Experts warn history repeating with expansionist Islam

via Experts warn history repeating with expansionist Islam.

It was the greatest defeat in the history of Christianity – and according to several Christian authors, history is repeating itself.

On May 29, 1453, the Ottoman empire under Sultan Mehmed II achieved the dream of Muslims for centuries and conquered Constantinople, proud capital of the Eastern Roman Empire and once the center of the Christian world.

The thick walls of the imperial city had held back the Islamic tide for so long the New Rome seemed invulnerable. But a European turncoat named Orban, eager for the high salary offered by the Ottomans, built large siege cannons for the Turks allowing them to finally breach the defenses.

Offered his life in exchange for surrendering the city, the final Roman emperor, Constantine XI Palaiologos, refused. Largely abandoned by the West, Constantine personally led the defense, aided only by a small group of Genovese under Giovanni Giustiniani. The siege began April 6, 1453, and the 7,000 defenders, outnumbered and outgunned by an estimated 60,000 Turks, were slowly choked off from supplies and food. On May 22, 1453, a lunar eclipse, by some accounts a “blood moon,” appeared over the city. The Romans saw it as the fulfillment of a prophecy of the doom of the city.

On the final night of the Eastern Roman Empire, the desperate population gathered in the Hagia Sophia, the great church built by the emperor Justinian. The emperor thanked the Genovese who had stayed with the defenders and urged his people to fight for the legacy of Greece and Rome. He spent the remainder of the night in prayer.

The next day, the towers were finally overrun, some say after one of the gates was opened by a traitor. According to the account in Lars Brownworth’s “Lost to the West,” the emperor threw off his imperial regalia and cried, “The city is lost, but I live!” Drawing his sword, he personally led a charge into the enemy ranks – and disappeared. To the fury of the Muslim conquerors, his body was never found. No one knows how the last Constantine met his end.

The people fled to the Hagia Sophia in panic, believing God would not let the church itself fall to the invaders. Yet the Muslims burst in even as a final service was being held, smashing the icons, desecrating the worship and slaughtering the priests and congregants. The city was looted for a full day before order was restored, all males of noble birth were murdered, and thousands of men, women and children were enslaved. The Hagia Sophia was transformed into a mosque. Victorious, Mehmed II added “Caesar” to his titles.

Though they had done little to prevent the conquest, the people of Western Europe were profoundly shocked by the fall of Constantinople. The Turks would continue their expansion until they finally were turned back in 1683 by a great European alliance at the Battle of Vienna – on the date of Sept. 11.

But some Christians warn the real Islamic offensive is just beginning, as once again the West is facing the forces of expansionist Islam, including jihadists who swear to re-establish a universal Islamic caliphate and conquer Rome itself. And just as Eastern Christians suffered under Islamic occupation and outright slavery for centuries, today Christians in what was once the heartland of the faith suffer martyrdom for remaining true to their Christian beliefs.

Joel Richardson, an expert on Islamic prophecy and a New York Times bestselling author of works including “The Islamic Antichrist” and “Mideast Beast,” sees the Christian world as falling prey today to the same short-sightedness, pettiness and greed that enabled the destruction of a great Christian civilization.

He told WND: “With the fall of Constantinople in 1453 to Mehmet II Fetih (the Conqueror) came the fall of the final vestiges of the historical Roman empire. It is a tragedy for many reasons.

“First, it was a defeat that could have easily been prevented had the European Christian states come to support their Eastern brethren. But due to political infighting, the Europeans sat back idly as this long shining gem of Christianity fell to the invading Turks.”

Richardson finds it impossible to ignore the parallels between the failure of Europeans to rescue Eastern Christians in the 15th century and the West’s abandonment of Middle Eastern Christians today.

“When I consider the suffering of our Christian brethren in Syria, Iraq and much of the Middle East today, and how relatively little support we are giving them, I see shadows of history being repeated.

“American Christians love the Gospel of  ‘the victorious life’ and the gospel of prosperity. Too many believe that in this present age we are called to live our best lives now, but too few believe we are called to suffer along with those who are suffering. If financial commitment is the barometer, then it is quite fair to say that American Christians love their dogs far more than they love their Eastern brethren. The Scriptures tell us that when one member of the body suffers, we all suffer.”

