A terrible truth written in blood

The Christmas bombings by Islamists across Northern Nigeria and the exodus of Christians from Egypt, Iraq and elsewhere carry a serious message - one which we need to hear. So far, it's getting lost in the now-all-too-routine reporting and commentary.

"Getting" what's actually going on is especially critical to the survival of Israel, given the spreading darkness all around that nation. On Israel, the emerging conventional wisdom (now beginning to be accepted not only by Europeans but by too many American Jews) is that the Jewish state is a "honest mistake, a well-intentioned mistake," an attempt to plant a Western, European-style democracy and a Western population in the heart of the Arab Middle East. Similarly, the violence foisted on American troops and ships in Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan and elsewhere was said, especially by the American left, to be caused by the fact that we are invaders there.

But we are out of Iraq now. And we were never in Nigeria - or Egypt. Yet, as Mark Steyn pointed out over the weekend, the Islamists seem to be going for the Christians with unrelenting fury. The violence is increasing, not diminishing.

Several reports in the foreign press have suggested that al-Qaeda elements may be behind this surge in attacks, including the recent attacks on Shia in Iraq, trying to ignite a sectarian bloodbath.

How did American and the West cause this? We didn't. The truth lies elsewhere.

As Samuel P. Huntinton wrote - to continuing furor - back in 1996: "Islam has bloody borders." And the blood is flowing - from West Africa to western Asia.

The people whom the Islamists are attacking and killing are not "Crusaders" or the descendants of Polish or Russian Jews transplanted to "Islamic land" by European "colonial powers" consumed with guilt over the Holocaust. The victims dying in Nigeria, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and Iraq can, by no stretch of the imagination, be called "Franks" or "Crusaders." They're not Westerners at all.

The Islamists are killing their neighbors - people whose ancestors, tribes, clans and family lines have been in those parts of the world as long as (and really longer than, in the case of the Middle East) their killers. It is a historical fact that the Middle East and Near East were Christian before they became Muslim. Egypt, an ancient land, is 10% Christian not because the British, in the halcyon days of Empire, imported shiploads of Christians from elsewhere. It's 10% Christian because, before the coming of the Arab armies, Egypt was Christian (except for its Jews, now long gone).

In Nigeria, of course, the history is different. Islam certainly arrived there, as it did in East Asia, before Christianity did. But animism survived (and survives) side-by-side with Islam as well. The point, however, remains the same. Nigerian Islamists are killing Christian Nigerians for the same reason Egyptian Islamists are killing Egyptian Christians - because of their religion.

What's happening is, in the words of Fraser Nelson of the Spectator, "religious cleansing."

It is a terrible truth, but a simple one. And it gives the lie to the rap on Israel.

And us.

Spread the word.



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