Monday, November 06, 2017

Israel Condemns Iran, Not Saudi Arabia, for Persecuting Christians


Israel Condemns Iran, Not Saudi Arabia, for Persecuting Christians

By Julio Severo
“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on a group of Christian journalists to put a spotlight on the persecution of Christians under Iran’s Islamic regime. Speaking at the first Christian Media Summit in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said it’s time to speak out for suffering Christians in Iran,” according to the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), of Pat Robertson last October.
All the nations that are neighbors of Israel are Muslim, including Saudi Arabia. In a lesser or greater degree, all of these nations persecute Christians, and Saudi Arabia persecutes Christians more than Iran does. Why has Israel singled out Iran to denounce?
If it’s time to speak out for suffering Christians in Iran, what about Christians persecuted by Saudi Arabia?
Netanyahu added, “Some world leaders are willing to ignore this repression and seek to appease Iran, but I am not one of them. I think that how a country treats religious minorities is a very good indicator of how it will treat its fellow citizens and its neighbors.”
You should measure if Netanyahu’s priority is correct by evaluating how Iran and Saudi Arabia treat Christians and Jews.
How many Christian churches are there in Iran?
There are at least 600 Christian churches and 300,000–370,000 Christians in Iran.
There are official and non-official churches in Iran. The official church, founded in 1830, is the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Iran, which is not persecuted because it is registered and a member of the World Council of Churches, which is a left-wing organization.
Most Christians persecuted in Iran are Pentecostal. For example, Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani has been persecuted because he is a member of a non-registered Pentecostal church. Iranian ministers of official, registered Presbyterian churches also condemned Nadarkhani because, for them, he is an “heretic” who has no theological formation.
How many churches are there in Saudi Arabia?
According to Paul Marshall in his book “Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians” (Thomas Nelson, 2013), “Saudi Arabia bans all churches and public manifestations of Christianity. It does not even permit churches that are state regulated. Moreover, secret congregations that pray together in private homes risk being raided and shut down, and seeing their members flogged, beaten, jailed, deported, or even killed. The only secure prayer services are ones quietly held in US and various European embassies for their nationals.”
Is the Bible allowed in Iran?
Yes.
Is the Bible allowed in Saudi Arabia?
Bible distribution is illegal in Saudi Arabia.
Are Jews allowed in Iran?
Estimates on the size of the Jewish community vary from 20,000 to 30,000 in Iran.
Judaism is a recognized religion in Iran. Despite Iran’s official distrust of the country of Israel, the Iranian government does not directly attack Judaism itself.
Are Jews allowed in Saudi Arabia?
No. Besides, Judaism is not a recognized religion in Saudi Arabia.
Are Christians and Jews allowed in government posts in Iran?
Yes. By law and practice, religious minorities can be elected to a representative body or to hold senior government or military positions, and have 5 of a total 270 seats in the majlis. Three of these seats are reserved for members of the Christian faith, including two seats for the country’s Armenian Christians, and one for Assyrians. There is also one seat for a member of the Jewish faith.
Are Christians and Jews allowed in government posts in Saudi Arabia?
No. No Christians or Jews are allowed to hold government or military positions in Saudi Arabia.
So if Christians and Jews are allowed to live in Iran and even have their churches and synagogues and if they cannot have churches and synagogues in Saudi Arabia, why is Iran, not Saudia Arabia, condemned by Israel? Because Israel has a geopolitical partnership with the United States, Saudi Arabia, which is a military ally of the United States and persecutes Christians more violently than Iran does, is spared, and Iran not.
If Israel really were worried about persecution of Christians, it would save Christians from ISIS. In an editoral article titled “A plea to Israel: Save Mideast Christians,” WorldNetDaily chief Joseph Farah asked Israel to reach out “to save Christians of the Middle East who are right now facing a mini-holocaust, nothing short of genocide, persecution unparalleled since the rise of Islam 1,300 years ago.”
