Why The Silence and Turning Away from Our Fellow Christians Who We Endangered?

America is a Christian nation. We number about 80% of the population. Yet you would never know it.

An article today in the Washington Post is titled:  Christianity in Iraq is Finished. Before we invaded Iraq there were more than a million Christians living peacefully in that country. Now the number is down to at best 200,000. Once we unleashed our dogs of war in part to save the people of Iraq from the horrors inflicted on them by Dictator Saddam Hussein, as President  George W. Bush told us, we cracked the shell of a civil society and loosed the tethers restraining evil and the bigoted brutes became emboldened and slaughtered those who held different beliefs.

One Christian member of a congregation in Doura that once had 30,000 families as part of the church membership but is now down to 2,000 said “In Saddam’s time, Christians could worship freely, and as long as you avoided politics you could survive. But since the war we have been attacked, robbed, raped and forced out of both Doura and the country..” That was in December 2013 prior to the Islamic State’s (IS) invasion.

IS forces have driven into  the plains of Nineveh where most of the remaining Christians lived and have driven with the support of the Sunni Iraqis the 100,000 or so who remained out under the threat of death.

The relationship between our invasion of Iraq and the destruction of the Christian community that has lived there for 2,000 years is one of those direct “but fors.” But for our decision to do it they would still be living there. My point is that we have an obligation to these Christians Iraqis. Why is it one of the things we are not directly addressing?

Israel is a country that is a Jewish nation. The population of Jews there is about 75%, a little less than the percentage of our Christian population. I can assure you that were the Iraqi Jews driven out as the Christians have been, Israel would be flocking to their aid. If you doubt that, then knowing that it is Israel that is rushing aid to the Christian refugees at this moment should lay those doubts aside.Making the Israeli aid possible are our fellow Americans who are Jewish who belong to the American Jewish Committee.

It seems to me a great irony that the small Jewish nation is helping the Christian refugees while the large Christian nation that caused the problem sits back silently.

President Bush wrote in his memoir. “We had liberated the country from a primitive dictatorship, and we had a moral obligation to leave behind something better.”  We’ve now seen the result of having liberated the country from a that dictatorship and throwing it into the arms of anarchy.

We invaded Iraq. Left Iraq. Now are going back to Iraq. This time it looks like we’ll be there forever. But the Christian Iraqis who left Iraq cannot go back. Where they lived will become Christianfrei forever. They had their neighbors turn on them and murder them. They can’t go home again.

As a Christian nation we felt we had a moral obligation to do nation building in the Muslim nations of Iraq and Afghanistan. We threw away billions of dollars, and are still doing it, to help these nations get back on their feet. Do we not then have a moral obligation to assist our fellow Christians in their time of plight caused by our actions?

It is not only in Iraq that the Christians are being persecuted. In Egypt and in parts of Africa they suffer for their beliefs. There is not much we can do about that but we should not ignore it. But there is something that we can do to the Iraqis Christians driven from their homes and into desperate straits as a result of our actions

We should open our doors to these people and let them come to the land where people are judged by the content of their character and where there will never be religious persecutions because we have learned to live together as Americans and not tribes. We must immediately send aid directly to those people so that their sufferings are minimized. Especially must we do this because we are the primary cause of it. Then open the doors to them. Why not each church parish take in one or more families.

I suggest, especially to those of us who are fellow Christians to those suffering, we sacrifice a little time on their behalf to write to the president or a member of Congress asking them to help these poor souls. Bring their plight to the attention of others. Contribute something to those NGOs that are aiding them.

“For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home.”   

 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Why The Silence and Turning Away from Our Fellow Christians Who We Endangered?

  1. “Luke 10:25-37 New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)

    The Parable of the Good Samaritan
    25 Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus.[a] “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” 27 He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.”

    29 But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii,[b] gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

    Footnotes:
    a: Luke 10:25 Gk him
    b: Luke 10:35 The denarius was the usual day’s wage for a laborer

    At the time of this parable, Judeans held Samaritans in extremely low esteem. Priests and Levites would be required to undergo ritual purification after tending to someone’s wounds, or they would be considered unclean. Samaritans did not have that cultural inhibition. This particular Samaritan cared enough for his neighbor to delay his journey, care for the wounded man, and then pay for the innkeeper to continue that care until the Samaritan’s return.

    The attitude of “let someone else take care of that problem” persists. The concept of what is the right the right thing to do even though it is costly both personally and financially was as difficult to understand and to implement well 2000 years ago as it is today. There are many “Christian” nations, but few are calling for action to protect their fellow Christians in other nations. Would they not be considered their “neighbors”? Or are they insisting that their fellow Christians “turn the other cheek” and die submissively?

