‘It is time for Jews to look after their Christian siblings’

December 20, 2015

weidenfeld_independent

DEBT REPAID: Lord Weidenfeld, who escaped the concentration camps in Nazi Germany through a “stroke of luck” has set up a fund to help rescue Syrian Christians from IS. Having been helped back into civilian life by the Plymouth Brethren, this was the major incentive for him to act. Picture courtesy of the Independent.

Midde East Christians

AT RISK: Christians accounted for one in three Syrians a century ago and now it is one in ten. President Bashar Al-Assad was reported in RT News to have attended a Christmas service in Damascus in the past 24 hours.

 

A PHILANTHROPIST who escaped the Holocaust has been explaining why he is giving his time and resources to rescuing as many Christians as he can in the Middle East from Islamic State.

Lord Weidenfeld, aged 96, came to this country in 1938 to escape the Nazis after the annexation of Austria by the fascist regime. But in a pertinent observation, he is convinced that if it is possible, IS are even more brutal in their persecution of the Chaldean and Assyrian Christians, the Druze Muslims and the Yezidis and have been getting even more perverse pleasure out of it.

This blog has been highlighting this issue for the very reason that in schools pupils are expected to have respect for minorities but shouldn’t Dorset and Somerset as two counties and other neighbouring communities should be prioritizing these refugees?

As stated before, David Cameron’s policy of taking only refugees from the camps in Lebanon and Jordan is not working as these groups will not publicly identify themselves there for fear of facing death from Islamists.

If groups like the Weidenfeld Fund and the Barnabas Fund are having to go behind enemy lines and in co-operation with others, doesn’t this put a huge question mark of the Conservative Government’s policy? The charge also remains that they won’t do it because they are afraid of what certain establishment columnists might say in favouring one community over another.

Where are the on-line petitions, the UN resolutions and physical demonstrations to face down this injustice? Various pontificating, trendy, left-wing columnists are being complicit in their silence whilst at the same trying to shout from the rooftops they will break their arm to help the most vulnerable, persecuted people yet are doing absolutely nothing about it.

It is on a par with animal rights groups being completely silent in 2001 when the infamous Foot and Mouth crisis took place where ten million animals, many of which were needlessly slaughtered when it emerged only one in ten animals was actually infected. The rest were taken out due to the three kilometre zone contiguous cull policy.

In an article for a major UK newspaper, Lord Weidenfeld writes how he is repaying back the Plymouth Brethren (a Christian organisation) who helped him get back onto his feet when he started his life out in the UK. He proceeded to get into King’s College to study law and acquire a job with the BBC monitoring news output across Europe.

The peer says the Weidenfeld Fund hopes to raise enough funds to rescue 2,000 families and relocate in countries across the world. Currently they are being settled in Poland and the Czech Republic and they are hoping Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and Canada will join them as well. The UK wasn’t mentioned.

He said: “In the territories now commanded by IS, Christians are in mortal danger. Jihadis are attempting to destroy 2,000 years of Christian presence and witness in Syria, persecuting people whose faith is so ancient some still speak Aramaic, the language of Jesus.

“They are doing it in the place where the apostle Paul was converted on the road to Damascus. They are doing it in towns we know as broken places: Aleppo and Homs, once famous as centres of Christian worship.

“Christianity has already been pushed to the margins, from the faith of one in three Syrians a century ago to just one in ten today. If IS has its way it could be extinguished altogether. Thousands of people – nobody knows how many – have already fled.

“This is Christmas week, a time of goodwill to all men to speak out about the fund I have established which unites the power of the Christian church and Jewry to rescue Christians from Syria.

“The Weldenfeld Fund is a modest charity but, as a refugee myself, I know that every life spared, every life lived happily and freely, is valuable.

“Put simply, we rely on a Christian network to deal with the logistics, while we, a Jewish network, raise money to help pay the bills.”

His most salutary words should make anyone reading them should ensure that politicians nationally and locally engage their “humanity” and get it, show some backbone and take concrete, not piecemeal action and face down the demagogues who insist on this universal silence.

“I trust that my faith, my age and my life’s work give me perspective and credibility when I say I believe IS to be more evil than the Nazis who drove my family from Vienna.

“If you compare Jihadis to the other two most evil phenomena in the history of man – the Holocaust and mass starvations of the Soviet Union – then it is IS you will find in the lowest circle of Dante’s Inferno.

“I say that because they enjoy what they do. The Holocaust in comparison was industrial: The Nazis were unemotional about killing, they ordered other nations to do their dirty work. But IS loves barbarity and seems to derive an almost sexual pleasure from torture.

“We should be more active in the fight against them, we need boots on the ground because pacifism will not get us anywhere. But while we wait for world leaders to act, we cannot ignore the catastrophe Syria’s Christians.”

Lord Weidenfeld was part of a group of thinkers and politicians who met annually at the summer residence of Pope John Paul II, Castel Gandolfo.

“The Pope used to say: ‘The Jew is the elder brother of the church.’ This Christmas it is time for us to look after our siblings.”

I know this is a difficult subject that has been raised. But anyone reading this I wish you a blessed, Happy Christmas.

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