes and driven them into the desert.
ISIS eliminated major Christian communities in Mosul and Qaraqosh, and the U.S. responded only with a concerned statement from its U.N. ambassador. And this is to say nothing of the hundreds of thousands of Christians who have become refugees since the invasion of Iraq in 2003. If genocide correctly describes what threatens the Yazidis, it also describes whats happening to Iraqi Christians. Indeed, many of these Christians are the descendants of people who suffered genocide at the beginning of the twentieth century.
There are reasons why America tends to treat Mideast Christians as an afterthought. Mideast Christians lack a natural constituency in American public life. They are, as one commentator observed, too foreign for the Right and too Christian for the Left. Most of our foreign policy elites have a blind spot about them. And I dont mean to single out the Obama administration. Nina Shea of the Hudson Institute has recounted her attempts to get the Bush administration to focus on the plight of Iraqs Christians, only to be told by Condoleezza Rice that assistance for Christians would make the United States appear sectarian.
To draw attention to the plight of Iraqs Christians is not special pleading. The U.S. should not concern itself only with Christians; other religious minorities deserve our attention, too. But, in the Middle East and around the world, Christians are often targeted for persecution in particularly severe ways, and the human rights community often seems not to notice. Indeed, as Pope Francis explained in remarks at a conference co-sponsored by the St. Johns University in Rome this summer, Christians suffer perhaps the largest share of religious persecution in the world today:
It causes me great pain to know that Christians in the world submit to the greatest amount of such discrimination. Persecution against Christians today is actually worse than in the first centuries of the Church, and there are more Christian martyrs today than in that era. This is happening more than 1700 years after the edict of Constantine, which gave Christians the freedom to publicly profess their faith.
Its good that the United States has begun attempts to alleviate a human rights crisis for which it bears much responsibility. Lets hope it does not ignore some of the principal victims of that crisis.
Christians and especially Catholics can never ever be the victims of anything....the Holocaust saw millions of Catholics persecuted and many gypsies as well as other groups....but we’ve been ingrained to believe only Jews were killed....IIRC, some 10,000,000 Catholics were killed by the Nazi regime...
Progressives and Democrats see Christians as “lawful prey” of whatever group that wants to eliminate them and the message of our Saviour from the world, “to make it safe for secular humanism.”
The problem is, that as the old wise saying goes, “ the blood of the Christian martyrs is the SEEDS for new Christians. “
The Christians will get nothing from Obama/Kerry it’s against their very fundamental beliefs.
Excellent points in this article.
I’m glad the U.S. is intervening on behalf of the Yazidis. But I wish the U.S. gov’t were interested in helping the Christians being persecuted by ISIS, too.
I wonder if there is any country in the world that will help persecuted Christians.
1 Peter 4:12-13
As true today as in the 1st Century.
Yes ... the United States of America. Sadly, many americans do not believe this could ever happen in our country. We know from history, how that plays out. Martin Niemöller (18921984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps. He is best remembered for his quotation below which has been adapted by various groups, as needed, to drive home the salient message ... ignore those being persecuted and with time, you too will be a victim.
Here is a world map indicating the top 10 countries for persecution.
If ISIL is not stopped, it will spread. It has already begun ..
There is NO question that the blatant omission of the word “Christians” with regard to the current humanitarian concerns in the Mid East is intentional!
Why is Colombia, South America highlighted?
Source of Persecution: Organised corruption/Tribal antagonism/Aggressive secularism
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