Archive for the ‘Christian refugees’ category

Is The Trump Executive Order on Refugees Unlawful?

January 31, 2017

Is The Trump Executive Order on Refugees Unlawful?, Jonathan Turley’s Blog, Jonathan Turley, January 31, 2017

djt

If the 1965 law means what the ACLU has suggested, actions by presidents from Carter to Obama would be facially unconstitutional.  Presidents have routinely identified countries as raising threats requiring special procedures.  President Obama was among them.  There is no requirement that this can only be done in response to an attack or specific threat if the president finds a national security danger.  Courts are loathe to substitute their judgment on such questions for a president.

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I previously discussed how President Donald Trump has the advantage in a constitutional challenge of this executive order suspending entry for refugees and imposing special limitations on seven stated countries.  As I have noted, this does not mean that there are not legitimate questions raised, particularly over the express preference to be given “religious minorities” under the order. However, the case laws heavily supports a president’s plenary power over such border controls.  There remains however a question over whether the law could be constitutional under a president’s inherent authority but still unlawful under statutory authority.  Most of that argument centers on the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which bars discrimination based on nationality or place of origin.  There are clearly compelling arguments on both sides of this question, but once again I believe that critics may be overstating the 1965 law as making the executive order facially invalid.  As I have repeatedly stated since this executive order was signed, I believe it was a terrible mistake, poorly executed, and inimical to our values as a nation.  However, legal analysis by a court should not be influenced by such personal viewpoints.  The question is solely whether the president is barred statutorily from taking this action.

The federal law relevant to this question stands in oppose tension between provisions that grant sweeping authority to a president while at the same time limiting that authority with regard to certain types of discrimination.  As we previously discussed, the 1952 immigration laws states in Section 1182(f): “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate”   That is obviously quite sweeping and supporting of the actions taken under this executive order.

However, in 1965 the Congress enacted the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. That laws was designed to end the quota system given numerical preference to certain European countries.  The  operative provision states “no person could be “discriminated against in the issuance of an immigrant visa because of the person’s race, sex, nationality, place of birth or place of residence.”  Congress exempted Cuban refugees but otherwise stated that no discrimination based on national or place of residence would be tolerated.

It is important to recognize what the 1965 law does not do. First, it does not apply to refugees and thus would not impact much of this order.  This deals with immigrants securing visas.  Second, the law does not ban discrimination based on religion.  Third, the law governs visas not later requirements of reporting or other conditions once immigrants are granted entry. Thus, President Carter signed out Iranian for special procedures and deported thousands of them.  Finally, and most importantly, the law was itself amended in 1996.  Congress expressly stated that “procedures” and “locations” for processing immigration applications cannot count as discrimination.  Thus, the Administration could argue that “vetting procedures” are exempted even for non-refugees.

With the exemption of green card holders, the foot print for analysis under the 1965 language has been reduced further by the Administration.  Notably, the Office of Legal Counsel reviewed these laws and signed off on the legality of the executive order.  I expect it was due to these exemptions and the amendment.

That does not mean that there is not a compelling argument to make but it is not as facially clear as has been suggested.  Like the OLC, I would still give the advantage to the Administration.  However, this is clearly the best foundation for challenge.

Of course, that leaves a potential conflict between the statute and inherent president authority in a rehash of past cases like U.S. v. Curtiss-Wright.  In that opinion, the Court held:

It is important to bear in mind that we are here dealing not alone with an authority vested in the President by an exertion of legislative power, but with such an authority plus the very delicate, plenary and exclusive power of the President as the sole organ of the federal government in the field of international relations–a power which does not require as a basis for its exercise an act of Congress, but which, of course, like every other governmental power, must be exercised in subordination to the applicable provisions of the Constitution.

Presented with such a conflict, the provision could be narrowly construed.  Courts have long adopted interpretations that would avoid such conflicts.  If there is a narrow interpretation of the 1965 law that would avoid the conflict, it traditionally has been favored by federal courts.

The challenge to the order is also burdened by history.  If the 1965 law means what the ACLU has suggested, actions by presidents from Carter to Obama would be facially unconstitutional.  Presidents have routinely identified countries as raising threats requiring special procedures.  President Obama was among them.  There is no requirement that this can only be done in response to an attack or specific threat if the president finds a national security danger.  Courts are loathe to substitute their judgment on such questions for a president.

So where does all of that leave us?  It leaves us with a good-faith challenge to an executive order, but a challenge that will have to clear away a host of existing cases to prevail.  Could it happen?  Sure, but it is important not to overstate the authority in the area or allow passions to overcome analysis.  At most the 1965 law would be relevant to part of the order and even for that portion (on the seven identified countries) the Administration has strong arguments on the basis of inherent plenary authority and statutory exemptions.

 

Trump says Syrian Christian refugees will be given priority

January 27, 2017

Trump says Syrian Christian refugees will be given priority, Jihad Watch

(Please see also, Immigration Priorities: Translators, and Victims of Genocide. — DM)

“Pew Research Center said last October 38,901 Muslim refugees entered the United States in fiscal year 2016 from all countries – almost the same number of Christian refugees, 37,521.”

