[This is unfortunately a long article - below is just the beginning of the article]
The following represents some of the persecution Christians experienced at the hands of Muslims during the month of April, 2015 alone. One wonders how the Western media, politicians, and other foolish talking heads would react if Muslims experienced the same sort and amount of persecution in Western nations in just one month.
Islamic State Slaughters 30 Christian Ethiopians
Approximately two months after the Islamic State published a video depicting its members slaughtering 21 Coptic Christians in Libya, on Sunday, April 19, the Islamic jihadi organization released another video of more Christians in Libya, approximately 30 Ethiopians—derogatorily referred to by an IS spokesman as “worshippers of the cross”—being butchered for not paying jizya, extortion money demanded of the “People of the Book” who refuse to convert to Islam, according to Koran 9:29.
One group of Christians were shot execution style to the back of their heads, the others had their heads carved off, like the Copts before them.
The IS spokesman further addressed “Christians everywhere”:
We say to Christians everywhere, the Islamic State will expand, with Allah’s permission. And it will reach you even if you are in fortified strongholds. So whoever enters Islam will have security, and whoever accepts the Dhimmah contract [subjugated, third-class treatment and social status] will have security. But whoever refuses will see nothing from us but the edge of a spear. The men will be killed and the children will be enslaved, and their wealth will be taken as booty. This is the judgment of Allah and His Messenger.
In a statement, the Coptic Christian Church of Egypt pointed out that the Ethiopian martyrs, like the 21 Copts before them, were “murdered purely for refusing to renounce their faith.”
Al Shabaab Murders 147, Separates Muslims from Christians
On April 2 in Kenya, gunmen from the Somali Islamic group, Al Shabaab—“the [Islamic] youth”—stormed Garissa University, singled out Christian students, and murdered them, some beheaded. A total of 147 people were killed in the attack—making this jihad more spectacular than the 2013 Al Shabaab attack on the Nairobi mall, which left 67 people dead (then, Islamic gunmen also singled out Christians for slaughter).
Islamic gunmen were careful to separate Christians from Muslims before beginning the carnage said eyewitnesses.
Collins Wetangula, vice chairman of the student union, said he could hear from inside his room where he was hiding the gunmen opening doors and inquiring if the people inside were Muslims or Christians: “If you were a Christian you were shot on the spot. With each blast of the gun I thought I was going to die.”
Egyptian Churches under Attack
- On Sunday, April 5, as Coptic Christians were celebrating Palm Sunday, a churchwas attacked in Alexandria, Egypt. Gunmen in a vehicle opened fire on the church during the night injuring a police officer and two civilians.
- On April 12, Easter Sunday according to the Orthodox calendar, two explosions targeting churches took place in Zagazig vicinity. One car explosion took place near a Coptic Orthodox church and another bomb exploded near the Evangelical Church in the same area. Although no casualties were reported, large numbers could have easily resulted, based on precedent. For example, on January 1, 2011, as Egypt’s Christians ushered in the New Year, car bombs went off near the Two Saints Church in Alexandria, resulting in 23 dead worshippers and dozens critically injured.
- Muslims rioted because President Sisi had agreed for Copts to build a church in Al-Our, where 13 of the 21 Christians who were beheaded by the Islamic State grew up and where their families still live. Local Muslims rose in violence soon after Islamic prayers Friday, April 3. They yelled that they would never allow a church to be built, that “Egypt is Islamic!” By night time, Molotov cocktails and stones were thrown at another Coptic church, cars were set ablaze—including one belonging to a relative of one of the those decapitated by the Islamic State—and several people were injured.[i]
- A day later, on Saturday, April 4, Muslims rioted and attacked the Christians of the village of Gala’, Samalout district. After waiting for years to repair their dilapidated church (see pictureshere) Coptic locals finally received all the proper permits to begin restoration. Soon Coptic homes, businesses, and persons, were attacked including by hurled stones. Christian owned wheat farms were destroyed and their potato crops uprooted. Islamic slogans were constantly yelled, including “There is no god but Allah” and “Islamic! Islamic!”
- After waiting for 44 years, the Christians of Nag Shenouda, in Sohag City, finally got the necessary permit to build a new church. Muslims again rioted and even burned down the tent the Christians had erected to worship under. Denied, the Christians of Nag Shenouda celebrated Easter in the street (picture here). And when one of them tried to hold worship service in his home, he and his household were attacked by a Muslim mob.
