Christmas Under Islam: Hardly a Season to be Jolly

December 25, 2011, was “Nigeria’s blackest Christmas ever”: in a number of coordinated jihadi attacks, several churches were bombed, killing over 40 people, “the majority dying on the steps of a Catholic church after celebrating Christmas Mass as blood pooled in dust from a massive explosion.” As expected, the New York Times all but apologized for the terrorists.

Christmas Eve in Uganda saw Muslims throw acid on a church leader, leaving him with severe burns, blinding one eye and threatening sight in the other.  The pastor was on his way to a church party when a man pretending to be a Christian approached him from behind, yelling, “Pastor, pastor.”  When he turned, the Muslim threw acid in his face while others poured it on his back, all running away while screaming Islam’s victory cry, “Allahu Akbar!”

In Muslim-majority Tajikistan, “a young man dressed as Father Frost — the Russian equivalent of Father Christmas — was stabbed to death” while visiting relatives and bringing gifts. Considering that the crowd beating and stabbing him were shouting “you infidel!” police cited “religious hatred” as motivation.

These are among the more violent and illegal attacks on Christians around Christmas time, undertaken by Muslim mobs and terrorists.  In their own way, however, Muslim governments — many deemed “friends” of America — also make Christmas a very “un-merry” time for celebrants.

For example, if  “vandals” in Indonesia “decapitated the statue of the Virgin Mary in a small grotto” days before Christmas, Indonesian officials have been shutting down churches; one “embattled church” fighting for survival was forced to move its Christmas prayers to a member’s house.

This pattern of treating Christian minorities as dhimmis — Sharia’s legal term for non-Muslims under Islam forced to live as despised, second-class citizens — is business as usual in the Muslim world. Some more Christmas-related examples follow:

  • Malaysia: Parish priests and church youth leaders had to get “caroling permits” — requiring them to submit their full names and ID numbers at police stations, an eerie practice for non-Muslim minorities under Islam — simply to “visit their fellow church members and belt out ‘Joy to the World,’ [or] ‘Silent Night, Holy Night.’”
  • Iran: While celebrating Christmas, a church was raided by State Security. All those present, including Sunday school children, were arrested and interrogated. Hundreds of Christian books were seized. The detained Christians suffered “considerable verbal abuses.”
  • Pakistan: “Intelligence reports warned of threats of terrorist attacks on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.” Christians also lamented that “extreme power outages have become routine during Christmas and Easter seasons.”

In closing, if people in the West think Christmas is a time of “peace on earth, good will toward man” — to the point of compromising this Christian holiday to appease their “fellow [Muslim] man” — they should know that, increasingly, it is neither a time of “peace” nor “goodwill” for Christians under Islam.