Eine Kleine Nichtmusik

Witty and pertinent observations on matters of great significance OR Incoherent jottings on total irrelevancies OR Something else altogether OR All of the above

Friday, January 07, 2011

Coptic Christians and Muslims - Surprise No 2

The Iraqi wing of al-Qaida has been killing Christians for some time. You probably also saw this story back in October, where they killed 52 Christians in Baghdad. Nothing surprising about that, nor that in their normal way they claimed responsibility without shouldering the blame. No, al-Qaida were cross with the Coptic Christians in Egypt so they attacked Christians in Iraq. (What is it about Iraq, that whenever anyone has a grievance against some other country it's Iraqis who get attacked? Just asking.)

The surprise is in what gave al-Qaida their "excuse". It seems that two Egyptian Christian women were married to priests in the Coptic Church who abused them. Their church forbids divorce, so they took the only way out other than suicide: they fled and attempted to convert to Islam. The Coptic Church would then declare them offically dead as apostates, thus voiding their marriages. They were caught, of course, and handed back to their wife-beating husbands by the police. Since then they have not been seen, and nobody is very hopeful of their ever beng found alive.

Opinions differ on whether they succeeded in converting before being recaptured, but of course al-Qaida and the like assumed that they had, and made hay with the story. Muslims abducted and killed by Christians for having converted to Islam! Al-Qaida to the rescue (sadly nobody DID rescue the women), defenders of Islam. Aye, right.

Anyway, let's back up there. This is a story of two women being abused by their (religious) husbands. The women are not allowed to divorce, and if they become apostates they will be considered dead. They were dragged back to their abusive husbands and apparently became the victims of "honour killings". If only they had been Muslims trying to convert to Christianity, they would have become worldwide celebrities. As it is, they lie in unmarked graves somewhere, and hardly anyone picks up the story. because who wants to hear about women fleeing TO Islam to escape abuse? Stories of women fleeing wicked abusing Muslims, now that's news, even if the stories are fake like Ayaan Hirsi Magan's.

Unlike my previous surprise story, there is nothing positive to take from this one: merely a lesson, that good is not always on the Christian side nor evil always on the Muslim. Al-Qaida's subsequent atrocity should not cause that to be forgotten: or else Wafaa Constantine and Camilla Shehata will truly have died in vain.

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