In one of the greatest brain-washings in human history, William F. Buckley Jr. turned antiwar conservatives into pro-war progressives. Soon after, American Christianity became more of a cultural movement and voting bloc with a set of rules, than a meaningful spiritual journey. America would never be the same again.
Then along came George W. Bush, lock-step support of his wars ... and the Middle East will never be the same again either. Because as we speak, Christians are literally being wiped off the ME map. "Collateral damage" in the war on Muslims.
Go ahead ... Call me "anti-American" if it makes you feel better. Sticks and stones. But the fact remains that your "super serial" "realpolitik" support for the mass slaughter of Muslims, necessarily means you support the mass slaughter of Christians too.
On October 15, Syrian Catholic Archbishop Athanase Matti Shaba Matoka of Baghdad delivered one of the most memorable interventions during the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East-- words made even more poignant by the October 31 attack on worshippers at his cathedral. Catholic World News reprints his remarks below.
Since the year 2003, Christians are the victims of a killing situation, which has provoked a great emigration from Iraq. Even if there are no definite statistics, however the indicators underline that half the Christians have abandoned Iraq and that without a doubt there are only about 400,000 Christians left of the 800,000 that lived there. The invasion of Iraq by America and its allies brought to Iraq in general, and especially to its Christians, destruction and ruin on all levels. Churches were blown up, bishops and priests and lay persons were massacred, many were the victims of aggression. Doctors and businessmen were kidnapped, others were threatened, storage places and homes were pillaged …
Seven years have passed and Christianity is still bleeding. Where is the world conscience? All the world remains a spectator before what is happening in Iraq, especially with regards to Christians.
We want to sound the alarm. We ask the question of the great powers: is it true what is said that there is a plan to empty the Middle East of Christians and that Iraq is one of the victims?
Sunday, on the eve of All Saints’ Day, Nov. 1, 2010, the faithful gathered at the Assyrian Catholic Church of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad.
As Father Wassim Sabih finished the mass, eight al-Qaeda stormed in, began shooting and forced him to the floor. As the priest pleaded that his parishioners be spared, they executed him and began their mission of mass murder.
When security forces broke in, the killers threw grenades to finish off the surviving Christians and detonated explosive-laden vests to kill the police. The toll was 46 parishioners and two priests killed, 78 others wounded, many in critical condition after losing limbs.
Within 48 hours, al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia issued a bulletin: “All Christian centers, organizations and institutions, leaders and followers, are legitimate targets for the (holy warriors).”
It was the worst massacre of Christians yet. For Assyrian Catholics known as Chaldeans, whose ancestors were converted by St. Thomas the Apostle, the U.S. war of liberation has been seven years of hell.
Estimates of the number of Christians in Iraq in 2003 vary from 800,000 to 1.5 million. But hundreds of thousands have fled since the invasion. Seven of the 14 churches in Baghdad have closed, and two-thirds of the city’s 500,000 Christians are gone.
While Saddam Hussein, a secularist, had protected religious minorities, Muslim vigilantes — Shia, Sunni and Kurd, as well as al-Qaeda — have attacked the Christians who have endured kidnappings, pillage, rapes, beheadings and assassinations.
Why is Christianity being murdered in its cradle by Muslim fanatics?
Multiple reasons. A return of Islamic militancy. The rise of ethnic nationalism that conflates tribal and religious identity. Hatred of America for its domination of the region, for our war on terror that they see as a war on Islam and for our support of Israel in its suppression of the Palestinians.
Christians across the Middle East are now seen as both members of an alien religion and a fifth column of the Crusaders inside their camp.
Paul Marshall of Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom warns that we may be in another great wave of persecution, “as Christians flee the Palestinian areas, Lebanon, Turkey, and Egypt.”
Christians are gone from Jerusalem, gone from Nazareth, gone from Bethlehem. From Egypt to Iran, the Vatican counts 17 million left.
“Across the Middle East,” writes Robert Fisk in The Independent, “it is the same story of despairing — sometimes frightened — Christian minorities, and of an exodus that reaches almost Biblical proportions.”
America remains the most Christianized of the Western nations. Yet, the protests of the White House, State Department and major media over the eradication of Christianity in the Middle East is muted.
Where is the outrage?
Of what worth these wars for democracy if we end up freeing fanatics to annihilate communities or expel populations of our own Christian brothers and sisters across the Middle East?
"Where is the outrage?" There can't be any outrage. Conservative Pro-War Orthodoxy forbids it. Just ask the (supposedly) former-communist David Horowitz. War has no undesirable consequences. War gnosticism trumps Christianity. War is America!
There is nothing remotely "conservative" about war. War is pro-government, pro-despot, pro-collectivist, pro-revolutionary, pro-inflation, anti-society, and anti-Christian. Nation-building is pro-central planning and utopian. Nation-building is the very definition of "to immanentize the eschaton."
Today, thanks to the blind support of a war that allowed American blood to be shed to build an Islamic State, Christians are being eradicated to make the Middle East wholly Islamic for the first time in history.
How will this lead to peace with the West?