Now that President Barack Obama’s days in the White House appear to be numbered, the Catholic clergy in Syria are once again pleading with the U.S. and other Western governments to stop supporting radical Islamic rebel groups.
With a change in the administration from a far-left clan of domestic policy seekers to a more boldly pragmatic, America First and peace-through- strength group led by a true outsider, Christian leaders believe they have a more sympathetic leader in President Donald J. Trump.
According to a statement attributed to Archbishop Jean-Clement Jeanbart of the Greek Orthodox Catholic Church in Aleppo, “Please help us to pull our country back from the abyss of the fundamentalist [Islamic] regime in which they are trying to immerse us.”
“Just stop selling arms to the terrorists,” pleaded Father Mtanios Haddad, who is now serving in Rome. Fr. Haddad notes that there are crucial actions immediately needed:
- Stopping the flow of arms from the U.S. to the terrorists;
- Stopping the flow of money from Saudi Arabia which funds the terrorists;
- Closing the border with Turkey through which the terrorists reach Syria.
Wikileaks documents and watchdog investigations by Judicial Watch, Freedom Watch, and the Clarion Project have shown that weapons and training were given to some of the most vicious Islamists by the United States and other countries. There were allegations that Hillary Clinton, then Obama’s Secretary of State, and her boss had weapons transported by the Central Intelligence Agency from Benghazi, Libya, to so-called freedom fighters in Syria. The CIA also allegedly trained the rebel forces in Jordan.
Christian church leaders believe that the American people are intentionally being given an inaccurate account of the dynamics in war-torn Syria.
“I think that those who control the information in the West have a political agenda,” said Chaldean Catholic Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo. Many believe the agenda is a deep-seeded hatred for Christians by liberal-left Americans who oppose Christian positions on abortion and same-sex marriage.
Archbishop Clement added that the possibility that Syria could end up being a fundamentalist Muslim state is a nightmare to the next generation of Syrians.
“This is why we turn to our brethren in the West and pray that they may help us prevent this from happening,” the archbishop said. The church leaders know that with a President Donald Trump in the Oval Office, they have a much better chance of receiving U.S. assistance.
A former U.S. counter-terrorism unit member, Douglas Fitzpatrick, agrees with the archbishop: “If the current administration showed one-tenth the concern it shows to Muslims and their victimization — which is usually all in their heads — perhaps the Catholics and Protestants living through some of the fiercest fighting in the Middle East would see some kind of concerted effort on the part of the U.S. military to at least get them out of the war zones.”
Fitzpatrick points to the recent acceptance by President Barack Obama of as many as 10,000 Syrian refugees and the fact that less than 60 of them were Christians. “No one cared about the inequity of that deal made with Australia who refused to take in those thousands of Muslims,” he said.
According to The Pew Research Center, over 75% of the world’s population lives in areas with severe religious restrictions (and many of these people are Christians). Also, according to the United States Department of State, Christians in more than 60 countries face persecution from their governments or surrounding neighbors simply because of their belief in Jesus Christ.