Syria: The Islamic State destroyed at least three churches under its jurisdiction:
- On Easter Sunday, the Islamic State destroyed the Virgin Mary Church in Tel Nasri, northeast Syria. The Assyrian church was built and consecrated in 1934. Loosely translated as “Christian Hill,” Tel Nasri is an ancient Assyrian Christian village. It is one of the dozens of Christian villages along the Khabur river that were attacked and occupied by the Islamic State in late February (morehere and here).
- On April 28, the St. Odisho Assyrian Church in Tel Tal and the St. Rita Tilel Armenian Church in Aleppo, were also destroyed.
Nigeria: A Muslim mob set fire to a church in a Christian village in Nigeria’s northern Kano State on April 1. Muslims were searching for a young man who had renounced Islam and re-converted to Christianity in order to kill him. They also attacked Christian villagers with machetes and torched the home of a pastor, killing one of his daughters. According to General Dikko, a local official,
The church and all the properties were burnt down in the presence of the Christian community despite all pleadings for them to stop the destruction. The arsonists gathered cornstalks and put them inside the church in order to cause greater damage…. We have the right to belong to any religion of our choice and live anywhere in this country. We call on the authorities at all levels to rise up to their responsibilities of protecting lives and properties of every citizen in this country.
Pakistan: Two assailants on motorbikes opened fire on the main gates of a church and Christian school in Lahore. The school had just closed half an hour earlier and several students were present outdoors. Police were present, causing the attackers to ride off. Two passersby were injured in the crossfire.
Malaysia: On Sunday, April 19, a Muslim mob of approximately 50 people rioted and protested against a small Protestant church in Kuala Lumpur, the capital. The object of their wrath was the cross atop the building of worship—which was removed during the Islamic protest. Rioters exclaimed that the cross, the central symbol of Christianity, represented “a challenge to Islam” and could “influence the faith of young people.”
More Muslim Slaughter of Christians
High Seas: On April 16, police in Sicily reported that Muslim migrants hurled as many as 53 Christians overboard during a recent crossing from Libya. The motive was that the victims “professed the Christian faith while the aggressors were Muslim.” Another report said that the reason the Christians were thrown overboard is because a boy was seen praying to the Judeo-Christian God. Muslims commanded him to stop, saying “Here, we only pray to Allah.” Eventually the Muslims “went mad,” in the words of a witness, started screaming “Allahu Akbar!” and began hurling Christians into the sea.[ii]
Nigeria: According to a “U.N. human rights chief … all 276 Christian schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2014 may have been among a group of women slaughtered by Boko Haram last month [March], Nigerian media reported Monday, April 6.”[iii]
Syria: Islamic rebels fired rockets at a Christian neighborhood in Aleppo, the nation’s largest city, on the night of April 10-11. The attack left massive destruction in the eastern section of the Sulaymaniyah district, which is predominantly Assyrian and Armenian. At least 40 people, mostly Assyrians—including women and children—were killed. Shells also targeted an Assyrian Catholic Cathedral, injuring three civilians. “Our Easter feast has turned to grief,” a nun in Aleppo said: “Some people woke up to find themselves without a home and others did not see the life died under the rubble because they were victims of violence.”
Uganda: Five Muslim men gang-raped and beat the teenage daughter of a Christian pastor. This was done in “retaliation” to the pastor’s refusal to stop Christian worship services in a Muslim-majority region. The girl was approaching the New Hope Church building where her father serves as pastor when she was abducted and taken to nearby bushes by the rapists. In the 17-year-old girl’s own words:
The five Muslims took hold of me, and they raped me there. I tried to scream, but they threatened to kill me. One of them said, “Your father should stop this prayer meeting of trying to change Muslims to become Christians and close the church building—we have warned him several times.
Greek Negotiations Now "Moving Backwards" As Confusion Reigns In Brussels - Live Updates | Zero Hedge
For a couple of hours on Tuesday, it appeared as though Greece had managed to sneak a debt deal proposal by the troika that, while hitting some of the mandated fiscal targets, did not include the pension cuts and VAT concessions that had previously constituted creditors’ “red lines.”
Then, on Tuesday evening, the IMF apparently decided to read the terms of the “deal” and Christine Lagarde did not like what she saw.
A few hours later, we were back to square one and Greek PM Alexis Tsipras was calling the IMF’s stance “weird” although in reality, the Fund was simply reiterating what it’s been saying since May, when Lagarde lost patience with the situation following Athens’ move to make a €750 million payment out of its SDR reserves.
