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August 14, 2014
Column #1,720
Islamic Crucifixions, Murders
By Mike McManus

I have seen pictures of Islamic State crucifixions of children. Teenagers are strung up off the ground with their arms tied to iron poles, while Islamists take pictures of the horror, and send them to news media. Some were removed alive after 8 hours.

But eight men from Aleppo Province who received the same punishment did not survive. They were crucified in the main square of a village, “where their bodies will remain for three days,” reported the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Typically, the men are shot in the head and then hung for public viewing with arms tied to a horizontal beam.

Islamic radicals are also beheading children with heads placed on hoods of cars and forcing hundreds of mothers to be wives for Islamic troops in a war against Christians and a small sect called Yazidis.

In his weekly address, President Obama said, “The terrorists that have taken over parts of Iraq have been especially brutal to religious minorities – rounding up families, executing men, enslaving women, and threatening the systematic destruction of an entire religious community, which would be genocide.”

That’s helpful, but why can’t he say Christians are being persecuted?

Hundreds of thousands have been forced to flee with only the clothes on their backs. Erbil, the largest city in Kurdistan, a province of Iraq, usually has 1.5 million residents. But in a modern Exodus, two million refugees have arrived – without food, water or shelter. Fortunately, Kurdish Muslims are tolerant of Christians and other minorities. However, there are no refugee camps. Most sleep on streets.

To his credit, Obama has finally taken two steps to help. American planes have taken off from the USS George H.W. Bush Aircraft Carrier, to bomb Islamic State military targets – tanks, troop convoys and artillery which were ironically “made in the U.S.A.” and captured by Islamist radicals.

Second, some food and water has been dropped to survivors.

However, tens of thousands of refugees have fled to the Mount Sinjar mountain range where they have been without water, food or even shade. Only a small percentage have been given relief. Thousands are dying of hunger or thirst. Fortunately, many have been helped to flee to Syria or to Kurdistan.

The United Nations put it bluntly this week, that “mass atrocity or genocide” is possible nut just within days but “hours.”

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, reports, “Even now, after a week of U.S. airstrikes, our own military is unconvinced that the President’s eleventh-hour strategy is an effective replacement for the American intervention that should have taken place all along.”

He quotes Army Lt. General William Mayville who warned that even with the U.S.’s involvement, “I in no way want to suggest that we have effectively contained or that we are somehow breaking the momentum of the IS (Islamic State). The strikes are unlikely to affect (IS’s) overall capabilities or its operations in other areas of Iraq and Syria.” He described the impact of U.S. bombing as “very temporary,” because IS is showing its ability to adapt, and are now hiding among villagers where they are less likely to be hit by U.S. missiles.

Perkins charges, “This is a crisis for which the U.S. is largely responsible. President Obama can dodge a lot of things, but history isn’t one of them. As the former U.S. ambassador in Iraq, Paul Bremer, said frankly, the `blame Bush’ defense will not work. `History will be pretty clear,’ Bremer pointed out, `that the decision not to have any troops there after January 1, 2012 was a very serious, strategic mistake that the President made. At the very least, he explained, `We would’ve saved tens of thousands of lives. Certainly, if we had acted earlier in Syria, we would’ve faced a much less threatening problem today in Iraq.’”

Obama is making the same mistake in Afghanistan, announcing that no U.S. troops will be left there after 2016. After World War II, we left troops in Germany and Japan, guaranteeing a stability which has made a vibrant rebirth of those countries possible. Similarly, we have 30,000 troops in Korea and South Korea is a booming economy as a result.

What can individual readers do to help? I have two suggestions.

First, urge your Senators and Members of Congress to support a sustained military offensive against the Islamic State. The President of Kurdistan has pled for heavy weapons to counter IS. And a much more massive volume of relief must be shipped to the refugees.

Second, send donations to which is a Christian relief agency working to relieve victims of persecution in Iraq and Syria.

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