عدد المساهمات : 38652
تاريخ التسجيل : 21/09/2009
|موضوع: Aug. 21, 2015 ISIS bulldozes monastery of Mar Elian, aiming to fuel a clash of civilizations (©ANSA) ISI الأحد 23 أغسطس 2015, 16:56|| |
Aug. 21, 2015
- اقتباس :
ISIS bulldozes monastery of Mar Elian, aiming to fuel a clash of civilizations
(©ANSA) ISIS bulldozes the Catholic monastery of Mar Elian in Qaryatain
The church and the religious structure as a whole dated back to the 5th century. The destructive rage of the Caliphate’s men is part of a wider strategy: the destruction of Christian symbols forms part of a sort of pornography of violence, which the world is subjected to. The demolition comes after the kidnapping of Fr. Mourad, the monastery’s prior last May
- اقتباس :
ISIS has carried out yet another act of vandalism and destruction in Syria. Aside from representing the umpteenth act of brutal violence in the never-ending Syrian crisis, the gesture is also laden with ideological, religious and military significance. The Catholic monastery of Mar Elian which was located near the town of Quaryatain was raised to the ground and images of the destruction and profanation of the 5th century church were immediately published, circulating round the world.
But behind the iconoclastic rage unleashed by the Caliphate is a carefully thought-out strategy: that of showing blind contempt for the symbols of the Christian faith in an attempt to fuel the clash between civilizations and religions across the Mediterranean. Should such a scenario definitively take hold, ISIS could receive increased support and boost its strength by taking advantage of the desperation and frustration of populations ravaged by conflicts across the entire Middle East.
The bulldozers that demolished the ancient monastery of Mar Elian form part of a violent landscape – a pornography of horror – that features beheadings, the destruction of the country’s historical remains and extends to the introduction of an Islamic law (the Sharia) which – as many representatives of the Muslim faith across the world have revealed and denounced – represents a violation and a heresy within Islam itself. ISIS certainly needs this: to threaten and kidnap Christians, to dream of the conquest of Rome and St. Peter’s as the capital of Catholicism, to make it seem like this is a conflict between religions and not a ferocious fight for control of the country and the region, with numerous geopolitical interests both inside and outside Syria.
Indeed, all around, the conflict continues and as the Apostolic Nuncio to Damascus, Mgr. Mario Zenari, has denounced on a number of occasions, we are currently faced with an unprecedented humanitarian crisis, with 12 million internally displaced people and refugees, around 300,000 dead, hundreds of thousands of wounded, hospitals bursting at the seams, an infinite number of civilian victims and the spread of poverty after years of war. Just a few days ago regime aircraft bombed the market in Douma, a town about 10 kilometres from Damascus. This context boosts fundamentalism.
The monastery of Mar Elian was located in an oasis near the town of Qaryatain in the region of Homs and was a filiation of the Deir Mar Musa community founded by the Italian Jesuit priest Fr. Paolo Dall’Oglio who was kidnapped on 29 July 2013 in Raqqa and has not been seen since. Other religious met with a similar fate, and it is estimated that about 20,000 people have disappeared after being captured by the various conflicting parties in Syria. At the start of August, the town of Qaryatain fell into the hands of ISIS, right after an extremist group kidnapped 230 civilians, including at least 60 Christians, women and children among them. 48 people from the group were released, while 110 were transferred to the province of Raqqa, the heart of the Islamic State. The whereabouts of the others are unknown. It was in this very area that Fr. Jacques Mourad, prior of the monastery of Mar Elian, was kidnapped last May. The community was busy concretely advocating dialogue and peaceful co-existence between Christians and Muslims and even in these difficult times of war, it was an important pilgrimage destination. It should also be recalled that the city of Qaryatain is located on the route that connects the country’s north and south, between Palmyra and Homs. This area is crucial in the context of the current conflict (partly because of its proximity to Lebanon) and is also important in terms of its gas reserves.