    In his inaugural speech, President John F. Kennedy proclaimed ” Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.” Liberty includes the right to free expression of religion.

    President Barak H. Obama is not President John F. Kennedy.

    1. Ed:

      Thanks, Excellent post. Kennedy said we will support any friend in order to assure the survival and success of liberty. Ukraine is seeking its liberty and reaching out to us. President Obama said last week according to a column in the Wall Street Journal: “We do very little trade with Ukraine and geopolitically it doesn’t — what happens in Ukraine doesn’t pose a direct threat to us.” Quite a change it attitudes: one time we helped those striving for freedom, now we don’t do that anymore because they don’t trade with us and if they go down it doesn’t affect us. That was the attitude of England when Hitler gobbled up parts of Europe. Obama has us on a downward spiral.

  2. What opened the door to ISIS was Obama’s decision, against the advice of all his military advisors, to withdraw all US troops from Iraq which created the vacuum for ISIS’s advance without opposition. Christians would not be being slaughtered in Iraq if the US had maintained a military presence long enough to stabilize the nascent Iraqi government and military. Bush had it right. Obama screwed it up — big time.

    1. Aspen:

      Christians began being slaughtered and driven out of Iraq shortly after our invasion. Once the Shia came to power one of their goals was to attack them. Their numbers dropped substantially long before we pulled out. The few hardy ones who remained are being driven out by IS.
      The last American troops left Iraq on December 18, 2011. An article in the Guardian a year before that is headlined: Christian exodus from Iraq gathers pace. The article notes: “Iraq’s Christian population has halved since the ousting of Saddam Hussein. But in the past two months, the rate of departure has soared.” While the US had its presence in Iraq
      The article noted: “It has been the worst of years for the country’s Christians, with thousands fleeing in the past month and more leaving the country during 2010 than at any time since the invasion nearly eight years ago. Christian leaders say there have been few more defining years in their 2,000-year history in central Arabia.” That was when our troops were still there.
      It was Bush’s war and it’s sort of silly to blame Obama for what happened because of it.

  3. Excellent post, Matt, Apsen and Ed: I would invite others to come to this country: the five thousand members of the CIA-manufactured FSA (free Syrian Army; FSA rather than being trained, armed and sent to the slaughter, should be invited here. 2. We should arm Assad and let him wipe out ISIS. Assad never threatened us nor beheaded, nor otherwise harmed any American citizen. Syria under Assad has been protective of Christians and has not, to my knowledge, attacked Israel. Let Syria be. 3. Wipe out ISIS: Help to do so with our air/naval-missile power; ISIS is a Satanic force, (as even the Pope recognizes) 4. Help Christians and non-Christians throughout the world WHERE FEASIBLE against the thugs and thuggery, while at the same time recognizing that the we, the US, cannot intervene in every civil war and should not! 5. We should recognize Spheres of Influence where we simply don’t belong: for example, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Tibet’s borders with China, Columbia, the Falkland Islands. 6. We should intervene, however, to eradicate the international cabals engaged in narcotic and cocaine (especially crack cocaine) trafficking; drug trafficking indeed does directly and indirectly harm and threaten Americans (users and victims of addicts’ criminal and/or reckless behaviors); addictions to hard drugs do kill and figuratively behead American citizens.

    1. William:
      One does have to pick and choose. We can’t invite everyone to the country but the Christain families driven from their homes by people who rose because of our actions should be at the top of the list.
      2. It would be interesting to go back to the beginning of the revolt against Assad. It was part of the Arab Spring. Uprisings occurred in Egypt and Syria; the military eventually took over Egypt after they let the people vote an Islamic party into power; Assad never stepped down like Mubarak so we decided to help those trying to overthrow him without wondering what would happen if he wasn’t quickly toppled. Now we know. We’ve got a mess on our hands. The Christains in Syria lived in peace under Assad. If a Sunni Muslim group takes over, whether Western leaning or Islamic, it’s not going to bode well for the Christians. Why did we turn against him in the first place?
      3. It’s too late to wipe out ISIS. It’s learned from all our previous mistakes. It is embedded in the cities. To destroy it means making more enemies. That’s always been the problem when you fight wars; the dead leave behind people who want to venge themselves on the killers. We’ve created a monster — all we really can hope is that it doesn’t come here but I’m feeling it will soon.
      4/5. Truly said. But we have given our word to help Japan, Philippines, Europe and Israel. We cannot go back on those commitments if they fall under attack by outside forces. Peace is nice if everyone is on board. Tianamen Square should have abused all of the right that peaceful actions are enough.
      6. Someone once said ou will always have drugs with you. Yes, its true drugs do kill but where there is a demand it will be met. You can’t blame the government for the drug problem, blame the people who use the drugs. The government has put a massive effort into eradicating drugs but it can onl do so much.

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