Reuters is being deliberately misleading. From Syria in 2016, the Obama administration admitted 12,587 refugees: 12,486 Muslims, 68 Christians, and 24 Yazidis. Trump is ending this obvious social engineering and saying that Syrian Christians, who have borne the brunt of persecution from jihad groups there, will be given priority.

This also shows the falsity of establishment propaganda media claims that Trump’s immigration ban would keep out non-Muslim victims of persecution by jihadis.

trumpwithpen

“Trump says Syrian Christian refugees will be given priority,” Reuters, January 27, 2017:

WASHINGTON, Jan 27 (Reuters) – President Donald Trump said on Friday that Syrian Christians will be given priority when it comes to applying for refugee status in the United States.

“If you were a Muslim you could come in, but if you were a Christian, it was almost impossible and the reason that was so unfair, everybody was persecuted in all fairness, but they were chopping off the heads of everybody but more so the Christians,” Trump said in an excerpt of an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Pew Research Center said last October 38,901 Muslim refugees entered the United States in fiscal year 2016 from all countries – almost the same number of Christian refugees, 37,521….

Immigration Priorities: Translators, and Victims of Genocide

January 27, 2017

Immigration Priorities: Translators, and Victims of Genocide, Gatestone Institute, Shoshana Bryen, January 27, 2017

Secretary Kerry described his understanding that Christian women were sold as sex slaves, and both women and men were massacred in areas of Syria and Iraq controlled by ISIS. But of the 10,801 refugees accepted in fiscal 2016 from Syria, only 56 (0.5 percent) were Christian.

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Prioritize two groups from the Middle East: those who have worked for the U.S. military as translators (and their families); and Middle East Christians who, according to then-Secretary of State Kerry, were being subjected to genocide in Syria and Iraq.

In 2008, Congress authorized 20,000 special visas for Iraqis who served the U.S. for a year or more; and in 2009, authorized 7,500 visas over seven years for Afghan translators. The idea was to get allies who had risked their lives for American troops out as quickly as possible, but thousands have waited for years.

Iraq and Afghanistan are countries in which being tagged as helpful to the U.S. military can be, and has been, a death sentence. And worse, in July 2016, an extension of the visa program failed to make it out of the Senate.

Of the 10,801 refugees accepted in fiscal 2016 from Syria, only 56 (0.5 percent) were Christian.

Making a concerted effort to bring those two desperately threatened groups to the United States would meet our commitment to the translators, give concrete expression to our revulsion at genocide, protect the interests of the American people, and ensure that America remains hospitable to immigrants and refugees.

If you want security clearances in the United States, the government “vets” you quite thoroughly. They begin by asking you questions and then ask for a list of people to interview — family, friends, employers, etc. They take your list and ask those people for more people who will talk about you, then take that list and ask those people for more people who will talk about you — and so on until the lists have the right number and combination of names that overlap. If you have a vindictive ex-wife, watch out. They do a credit check, a criminal background check, a motor vehicle records check, and a medical records check. Psychiatrist? That too.

When discussing visas for people coming to the U.S. from countries with terrorism issues, it is useful to know what it means to “vet” and why there is no possibility of vetting (or “extreme vetting,” whatever that means) refugees and potential immigrants who have no links to their former lives. Vetting — whether for security clearances or visas — is all about your life to this point.

President Trump’s executive order halting immigration from seven countries for 30 days — for a start — is a reasonable response to the increasing understanding that people from certain countries can pose more of a security risk than people from other countries, even when all the countries are Muslim-majority. The seven are Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Libya and Somalia; the U.S. government, under previous presidents, had cited all for terror links. Countries such as Kuwait, Egypt, Jordan, Indonesia, Oman and Tunisia and other Muslim-majority countries are not affected.

A “Muslim ban” would be racist, wrong, and a violation of deeply held American principles; but the claim by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) that visa restrictions are tantamount to slavery and denying women the right to vote is slanderous, exaggerated, inaccurate and anti-American. Restrictions — and post-fact checks — on people who enter the United States from countries with clear links to terrorism, and to which we cannot turn for record-checks and interviews, are simply something the United States does.

In 1979, the U.S. Embassy in Tehran was occupied by radical Islamists bent on war with the United States. The Carter Administration ordered all Iranians with student visas to report physically to U.S. immigration officials or face possible deportation. Ten months later (Carter’s order had to go through the courts), the New York Times, citing an Immigration and Naturalization Service spokesman, reported that nearly 60,000 students had registered as required, about 430 had been deported, and 5,000 had left voluntarily. In the interim, Carter ordered federal officials to:

“invalidate all visas issued to Iranian citizens for future entry into the United States, effective today. We will not reissue visas, nor will we issue new visas, except for compelling and proven humanitarian reasons or where the national interest of our own country requires. This directive will be interpreted very strictly.”

Iran remains at war with the United States and al Qaeda and ISIS are no less at war simply because they lack a central government.

In 2015, the assistant secretary of state for the Bureau of Consular Affairs told a House hearing that the U.S. government had revoked more than 9,500 visas over terrorism concerns since 2001 (the number is now more than 13,000). The attacks of 9/11 were followed by more attacks and plots against symbols of American military, law, justice, and governance as well as trains, bars, and shopping centers that are symbols of everyday life. Mass-casualty attacks in San Bernardino and Orlando were only the latest catalysts for Americans’ underlying concern that have been growing for years about terrorism and the government’s ability to protect us.