Richardson is also the director of the blockbuster documentary “End Times Eyewitness,” which traces the transformation of once secular Turkey into a radical Islamic state. Richardson sees the conquest of Constantinople as inspiring the Turkish Islamic radicals of today.

He explains: “Within Islamic prophecy, there is an alleged prophecy of Muhammad’s which says that the Muslims would conquer Constantinople – twice. As Mehmet’s armies surrounded the city, he sent Muslim preachers into the camps to proclaim these prophecies to the soldiers. The result was an army endued with profound sense of prophetic destiny. Conquering Constantinople, they believed, was their divinely ordained calling.

“As then, so also today are many of the Islamists throughout the region endued with this sense of prophetic destiny. Not only does ISIS believe they are being swept up by the waves of prophetic destiny, but so also do many of the Turks today believe this.

“Many of the Islamist Turks of the ruling Justice and Development (AKP) Party of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime Minister Davutoğlu believe that as they snatch their nation out of the control of the secular Kemalism established by Atatürk that has dominated Turkey for the past 80 plus years, they are fulfilling Muhammad’s prophecy of conquering Constantinople ‘a second time.’”

Richardson argues Islamic radicals are basing their actions on their own beliefs about the end times and warns, “Do not tell me that Islamic apocalyptic prophecies are not relevant.”

Erdoğan’s Turkey has been accused of providing “direct support” to ISIS and using the terrorist group as a tool for realizing its neo-Ottoman ambitions. Middle East expert and former Department of Defense senior security policy analyst Michael Maloof, author of the WND special report “ISIS Rising: Prelude to a Neo-Ottoman Caliphate,” says some experts believe “Ankara’s cooperation with the jihadist army could be part of a quiet plan to re-establish the Ottoman Empire.”

 Read it all.

Video: The Legacy of Arab-Islam in Africa – Author Interview

Azumah

via New English Review

An interview with John Alembillah Azumah, the author of “The Legacy of Arab-Islam In Africa“.

The Greek Genocide – 100 Years of Silence (Ottoman Jihad)

via 100 Years of Silence. h/t Euro News

By Thea Halo

In the struggle between denial and silence, silence wins hands down. That is, silence wins out over denial if the genocide of a people is to be complete. For almost 100 years, Pontic Greeks have mourned the loss of the 353,000 fathers, mothers, grandparents, children, friends and community members who were slaughtered outright, or who died agonizing deaths on long death marches to expulsion from 1916 to 1923. My mother was among them. Of the 2.6 million Greeks of Ottoman Turkey in 1914, over 700,000 additional Thracian and Anatolian Greeks were slaughtered, bringing the total Greek deaths to over one million.

Although the Pontic Greeks had settled on the southern shores and in the mountains along the Black Sea since 875 B.C., and other Greeks had settled in Anatolia since 1200 B.C., over 2,000 years before the first Turkish tribes invaded, today it’s difficult to find anyone who has heard of the Pontians or Anatolian Greeks, as if they never existed? Ditto for the Assyrians who had settlements in Asia minor dating back four thousand years before the genocide that took the lives of at least 275,000 Assyrians, more than half their population. As with the Pontic Greeks, until recently, it was rare to find anyone who knew Assyrians still existed in the modern world.

Armenian scholars rightfully criticize the Turkish government for the denial of the Armenian Genocide that took place 100 years ago. However, it’s rarely mentioned that the first target of what, for many, has become know exclusively as The Armenian Genocide, began against the Greeks under Ottoman rule in Thrace in the spring of 1913, before the commencement of WWI, and then in the summer of 1914 against the Anatolian Greeks who lived along the western coast of Turkey. Boycotts against Greek shops and goods, massacres of Greeks in towns and villages -instigated by Young Turk propaganda – and conscription of Greek men into the dreaded labor battalions, where they were worked and starved to death, was responsible for hundreds of thousands of Greek deaths.