The responsible for this mini-holocaust, or genocide, is ISIS. Its Christian victims are in the reach of Israel. Yet, Israel has been running military operations to save terrorists who slaughter Christians. Eighty percent of wounded Syrians receiving medical care in Israel are Islamic male rebels fighting against Christians.
Israel has never given attention to Farah’s plea.
ISIS, which was founded by the left-wing Obama administration, is funded and armed by Saudi Arabia, which was a strong ally of Obama and now is a strong ally of Trump. So because of U.S. geopolitical interests, Israel is not helping Christians. It is helping their oppressors.
Because of the U.S. geopolitical interests, Israel condemns Iran, but it does not condemn Saudi Arabia for its worst record of persecution of Christians and for its sponsorship of ISIS, which is committing a mini-holocaust, or genocide, of Christians.
Even so, American Christians worry too much about Israel and its security, while Israel does not worry about Christians and their safety — at least not about Christians slaughtered by ISIS.
Christians could object by saying that Israel has reasons to single out Iran because of Iranian threats to make a nuclear bomb to attack Israel. In no way Christians can support the Iranian hatred for Israel. But could such hatred be largely explained by the U.S. geopolitical meddlings? Even though the U.S. is incapable of guarding its own borders, the U.S. is “guarding” the Iranian borders: Iran is surrounded by over 40 U.S. military bases.
If the U.S. had a sincere worry about Iran making a nuclear bomb, it would have hindered Pakistan, a neighbor of Iran and U.S. ally, from making its own nuclear bombs. Pakistan, which sheltered Osama bin Laden, is an unreliable Islamic nation sheltering many terrorists, but the U.S. did not make against Pakistan the same fuss it is making against Iran.
If Iran makes a nuclear bomb, is Israel defenseless? No. Right now, while Iran is trying to make a nuclear bomb, Israel has 200 nuclear warheads all pointed at Iran.
If Israel had no nuclear defense, there would be justification for the hysteria against Iran. But Israel has extreme and abundant military defense. And the Iranian hatred is justified: It is surrounded by intrusive U.S. military bases.
The United States has a long record of meddling in the national affairs of Iran in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Predictably, this meddling has provoked hatred in Iran. Because Israel and Saudi Arabia are the closest U.S. allies in the Middle East, Iran vents its anger on both of them.
The many U.S. bases surrounding Iran could have a best function protecting Christians from ISIS, but they are not doing it. Or they could guard the defenseless U.S. borders. There is no reason for the U.S. to have so many bases to protect Saudi Arabia, which deserves no protection. There is no reason for the U.S. to bully Iran, not Saudi Arabia.
Israel can defend itself. It has 200 nuclear warheads against Iran. And it has many other nuclear warheads to protect itself from other Muslim nations.
How many nuclear warheads have Christians in the Middle East to defend themselves against ISIS and its sponsor, Saudi Arabia? Absolutely nothing.
How can Netanyahu condemn Iran for partial persecution of Christians and not condemn Saudi Arabia for full persecution of Christians?
How can Netanyahu condemn Iran for partial persecution of Christians and not condemn ISIS for its mini-holocaust, or genocide, of Christians?
How can Netanyahu send military units to save Islamic terrorists who slaughter Christians instead of sending them to save Christians?
I support Netanyahu’s efforts to defend Israel in its rightful Promised Land. But I cannot defend his hypocritical attitude of ignoring Christians persecuted by ISIS and Saudi Arabia to serve the U.S. neocons ambitions.
While Netanyahu is condemning Iran for partial persecution of Christians, the Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Lutheran churches have accused Israel of undermining Christianity in the Holy Land.
Netanyahu will have a right to condemn Iran for partial persecution of Christians only after Israel condemns Saudi Arabia and ISIS for full persecution of Christians.
Netanyahu will have a right to condemn Iran for partial persecution of Christians only after Israel stops from saving Islamic terrorists and begins to save Christians from Saudi Arabia and ISIS.
With information from CBN, Newsweek, New York Post, Julian Assange and Wikipedia.
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