If “vetting” is not possible and American security requirements are real, is there a way to bring together our historic sympathy for refugees and historic welcome of immigrants with our reasonable concerns?

Yes.

Prioritize two groups from the Middle East: those who have worked for the U.S. military as translators (and their families); and Middle East Christians who, according to then-Secretary of State Kerry, were being subjected to genocide in Syria and Iraq.

In 2008, Congress authorized 20,000 special visas for Iraqis who served the U.S. for a year or more; and in 2009, authorized 7,500 visas over seven years for Afghan translators. The idea was to get allies who had risked their lives for American troops out as quickly as possible, but thousands have waited for years. Iraq and Afghanistan veteran Spencer Case wrote early in 2016:

“State Department numbers show that an Iraqi applying for a special visa could expect to wait for 292 business days before hearing back — and hearing back may just be another delay or a denial. In Afghanistan, the average wait time is 417 business days.”

Iraq and Afghanistan are countries in which being tagged as helpful to the United States military can be, and has been, a death sentence. And worse, in July 2016, an extension of the visa program failed to make it out of the Senate.

Secretary Kerry described his understanding that Christian women were sold as sex slaves, and both women and men were massacred in areas of Syria and Iraq controlled by ISIS. But of the 10,801 refugees accepted in fiscal 2016 from Syria, only 56 (0.5 percent) were Christian.

1261-1When a few persecuted Iraqi Christians crossed the border into the U.S., they were thrown in prison for several months and then sent back to the countries persecuting them, possibly to be enslaved, raped, or murdered. Pictured above: Members of California’s Iraqi Christian community and their supporters protest the months-long detention of Iraqi Christian asylum-seekers at the Otay Mesa detention center. (Image source Al Jazeera video screenshot)

Making a concerted effort to bring those two desperately threatened groups to the United States would meet our commitment to the translators, give concrete expression to our revulsion at genocide, protect the interests of the American people, and ensure that America remains hospitable to immigrants and refugees.

Judge Berates Obama Admin for So Few Christian Refugees

November 2, 2016

Judge Berates Obama Admin for So Few Christian Refugees, Clarion Project, November 1, 2016

(Please see also, Obama’s Secret Muslim List. — DM)

iraq-christian-girl-takes-refuge-in-erbil-getty-640A Christian girl from Iraq takes refuge from the Islamic State in Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan (Photo: © Getty Images)

In the course of a trial concerning a related issue, a federal judge chastised the Obama administration for allowing in to the U.S. such a small number of Christian refugees from war-torn Syria, as reported by The Daily Signal.

While the administration exceeded by almost 1,000 its goal of admitting 10,000 Syrians to the U.S. (during the 2016 fiscal year), only 56 were Christian.

“To date, there has not been a good explanation for this perplexing discrepancy,” wrote Judge Daniel Manion.

“It is well‐documented that refugees to the United States are not representative of that war‐torn area of the world. Perhaps 10 percent of the population of Syria is Christian, and yet less than one‐half of one percent of Syrian refugees admitted to the United States this year are Christian,” he added.

Thus, he concluded, we “remain in the dark as a humanitarian catastrophe continues.”

In addition, Manion pointed out that while the Obama administration demanded a high-level of evidence from states objecting to the resettling of refugees due to security concerns, it kept that information secret from those states.

In addition, the government is not forthright about telling the public or individual states what steps are taken to ensure terrorists are not posing as refugees with the goal of infiltrating the U.S.

Between a half- and one-million Syrian Christian have left the country since the outbreak of the war that has seen their communities targeted for genocide by the Islamic State (ISI/ISIL) and other radical Islamist groups.

Manion clarified his comments were made “not to suggest that any refugee group is more or less welcome: quite the contrary,” but rather to point out the Obama administration is not willing to provide states with information about the refugees allowed to enter.

“It is at least possible that incidental affiliation with some Christian militia could lead an immigration officer to deny entry to Syrians on this basis. That would be a dubious consequence,” he wrote.

U.S. Helps Muslims, not Christians

October 23, 2016

U.S. Helps Muslims, not Christians, Gatestone Institute, Raymond Ibrahim, October 23, 2016

(But, cautions Obama, this sort of stuff has nothing to do with peaceful, tolerant Islam. — DM)

The Obama administration has taken in 5,435 Muslim refugees, but only 28 Christians — even though Christians are approximately 10 percent of Syria’s population and are classified as experiencing a genocide there.

The logic of the pope’s statement seems to be that violence done that contradicts the Judeo-Christian God’s commandments — such as the murder of wives and mothers-in-law — is identical to violence done in accord with Allah’s commandments to wage jihad on “infidels.”

One million Christian children whose families have been displaced or affected by the violent activities of Boko Haram and Muslim Fulani herdsmen are starving. Boko Haram’s seven-year rebellion has left 20,000 people dead and more than two million displaced. — Nigeria.

One social media posting by the Islamic State showed a picture of a young girl with the caption: “Virgin. Beautiful. 12 years old… Her price has reached $12,500 and she will be sold soon.”

