The Corner

Re: The Shadow War Against Syria’s Christians

Today, the Vatican press agency Fides provides more details about the Islamist rebels’ new sharia courts that I reported on yesterday. These Islamic courts, manned by a Saudi judge and others, have been established in the Idlib countryside, in Syria’s northwest, the area where Fr. Francois Murad was murdered last month. The rebels are calling this territory they’ve now conquered the “Caliphate of Saraqib.”

Farid, a local Syrian Muslim and social activist, told Fides about what he termed “an ideology of ethnic cleansing,” and described the working of the courts as follows:

In this situation, inconceivable for the history and tradition of Syria, everything becomes possible. We live in an atmosphere of terror, in insecurity. It is possible for beheadings to occur — he explains — because for this ideology the infidel must be beheaded. For other minor offenses, the men’s limbs are mutilated, beaten or flogged. A fatwa is sufficient and any abuse of human rights becomes legal, especially on minorities such as Christians, Alawites, Ismaili, Shia, Druze, but also on the Sunni Muslims. The Islamists freely dispose of the life of religious minorities. The minorities are spared for ‘clemency’ only if they pay the jizya, the tax imposed by the Muslim majority.

No doubt it was this situation that prompted the recent lament of Rev. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the head of the Franciscan Custodianship of the Holy Land: “The world must know that the support of gunmen by the West is helping extremists in killing Syrians. With such stances, not a single Christian will remain in the East.”

 

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More
Elections

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More
U.S.

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More