How did the Young Turks incite hatred against former neighbors? US Consul General George Horton, who was stationed at Smyrna from 1911 to 1917 and again from May 1919 to September 1922, reported that in the spring of 1914, the Aegean Coast Greeks were demonized to induce the Turkish population to destroy them. Horton wrote:

[V]iolent and inflammatory articles in the Turkish newspapers appeared unexpectedly and without any cause … so evidently “inspired” by the authorities … Cheap lithographs … executed in the clumsiest and most primitive manner … represented Greeks cutting up Turkish babies or ripping open pregnant Moslem women, and various purely imaginary scenes, founded on no actual events or even accusations elsewhere made. These were hung in the mosques and schools. … and set the Turk to killing….”

The sequence of events is noteworthy. U.S. Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau Sr., reported at the time that the Young Turks were so successful against the Greeks, that they decided to go after the other “races” as well… the Assyrians and Armenians. Just as Kristallnacht in Nazi Germany signaled the beginning of a full-blown genocide of the Jews, the pogroms against the Thracian and Anatolian Greeks signaled the beginning of a full-blown genocide of the Christians under Ottoman rule, Greeks, Assyrians, and Armenians.

In October 1914, the Assyrians were the next Christian people to be targeted through displacement, without care for their survival. In 1915, both Armenians and Assyrians were subjected to massacres and death marches to expulsion. In 1916, the Pontic Greeks along the Black Sea coast were targeted. Some Pontians were locked in churches and burned alive.

In June 1918, four months before the end of the Great War, the Chicago Daily Tribune reported that at least 1,000,000 Greek men, women, and children had perished as a result of organized massacres and deportations by “the Turco-Teutons” in Asiatic Turkey. On October 30, 1918, the Armistice of Mudros was signed, officially bringing Ottoman participation in the war to an end, but the massacres, death marches, and labor camp conscriptions continued. A New York Times Article dated December 8, 1918, affirms that:

“(…) the Turkish authorities, despite Turkey’s defeat, are pursuing a brutal attitude towards the Christian populations of the empire and are inciting the Ottoman people to fanatical outrages against the non-Moslems. (…) Many signs of organizing among the Turks for new massacres of Christians, and particularly Greeks, are noted.”

While it’s true that denial of this crime is unconscionable, denial has at least kept the memory of the Armenians in the minds, and hopefully the hearts, of the general public. However, where news and diplomatic reports were numerous at the time, today there is usually silence. Silence surrounding the Christian Genocide by the Ottoman and Kemalist regimes between 1913 and 1923 have, until now, rendered the genocide of the Greeks and Assyrians complete. In fact, for the general public, silence over the last 100 years has effectively erased all memory of Pontic Greeks and Assyrians, co-victims of the Armenians, as if they never existed.

Consul General of Greece, George Iliopoulos said at this year’s May 19th Pontian Commemoration Ceremony at Bowling Green in NYC, “an atrocity can be forgiven, but should not be forgotten. Remorse is painful and demonstrates spiritual superiority. Forgetting… shows an inability to comprehend and accept history’s lessons and demonstrates disrespect for the victims. It is also a form of complicity. We need not allow the world or Turkey to forget.”

Senator Leonidas Raptakis joined with other Rhode Island senators to declare May 19th a day of solemn remembrance of the Pontian Genocide, and reminded the gathering at Bowling Green, that “it is vital and proper to those who lost their lives in the Pontian Genocide, and it is paramount that people of all nations look at this horrific event in our world’s not-so-distant history as a way to learn a valuable lesson, so that such atrocities are not tolerated and are never committed again.”

We could start with a U.S. Resolution that recognizes the genocide, not only of the Armenians, but of the 3 million Christians under Ottoman and Kemalist rule, Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks who were slaughtered by various means between 1913 and 1923, which brought four millennia of Christian presence in Turkey to a cruel and bitter end in a matter of 10 short years.

For a personal account of the genocide of all three Christian peoples, see Not Even My Name.

 

Islamic Conquest of India – One of Bloodiest in History (VIDEO)

Whatcha gonna do when they come for you?

Related: (note, most of the previous videos have vanished down the memory hole)

 

Koran: ‘Don’t Take Jews and Christians as Friends’

via Don’t Take Jews and Christians as Friends?

by Dr. Stephen M. Kirby

Some claim that Chapter 5, Verse 51 of the Koran prohibits Muslims from being friends with Jews and Christians. Others claim that there are various ways of interpreting this verse, and that this verse is only advising Muslims not to take Jews and Christians as, for example, legal or spiritual advisers. Because the Koran is considered the timeless Word of Allah to be followed by Muslims, let’s see which claim is supported by Islamic doctrine.