Countless reports continued to appear indicating that non-Muslim students, most often Christians, are being forced to convert to Islam through the public school system. Teachers force them to recite the shahada — which when said before Muslim witnesses makes them a Muslim. — Pakistan.

The government is trying to “cleanse” the nation of Christians and create a homogenous Muslim state. — Sudan.

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As the Muslim persecution of Christians continues to reach critical proportions around the world (see report below), the average American shows much more concern than the current administration. Soon after it was revealed that the Obama administration has taken in 5,435 Muslim refugees, but only 28 Christians — even though Christians are approximately 10 percent of Syria’s population and are classified as experiencing a genocide there. A poll found that more than three-quarters of American respondents agreed with the statement: “It is important to me that the next US President be committed to addressing the persecution that some Christians face around the world (e.g.: imprisonment, beheadings, rape, loss of home and assets).”

The deliberate targeting and killing of Christians in Europe also reached unprecedented levels in modern times. Most notably, on the morning of July 26, shouting Muslims shouting “Allahu Akbar” [“Allah is the Greatest”] stormed a small church in France during morning mass. They forced 85-year-old Father Jacques Hamel to his knees, slit his throat, and “critically injured” a nun, before being killed by police. (It was later revealed that police had known that church was being targeted and had even been monitoring one of the murderers for at least a year and a half.)

Later, when a journalist asked Pope Francis if Fr. Jacques was “killed in the name of Islam,” the pope disagreed. He argued that he hears of Christians committing violence every day in Italy: “this one who has murdered his girlfriend, another who has murdered the mother-in-law… and these are baptized Catholics! There are violent Catholics! If I speak of Islamic violence, I must speak of Catholic violence.” The logic of the pope’s statement seems to be that violence done in direct contradiction of the Judeo-Christian God’s commandments — such as the murder of wives and mothers-in-law — is identical to violence done in accordance with Allah’s commandments to wage jihad on “infidels.”

1734-2Father Jacques Hamel was murdered in France on July 26, in the church of Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, by Islamic jihadists.

In ISIS-controlled territories in Iraq and Syria, reports continued to emerge of Christians being tortured to convert, sold into sex slavery, maimed, crucified, burned alive or beheaded. In Iraq, a report says that:

“Christians and other minorities in Iraq are facing persecution at unprecedented levels and are at the verge of extinction …. The Christian population has dwindled from 1.4 million to 300,000 in the last decade, according to some estimates. However, Minority Rights Group put that the number at anywhere between 50,000 to 250,000.”

A former ISIS member exposed some of the atrocities the group commits in Syria. “They were extremely brutal, killing women and the elderly who did not obey them. They abused and mutilated their dead bodies. They cut up the corpses, tied them to the back of the cars and dragged them along. They would find them and publicly execute them. I witnessed many executions.”

The remainder of July’s roundup of Muslim persecution of Christians — most of which was not committed by ISIS — includes, but is not limited to, the following:

Muslim Slaughter of Christians

Nigeria:

Two armed Muslim tribesmen murdered Rev. Joseph Kurah, an evangelical pastor, while he was working on his farm. They repeatedly hacked him to death with machetes. A local Muslim reportedly hired the assassins after he got into an argument with the Christian leader. Since 2001, Muslim Fulani have murdered thousands of Christians and destroyed hundreds of churches. According to a separate report, in just June and July, Muslim Fulani tribesmen targeted and invaded several Christian-majority villages. They killed 133 people, destroyed 76 churches, and countless Christian properties and farms.

Muslims hacked a female Christian preacher to death in the outskirts of Abuja. Eunice Elisha, a minister from the Redeemed Church of God, was found dead in a pool of her own blood after she went out to preach in the streets. A month earlier, on June 2, a Muslim mob beat Bridget Agbahime, the wife of a Christian pastor, to death with iron rods on the accusation that she had blasphemed against Muhammad.

About one million Christian children whose families have been displaced or affected by the violent activities of Boko Haram and Muslim Fulani herdsmen are starving. Churches, which are currently the primary supporters of these children, have gone beyond capacity and tens of thousands of children are expected to die of starvation and disease if they do not receive aid from elsewhere. According to the report, Boko Haram’s seven-year rebellion has left 20,000 people dead and more than two million displaced.

Philippines: Attacks and murders of Christians around Mindanao Island, which has a large Muslim population, are on the rise. Fr. Sebastiano D’Ambra, who has lived in the region for 40 years, is calling on authorities to “find proper solutions” to stop “the agony of the Christian community.” He said, “A Christian was killed in Jolo a few days ago. A reliable source told me that 20 Christians have been targeted to be killed or kidnapped soon…. the Christian community is suffering a form of persecution from those who are guided by bad elements who claim to do it in the name of Islam.”

Kenya: Muslim gunmen from Al Shabaab murdered Pastor John as he was returning home from facilitating a peacemaking training seminar. The jihadis ambushed the bus he was in, killing the pastor and six other people including children.

Democratic Republic of Congo: Suspected Muslim militants armed with guns and machetes slaughtered nine Christians in the North Kivu region. They also looted homes, seizing food and cattle as plunder. The area, which is 96% Christian, has seen more than 1,100 killed over the last year and a half.

