Iraqi Archbishop on Trump’s Executive Order Regarding Refugees

Friday, February 3, AD 2017

 

Well this is interesting.  Crux has an interview with Iraqi Archbishop Bashar Warda:

 

 

What do you make of the protests against President Trump’s refugee order?

Everyone, including the administration, seems to agree that this should have been implemented with more clarity. There was much confusion about what the order meant and many people were very upset.

From my perspective in Iraq, I wonder why all of these protesters were not protesting in the streets when ISIS came to kill Christians and Yazidis and other minority groups. They were not protesting when the tens of thousands of displaced Christians my archdiocese has cared for since 2014 received no financial assistance from the U.S. government or the U.N. There were no protests when Syrian Christians were only let in at a rate that was 20 times less than the percentage of their population in Syria.

I do not understand why some Americans are now upset that the many minority communities that faced a horrible genocide will finally get a degree of priority in some manner.

I would also say this, all those who cry out that this is a “Muslim Ban” – especially now that it has been clarified that it is not – should understand clearly that when they do this, they are hurting we Christians specifically and putting us at greater risk.  The executive order has clearly affected Christians and Yazidis and others as well as Muslims.

Here in Iraq we Christians cannot afford to throw out words carelessly as the media in the West can do.  I would ask those in the media who use every issue to stir up division to think about this. For the media these things become an issue of ratings, but for us the danger is real.

Most Americans have no concept of what it was like to live as a Yazidi or Christian or other minority as ISIS invaded. Our people had the option to flee, to convert, or to be killed, and many were killed in the most brutal ways imaginable. But there were none of these protests then of ISIS’s religious test.

Our people lost everything because of their faith – they were targeted for their faith, just like the Yazidis and others too. Now these protesters are saying that religion should not matter at all, even though someone was persecuted for their faith, even though persecution based on religion is one of the grounds for refugee status in the UN treaty on refugees.

From here I have to say, it is really unbelievable.

It is exactly this reasoning, that religion should not be a factor at all in American policy, that has resulted in Christians and other minority communities being overlooked by U.S. and UN aid programs. We are too small to matter, our communities are disappearing from constant persecution, and for years the American government didn’t care. Now when someone tries to help us, we have protesters telling us that there can be no religious basis for refugee status – even though the UN treaty and American law say that religious persecution is a major reason for granting the status, and even though ISIS targeted people primarily on the basis of religion.

I am not saying that any group should have a blanket preference when it comes to being admitted as a refugee in the United States. Such a policy would not be right, and would clearly be against our Catholic faith and teaching. And that is not the policy as I understand it.

But it is very hard for me to understand why comfortable people in the West think those who are struggling to survive against genocide, and whose communities are at extreme risk of disappearing completely, should not get some special consideration.  We are an ancient people on the verge of extinction because of our commitment to our faith.  Will anybody protest for us?

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8 Responses to Iraqi Archbishop on Trump’s Executive Order Regarding Refugees

  • Islam is an evil pagan cult. Of course there should be a religious test. Catholicism is not a suicide pact. Even Pope Chastisement believes this as he lives behind very high, very thick, very solid walls.

  • The Archbishop speaks with such clarity. I hope his message registers with Western Catholics.

    I don’t think it makes the difference if another pathetic Hollywood embecile climbs onto her soapbox and bemoans America. They are utterly useless to their fellow man.

    The Archbishop is talking about the persecution of one of the oldest Christian groups in the history of the world.

    I’m greatly disappointed with Pope Francis silence. I don’t think there has ever been a Pope in modern times who has stood up for Christians in the Middle East. These Christians need to be protected through strong action and with the same resolve that the world stood up to Communist forces back in the 20th Century. I can’t believe the Vatican has turned a blind eye to their own people for so long. The Archbishop is having to justify why his people deserve help. We should be ashamed by this.

  • Hm. Checking… checking… nope, seems our favorite political commentator has never weighed in on this. I wonder why…

    Would that we Christians (ANY of us, Catholic, Protestant, or Orthodox) had the stones for another crusade. Heck why not have the Vatican fun its own military or hire a PMC to go get our brothers in trouble out of there or provide cover to set up protected enclaves. Something! We live in an age of billions of answers at our fingertips, why does every proposed solution seem to be the same?

  • Trump already said that Christian refugees will be given priority. It’s just a TEMPORARY stop to better vet the people coming in. Why would anyone want to go to a better country to leave behind the evil people if the evil people are coming with them?

  • I have mentioned that I read Brietbart for the news articles. Anytime that there is a news story about anything Catholic the comment box is filled with two types of comments. One type is that the Catholic Church is an evil cult that is not Christian. Another type is made by ex Catholics who hate the church with a passion – often atheist types. Is it any wonder that so little attention has been paid to the poor Middle East Christians? The USCCB’s Catholic charities is only too happy to take taxpayer money to resettle refugees…but they are forbidden to preach religion to them. I did a volunteer day assisting the Pittsburgh chapter and tis is what the director of the office said. What’s more, given the rotten catechesis, most Catholics in the US, practicing or not, are completely unaware of the Eastern Catholic Churches. These poor people have nowhere to go, no one to turn to and are abandoned – by the West, who falls all over themselves resettling Muslims, by the Pope, who would rather let the German bishops dictate what being Catholic should be.

  • God bless Archbsp. Warda and keep him safe.
    It’s my understanding that USCCB receives millions from the federal government for refugee resettlement. I have heard $91 M but don’t know if that is accurate; a review of the USCCB’s financial statement might contain many surprises. Since it is fed money there must be strings attached, one of which, I would guess, is that they cannot assist only Catholics or only Christians. Please correct me if I am wrong. I wonder if Catholic Charities receives federal money?

    The silence and lack of action by the UN, the Vatican, and in the past our central government is appalling. Now the Trump administration is trying to correct that and give assistance to the persecuted groups the Archbishop mentioned and all hell breaks loose from the wackos, Congress and the Courts. This power plays by the liberals and the Democratic Party is aimed at Trump, but meanwhile their behaviour is costing lives. Their lies about the executive order is not only costing lives, but making the lives of the persecuted still in the home countries miserable.

    Where is the Catholic press? We should expect more from them. Yes there is an occasional article or interview, but there ought to be an article in every weekly addition about some persecuted group….Africans, Near and Middle and Far Easterners.
    We do pray for the persecuted Christians at Sunday and daily Masses at our Mission. The occasional collection is taken, however who knows to whom that money really goes.

  • Oops, make that weekly edition vice addition.

  • Islamic State is honest and direct in its persecution. You are a left in no doubt as to your situation. The two-faced culture of the so-called free West is another matter. Their crocodile tears fool no one least of all the death merchants of Da3ish.