Why insurgents murdered Iraqi archbishop

Here’s another aspect of the TIMELESS AND UNCHANGING RELIGION OF ISLAM, which has been brought back and empowered thanks to President Bush and the neocons’ belief in FREEING, LIBERATING, AND DEMOCRATIZING MUSLIMS: non-Muslim Iraqis, namely Christians, must pay Muslims for their lives.

This of course is the reality of the “protected, tolerated” status enjoyed by non-Muslims under Islam that Westerners are always cooing about. “Oh, isn’t it great? We Westerners are so intolerant and racist toward OUR minorities, but Islam officially tolerates its minorities.” But what this “toleration” means is: You subject yourself to Muslims, you pay them off, or you DIE.

Which, as the New York Times reports today, is what happened to the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul after he stopped paying protection money to Muslim insurgents.

As a result of the surge, the article continues, Iraqi Christians have become safer. But what happens when the surge ends, or when the U.S. forces leave?

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At 6:49 a.m. I sent this blog entry to Andrew Bostom. At 8:10 a.m. he sent me a full-length article (posted at his blog he had just written about the same New York Times story.

Carol Iannone writes:

This is so outrageous. And do you believe the Times article said this:

For more than 1,000 years, northern Iraq has been shared by people who for the most part believe and worship differently: Turkmen, Kurds, Yazidis, Sunni and Shiite Arabs, and Assyrian Christians—of whom the Chaldeans are the largest denomination. (The Chaldean Church, an Eastern Rite church, is part of the Roman Catholic Church, but maintains its own customs and liturgy.)

Since the time of the Prophet Muhammad, the founder of Islam, Muslims in the Middle East permitted that diversity in part through a special tax on Jews and Christians. The tax was called a jizya—and that is the name with which the insurgents chose to cloak extortion, Mafia-style, from Christians.

Officials say the demands could be hundreds of dollars a month per male member of a household. In many cases, Christian families drained their life savings and went into debt to make the payments. Insurgents also raised money by kidnapping priests. The ransoms, often paid by the congregations, typically ran as high as $150,000, several priests and lay Christians said.

In a paradox, this city, long the seat of Iraqi Christianity, also became known as the last urban stronghold of Sunni insurgents. Another, more painful, paradox is that many of Iraq’s remaining 700,000 Christians paid to save their lives, knowing full well that the money would be used for bombs and other weapons to kill others.

Are they trying to say that the insurgents are really Mafia thugs using the cloak of Islam? That it’s not Islam? But isn’t there just a hint that the jizya is itself a kind of extortion?

What about those large sums of money? You get the impression that in the years of the war, there was hardly any economy at all, let alone congregations that could raise over a hundred thousand dollars.

LA replies:

I’m also struck by the Times use of “diversity.” On the same day that we have the EU proposing suppression of bloggers in the name of “diversity,” we have the Times admitting that the famed “diversity” and “tolerance” within Islam was allowed through money pay-offs.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 26, 2008 06:14 AM | Send

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