Archive for July 2014

ISIS doing its best to make the Mongolians look like nice invaders

isis in iraq

Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has been so bloody and barbaric, it is making the Mongolians look like nice invaders.

By: Ashur Sada

The Mongolian empire, which dominated most of the known world  during the 13th and 14th centuries, set the standards for brutality and the most barbaric and inhumane treatment of your enemies.

ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) seems to have broken these standards set by the Mongols and are setting new standards for what it means to be brutal, barbaric and bloody. They are making the Mongols look nice and respectable invaders in comparison, as crazy as that may sound. Since invading the northern Iraqi city of Mosul in early June, the ruthless terrorist organization keeps  surprising us with new bloody surprises everyday. Not a day goes by without reading, watching or hearing of a new sick video or picture that is out there, showing what ISIS is up to. Some examples have included:

  • Summarily executing some 1000+ Iraqi soldiers in one day
  • Blowing up mosques, churches and extremely significant cultural landmarks in the city, including the mosque of prophet Jonah
  • Applying an extreme set of rules for daily living for city residents, especially for females
  • Forcing virtually every Christian out of the city, something not seen almost ever before
  • Marking (Assyrian) Christian and other minority homes with special painted letters to designate them as their property
  • Beheading Iraqi soldiers and displaying their heads and corpses in city streets for others to see
  • Asking families in the city to submit their wives, daughters, mothers etc. to the organization for ‘Jihad sex’
  • Publicly amputating legs and hands of those accused of stealing or other crimes
  • Eliminating entire families and blowing their homes, for any small act they deem unacceptable

You get the picture. ISIS preaches an extreme version of Islam, but they may as well preach about ‘Satanism’ and that would make more sense.  We have seen a lot of barbaric and terrorist groups in the last few decades but none comes close to this one. Their members, most of which are not even Iraqi, are brain-washed to the point where they don’t see anything else beyond what they have been told. It is just not possible to reason with these people because they have no concept of logic. And the irony of all ironies, despite preaching a very extreme version of the Qur’an, they seem to break most of what the book teaches.

Despite having some clueless backers, the above actions have caused a backlash from the rest of the Iraqi population, others in the region and people all around the world in general.  But despite all the condemnation, protests and petitions, they are symbolic at best and nothing will matter. ISIS is not an organization that will leave Mosul due to public pressure or social media campaigns.  What is actually needed is a joint and serious effort by the entire population of Mosul, backed by the Iraqi army, to eliminate this extremely cancerous snake called ISIS, once and for all.

Oh, and last but not least: the Mongols took about two centuries to stamp their name in history as being the most ruthless invaders. ISIS is doing it in a matter of a few months.   In addition, their army was huge in size, numbering in the millions, compared to the few thousands that ISIS currently has in Mosul and other nearby Iraqi and Syrian cities.

Not sure how Genghis Khan would feel about ISIS making his empire look relatively nice in comparison?

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Is History Repeating Itself?

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By Abbey Mikha

            World War I as thought of as an Islamic jihad and or a Christian crusade is in essence very similar, but it involved diverse nations of differing historical background and from opposing regions of the world. Although the terms jihad or crusade had a religious connotation, the actual dealings, which occurred, by the Ottomans and the British were based on interests, benefits, strategy, and not necessarily religion. These religious ideas were used to rationalize war against a perceived enemy. The ordinary individual on both sides and his religious passions were sparked by these religious philosophies, which were used by their leaders to start conflict and continue it for the benefit of the heads of these empires. It is not the ordinary individual who benefited from war rather the planers and thinkers who use ordinary people to condition them to do their dirty work. History is repeating itself as ISIS is doing this today in Mosul, Iraq and other regions against the Assyrian Christians, the Indigenous people of Nineveh. It must be stated that ISIS itself is a tool in the hands of the same schemers who since 2003 until today have been terrorizing, displacing, and killing Assyrian Christians and other minorities. One must ask the question of who is benefiting from these criminal acts and then we will know who is responsible.