Pakistan: The 2013 Muslim bombing of the All Saints Church in Peshawar, which killed more than 100 Christian worshippers, claimed its latest victim. After battling internal injuries, Cecilia, a 42-year-old Christian nurse, had received three years earlier from the attack, died from bomb fragments that had turned cancerous while embedded in her body. According to the report, “With tearstained eyes,” her husband noted that “We are still losing loved ones [after the attack].

Forced Conversion, Rape and Murder of Christians

Libya: A report documents the sufferings that Christians experience at the hands Muslim militants when they migrated through Libya in an effort to reach Europe. In one instance 11 women were abducted, kept as sex slaves underground and repeatedly raped by various jihadis for almost a year. One of the Christian women, Amal, 21, said: “They took [the Christians] to Tripoli and kept us underground – we didn’t see the sun for nine months…. Sometimes we didn’t eat for three days. Other times they would give us one meal a day, half a piece of bread.” The Christian woman described how they were pressured into converting to Islam under threat of death and beaten with hoses or sticks. “Sometimes they would frighten us with their guns, or threaten to slaughter us with their knives.”

Islamic State: ISIS has been making use of social media—including Facebook, and mobile applications, such as WhatsApp, and Telegram—to sell enslaved Christian and Yazidi girls to a wider network of sadists and pedophiles. One Telegram posting showed a picture of a young girl with the caption: “Virgin. Beautiful. 12 years old,” the posting states. “Her price has reached $12,500 and she will be sold soon.”

Nigeria: Another report says that the Muslim terrorist group, Boko Haram, has murdered 466 people, almost all of whom were Christian, for refusing to convert to Islam; they also forced 218 women and young girls to “marry” their fighters.

Pakistan:

Muslims kidnapped and forced a 14-year-old Christian girl to convert to Islam last May. Her father pled with them for weeks to release his daughter. They eventually pretended to relent, told him to meet them somewhere so they could return his daughter; once he arrived, shot him dead. The girl remains with the rapists, the slain father’s widow and three other daughters are hiding in their home in fear of further reprisals from the kidnappers. According to Najma Bibi, the girl’s mother: “several months after my daughter’s kidnapping, the police have not done anything because we have no money to defend our rights. We live in a hopeless situation, we need help. I pray that my daughter will continue to place hope and faith in Jesus Christ.”

Muhammad Iqrar, a Muslim man, assaulted and raped Sonia Nasar, a 16-year-old Christian girl. Although the rapist fled when her father rushed to the scene after hearing the cries of his daughter, Sonia, she was left in “critical condition.” He said that he expects no justice or follow up from local authorities, some of whom are associated with the rapist.

Sobia Nadeem, a Christian girl studying for a Master’s degree in physics, was abducted by a group of Muslims, forced to convert to Islam, and forced to marry—at gunpoint—a man named Mohammad Hamza in Lahore. Although the girl managed to escape back to her parents’ home, she was taken to court where her family had to prove that her conversion and marriage were performed under force.

Countless reports continued to appear indicating that non-Muslim students, most often Christians, are being forced to convert to Islam through the public school system. Teachers force them to recite the shahada—which when said before Muslim witnesses makes them a Muslim. Teachers also force them to study Muslim beliefs and practices. This often occurs in conjunction with denigration of the Christian faith. Due to ongoing Christian protests, the Punjab government said it would launch an inquiry.

Muslim Attacks on Christian Churches and Symbols

Turkey: During the July 15 failed coup attempt, at least two churches were attacked. “One of the attacks happened in Trabzon. A group of 10 people attacked Santa Maria Church with paving stones and hammers to smash the windows” said the report. One church leader in Istanbul said, “I’m not optimistic about the plight of Christians in Turkey. Bear in mind we’ve had a Roman Catholic Bishop murdered, we’ve had clergy threatened, we’ve had one priest murdered 10 years ago. Any Christian leader, if they’re being honest, would say that some of what’s going on is quite alarming.”

Nigeria: On Friday, July 15, Muslims attacked a Catholic church. They said they were angered that Christians were praying in the church on Friday, Islam’s “holy day,” when Muslims congregate and pray in mosques. According to a Christian church leader, “Sometime around 2pm, some Muslim youths in their [sic] hundreds left their mosque after their Friday Jumat prayer and rushed to the church premises, climbed the wall and destroyed everything in the church: the windows, the altar, musical instruments, the chapel. The security man in the church premises was beaten to a pulp. Some women holding a prayer meeting were chased away. The seminarian, who is resident in the premises, was also beaten up and chased away.”

Iraq: According to a new report, “All 45 churches and monasteries inside Mosul are reportedly now occupied by ISIS, who have looted, burned and destroyed property, in addition to removing the building’s crosses.” Christians unable to flee are forced to pay huge extortion money (jizya) or risk instant execution.

Sudan: A report notes that by continuously bombing Christian and non-Muslim indigenous regions near South Sudan, and targeting churches and pastors’ homes for destruction, the government is trying to “cleanse” the nation of Christians and create a homogenous Muslim state. In recent years, hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced by the violence, their homes, crops, churches, schools and hospitals destroyed.

