As the Islamic State continues to control Iraq's two "capitals of Christianity," American combat experts have taken it upon themselves to train Christian militia fighters to not only defend the remaining Christian villages from ISIS, but eventually go on the offensive to recapture the historic Christian lands of Mosul and Qaraqosh.
Sons of Liberty International, a group headed by Baltimore-native Matthew VanDyke, a renowned Libyan revolutionary and former prisoner of war, has been operating in northern Iraq since last December. The organization's main focus is training recruits in the Nineveh Plains Protection Unit, a militia made up of a couple thousand Christians, and prepare them to protect the Nineveh Plains from the brutal ISIS extremists.
"The purpose of the NPU is beyond just fighting ISIS," VanDyke told The Christian Post in a Thursday interview. "It is not just a short-term project. They have their eye on being a security force for their region from now on, and being able to demonstrate to their people that they will be safe and that they can stay in the country and Christianity can survive in Iraq." more >>
World and faith leaders are marking on Friday the 100th year anniversary of the genocide of 1.5 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire, one of the largest Christian massacres in history.
"I am grateful to all those who are here to once again confirm your commitment to human values, to say that nothing is forgotten, that after 100 years we remember," Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said at a flower-laying ceremony in Yerevan.
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, a prominent social conservative commentator, asserted Wednesday that the Obama administration's limitations on religious freedoms domestically is "emboldening" the Islamic State's attacks on Christians abroad.
Perkins, who testified before a Senate subcommittee in March and stated that the U.S.' growing intolerance toward religious freedoms in the domestic marketplace and public sector is "giving rise" to religious persecution abroad, further claimed in an email to FRC followers, which The Christian Post obtained, that the Obama administration has done little to deter Islamic extremism abroad.
"Ask Christian Wives, mothers and daughters overseas. Their husbands, sons and fathers are being beheaded or shot by radical Islamic jihadists like ISIS. They are being driven from their homes. Children are being martyred," Perkins explained. "And our administration has done little to help, and for months resisted calling this massacre of Christians by Islamic jihadists what it is." more >>
Recently published testimony provided by an escaped Yazidi Islamic State captive battling a "terminal illness" has revealed more horrifying details into ISIS' blatant disregard for human rights and how many of the thousands of Yazidi sex slaves were sorted and divided as battle "shares" for militants.
In an op-ed published by the International Business Times, Murad Ismael, a Yazid activist who works for the NGO Yazda, wrote about a Yazidi women named Samia who was taken captive, along with her two sisters, after ISIS seized her Iraqi village of Kocho on Aug. 15 of last year.
Although Samia was diagnosed with cancer in 2007 and was still receiving chemotherapy last August when she was taken hostage — along with 130 other women and girls from her village — that didn't prevent her from being subject to the total wrath of the group's sexual and physical brutality that it systemically imposes on religious minority women. more >>
The American Center for Law and Justice has warned that pastor Saeed Abedini and three other Americans imprisoned in Iran seem likely to be forgotten by President Barack Obama's administration in the proposed nuclear deal with Iran.
Beside Abedini, the law group has identified Jason Rezaian, Amir Hekmati, and Robert Levinson as three other U.S. citizens being held in Iranian prisons.
ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow wrote for Fox News on Wednesday that forgetting these Americans in the negotiations would be "outrageous," but the signs are showing that it might very well become a reality. more >>
Tens of thousands of Ethiopians marched on Thursday in the capital of Addis Ababa in solidarity with the 28 murdered Christians at the hands of terror group ISIS. Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn described the terror group at the rally as "Satanic."
"This week's cruel act, which was committed against our citizens in Libya, not only gives a glimpse into terrorism, but also shows the Satanic acts and objectives of those who committed the act," Desalegn told the mass rally in Addis Ababa's Meskel Square, according to BBC News.
The response comes to a video released by ISIS on Sunday depicting the execution of two groups of Ethiopian Christians, one where the hostages were shot, and the other where they were beheaded. The militants directed their message to "the nation of the cross," referencing a previous video they released in February that showed the beheading of 21 Coptic Christians. more >>