Over the summer of 2013 Egypt witnessed its worst anti-Christian violence in centuries, with dozens of churches burned down by supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood. In Syria Islamist gunmen occupy the faith’s holiest site, while the Civil War has given Sunni extremists the chance to empty Christian villages through ‘religious cleansing’. And ten years after the fall of SadOver the summer of 2013 Egypt witnessed its worst anti-Christian violence in centuries, with dozens of churches burned down by supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood. In Syria Islamist gunmen occupy the faith’s holiest site, while the Civil War has given Sunni extremists the chance to empty Christian villages through ‘religious cleansing’. And ten years after the fall of Saddam, Iraq’s pre-war Christian population has fallen from a million to 200,000 and now barely clings on. Yet this greatest and most tragic of historical events of the 21st century has been met with near apathy in the West. In The Silence of Our Friends: The Extinction of Christianity in the Middle East, Spectator blogger and Catholic Herald deputy editor Ed West looks at the tragedy that has befallen Christian communities in the region where the faith first took hold, and asks whether there is anything the west can do, or if it will soon be the last Christmas in the land of St Paul....
|Title||:||the silence of our friends|
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||55 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
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the silence of our friends Reviews
Damning and timely, this short book focuses on the plight of modern-day Christians in the Middle East. I strongly recommend this book to anyone who wants to know what our culture and media so often, and dangerously, neglect to report.
A dispiriting taleThis important book terms the very depressing recent history of the Christians in the middle east. Whether you are religion or not, we all need to have freedom of thought and beliefs, and this book reveals the great threat to this liberty
This is a very quick read, but a sobering one. Ed West highlights the intensifying persecution in 21st century of Christians in the Middle East, in the form of the wholesale destruction and ethnic cleansing of ancient Christian communities. West's title refers to the ignorance and seeming apathy of the Western world in response. Westerners are quick to jump to the aid of persecuted minorities the world over, but outside of certain evangelical and Roman Catholic circles, Christian persecution is rarely discussed or highlighted. This isn't street evangelists being mocked on Youtube or bakers facing fines for not making a cake for a gay wedding - this is serious, horrific persecution through (in some cases) government-sanctioned pogroms.Although the book is not long, West highlights that American foreign policy often turns a blind eye to its impact on religious minorities throughout the Middle East - witness the decimation of the Iraqi Christian community in the years following the 2003 invasion, and the point blank refusal of the Bush and Obama administrations to offer concrete protection to those who face real danger of torture, death, and dispossession.The book also makes an interesting point. Most Westerners, whether personally Christian or not, rarely think of their culture or society as a "Christian" one in the way that we routinely think of the entire Middle East as an "Islamic" society. Many of the attacks on Christian minorities, however, have been justified by their perpetrators as revenge for the actions of their perceived "Christian" allies e.g. the American president and government. Minority Christians, therefore, are caught in a terrible bind - they are blamed by their neighbours for the actions of Western powers in their region, but those Western powers routinely refuse to offer real protection since they do not view themselves as having any special responsibility to Christians in the Middle East.
The short book is a very good introduction to the plight of the minority Christian community, being systematically slaughtered in the Middle East. Granted all the minority groups are in dire danger of total obliteration but so are the all the moderate and hard working Muslims, who are being systematically butchered and driven away from their homes. The emergence of Saudi and Qatari sponsored ISIS in recent times highlights a very important point which Ed has failed to mention, oil. Zimbabwe also has a minority crying out for help but unfortunately cannot seem to get any attention from Western governments because potatoes are a lot cheaper than oil.So why is Middle East so divisive and fractious? Is it worst than the Balkans or Africa? Is there an effective solution to the constant stream of bad news coming out of the Middle East? Creating another country for the various disenfranchised minorities in Iraq is not the right approach. Taking a tougher stance with Saudi Arabia and not placating Qatar with Football World cups could be a good start in the opinion of a moderate Muslim like me. If creating countries in the Middle East is directly responsible for the current sad state of affairs then how will his new country work? Why does Ed West not openly challenge the Western countries to take a positively moral stance against Saudi and Qatar funded islamisation drive, which is the real issue behind the anarchy. Heads and limbs have been chopped off for years in Saudi Arabia with only a whimper of protest in the Western Media. Why can't Saudi Arabia be penalised like an Iran or Pakistan? Instead we see the enlightened West coming to its rescue when Kuwait was invaded and there was marginal risk to the Saudis. Its completely futile expecting the moderate muslims to tackle an issue when the powerful Western governments are completely spineless when dealing with oil rich Saudis and Qataris.
Short, startling and chilling polemic on the persecution of Christians in the Middle East in the past decade and the way the media and politicians in the West have ignored this violent attack on a minority. West writes clearly and raises awareness of an appalling situation.
An excellent summary of the sectarian violence perpetrated against Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. Meanwhile, the West yawns and turns a blind eye, more interested by the plight of gays at the Olympic games in Sochi and the size of your carbon footprint.
Shaming & heart-breaking, this is a side-effect of Western interference into Middle Eastern matters (especially Iraq, & Syria) that politicians have signally failed to take into account, and seem oblivious of the ramifications. Equally shocking is the lack of any media coverage. Read and weep.
Worth readingSuch a lot to take in I may have to re-read it. Explains in detail the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and how little the West is doing to help. Religious freedom for all faiths should be our goal, but as yet that isn't the case.
Here's a history of the persecution of the church in the Middle East in less than 100 pages. Worth it.