The Koran

Since most Muslims do not speak Arabic, the Koran has been translated into numerous languages to help Muslims learn about their faith. Since it is blasphemy to provide an incorrect translation of the meaning of a Koran verse, there is a tremendous burden on the shoulders of the translator to make sure the translation accurately reflects the Arabic verse. With this in mind, let’s look at how 5:51 has been translated into English by Muslim scholars in five different modern translations of the Koran:

O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as Auliya’ (friends, protectors, helpers), they are but Auliya’ of each other. And if any amongst you takes them as Auliya’, then surely, he is one of them. Verily, Allah guides not those people who are the Zalimun (polytheists and wrongdoers and unjust).

Interpretation of the Meanings of The Noble Qur’an, trans. Khan and Al-Hilali (2007)

O ye who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians for friends. They are friends one to another. He among you who taketh them for friends is (one) of them. Lo! Allah guideth not wrongdoing folk.

The Meaning of the Glorious Koran, trans. Marmaduke Pickthall (1930; rpt. 1992)

You who believe! do [sic] not take the Jews and Christians as your friends; they are the friends of one another. Any of you who takes [sic] them as friends is one of them. Allah does not guide wrongdoing people.

The Noble Qur’an: A New Rendering of its Meaning in English, trans. Abdalhaqq and Aisha Bewley (2011)

O ye who believe! take [sic] not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors: They are but friends and protectors to each other. And he amongst you that turns to them (for friendship) is of them. Verily Allah guideth not a people unjust.

 The Meaning of the Holy Qur’an, trans. Abdullah Yusuf Ali (2010)

For some years the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has been distributing a particular translation of the Koran at no charge. This translation was done by Muhammad Asad, and here is how he translated 5:51:

 O YOU who have attained to faith! Do not take the Jews and the Christians for your allies: they are but allies of one another – and whoever of you allies himself with them becomes, verily, one of them; behold, God does not guide such evildoers.

The Message of the Qur’an, trans. Muhammad Asad (2003)

In Footnote 72 for this verse, Asad explained that “allies” meant “friendship”:

According to most of the commentators (e.g. Tabari), this means that each of these two communities extends genuine friendship only to its own adherents – i.e., the Jews to the Jews, and the Christians to the Christians – and cannot, therefore, be expected to be really friendly towards the followers of the Qur’an.

The Koran Commentaries (Tafsirs)

Asad referred to commentators who have provided an explanation for this verse. Asad is referring to authoritative Islamic scholars who have written commentaries (tafsirs) on the Koran that Muslims have used for centuries to understand the meaning of each verse. So let’s see how some of those authoritative scholars have explained 5:51.

In a section titled The Prohibition of Taking the Jews, Christians and Enemies of Islam as Friends, Ibn Kathir explained this verse by pointing out that,

 Allah forbids His believing servants from having Jews and Christians as friends, because they are the enemies of Islam and its people, may Allah curse them. Allah then states that they are friends of each other and He gives a warning threat to those who do this, And if any among you befriends them, then surely he is one of them.

Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Vol. 3, p. 204

The Tafsir Al-Jalalayn (p. 256) explained that this verse meant Muslims were not to join Jews and Christians “in mutual friendship and love,” or “in their unbelief.”

The Tafsir Ibn ‘Abbas (p. 143) stated that Muslims who take Jews and Christians as friends are “not included in Allah’s protection and safety.”

One might point out that these three tafsirs were written centuries ago, and then make the claim that the understanding of this verse has surely been “modernized.” So let’s look at two, more recent tafsirs.

The Tafsir as-Sa’di was written in the early 20th century. Here is how 5:51 is explained:

 Allah, while describing to His believing servants the ignorant condition and unethical demeanor of the Jews and the Christians, orders them to not maintain alliance with them. This is because the Christians and the Jews aid one another and are united in their opposition of others. You should not make them your allies; rather, they are your enemies and they care not the least concerning your loss; they will leave no stone unturned to misguide you. Only a person who is like them will make alliance with them.