Indonesia: Despite receiving all legal documents and permits, a Catholic family trying to construct a shrine to the Virgin Mary on their own land since 2009 continued to face growing threats from local Muslims. In 2012, a Muslim mob set fire to the shrine site and brought construction to a halt. Most recently in July, Muslims stormed the house of a Catholic leader and ordered him to stop the work, even though he has a building permit issued by the authorities.

Muslim Attacks on Christian Apostates, Blasphemers, and Preachers

Egypt: According to a report, “Just like the biblical character Daniel in the lions’ den, an Egyptian Muslim who converted to Christianity found himself at the mercy of ferocious attack dogs that were unleashed by his jailers to torture and possibly kill him. However, the law student, Majed El Shafie, must have had God on his side and, just as in the story of Daniel, the savage animals miraculously did not harm him—to the utter astonishment of his prison guards.” He was, however, tortured by the Muslim guards.

Uganda: Another Muslim convert to Christianity has lost his family, home, and business, and now lives in a tiny shanty. As a result of his apostasy, the extended family of the 53-year-old man, a former Muslim imam stormed into and eventually appropriated his ancestral home in after an attempt on his life. Of that night, he said: “I heard people talking outside my house around 8 p.m., saying that they wanted to take away my life and, ‘We cannot watch the whole family turning to Christianity.'” He complained to the local council after his relatives also destroyed his business, but their intervention had no effect. He now lives without any means to provide for himself.

Pakistan:

Nadeem James, a 27-year-old Christian man and father of two, was arrested in Gujarat district after a Muslim angry with him accused him of texting a poem deemed “blasphemous” toward Muhammad. According to James’s brother: “We were not at home when the police raided our house to arrest Nadeem. However, when the cops couldn’t find any of us in the premises, they took away two women of the family – my wife and the wife of my elder brother, Faryad.” Around the same time, local mosques began calling on megaphones that if he did not surrender himself, Christian homes would burn. Nadeem surrendered himself and the women were released.

“The charge against my brother is completely baseless. Nadeem is uneducated and could not have possibly sent that text message. I’m certain that Yasir Bashir [Muslim accuser] downloaded the supposedly blasphemous text onto Nadeem’s phone and then forwarded it to his cell number to build a case against my brother.”

In Hyderabad, Yaqoob Masih, 56, a Christian sanitary worker, was accused of committing blasphemy against Islam. According to the report:

“Masih collected waste from the streets and dumped it at a specific [location], however Bakash [the Muslim accuser], without verifying what had happened, tortured Masih with a stick, accusing him [of] committing blasphemy by burning pages of a book which [reportedly] carried Islamic verses. Masih was packing the garbage and waste in a trunk when Bakash accused him [of] blasphemy.”

Masih had to be hospitalized.

A Muslim doctor who treated a dying Christian man with medicine donated through Islamic charity, zakat, received death threats. The Christian was on the verge of dying without treatment. In his defense, the Muslim doctor said he did not know the man was a Christian, or that it was against some interpretations of Islamic law to use Muslim charity money to help non-Muslims.

Iran: Three Azerbaijani pastors were arrested in Tehran during a visit. No reason was given to family and local legal experts. According to the report, “This is the latest in a succession of pastors who have been imprisoned by Iranian authorities over many years for accusations ranging from apostasy to evangelism.” And Ebrahim Firouzi, who has been under arrest since 2013 under vague charges “suffered physical abuse at the hands of prison guards when he was forced to attend an appeal hearing.”

Dhimmitude: The Condition Muslim Contempt and Hostility for Christians

Bangladesh: Christian and Hindu businesses received notices from a banned Islamic organization ordering them to uphold a number of Islamic customs or be killed. These include hanging banners with Allah’s name, keeping copies of the Koran, putting pictures of the Kaba in Mecca, removing pictures or statues of their own religions, creating a place for Muslims to pray, and banning music and female workers.

Pakistan: The government in the Raiwind district flooded a Christian graveyard with sewage water and desecrated all the graves. In response, protesting Christians complained that even in the grave they can receive no peace in Pakistan.

Sudan: Authorities insulted, forcefully arrested and jailed 14 Christians when they attempted to stop the authorities from seizing an evangelical school on church property, which the authorities apparently plan on giving to Muslim businesses. Later, the authorities returned to the same Christian school, gave letters of dismissal to the Christian headmistress, vandalized her office, and replaced her with a teacher of their own choosing.

Egypt: After a Christian man was stabbed to death and many Christian homes and a church burned by angry Muslims because of a rumor that a church was going to be built, Coptic Christian Bishop Makarious of al-Minya was interviewed on television. Church authorities in Egypt are regularly diplomatic and sensitive to what they say, but Makarious made many revealing comments. Although only Christians, no Muslims, were killed and hurt, he wondered why the government and media continue to describe these incidents as “clashes”—which suggests two quarrelling parties—when the reality is always that one side attacks the other:

“Within minutes [of the start of one of the attacks], 100 Muslims instantly appeared, fully armed, as if ready for war. … As long as the attackers are never punished, and the armed forces are portrayed as doing their duty, this will just encourage others to continue the attacks, as, even if they are arrested, they will quickly be released.”