Following meetings with EU officials and then with Lagarde and ECB chief Mario Draghi on Wednesday evening, Tsipras is back at it on Thursday, in a frantic attempt to win over EU finance chiefs (who are collectively losing their will to keep Greece in the currency bloc) and the IMF as the EU summit kicks off in Brussels. Here’s Bloomberg summing up:
As the pressure grew, Tsipras met with International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker after concluding hours of discussions Wednesday that yielded no breakthrough. Euro-area finance chiefs are also in Brussels trying to find a way to broker an agreement that will satisfy all sides ahead of a two-day summit of European Union leaders that begins later Thursday.
It now appears the Greeks have missed a deadline to present a counter proposal ahead of the finance ministers' meeting, meaning the troika's proposal will be discussed instead, even though the Greeks rejected that proposal yesterday.
And now that meeting has been delayed, presumably because it's pointless to discuss a proposal that one side has already rejected.
Here's Austrian Finance Minister Hans Joerg Schelling attempting to explain where things stand:
“I believe that it still is possible to come to an agreement. This is no longer about days; it’s about hours. We have been commissioned by the summit to present a compromise by 4 p.m. Negotiations took the entire night. The Greeks are rejecting every compromise, constantly present new wishes. We are prepared to make an agreement, to help Greece as finance ministers, but the responsibility lies solely with Greece to accept these compromises.”
While Wolfgang Schaueble says if anything, the divide between Athens and Brussels is growing:
Greece's international creditors will put their own final proposal for a cash-for-reform deal to avert a Greek default to euro zone finance ministers for approval on Thursday after Athens let a deadline pass, euro zone officials said.
"If Greece says 'no go' now, it could be the final straw," one senior European official said.
The lenders had given leftist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras an ultimatum to come up with a credible reform plan by mid-morning (5 a.m. EDT), saying they would otherwise send their own version to Eurogroup ministers.
The dramatic move came hours before European Union leaders meet in Brussels for a summit on migration, the long-term future of the euro zone and renegotiating Britain's membership terms, that has been overshadowed by the Greek debt crisis.
A Greek official said Athens was standing by the proposals submitted on Monday with the inclusion of some modifications made during negotiations this week.
The heads of the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank set Tsipras the deadline to come up with a new, workable proposal of reforms to unlock new funding and avert a debt default next Tuesday.
Diplomats said the lenders' tactics reflected exasperation at Tsipras's refusal to compromise on key reforms of pensions, labor markets, wages and taxation, which cross his Syriza party's self-declared "red lines".
Without a cash-for-reform deal in the next 48 hours, the chances of Greece averting a default to the IMF look slim.
Failure to repay 1.6 billion euros owed to the IMF on Tuesday could trigger a bank run and capital controls, followed by a slide out of the single currency area.
Austrian Finance Minister Hans Joerg Schelling, a hardliner on Greece, said the ultimate deadline for a deal was Sunday, a day before a German parliament sitting that would have to approve the release of aid to meet the IMF payment.
U.S. Power Grid Being Hit With ‘Increasing’ Hacking Attacks, Government Warns | Washington Free Beacon
Major attacks on the U.S. power grid system are “increasing,” with hackers stepping up efforts to penetrate critical systems and to implant malicious software that could compromise the power grid and result in a nationwide crisis, according to a government report.
While experts have long signaled that the U.S. power grid and related systems are vulnerable to physical attacks by terrorists and other individuals, the U.S. government is now warning that sensitive computer systems that maintain the grid are increasingly being attacked, according to a Congressional Research Service (CRS) report that was not made public until the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) disclosed it this month.
The report warns that hackers potentially affiliated with terrorist groups or rogue nations have the ability to insert harmful malware into the internal systems governing the U.S. grid, which increasingly are being hooked into the Internet.
These types of computer viruses are able to comb internal systems for private information in a clandestine manner; they can also be used to wrest control of certain computers away from their owners.
“In recent years, new threats have materialized as new vulnerabilities have come to light, and a number of major concerns have emerged about the resilience and security of the nation’s electric power system,” the report says. “In particular, the cyber security of the electricity grid has been a focus of recent efforts to protect the integrity of the electric power system.”
The threat is compounded by the revelation that many power companies are only living up to the “minimum standards” set for cyber security by the U.S. government.
Cyber attacks on the U.S. grid and power companies are becoming more prevalent.
“Incidents of reported cyber intrusions and attacks aimed at undermining the U.S. grid appear to be increasing,” according to the report. “While parts of the electric power subsector have mandatory and enforceable cyber and physical security standards, some have argued that minimum, consensus-based standards are not enough to secure the system.”
The report continues: “Further, the electric grid is not isolated from attacks on other critical infrastructure sectors on which it depends (i.e., the natural gas subsector, water, and transportation), and mandatory and enforceable cyber security standards apply to only a few of the critical infrastructure sectors,” the report states.
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