Tafsir as-Sa’di, Vol. 1, p. 512

The Tafsir Ahsanul-Bayan was first published on 1995; here is how this tafsir explained 5:51:

 The verse forbids Muslims to keep intimate relations with them and take them as protectors and helpers, because they are the enemies of Allah, the Muslims, and Islam. It should be noted that those who take them as protectors and helpers will be considered among them.

Tafsir Ahsanul-Bayan, Vol. 1, p. 616

So here we have five authoritative tafsirs joining together in explaining that 5:51 prohibits Muslims from being friends with Jews and Christians; and in the context of this verse, three of these tafsirs (including the two most modern) specifically refer to Jews and Christians as the enemies of Islam.

Additional Evidence

The idea that Muslims should not take Jews and Christians as friends is reinforced in the following verses of the Koran:

Chapter 5, Verse 82

Verily, you will find the strongest among men in enmity to the believers (Muslims) the Jews…

Chapter 9, Verse 29

Fight against those who believe not in Allah, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad), and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islam) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.

Chapter 98, Verse 6

Verily, those who disbelieve (in the religion of Islam, the Qu’ran and Prophet Muhammad) from among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) and Al-Mushrikun, will abide in the fire of Hell. They are the worst of creatures.

These ill-feelings towards Jews and Christians were repeated in teachings of Muhammad, e.g.:

 Abu Huraira reported that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) had said: Do not greet the Jews and the Christians before they greet you and when you meet any one of them on the roads force him to go to the narrowest part of it.

Sahih Muslim, No. 2167

Narrated Abu Hurairah: Allah’s Messenger said, “The Hour will not be established until you fight against the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say, ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.’”

Sahih Al-Bukhari, No. 2926

Muhammad even said that Jews and Christians would take the place of Muslims in Hell:

 Abu Burda reported on the authority of his father that Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) said: No Muslim would die but Allah would admit instead of him a Jew or a Christian in Hell-Fire.

Sahih Muslim, No. 2767R1

And on his death bed Muhammad had this to say regarding Jews and Christians:

 It has been narrated by ‘Umar b. Al-Khattab that he heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) saying: I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslims.

Sahih Muslim, No. 1767

Conclusion

In 5:51 Allah commands Muslims not to be friends with Jews and Christians. This understanding is supported by five modern translations of the Koran; the message of additional verses of the Koran; five authoritative tafsirs, written at different times between circa 900-1995 AD; and the teachings of Muhammad.

But what about Muslims who appear to be friends with Jews and Christians in defiance of Allah’s timeless command? There are a number of explanations:

  1. In reality they might be following another command of Allah: Chapter 3, Verse 28 of the Koran allows Muslims to pretend to be friends with non-Muslims if those Muslims live in a non-Muslim society and fear for their safety.
  1. They might just decide they can actively deny certain verses in the Koran. But Muhammad had a warning about this:

 It was narrated from Ibn ‘Abbas that the Messenger of Allah said: “Whoever denies a Verse of the Qur’an, it is permissible to strike his neck (i.e. execute him)…”

Sunan Ibn Majah, No. 2539

  1. They might just use their own personal opinion in re-interpreting the commands of Allah. But Muhammad had a warning about this too:

Muhammad bin Jarir reported that Ibn ‘Abbas said that the Prophet said, ‘Whoever explains the Qur’an with his opinion or with what he has no knowledge of, then let him assume his seat in the Fire.’

Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Vol. 1, pp. 32-33

  1. Or they might just simply decide to passively ignore this timeless command from Allah.

Keep in mind that denying or ignoring a doctrine does not mean that doctrine is no longer valid. 5:51 is a valid part of Islamic doctrine and has been so since the 7th century. And anytime a wayward Muslim wants to, he can return to that doctrine.

The Islamic Genocide of Christians: Past and Present

via The Islamic Genocide of Christians: Past and Present | Raymond Ibrahim.

Last Friday, April 24, we remembered how exactly 100 years ago the last historic Muslim caliphate, the Ottoman Empire, tried to cleanse its empire of Christian minorities — Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks — even as we stand by watching as the new caliphate, the Islamic State, resumes the genocide.

