"At the beginning of the acts of violence in Syria, Christians distanced themselves," says the observer, "except that with the increasing frequency of incidents and the increase of Wahhabi takfiri voices penetrating into Syria, Christians became a target for expulsion, murder, theft, and kidnapping. Their factories and homes were robbed (as happened in Aleppo), they were deprived of their sources of livelihood, and their monuments were looted and plundered."
The source gives examples of this, "Christian monuments in the region of Jebel Siman have mostly been looted and some reports coming from there state that looted antiquities have been transported outside Syria via Turkey, where they were sold on the black market."
For his part, the abbot of the Monastery of Saint Peter in Marmarita, Father Walid Iskandafi, who is also the general episcopal vicar for the Greek Catholic diocese of Lattakia and Tartus, stresses that "the ongoing war in Syria has shown that it not only targets humans and humanity. It also destroys history, civilization, and heritage." He continues in his discussion with as-Safir, "There is no doubt that the first and last party to benefit from what is happening is Israel."
I called this the second Mohammedan conquest from the beginning.
Carol Saba gets it somewhat right here, but really, all she's calling for is a revival of that old-time Ba'athist religion.
What is needed today is a bold vision that frees Christians from the sectarian, minoritarian approach and the shackles of the Ottoman millet system, that takes them off the path of sectarianism and places them on the path of citizenship. What is needed today is talk from Christians about national and pan-Arab challenges and what they require more than talk about Christian challenges and what they require.
What is actually needed are property rights and the rule of law, which is what engenders a self-sufficient, stabilizing middle class (Marx's hated bourgeoisie). No middle class, no stability.
Property rights and lex rex are a distinctly Anglo-European outlook. Most nationalities don't think in such terms; most nationalities think in terms of a benevolent tribal Big Man divvying up the nation's bounty. That is generally how Arab nations are run.
The idea of self ownership and thus property ownership is Aristotelian, and the Arabs are engaged in the continuing purge of all things Greek from the Middle East, including Byzantine Christianity.
The tiny Byzantine Christian minority is still trying to demonstrate their pan-Arabic solidarity, as per Fr. Walid's swipe at the Israelis above. This is a shortsighted strategy. The Arabs do not want multiculturalism; they want the region's Christians either out of their Middle East or completely married into the monoculture of the dar al Islam.
It's about blood and soil, and always has been.