During World War I crusade meant a religious war and jihad meant effort or struggle. A call to jihad was made in Constantinople and another in Madina by Arabs. The leaders told the regular people that death or sacrifice for the cause would send them to paradise. In 1914 there were 270 million Muslims. 30 million governed by fellow Muslims. 100 million were British subjects. There were others in Chechnya. Those who opposed holy war were promised the fire of hell. This was to scare the ordinary religious individual. Call to jihad was translated into Persian, Urdu, Arabic, and Tartar. Jihad was also proclaimed in Afghanistan and India. In Persia there was a call for jihad by Shiites. Uganda, Congo, Sudan were also involved.   This was the most prominent instant of state sponsored jihad, for the Ottomans knew that their empire was going to be destroyed unless they made their move. Jihad was seen as a German plan to weaken Britain and her allies at the time.

Enver Pasha the Ottoman Minister of War himself wondered, “Is holy war useful?” In other words how could the Ottomans use the notion of holy war! Jihad was an attempt by the Ottomans to supposedly unite the empire. One must note that history seems to be repeating itself here again because today the Prime Minister of Turkey Tayyip Ordogan and his Turkish Foreign Minister Daoud Oglo are the main players in the fighting of a dirty war in Syria and Iraq in order to selfishly retrieve gas and oil by manipulating many Islamic jihadi groups in the region.

In regards to World War I in the Middle East and the Ottomans using the notion of holy war to unite the empire, one has to consider that there were many non-Turkish nations living under Ottoman tyranny who were also Christians such as the Assyrians, Armenians, and Greeks. If Jihad was going to strengthen the Ottoman Empire what was to become of its Christian inhabitants?

The British Empire had more Muslims living in it than the Ottoman Empire, but there was a religious crusade declared in Europe. The regular soldiers were told that the British army wanted to reclaim the Holy Land for Christendom and perhaps make Jerusalem the capital of the world. Throughout the 19th century the idea of crusade was associated with an act of public good, like crusading for a cause…

The idea of crusade was not just restricted to the Middle East. Anglicans demonized Germany as anti-Christian and perhaps even pagan. This was their propaganda. Though Germany was a European country the British wanted to defeat the Germans because these peoples were of a different culture. The British tried to distance themselves from fighting a Muslim Empire but they did want to reclaim Constantinople supposedly for Christianity.

In March 1917 the British took Baghdad but the British proclaimed themselves as liberators rather than colonizers. Also, when Allenby entered Jerusalem he did so on foot rather than as a conqueror on a horse. For soldiers of the Middle East who relied on the Bible crusading was about Ottoman government not Islam. They wanted to free people from Ottoman rule not Islamic rule. Soldiers many times saw themselves as tourists. They were fascinated by Islamic culture and found this to be a once in a lifetime opportunity.  A chance to see Egypt, tour the Christian Holy sights and Islamic architecture.   Most of the British soldiers were Protestants though and they did not feel a complete connection with the Christianity in the Holy Land. It was not what they expected. Perhaps here again history is repeating itself as the same sentiment can be seen in the reasoning for many if not most European, Canadian, American, and the larger English speaking community of the world today who do not feel a closeness and a need to stand up for the crimes against humanity which are being committed against the Assyrian Christians (also called Chaldeans and Syriacs) in our holdy land. We ask you on behalf of all the Assyrians suffering in the world. Open your eyes and hearts and help this ancient community, which is on the brink of extinction.

Conclusion

Religion is supposed to be about spirituality. Religion is about faith and it is for the individual not for nations to ruin the world through their understanding of religion. Faith is between you and God no one else. It was the leaders of the Ottoman and the British Empires who used the terms jihad and crusade to ignite in the ordinary individual the desire to go to war against another nation and other human beings of differing religions and cultures.

Lets give an example. Had World War I really been a Christian crusade as was thought by some of the British soldiers, the British planers and thinkers would have aided the Assyrians Christians in the Hakkari region, of what is now south east Turkey, and other regions, and not allowed them to be slaughtered and crucified by the Ottomans and Kurds just for being Assyrians of a different and more ancient culture, language, and because they were ancient Christians.