And in both cases, the atrocities were and are being committed in the name of Islam.

 In November, 1914, during WWI, the Ottoman caliphate issued a fatwa, or Islamic decree, proclaiming it a “sacred duty” for all Muslims to “massacre” infidels — specifically naming the “Christian men” of the Triple Entente, “the enemies of Islam” — with promises of great rewards in the afterlife.

The same Koran verses that the Islamic State and other jihadi outfits regularly quote permeated the Ottoman fatwa, including:  “Slay the idolaters wherever you find them — seize them, besiege them, and be ready to ambush them” (9:5) and “O you who have believed! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are but friends of each other; and whoever among you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them” (5:51) — and several other verses that form the Islamic doctrine of Loyalty and Enmity.

Many Muslims still invoke this doctrine; it commands Muslims to befriend and aid fellow Muslims, while having enmity for all non-Muslims (one Islamic cleric even teaches that Muslim husbands must hate their non-Muslim wives, while enjoying them sexually).

As happens to this very day, the Muslims of the Ottoman caliphate, not able to reach or defeat the stronger infidel — the “Christian men” of Britain, France, and Russia — satiated their bloodlust on their Christian subjects.  And they justified the genocide by projecting the Islamic doctrine of Loyalty and Enmity onto Christians — saying that, because Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks were Christian, they were naturally aiding the other “Christian men” of the West.

As happens to this day under the new caliphate — the Islamic State — the Ottoman caliphate crucified, beheaded, tortured, mutilated, raped, enslaved, and otherwise massacred countless “infidel” Christians.  The official number of Armenians killed in the genocide is 1.5 million; hundreds of thousands of Greeks and Assyrians each were also systematically slaughtered (see this document for statistics).

(Although people often speak of the “Armenian Genocide,” often forgotten is that Assyrians and Greeks were also targeted for cleansing by the Ottoman caliphate.   The only thing that distinguished Armenian, Assyrian, and Greek subjects of the caliphate from Turkish subjects was that the three former were Christian.  As one Armenian studies professor asks, “If it [the Armenian Genocide] was a feud between Turks and Armenians, what explains the genocide carried out by Turkey against the Christian Assyrians at the same time?”)

Henry Morgenthau, the U.S. ambassador to the Ottoman Empire and personal witness of the atrocities, attested that “I am confident that the whole history of the human race contains no such horrible episode as this.”   He added that what the Turks were doing was “a carefully planned scheme to thoroughly extinguish the Armenian race.”  In 1918, Morgenthau wrote in Red Cross Magazine:

Will the outrageous terrorizing, the cruel torturing, the driving of women into the harems, the debauchery of innocent girls, the sale of many of them at eighty cents each [today the Islamic State sells enslaved Christians and  Yazidis for as little as $43], the murdering of hundreds of thousands and the deportation to, and starvation in, the deserts of other hundreds of thousands, the destruction of hundreds of villages and cities, will the willful execution of this whole devilish scheme to annihilate the Armenian, Greek and Syrian [or Assyrian] Christians of Turkey  –  will all this go unpunished?

Because this genocide of Christians is usually articulated through a singularly secular paradigm — one that recognizes only those factors deemed intelligible from a modern Western point of view, one that never uses the words “Christian” and “Muslim” but rather “Armenian” and “Turk” — few are able to connect these events from a century ago to today.

War, of course, is another factor that clouds the true face of the genocide.  Because it occurred during WWI, so the argument goes, it is ultimately a reflection of just that — war, in all its chaos and destruction, and nothing more.  This has been the stance of all successive Turkish governments. Turkish President Erdogan, who staunchly denies that his ancestors committed genocide against Christians by arguing that they were just wartime casualties, also absurdly accused China of committing “genocide” in 2009, when less than 100 Muslim Uighurs were killed in clashes with Chinese security.

War was — and, as shall be seen, still is — a pretext to sate jihadi barbarity.  Winston Churchill, who described the genocide as an “administrative holocaust,” correctly observed that “the opportunity [of World War I] presented itself for clearing Turkish soil of a Christian race.”  Talaat Pasha, one of the Ottoman Empire’s “dictatorial triumvirate” during WWI, pointed out that “Turkey is taking advantage of the war in order to thoroughly liquidate its internal foes, i.e., the indigenous Christians, without being thereby disturbed by foreign intervention.”