When the host asked questions about who is released and why, suggesting that perhaps those released are in fact innocent of any wrongdoing against the Christians, the bishop replied:

“Well what do you think when the actual attackers themselves are arrested, with complete proofs and evidences against them, but then are still declared innocent and released?… this happens every single time.”

About this Series

While not all, or even most, Muslims are involved, persecution of Christians by Muslims is growing.

The report posits that such Muslim persecution is not random but rather systematic, and takes place in all languages, ethnicities, and locations.

Unprecedented: Hungary Opens Office For Persecuted Christians

October 14, 2016

Unprecedented: Hungary Opens Office For Persecuted Christians, Front Page MagazineRaymond Ibrahim, October 14, 2016

hungaryandchristians

The nation of Hungary recently did something that is as unprecedented as it is commonsensical and humanitarian: it “has become the first government to open an office specifically to address the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and Europe.”  

Zoltan Balog, Hungary’s Minister for Human Resources, explained:

Today, Christianity has become the most persecuted religion, where out of five people killed [for] religious reasons, four of them are Christians.  In 81 countries around the world, Christians are persecuted, and 200 million Christians live in areas where they are discriminated against. Millions of Christian lives are threatened by followers of radical religious ideologies.

“Followers of radical religious ideologies” is of course code for Muslims—they who are responsible for the overwhelming majority of Christian persecution in the world.

This move comes “after Hungary’s right-wing prime minister, Victor Orban, drew criticism in the EU by saying Europe should focus on helping Christians before helping millions of Muslims coming into Europe.”

Orban explained: “If we really want to help, we should help where the real problem is.… We should first help the Christian people before Islamic people.”

But do Western governments “really want to help” those suffering true persecution?  For if they did, not only would taking in “Christian people before Islamic people” be the most humane thing to do; it would also benefit Western nations as well.

Consider some facts:

Unlike Muslims, Christian minorities are being singled out and persecuted simply because of their despised religious identity.  From a humanitarian point of view, then—and humanitarianism is the reason being cited for accepting millions of refugees—Christian refugees should receive greater priority over Muslim migrants.  Even before the Islamic State was formed, Christians were and continue to be targeted by Muslims—Muslim individuals, Muslim mobs, Muslim regimes, and Muslim terrorists, from Muslim countries of all races (Arab, African, Asian)—and for the same reason: they are infidel number one.  (See Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians for hundreds of anecdotes before the rise of ISIS as well as the Muslim doctrines that create such hate and contempt for Christians.)

Conversely, Muslim refugees—as opposed to the many ISIS and other jihadi sympathizers posing as “refugees”—are not fleeing religious persecution (most Muslim migrants are, like ISIS, Sunnis), but chaos created by the violent and supremacist teachings of their own religion.  Hence why when large numbers of Muslims enter Western nations—in Germany, Sweden, France, the UK—tension, crimes, rapes, and terrorism soar.

And hence why Hungarian minister Balog also said: “Our interest not only lies in the Middle East but in forms of discrimination and persecution of Christians all over the world.  It is therefore to be expected that we will keep a vigilant eye on the more subtle forms of persecutions within European borders.”

Indeed, what more is needed than the fact that so-called Muslim “refugees” are throwing Christians overboard during their boat voyages across the Mediterranean to Europe?  Or that Muslim majority refugee centers in Europe are essentially microcosms of Muslim majority nations: there, Christian minorities continue to be persecuted.

Most recently a report found that 88% of the 231 Christian refugees interviewed in Germany have suffered religiously motivated persecution in the form of insults, death threats, and sexual assaults. Some were pressured to convert to Islam.  “I really didn’t know that after coming to Germany I would be harassed because of my faith in the very same way as back in Iran,” one Christian refugee said.  “These are not isolated cases. I don’t know of any refugee shelter from Garmisch to Hamburg where we have not found such cases,” said a German authority.

Is persecuting religious minorities the behavior of people who are in need of a sympathetic welcome by Europeans and Americans?   Or is this behavior yet another reminder that it is non-Muslims from the Middle East who are truly in need of sanctuary?

Western nations should further accept Christian refugees because Western foreign policies are directly responsible for exacerbating their persecution.  Christians did not flee from Bashar Assad’s Syria, or Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, or Muamar Gaddafi’s Libya.  Their systematic persecution—to the point of genocide—began only after the U.S. and other European nations interfered in those nations under the pretext of “democracy.”  All they did is unleash the jihadi forces that the dictators had long kept suppressed. Now the Islamic State is deeply embedded in all three nations, enslaving, raping, and slaughtering countless Christian “infidels” and other minorities.

Surely if the West is responsible for unleashing the full-blown jihad on Christians, the least it can do is put Christians on the top of its refugee list—that is, if it “really cares” about helping?  In fact, it’s the opposite: report after report has shown that in Western nations persecuted Christians are “at the bottom of the heap” of refugees to be granted asylum.  Despite the U.S. government’s acknowledgement that ISIS is committing genocide against Christians in Syria,  the Obama administration has taken in 5,435 Muslims, but only 28 Christians—even though Christians are approximately 10 percent of Syria’s population; in other words, to be on the same ratio with Muslims, at least 500 Christians should’ve been granted asylum, not 28.