Although the Assyrians were called Britain’s smallest ally the British only used them and made false promises for a homeland for the Assyrians. They abandoned them and were not faithful to their promises. Today history is repeating itself because the Assyrian Christians are asking from the world community the establishment of their own federal region in their ancestral homeland, but the world powers are giving their lands to the Kurdish occupiers who are originally not from this land, rather from nomadic areas such as Afghanistan and Mahabad Iran. The Kurds have lived in the area less than 200 years and they are definitely not indigenous to this land.

Jihad and crusade during WWI had little to do with true religion, which is spirituality. Mahatma Gandhi who was a product of British colonization said something interesting. He said, “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” These words give witness to British mannerism and their colonial wars. It was not about religion or spirituality and faith, rather it was about the interests of the few at the expense of the ordinary poor individuals, human beings, and nations. Wars and conflicts are always between various sides that know each other well, and know what they want from their campaign or operation. The regular people who die, they don’t know why they are truly there and why they are dying.

Now almost a hundred years after World War I the Assyrian Christians are still suffering and being driven out of their ancestral homeland.  ISIS is a powerful gang who have taken advantage and created a strategy to gain control of an unstable Middle East. The Assyrian activists worldwide should realize that we have to be strong and diligent in speaking out about the events occuring in the homeland.  History repeats itself.  No one will give us our rights unless we ask for it and stand up for it.  It is very sad that basic human rights are not being afforded to the Assyrians Christians of the region. We need to have leaders that will work in the right direction and who wont be afraid to speak the truth and be faithful to the Sacred Assyrian Cause.

*All information from World War I in the Middle East class 2014

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Why did the chaldean parties fail miserably again at the recent Iraqi elections?

Parliamentary elections were held in Iraq on 30 April 2014 to select the 328 members of the Council of Representatives.  assyrian chaldean in iraqi elections failureThese in turn will elect the Iraqi President and Prime Minister.

Our Assyrian Chaldean Syriac politicians and parties were also very active in this election, vying for the 5 seats allocated for the ‘Christian quota’.  There was a total of 9 lists representing our people in Iraq and these were:

298: Sons of Mesopotamia
299: Al-Warkaa Democratic List
300: Al-Rafidain List (Zowaa)
301: Bet Nahrain National Coalition
302:  Chaldean Syriac Assyrian Popular Council (KRG affiliated)
303: Babylon List
304: Souraya National Coalition
305: Ur National List
306: Shlama Entity

 

Of those, lists number 303 and 305 had relatively or majority chaldean representatives and were heavy on promises for reviving chaldean politics and aspirations.  Problem is, many or most were based on empty rhetoric, one that serves no one but the candidates themselves in most cases.  Moreover,  most of their platforms was heavy on anti-Assyrian agendas, as if Assyrians are the one and only problem facing our chaldean brothers in Iraq and outside of Iraq.

This brings us to the following question: why do chaldean politicians and platforms keep failing in winning in Iraqi elections? to be clear, it is not necessarily about the candidate being a chaldean. It is about their platform and its separatist aspirations.  After decades of useless divisions, our people are tired of these divisions and are making it clear at the ballot box. We want unity and not someone who makes false claims and empty promises about ‘restoring Babylon to its former glory’. By all means, if you can do that, go ahead, liberate Babylon and reestablish it again. Last time I checked, Babylon is inhabited by Arab Muslims and has virtually no Christians living there.  Our true home is in Nineveh, more specifically the ‘Nineveh Plain’, where the majority of Assyrians now live and happens to be where the former great Assyrian empire once stood.  That is where we should focus our attention, hopefully getting our own province there, and not on a false promise to ‘bring back Babylon’!

Our politicians, like most have been doing in the last few years, should instead focus their energy on unity. Nothing else matters in this day in age. With unity, we can do a lot.

To these chaldean politicians who keep lying to the people and screaming their lungs out about serving the chaldean people and their political aspirations, just do yourself and your people a favor and stop it. This is not what people want anymore, even if those close to you-cousins and friends-tell you otherwise.

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