A century later, consider how Christian minorities today are still being systematically decapitated, crucified, tortured, raped, and enslaved — also under the pretext of war.  In every Arab nation the U.S. has helped oust (secular) autocrats — Iraq, Libya, Syria — indigenous Christian minorities have been massacred by the jihadi elements that were once contained by Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, and Bashar Assad (read here for details).

The Islamic State’s recent slaughter of some 30 Christian Ethiopians in Libya — and two months earlier, 21 Christian Egyptians — is merely the latest serving of Christian persecution in post “Arab Spring” Libya.

Nor is this limited to the Arab world.  In Muslim-majority northern Nigeria, Muslims, spearheaded by the Islamic organization Boko Haram, are waging a savage jihad on the Christian minorities in their midst.  Boko Haram’s stated goal is to cleanse northern Nigeria of all Christians — a goal that should be reminiscent by now.

But even in non-war-torn nations, from Indonesia in the east to Morocco in the west, from Central Asia in the north, to sub-Sahara Africa — in lands of different races, colors, languages, politics and economics, in lands that share only a Muslim majority — Christians are, to varying degrees, being eradicated.  Indeed, in Turkey today, even indigenous Turks who convert to Christianity are regularly persecuted and sometimes slaughtered in the name of Islam. See my book, Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians, for a comprehensive account of what may eventually culminate into the Genocide of the 21st century.

There is no denying that religion — or in this context, the age-old specter of Muslim persecution of Christian minorities — was fundamental to the genocide of Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians.  Even the most cited factor, ethnic identity conflict, while legitimate, must be understood in light of the fact that, historically, religion sometimes accounted more for a person’s identity than language or heritage — certainly it did for Muslims, in context of Loyalty and Enmity.   This is daily demonstrated throughout the Islamic world today, where Muslim governments, mobs, and jihadis persecute Christian minorities — minorities who share the same ethnicity, language, and culture as Muslims, but not religion — often in retaliation to the West (just as the Ottomans, as seen, were also “retaliating” to the Triple Entente).

Finally, to understand how the Ottoman Genocide of Christians is representative of the modern-day plight of Christians under Islam in general, the Islamic State in particular, one need only read the following words written in 1918 by President Theodore Roosevelt — but read “Armenian” as “Christian” and “Turkish” as “Islamic”:

The Armenian [Christian] massacre was the greatest crime of the war, and the failure to act against Turkey [the Islamic world] is to condone it… the failure to deal radically with the Turkish [Islamic] horror means that all talk of guaranteeing the future peace of the world is mischievous nonsense.

Indeed, if we “fail to deal radically” with the “horror” currently being visited upon millions of Christians around the Islamic world — which in some areas has reached genocidal proportions according to the United Nations — we “condone it” and had better cease talking “mischievous nonsense” of a utopian world of peace and tolerance.

Put differently, silence is always the ally of those who would commit genocide.  In 1939, on the eve of World WWII, Hitler rationalized his genocidal plans against the Jews, when he reportedly asked: “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?”

And who speaks today of the ongoing annihilation of Christians under Islam?

While Remembering the Armenian Genocide, Let’s Not Forget the Greeks and Assyrians

via While Remembering and Commemorating the Armenian Genocide, Let’s Not Forget the Greeks and Assyrians

Armenians and others around the world this month are marking the centennial of the genocide that left hundreds of thousands of Armenians dead early in the last century. The date April 24 is typically picked as the centennial day since it was on that day in 1915 that Turkish authorities rounded up Armenian intellectuals and leaders in Constantinople and murdered them.

It was the first step in a much broader slaughter. The Armenian centennial is getting the attention it deserves from sources as diverse as Pope Francis and Kim Kardashian. The Pope courageously used the word “genocide” in a mass this past weekend, and the Lord’s Prayer was sung in Armenian at the Vatican. Kim Kardashian, whose grandfather was an Armenian immigrant, traveled to the Republic of Armenia with her husband Kayne West, who put on an impromptu concert.

