Pope Francis has spoken out against the persecution of Christians and other minorities in Iraq, and has addressed whether the use of force to stop their persecutors is justified.
"In these cases, where there is an unjust aggression, I can only say that it is licit to stop the unjust aggressor," Pope Francis told journalists. "I underscore the verb 'stop.' I'm not saying 'bomb' or 'make war,' just 'stop.' And the means that can be used to stop them must be evaluated."
Hundreds of thousands of Christians and religious minority members have had to flee their homes and communities in order to avoid being slaughtered by radical Muslims. The Islamic group known as ISIS has spent recent months murdering thousands across northern Iraq in an attempt to form a unified Islamic Caliphate. The militant group has already taken over a large area of Syria and hopes to "cleanse" the region of Christians and other minorities such as the Yazidids. more >>
Notable atheist author and intellectual Richard Dawkins has recently claimed that nonviolent religious believers enable acts of violent extremism by being "nice."
While speaking at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, Dawkins blamed "nice Muslims, nice Christians" for acts of religious terrorism.
"It's very important that we should not demonise ordinary, law-abiding, very decent Muslims, which of course is the vast majority in this country," Dawkins said Wednesday, according to the UK Telegraph. more >>
Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University, started a petition calling on President Barack Obama, Congress and the international community to destroy ISIS as a fighting force.
In a Thursday video phone interview with The Christian Post (see below), George said he thought the petition was needed because ISIS, also called ISIL or the Islamic State, is committing genocide, similar to what happened in Rwanda in 1994. The United States did nothing to prevent the Rwandan genocide, and that was a mistake that should not happen again, he argued.
An atheist activist who attempted to have an Alabama county commission not display a plaque bearing the national motto, "In God We Trust," has stated that a strict separation of church and state protects Christians from Islamic rule.
Amanda Scott, an atheist college student who testified against the Mobile County Commission's plan to place a plaque featuring the national motto in the government plaza, made the statement about Islam during a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" segment.
Earlier this week during the "Ask Me Anything" online forum, one poster asked Scott why secularism was important to her. more >>
The U.S. Navy has reversed its decision to remove Bibles from Navy rooms, and has noted that it would be reviewing its policy. Navy Exchange Service Command officials had previously said they would be removing all religious literature, following complaints from an atheist group.
"That decision and our religious accommodation policies with regard to the placement of religious materials are under review," Navy spokesman Lt. Chika Onyekanne said in a statement. "While that review is underway, religious materials removed from Navy Lodge rooms will be returned."
The Navy's decision to put Bibles back in its lodge and guest rooms came on Thursday, Navy Times reported. The reversal follows backlash from religious groups who had asked why the Navy is giving in to demands from the Freedom From Religion Foundation, which filed a complaint against the Bibles earlier this year. more >>
As Syria burns, as casualty rates soar to levels not seen in the Middle East since the Iran–Iraq War, and as a Ba'athist dictator clings to power in part by the use of chemical weapons, it simply boggles the mind that so many Americans seem to believe that the world would be better off with Saddam Hussein — and are so committed to this view that they literally want to shut down any discourse from supporters of the 2003 invasion. Here, for example, is Bill Clinton, dismissing Dick Cheney's critiques, with this incredible statement: "I believe if they hadn't gone to war in Iraq, none of this would be happening."
Let's review a bit of history, beginning with this rather important fact. Syria is a jihad-exporting bloodbath, and we never invaded Syria. Indeed the Ba'athist dictatorship has been left intact — subject mainly to Israeli containment — for decades. It had invaded Israel in 1973, had put down a bloody jihadist rebellion in the city of Homs in 1982, had occupied Lebanon for almost 30 years, and had started working with North Korea to develop nuclear weapons, but Nancy Pelosi still said, in 2007, that "the road to Damascus is a road to peace." Then-senator Kerry said, "Syria will change as it embraces a legitimate relationship with the United States." more >>