Who’s Really Persecuting Christians? (COMMENTARY MAGAZINE) Jonathan S. Tobin 05/18/12)
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Last month CBS’s “60 Minutes” show earned itself some justified
criticism for a biased report about the treatment of Palestinian
Christians by Israel. As Alana noted then, the premise of the piece —
that routine security precautions on the part of Israeli forces has
led to a decline in the Christian population in the West Bank — was
preposterous. Why would Israeli measures cause Christian numbers to
diminish but not affect the rapidly growing Muslim population? Only a
determination to blame Israel for everything could have led the “60
Minutes” team to avoid the obvious explanation: the rise of militant
Islam in traditional Christian strongholds that has gradually forced
many Christians to flee the country. Israel remains the only country
in the Middle East where the rights of the Christian minority — which
is growing — are respected.
But the pushback against this calumny requires more background than
just a fact check about the West Bank. The Gatestone Institute has
published an important online monthly report about Muslim persecution
of Christians throughout Asia and Africa and it makes for frightening
reading. Even a brief summary of the litany of horrors being visited
upon Christians by Muslims puts the ridiculous accusations against
Israel in perspective.
* Attacks on churches took place in Azerbaijan, Indonesia, Kenya,
Nigeria, Sudan and Tunisia.
* Christians were threatened with death and imprisonment
for “blasphemy” and apostasy in Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Iran and
Pakistan. At the same time, Muslim terrorists have threatened
Christian pastors in the Philippines.
* In a separate category called “dhimmitude,” the report discusses
the “general abuse, debasement, and suppression of non-Muslims as
tolerated citizens.” Such incidents were recorded in Egypt, India,
Iran, Pakistan, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey.
The widespread scope of incidents of persecution throughout the
Muslim world ought to alarm Christians in the West. But for some
reason, it doesn’t. The Palestinians, whose goal is to eradicate the
one Jewish state in the world, seem to generate more sympathy in
Europe and America than the embattled Christians of the Third World.
All this took place in April of this year alone.
Those who purport to care about human rights undermine their already
shaky credibility when they ignore the far greater instances of abuse
of Christians by Arabs and Muslims while supporting the
delegitimization of the one democracy in the Middle East as well as
the one nation in the region that protects Christians.
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