There are virtually no Jews left in Iraq. There used to be Jews there – 130,00+, but most have fled, many to Israel. And now, one Christian leader in Iraq fears Christians will suffer the same (or a worse) fate.
Baghdad’s Monsignor Pios Cacha made a grim prediction. He said that his Iraqi Christian community was experiencing the kind of religious cleansing that eradicated the country’s once-thriving Jewish community half a century before.
His rather prophetic words made headlines in Lebanon’s DailyStar: “Iraqi Christians fear fate of departed Jews.”
One of the goal’s of ISIS, the terrorist group with ties to Al Qaeda, is to either force submission of all to radical Islam or drive Iraqi Christians from their homes. They are getting dangerously close to achieving this goal.
Christians have been part of what is now Iraq since the 1st century. Now, facing the threat of coerced conversion or death, they flee.
Christians in the Middle East know very well about the ferocious system of Islam enforced by ISIS terrorists. When the group attacked Raqqa, Syria earlier this year, they gave the Christians three options: “Convert. Submit to Islam. Or face the sword.”
The campaign against Christians has encompassed 70 deliberate church bombings and assaults, as well as assassinations, an epidemic of kidnappings, and other attacks against clergy and laity alike. In recent years, particularly since 2004, a million of Iraq’s Christians have been driven out of the country by such atrocities. This can be rightly called targeted religious cleansing, and it is a crime against humanity.
Louis Salko, Chaldean Catholic patriarch, implores the West for help: “We sometimes wonder, if they kill us all, what would be the reaction of Christians in the West? Would they do something then?”
Griffiths warns that the benefits of globalization are predicated on the culture that it reflects, and urges Christians to work to ensure that globalization reflects the principles of Christian anthropology rather than narrowly secularist alternatives.