The Corner

Melkite Patriarch Absolves Islam, Blames ‘Zionist Conspiracy’

A friend who worries deeply about the Eastern Catholic Church e-mailed along this “latest Judeophobic calumny propagated by our clueless prelates in the Middle East”: According to the Daily Star, an English-language paper for Lebanese expats, the patriarch of the Antioch Church (Melkite Greek), Gregory III Laham, announced that there was a “Zionist conspiracy against Islam” behind al-Qaeda’s attack last month at a Catholic church in Baghdad. (Remember? The one where 58 innocent parishioners were slaughtered.)

Say what, Patriarch?! Concerning the “violence and disturbances against Christians here and there and on an increasing level,” well, don’t blame Osama bin Laden or the Taliban. “All this behavior has nothing to do with Islam,” says the Damascus-based Gregory. Instead, it is “a conspiracy planned by Zionism and some Christians with Zionist orientations and it aims at undermining and giving a bad image of Islam.”

Here’s a chunk from the Star article:

Sidon’s (Melkite) Greek Catholic Archdiocese was inaugurated over the weekend along with a center for Islamic and Christian studies, with speakers at the ceremony calling for dialogue of religions and emphasizing coexistence.

A number of religious figures, politicians and businessmen took part in opening the archdiocese which saw a number of refurbishments.

Gregory III Lahham, the patriarch of the Church of Antioch and the entire Levant for Melkite Greek Catholics, participated in the ceremony that took place under his patronage.

Attendees gathered at Saint Nicholas Cathedral inside the archdiocesan headquarters.

Lahham said that attacks against Levantine Christians reflected a “Zionist conspiracy against Islam.”

“I believe it is necessary to deeply examine fundamentalism … and terrorism that are masked by religion, along with violence and disturbances against Christians here and there and on an increasing level. All this behavior has nothing to do with Islam,” Lahham said.

“But it is actually a conspiracy planned by Zionism and some Christians with Zionist orientations and it aims at undermining and giving a bad image of Islam,” he added.

Gunmen from the Islamic State of Iraq — an Al-Qaeda affiliated organization — stormed Baghdad’s Our Lady of Salvation Church during Sunday Mass on November 1. More than 50 people were killed during an attempted hostage-rescue operation and doubts escalated over the future of the country’s Christians.

“And it is also a conspiracy against Arabs and the pre-dominantly Muslim Arab world that aims at depicting Arabs and Muslims in Arab countries as terrorist and fundamentalist murderers in order to deny them their rights and especially those of the Palestinians,” Lahham said.

The prelate said dialogue between Muslims and Christians was the best means to confront such a conspiracy.

“Dialogue, Islamic-Christian dialogue centers along with coexistence and solidarity here in Lebanon and in Arab countries represent the actual response to this conspiracy which targets us as Muslims and Christians and threatens our countries and generations,” Lahham said.

Most Popular

World

Trump’s Disgraceful Press Conference in Helsinki

On Monday, President Trump gave a deeply disgraceful press conference with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. The presser began with Trump announcing that although the Russia–U.S. relationship has “never been worse than it is now,” all of that “changed as of about four hours ago.” It was downhill from ... Read More
Culture

Questions for Al Franken

1)Al, as you were posting on social media a list of proposed questions for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, did it occur to you that your opinion on the matter is no more relevant than Harvey Weinstein’s? 2) Al, is it appropriate for a disgraced former U.S. senator to use the Twitter cognomen “U.S. ... Read More
National Security & Defense

Trump’s Helsinki Discord

Donald Trump is not, and never will be, the Moscow correspondent for The Nation magazine, and he shouldn’t sound like it. The left-wing publication is prone to extend sympathetic understanding to adversaries of the United States and find some reason, any reason, to blame ourselves for their external ... Read More