Monday, March 08, 2010

Muslims massacre hundreds of Christians in Nigeria

Machete wielding Muslims attacked several predominantly Christian villages in Nigeria on Sunday. Estimates of the number of victims vary with the more conservative figures being around 300 and some suggesting well over 500 dead. Large numbers of dead bodies including a disproportionate number of women and children have been reported in the affected area. Newborns and infants were among the confirmed martyrs. Eyewitness reports suggest that Christians were hunted down by mobs of armed Muslims and slaughtered wherever they were found. Some homes were set afire with the occupants burned alive.

Reports of the massacres are receiving an unusual degree of attention from the mainstream press and media which has typically downplayed or ignored similar anti-Christian pogroms in the past.

8 comments:

Alice C. Linsley said...

And the government of Nigeria seems incapable of stopping these "jihads". Archbishop Peter Akinola warned that corruption in the government would cost Christian lives.

Reactionary said...

I can't help but observe that the slant to this is as a Muslim phenomenon. It is more accurately an African phenomenon, as the vast majority of Christians and Muslims co-exist peacefully.

npmccallum said...

Reactionary,

Certainly there are non-Muslim cultural issues involved. However, there also seems to be something in Islam which allows these events to be specifically Muslim expressions. No Christian can ever do this, because we are commanded to "love our enemies" (and this love is qualified as surrendering our own lives as Christ does on the Cross). Islam allows these ideologies to be expressed as religious ideals in precisely the way that Christianity does not allow.

Ask yourself this question: When was the last time a Christian tribe in Nigeria wiped out hundreds of Muslims? The best you can say is that Islam is no better than tribalism, while Christianity restrains these desires.

Carlos Antonio Palad said...

"Ask yourself this question: When was the last time a Christian tribe in Nigeria wiped out hundreds of Muslims?"

Unfortunately this DID happen very recently (Christians massacring Muslims in Nigeria). However, as I pointed out in Rorate, the root cause of this vicious cycle is the introduction of Sharia law in parts of northern Nigeria.

npmccallum said...

Of course, I'm not arguing that it can't happen. Only that:
1. it rarely does
2. when it does happen, it is at odds with the teachings of Christianity and as such cannot be "Christian violence"

For this to happen among Islamic people however is more common and it does not contradict the teachings of Islam. My point was that Christianity's moral principles restrain this sort of action in a way that Islam's teachings do not.

Reactionary said...

Ask yourself this question: When was the last time a Christian tribe in Nigeria wiped out hundreds of Muslims?

I'll broaden the question a bit, and point to Iraq and Afghanistan. But more to the point, I know that Muslims and Christians co-exist peacefully in most of the world while the common denominator for sectarian conflict in sub-Saharan Africa is appalling brutality. Therefore, this latest in a string of such horrors strikes me as more of an 'African' problem than a 'Muslim' problem.

I agree that the Muslim religion has some troubling rapacious strains (and some Muslims who act on them), but there are very few Muslims in the Middle East and Asia who would commit such slaughter.

John (Ad Orientem) said...

Muslims and Christians tend to coexist at least somewhat peacefully, provided we are talking about countries that are non-Muslim majority. Once a nation becomes Muslim majority religious minorities suffer. I am unable to think of a single Muslim majority country where Christians are not subject to some form of official harassment or persecution.

In ICXC
John

Reactionary said...

"I am unable to think of a single Muslim majority country where Christians are not subject to some form of official harassment or persecution."

Well, I will name three: Lebanon, Jordan and Syria. There are active Maronite Catholic and Antiochian Orthodox Churches in Kuwait as well. Iraq was religiously tolerant of Christianity (and Judaism) before the US imposed Shi'ite rule on that country. I don't think it can be said that we are talking about the dhimmi any more but I'll defer to anybody from the countries in question.