Iraq. Genocide. “Never Again” Should Cue Something More Than A James Bond Movie.

Iraq. Genocide. “Never Again” Should Cue Something More Than A James Bond Movie. August 7, 2014

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The Wall Street Journal reports today that the U.S. military is considering airstrikes and emergency relief supplies to the religious minorities in Iraq who are being forced out by the Islamic State (aka ISIS).

Finally.

Patheos bloggers have been covering the story consistently. I wrote about it early on, including an email from a Dominican priest who was near Mosul and described the activities of then ISIS.

The situation in Iraq is very, very bad. Read Deacon Greg’s piece describing the exile of Christians as a via crucis (way of the cross). Imagine getting up and leaving your house in the middle of the night, with your family members, and only the goods that you can carry. If you have small children, you’d be carrying them instead of supplies. Imagine. But that’s reality for them.

Joan Desmond at The National Catholic Register has an excellent piece detailing the lack of U.S. response so far. Kurdistan has at least one million Iraqi Christian refugees, even to their own detriment since they do not know how long they can keep IS forces at best. But the Kurds also know what it’s like to experience genocide.

Some suggestions from Desmond’s article:

With IS amassing power, [Nina] Shea noted that the ongoing protection of Iraq’s vulnerable minority groups — those forced from their neighborhoods and those still in their homes — is a major concern. She proposed that the U.S., with its superior intelligence capabilities, should provide an “early warning system” that would alert Christians and others when IS militants pose an immediate threat.

Thomas Farr, the director of the Religious Freedom Project at Georgetown University, went a step further than Shea and called for the White House to “propose an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council in order to consider a resolution, to be offered by the U.S., authorizing the use of force in Iraq and Syria to mitigate the humanitarian catastrophe that is taking place and to prevent genocide.”

Speaking of genocide, Dan Hodges at The Telegraph discusses the IS persecution of the Yazidis, another religious minority in Iraq.
He writes:
The Yazidi wish to inform you that tomorrow they will be killed with their families. Actually, it may not be tomorrow. The 40,000 members of Iraq’s most ancient sect, who are currently huddling on the side of Mount Sinjar, might have a bit longer. If they stay there it will apparently take a few days, maybe a few weeks, before they die of thirst, malnutrition and sickness. If they don’t, their deaths at the hands of the butchers of Isis who have surrounded them will be quicker. Though not that quick.
His passionate conclusion should do more than make us think, it should lead to action:

For once, just for once, can we actually do something? The UN, Nato, the US and the UK. It doesn’t really matter whose umbrella its under. For once let’s demonstrate that the billions of pounds we spend on the most powerful military forces in human history can actually stand up to a bunch of petty hoodlums with machetes, or AK47s, or Toyota 4x4s.

Just this once let’s not wait. For the book. And then the film. And then the hand-wringing and empty pledges that “we will ensure this never happens again”.

Just this once let’s actually stop them being killed with their families.

Just this once.

Yes, the Bond movie is titled Never Say Never Again. And the grammar is ambiguous. But I think my point still stands. “Never Again” should really start to mean something, especially when it comes to genocide. If it doesn’t, I just may skip the movie Hodges predicts and watch the old Bond movie even if its depiction of women will probably make my skin crawl.

 

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