"How do You live with it, Lord?"
That's a question I recently asked God in prayer as I thought about all the suffering taking place around the world today, especially as human beings slaughter one another in the most horrific and barbaric ways, including reports of Muslim radicals beheading Christian children.
"Lord, how do You live with so much suffering and pain when you see it and know it all?" more >>
Protests highlighting the plight of Iraqi Christians are being held in many parts of the world, thanks at least partly to the #WeAreN campaign that has drawn attention to the unprecedented persecution by highlighting Arabic letter "N," which the ISIS militants placed on the homes of Christians in Mosul.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, tweeted, "#WeAreN and we stand in solidarity with the persecuted Iraqi Christians," adding a link to an article in National Review on the campaign's success, and urging his followers, "RT if you do too!"
The article notes that the #WeAreN campaign has helped fuel protests across the United States and all over the world in favor of Christians forced to flee their homes in Mosul and other parts of Iraq, which is now under the control of the Sunni militants of the ISIS. more >>
The Christian genocide taking place in the Middle East currently has reached alarming levels. Last week, the jihadist terrorist group ISIS, which means the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – although it is unrecognized as a nation – took over Qaraqosh, the largest Christian town in Iraq, warning Christians to "leave, convert or die." They are systematically beheading children. It is a part of an unprecedented, recent effort by the ISIS to extinguish Christians from northern Iraq. In 2003, there were about 1.5 million Christians in Iraq. After the Iraq War, that number dropped to as low as 200,000.
ISIS captured Mosul in June, so Christians there fled to Qaraqosh, population 50,000. ISIS warned Christians in Mosul to leave by July 19th. The houses of Christians in Mosul were painted with the letter "N," meaning Nasare, the Muslim word for Christians, which comes from Nazareth, Jesus's hometown. Their property was confiscated, including jewelry and wedding rings – sometimes chopping off their fingers to get them. Their churches were bombed, which has been caught on video. Catholic Online has compiled some of the more graphic photos of the barbaric, torturous executions. Many Christians were crucified due to the humiliation of Christ's crucifixion. There are reportedly no Christians left in Mosul.
Within the past few months, ISIS has taken over Fallujah, Tikrit, and Tel Afar in northern Iraq. Composed of radical Sunni Muslims, ISIS is also terrorizing Shia and some Kurdish Muslims. Besides eradicating Christians, its goals include removing the Shia Muslim population. Next, it is going after certain Kurdish Muslims, marching toward Erbil, the Kurdish capital of Iraq. more >>
A three-day cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militant group Hamas in Gaza is holding as of Monday morning, with negotiations for a longer-term truce set to begin later that day in Cairo.
The cease-fire agreement began midnight in Gaza, BBC News reported, following days of mediation by Egypt, whose previous endeavors for truce between the two sides had been rejected by Hamas.
ISIS and ISIL are currently both being used to refer to Iraq's Islamic extremist terrorist organization, but recently there has been confusion over what to call the jihadist group. While the U.S. State Department is using the ISIL designation, much of American media still uses the better-known ISIS. Adding to the confusion is a third name, Da'ish, which is being used by some Arabic media and politicians.
ISIS stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria or Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham, and emerged roughly two years ago, according to reports. The highly dangerous offshoot of al-Qaeda is responsible for thousands of deaths in the Syrian civil war and has taken credit for terrorist acts in Iraq. The group, led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aims to create a Sunni Muslim state consisting of Iraq, Syria and other Middle Eastern countries.
However, the U.N. and the U.S. State Department have now started using the term ISIL to refer to the jihadists because of the group's broader mission to extend their reach into a wider area. In Arabic, "al-Dawla al-Islamiya fi Iraq wa al-Sham" refers to an area bigger than just Iraq and Syria, which English speakers refer to as the Levant. Thus, the ISIL acronym was created. more >>
President Barack Obama was praised Friday for acting to save refugees fleeing ISIS. Some have criticized his decision, however, to not have a broader strategy to combat ISIS.
After the U.S. military fired two 500-lb bombs as ISIS targets Friday morning, additional airstrikes on Friday afternoon took out ISIS mortars and a convoy. A Defense Department spokesperson said more strikes could continue throughout the weekend.
(ISIS, which stands for "Islamic State in Iraq and Syria," is sometimes called Islamic State or ISIL, for "Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.") more >>