Ralph Peters: '2000 Years of Christian Civilization Destroyed on Obama's Watch'
The Islamic State has managed to destroy two thousand years of Christian civilization in the Middle East in just a couple of years, Lt. Col. Ralph Peters noted on The O'Reilly Factor last week. And he placed the blame squarely on President Obama's cowardly, feckless, incompetent foreign policy.
ISIS has been spreading across the Middle East like a plague of locusts, and as they have spread, they have targeted religious minorities, particularly Christians, for destruction. In Syria, tens of thousands of Assyrian Christians have been attacked and displaced.
They are the forgotten refugees.
A Catholic priest who visited Kurdish Iraq last fall described the wounded souls of the Christians who had taken refuge there. They had been forced from their homes in northern Iraq in the summer of 2014.
“Without question, we are talking about genocide here. Genocide is not only when the people are killed, but also when the soul of a people is destroyed. And that is what is happening in Iraq now,” Fr. Andrzej Halemba, head of Aid to the Church in Need's Middle East section, said Oct. 28. “It is the most tragic thing that I have ever experienced.”
“I have seen people who have been deeply wounded in their soul. In the various crises in this world I have often seen people who have lost everything. But in Iraq there are Christians who have had to leave everything and take flight three or four times. They can see no light at the end of the tunnel.”
Last spring, hundreds of Assyrian Christians fled to Lebanon after ISIS jihadists stormed their villages in Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakeh.
Members of Lebanon’s Assyrian community did their best to welcome the new refugees, but the displacement had left them traumatized.
The group has seized at least 11 of the 33 Assyrian villages in the region, and kidnapped more than 200 members of the ancient Christian sect, which numbered around 30,000 in Syria before the war …
“The villages of Khabur are empty now, there is no one left except some fighters,” lamented Chorbishop Yatron Koliana, as he oversaw the distribution at his diocese.
“Our people have experienced a great tragedy in Syria,” he added with a sigh, saying that many of the new arrivals were traumatized. “They are depressed. Some of them have chronic illnesses. Their lives are difficult.”
“How can we be comfortable, living on aid?” asked 50-year-old Simaan, who fled his village Tal Hormuz.
He railed against what he called international indifference to the plight of Assyrians under attack by ISIS in Syria and neighboring Iraq.
“The whole world, from the UN to the United States and Russia, is responsible,” he said angrily. “They (ISIS) have destroyed our whole civilization…and the world is watching.”
In July, 4,000 more Assyrian Christian families were among the 120,000 people who fled Hasakeh to escape ISIS forces who had entered the city looking to carry out a mass ethno-religious slaughter.
Fleeing Muslim persecution, Christian refugees are often targeted and persecuted anew by fleeing Muslim refugees.
An egregious example from last April: 12 Christian refuges lost their lives during a particularly harrowing trip — not due to their boat capsizing, but through Islamic violence.
The International Business Times reported:
Italian police have arrested 15 Muslim immigrants in Palermo, for allegedly having thrown Christian refugees off the rubber boat that was taking them to Italy after a fight for “religious reasons”, according to media reports.
Those arrested – from Mali, Guinea and Ivory Coast – were part of a group of 100 that were rescued off the Libyan coast by the Italian coastguard.
The archbishop of Canterbury recently warned British Prime Minister David Cameron that his government's refugee policy was discriminating against Christians because Christians are not among the refugees being helped in UN camps. They're not in the UN camps because they fear persecution from radicalized Muslim refugees.