There are even some benefits in taking in Mideast Christians instead of Muslims.  Christians are easily assimilated in Western countries, due to the shared Christian heritage.  Muslims follow a completely different blueprint, Islamic law, or Sharia—which condemns and calls for constant war (jihad) against all non-Muslims, and advocates any number of distinctly anti-Western practices (female subjugation and sex slavery, death for blasphemers and apostates, etc.).   Hence it’s no surprise that many Muslim asylum seekers are anti-Western at heart—or, as the German police union chief recently said, Muslim migrants “despise our country and laugh at our justice.”

Mideast Christians also bring trustworthy language and cultural skills that are beneficial to the West.  They understand the Middle Eastern—including Islamic—mindset and can help the West understand it.  Moreover, unlike Muslims, Christians have no “conflicting loyalty” issues: Islamic law forbids Muslims from befriending or aiding “infidels” against fellow Muslims (click here to see some of the treachery this leads to in the U.S. and here to see the treachery Christians have suffered from their longtime Muslim neighbors and “friends”).  No such threat exists among Mideast Christians.  They too render unto God what is God’s and unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

All the above reasons—from those that offer humanitarian relief to the true victims of persecution, to those that offer safety and even benefits to the West—are unassailable in their logic.  Hungary seems to understand all this.

But can such common sense, reason, true altruism, and even self-interest ever prevail among the West’s ruling elite—that is, assuming their motives in accepting millions of Muslims are sincere to start with?

No Where to Go: Pakistani Christians Refused Asylum

October 6, 2016

No Where to Go: Pakistani Christians Refused Asylum, Clarion Project, Kaleem Dean, October 6, 2016

thailand-police-getty-640Police in Thailand (Photo: © Getty Images)

A Pakistani Christian pastor forced to flee to Thailand was denied asylum, leaving him with nowhere to turn.

After four years of struggling with the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) to prove his case was genuine, Baber Masih said of his plight and that of his wife and three children, “If we return to our country and get arrested due to blasphemy, we are afraid that everything that happens to people who get arrested under blasphemy laws would happen to us. The Muslim extremists of Pakistan could imprison us, kill or even burn us alive.”

Over the last number of months, the UNHRC turned away Pakistani Christians seeking asylum in Thailand. In the last two months alone, the files of more than 20 Christian families were closed, said Baber.

Once their files are closed, the UNHCR office informs the Thai Immigration about their status. Many are then arrested and put behind the bars in deplorable conditions, a fate of which Baber and his family are living in fear.

In addition, Baber reports the seeming arbitrariness of the judgments relating that another Christian was given refugee status whereas Baber’s plea was not considered to be true.

The UNHCR-Thailand uses the British Home Office guidelines to assess Pakistani Christian asylum seekers’ applications in Thailand. An article published by the Church Times notes, “The guidance currently reflects a tribunal ruling that Christians in Pakistan suffer discrimination, but this is not sufficient to amount to a real risk of persecution.”  It also states the Pakistani government is “willing and able to provide protection against such attacks, and internal relocation is a viable option.”

However, this assessment is contradicted by the British Foreign Office’s own guidelines, which state there is “not much protection of religious minorities from the government.”

Lord Alton of Liverpool presented his report expressing his deep concern over the treatment the UNHCR gives to Pakistani Christians. In his report, he stated, “The UK’s Home Office guidance on Pakistani Christians and Christian converts is being used to de-prioritize and de-legitimize Christian asylum-seekers’ applications — even if returning these individuals to Pakistan will leave them at a significant and real risk of attack, torture, or being killed.”

Baber further charges that the UNHRC has no parameters to investigate and gauge the depth of the seriousness of threats to Christian individuals and families in Pakistan.  Relating his story, Baber said, “On September 16, 2012, about 8 p.m., Muslim clerics/extremists attacked our home. They entered forcefully and started beating us with rods and clubs and abused us, calling us kafir(infidels) and churry (sweepers) and many other bad words.

“It seemed they wanted to burn us alive as they were shouting that they were going to do so.  We thank God that many people gathered quickly and rushed to our home because our women and children had locked themselves in a room and were crying and weeping very loudly as they heard us being beaten. Knowing the situation we decided to leave our homeland.

“We applied for asylum with UNHCR and received registrations in December of 2012. We were interviewed in the following year, and the year after our application was refused. We submitted an appeal to the UNHCR through the asylum access in 2014, but now after two years of struggle, the UNHCR has refused our case, closing our file permanently.”

The size of the minority population in Pakistan has decreased, from 25 percent in 1947 to a mere 3% today. The discriminatory laws against ethnic minorities have made their lives almost impossible. For example, since 1974, when Ahmadi Muslims were declared a “minority” in Pakistan, they have been relentlessly persecuted.

Their exodus from Pakistan continues unabated. Similarly, Hindus, Christians and Sikhas never miss an opportunity to flee from Pakistan.

Yet, the world seems to have closed its doors to Pakistani Christians, as Baber Masih and others like him have discovered. Even in America, the latest statistics show that of the 10,801 Syrian refugees accepted in fiscal 2016, only 56 are Christians, a mere 0.5 percent.

While the Islamic State commits genocide against Christians and other minorities, other countries, like Pakistan, wage an unremitting war of attrition against their minority populations. It is imperative that the world wakes up to this slow genocide from within.