Sunday, April 21, 2019

Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage Magazine: Why Easter Brings Out The Worst In Islam

http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/266428/why-easter-brings-out-worst-islam-raymond-ibrahim

WHY EASTER BRINGS OUT THE WORST IN ISLAM



No other Christian holiday defies Islam as Resurrection Sunday.

  
Why are some Christians murdered and many more terrorized in the name of Islam every Easter holiday? 
This year’s most notable attack occurred in Egypt, where two packed Coptic Christian churches were bombed during Palm Sunday mass, leaving 50 dead and 120 injured. 
While this incident received some coverage in Western media, attacks on churches in Egypt on or around Easter are not uncommon.  For instance, two days after the Palm Sunday attacks, on April 12, authorities thwarted another Islamic terror attack targeting a Coptic monastery in Upper Egypt.   Similarly, on April 12, 2015, Easter Sunday, two explosions targeting two separate churches took place in Egypt.   Although no casualties were reported—hence no reporting in Western media—large numbers could easily have resulted, based on precedent (for example, on January 1, 2011, as Egypt’s Christians ushered in the New Year—another Christian holiday for Orthodox communities—car bombs went off near the Two Saints Church in Alexandria, resulting in 23 dead worshippers and dozens critically injured). 
Less spectacular but no less telling, after 45 years of waiting, the Christians of Nag Shenouda, Egypt,  finally got a permit to build a church; local Muslims responded by rioting and even burning down the temporary tent the Christians had erected to worship under (different incident from this similar one). Denied, the Christians of Nag Shenouda celebrated Easter in the street, to Muslims jeers and sneers (picture here)
While almost anything can provoke Muslims around the world to attack churches, there is a reason that the animus can reach a fever pitch during Easter: more than any other Christian holiday, Resurrection Sunday commemorates and celebrates three central Christian doctrines that Islam manifestly rejects: that Christ was crucified and died; that he was resurrected; and that by especial virtue of the latter, he is the Son of God.  As Dr. Abdul Rahman al-Bir, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood’s mufti said in 2013, Muslims must not commend Coptic Christians during Easter, for that holiday “contradicts and clashes with Islamic doctrine unlike Christmas.”
From here the carnage makes sense.  Thus on Easter Sunday, 2016, another Islamic suicide bombing took place near the children rides of a public park in Pakistan, where Christians were known to be congregated and celebrating.  Some 70 people—mostly women and children—were killed and nearly 400 injured.  Something similar was in store for Pakistan this year, 2017, as officials foiled a “major terrorist attack” targeting Christians on Easter Sunday.
Celebrating Easter is an especially dangerous affair in Muslim-majority regions of Nigeria: a church was burned down on Resurrection Sunday, 2014, leaving 150 dead; another church was bombed on Resurrection Sunday, 2012, leaving some 50 worshippers dead;   Muslim herdsmen launched a series of raids during Easter week, 2013, killing at least 80 Christians—mostly children and the elderly; additionally, over 200 Christian homes were destroyed, eight churches burned, and 4,500 Christians displaced. 
As Islam’s presence continues to grow in Europe, and in accordance with Islam’s rule of Numbers, Easter-related attacks are also growing.  According to one report, “the terror cell that struck in Brussels [in March, 2016, killing 34] was planning to massacre worshippers at Easter church services across Europe, including Britain.”  In Scotland, 2016, a Muslim man stabbed another Muslim man to death for wishing Christians a Good Friday and Happy Easter.  If an al-Qaeda terror plot targeting Easter shoppers in the UK was not thwarted “it would almost certainly have been Britain’s worst terrorist attack, with the potential to cause more deaths than the suicide attacks of July 7, 2005, when 52 people were murdered.”
One can go on and on:
Of course, while Resurrection Sunday has the capacity to offend—and thus bring out the worse in some—Muslims more than any other Christian holy day, one should be careful not to attribute too much doctrinal nitpicking to those who attack churches.  After all, Muslims have bombed and burned Christian churches on other holidays—in the days leading to last Christmas, 2016, a Cairo church was bombed leaving 27 dead and 70 wounded—and no holidays at all.  (See here for Christmas 2016, here for Christmas 2015, and here for Christmas 2014 for dozens of anecdotes of Muslim violence against and slaughter of Christians in the context of Christmas.) 
In short, whatever the holiday, growing numbers of Muslims appear to agree with the view voiced by one Egyptian cleric that “Christian worship is worse than murder and bloodshed”—meaning, shedding the blood of Christians and murdering them is preferable to allowing them to flaunt their opposition to Muhammad’s teachings, as they most certainly do every Sunday in church.  Only more doctrinally attuned Muslims, who are in the minority, save their attacks for that one day of the year that so flagrantly defies Islam: Resurrection Sunday.
http://raymondibrahim.com/about/

RAYMOND IBRAHIM is a widely published author, public speaker, and Middle East and Islam specialist.  His books include Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (2013) and The Al Qaeda Reader (2007). His writings, translations, and observations have appeared in a variety of publications, including the New York Times, CNN, LA Times, Fox News, Financial Times, Jerusalem Post, New York Times Syndicate, United Press International, USA Today, Washington Post, Washington Times, and Weekly Standard; scholarly journals, including the Almanac of Islamism, Chronicle of Higher Education, Hoover Institution’s Strategika, Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst, Middle East Quarterly, and Middle East Review of International Affairs; and popular websites, such as American Thinker, the Blaze, Bloomberg, Breitbart, Christian Post, Daily Caller, FrontPage Magazine, Gatestone Institute, the Inquisitr, Jihad Watch, NewsMax, National Review Online, PJ Media, the UK’s Commentator, WND, and World Magazine. He has contributed chapters to several anthologies and been translated into dozens of languages.
Ibrahim guest lectures at universities, including the National Defense Intelligence College, briefs governmental agencies, such as U.S. Strategic Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and has testified before Congress regarding the conceptual failures that dominate American discourse concerning Islam and the worsening plight of Egypt’s Christian Copts. Among other media, he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, Blaze TV, CBN, and NPR; he has done hundreds of radio interviews and instructed two courses for Prager University.

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