Here and There in the Middle East: Fleeing Christians, “Moderate” Imam, Mad Turkish Leader, Syrian Revolution
By Barry Rubin
1. Fleeing ChristiansContinue reading Here and There in the Middle East: Fleeing Christians, “Moderate” Imam, Mad Turkish Leader, Syrian Revolution
Christians are fleeing the Middle East and Western Christians are indifferent. More than half of Iraqi Christians, threatened with death and terrorism are out of that country, though many are in neighboring Syria. Virtually all Christians have fled the Islamist Gaza Strip and Syrian Christians generally (though not all) support the regime there, fearing an Islamist takeover.
But Egypt is home to millions of Christians that dwarf these numbers. In fact, the number of Christians in Egypt exceeds the populations of Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, and Tunisia.
Copts have emigrated in the past, but they have been so rooted in Egypt as to tend to remain there. Now the Egyptian Union of Human Rights Organizations reports that 95,000 Christians have emigrated since March 2011. If Egypt continues to look as if it is going down an Islamist road, or at least if the government and military appear ready to tolerate such assaults, one can easily imagine one million or so Copts heading for the exits in the next few years. How would Europe like to receive these people who—in contrast to many other immigrants—would be legitimate asylum seekers with a genuine fear for their lives?
2. Mad Turkish Prime Minister
It’s rather clear that Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and his Islamist regime hates Israel. What’s less apparent to many people is that Erdogan has gone off the deep end into antisemitic insanity. If you didn’t know who was speaking you’d think Erdogan was Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reports, and now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media
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