These events are good and an important

What few people know is that the Armenian Genocide was a horrible event that occurred within the context of a wider religious cleansing across Asia Minor that lasted ten years and included Armenians, Greeks and Assyrians. They were all Christians, and they were subjects of the Ottoman Empire.

The religious cleansing was actually the first in modern times, and it fit the pattern of genocides that would follow in the terrible century ahead. It’s worth noting that the Nazis in following decades were transfixed by the events that had occurred in Turkey in those nightmarish years of mass killings and deadly deportations.

The Armenians in many way bore the worst of the slaughter, but ethnic Greeks and Assyrians also were slaughtered in similar ways — and for the same reason: They were scapegoats in a crumbling empire that saw Christians as a dangerous and potentially treasonous population inside the country. There was a strong nationalistic impulse to create a “Turkey for the Turks,” and that meant a homogeneous population based on Turkishness and the Moslem faith.

Christians had long been second-class citizens in the Ottoman Empire, long before the genocide, and they had been subject to pogrom-like actions. But the systematic uprooting of Christians began about 1912 following the First Balkan War, in which Greece, Serbia and Bulgaria defeated the Ottomans and the city of Salonika passed to the Greeks.

It was the nation of Greece that had been part of the alliance that defeated the Ottomans, but it was ethnic Greek subjects of the Ottoman Empire who paid a price in harassment, killing and forced departures. Tens of thousands of ethnic Greeks were forced from their homes along the west (Aegean) coast of Turkey and many were killed.

This had the silent encouragement of Turkey’s military ally, Germany. Virulent propaganda spread images of Christians threatening Islam; hatred was fomented between the faiths.One of the witnesses to the killing was the American consul general in Smyrna, George Horton. Smyrna was a prosperous city on the Aegean, and Horton had been posted there to look after American interests. He documented the killing and reported it back to the State Department. Smyrna itself, after WWI, would itself be destroyed in the religious hatred directed toward Christians.

The Armenian genocide is typically bracketed by 1915-1916, during World War I. And for sure, this is when most of the killing took place. Armenian civilians were marched out of their towns and cities and segregated by sex and age. Men were killed immediately; women and children were marched long distances until they dropped form disease, thirst or starvation. The first-hand accounts of these treks are numerous and collected in letters, cables and reports in libraries though the world.

After WWI, the British made an attempt to bring the Ottoman mass killers to justice, but the effort faltered as Britain’s grasp on the situation inside Turkey faltered. A nationalist movement arose, and the forces of religious hatred were again unleashed. The killing of Christians was renewed with Ottoman Greeks as well as Armenians being shot and marched to their deaths. American and British consuls diplomats in the region provided a first-hand account of the killing.

The situation was worsened when the Allied Powers and the United States invited the nation of Greece to occupy Smyrna, a mostly Greek city inside Turkey, to forestall a landing by the Italians who wanted to seize the city as the spoils of war. The powers sent Greece to Smyrna, but when war broke out between the army of Greece and the Nationalist army of Turkey, they did next to nothing to support it.

As a consequence, more Christians — people who were Ottoman subjects — were murdered in towns and cities from the Black Sea to the south coast of Turkey. By the end of 1922, about three millions Christians had been killed in the decade-long religious cleansing that operated essentially under two Turkish governments.

The final catastrophe was the Turkish army’s occupation of Smyrna, a prosperous and cosmopolitan city of a half million people. The city was burned, and countless numbers of civilians slaughtered on the city’s streets and in their homes. The occupation of Smyrna was, in an important sense, the last episode of the genocide. It was also a marker of the end of the Ottoman Empire. After Smyrna, a new order arose, led by Turkey’s brilliant, ruthless and secular leader Mustafa Kemal, later called Ataturk.

So, as we commemorate the Armenian genocide, and give it the historical standing and label it deserves, let us not forget that many hundreds of thousands of others perished in the 20th Century’s first genocide.

Editor’s note: Lou Ureneck is a professor at Boston University and author of the forthcoming book, “The Great Fire: One American’s Mission to Rescue Victims of the 20th Century’s First Genocide.” It can now be pre-ordered here.


Related: Video: The Truth About the Armenian Genocide by Turkish Muslims

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