Damian Thompson is well established as a dhimmi journalist who cowers before Islamic supremacists and dutifully recites their talking points, so this comes as no surprise. And there is a grain of truth to what he says here: the relatively secular Arab Nationalist regimes of Saddam Hussein and Hosni Mubarak were indeed better for the Christians in Iraq and Egypt than the coming Sharia regimes in both countries will be.
But note the thrust of Thompson's argument: he dismisses the idea that "there is a co-ordinated Islamic plot to exterminate Christianity as a stepping stone to a universal caliphate" as an attempt to let "the 'Christian' West off the hook." The fault, you see, lies with the West, presumably for abandoning these strongmen who protected the Christians. And so he writes: "The removal of Saddam has eviscerated Iraqi Christian churches so ancient that they still worship in Aramaic, the language of Jesus. The fall of Mubarak means that it’s open season on Copts."
Yes, but why did the removal of Saddam eviscerate Iraqi Christian churches? And why did the fall of Mubarak mean that it is open season on Copts? Let's hear it from the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarch, Gregory III, who is by no stretch of the imagination a counter-jihad "conspiracy theorist": "After 11 September, there is a plot to eliminate all the Christian minorities from the Arabic world." And that plot is not coming from Western governments, or "right-wing extremists," or anyone other than Islamic supremacists. But Thompson, like so many dhimmi multiculturalists, engages in the same paternalistic patronizing of Muslims that characterizes so much of today's discourse about them: they are never responsible for their actions, but are only passive reactors to the actions of the big bad West, which carries all the responsibility. It's funny how ethnocentric these people who profess to believe in the equality of all cultures really are.
"Radical Islam revives an ancient hatred," by Damian Thompson in the Telegraph, August 24 (thanks to Block Ness):
...This new persecution is the result of the simultaneous revival of militant Islam in many countries. We can say that with confidence. What we can’t say, however, is that there is a co-ordinated Islamic plot to exterminate Christianity as a stepping stone to a universal caliphate.
Conspiracy theorists may derive emotional satisfaction from this idea, but it doesn’t correspond to the messy politics of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. Also, it lets the “Christian” West off the hook.
We have to confront the awkward fact that, for decades, some of the world’s most despicable dictators have protected indigenous Christians from Islamic mobs. When the West withdraws its support from these rulers, Christian minorities are exposed as never before.
The removal of Saddam has eviscerated Iraqi Christian churches so ancient that they still worship in Aramaic, the language of Jesus. The fall of Mubarak means that it’s open season on Copts. Those who can afford to do so may follow the example of Palestinian and Lebanese Christians and emigrate. A key statistic: 100 years ago, the Levant was 20 per cent Christian; now the figure is 5 per cent.
The British government, despite prodding by the heroic Lord Alton, is doing a good imitation of not giving a stuff about any of this. Maybe it’s guilt: Anglo-American policies helped liberate Islamism....
"Islamism" was there already, and the "Islamists" bear responsibility for their persecution of Christians. No one else does, not even the dhimmis and Useful Idiots among Western leaders who withdrew their support for the protectors of the Christians in favor of a chimerical "Arab Spring" that has now thoroughly revealed itself to be what I said it was all along, an Islamic supremacist Sharia takeover.