Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Nina Shea... NR, assesses the plight of Iraqi Christians. They live now - those who have not been abducted, sold into slavery or killed - in miserable conditions. Prospects of a military resolution seem grim. U.S. indifference to their plight did not begin with the Obama administration. Says Shea:

...there’s no reason to think that America would shape its defense policy to specifically help Iraqi Christians. This was true even during the Bush administration. When I asked about a safe haven for Christians in 2007, when mounting kidnappings and terrorism were directed against the Christians of Baghdad’s Dora neighborhood, the State Department’s coordinator for Iraq policy told me that it is “against U.S. policy to further sectarianism.” Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice confirmed that this was “the policy,” arguing that reducing violence would help all Iraqis, even though the U.S. helped empower, in turn, Shia, Sunnis, and Kurds. The Obama administration is no more inclined to help Iraq’s Christians. It took a public outcry for one Iraqi Catholic nun to get a visitor’s visa last month to testify before Congress on the plight of Christians in the Middle East...In May, Sister Diana Momeka of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena told me that 14 Catholic nuns from her convent have died from the ordeal of displacement. “This is cultural and human genocide,” as she told Congress. “This uprooting, this theft of everything that the Christians owned, displaced them body and soul, stripping away their humanity and dignity.”

Shea, who is director of the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom, makes a plea that sanctuary be found for these Christians (and Yazidis) in the West.

I am not optimistic. Even the beheadings of American reporters and Ethiopian Christians seem not to move us very much. We flap our lips in a pantomime of outrage, but we don't do anything.

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