Riot leaves an Egyptian village without Christians

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Riot leaves an Egyptian village without Christians

Post by Dennis324 on Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:49 pm

This is a weird story.

DAHSHOUR, Egypt (AP)— When the angry mob was rampaging through town, storming her home and those of other Christians, the 70-year-old woman hid in her cow pen, pushing a rock against the door. There she cowered for hours, at one point passing out from tear gas being fired by police that seeped in.

When Sameeha Wehba emerged just before dawn, she found she was the only Christian left in this small Egyptian village just south of Cairo.
Dahshour's entire Christian community — as many as 100 families some estimate — fled to nearby towns in the violence earlier this week.

The violence was ultimately rooted in a dispute over a badly ironed shirt that escalated into a fight in which a Christian burned a Muslim to death, in turn sparking the rampage by angry Muslims.

The unprecedented exodus underscores how sectarian divisions that festered under decades of Hosni Mubarak's rule are taking a turn to the worse, complicated by the problems of post-revolution Egypt, a country where 10 percent of the population are Christian.

Police forces have been weakened and often don't carry out their duties. Islamists have been emboldened, with rhetoric fanning hatreds. In an atmosphere of lawlessness, Muslims and Christians alike feel freer in unleashing prejudices that in the past were kept barely under the surface.

Most notably in Dahshour, police did nothing as tensions spiraled following the burning of the Muslim man late last month.
When the Muslim died Tuesday, the only solution from police was to encourage or assist in removing the Christian population before the violence erupted that night, Christians say. Many in the village say the Christians should not be allowed to return until the Christian laundry worker who set fire to the Muslim is killed. Some residents take an even harder line and say they shouldn't be let back at all.

The dispute began when the laundry man, Sameh, burned the shirt of his Muslim client, setting off an argument first with the client's wife and then with the client himself, according to several residents. The argument turned violent. On July 26, an angry crowd gathered outside Sameh's home, and he and his family lobbed firebombs down on them from his roof.

One man in the crowd, 27-year-old Moez Mohammed, was set aflame and was hospitalized with severe burns.

The next two days, Mohammed's brothers and friends went down the village's main Christian street, waving firebombs and threatening violence, Shehata said. When one Christian countered that the whole community was not to blame, a fight broke out, until it was broken up by neighbors.

"They said if you don't leave the village, you will all die," Shehata recalled. Aside from the anger over the young man's death, there was economic jealousy because local Christians are seen as better off, he said. Moreover, some Islamists used the occasion to ignite deep-seated biases against Christians and their local priest and settle scores.



Ok. So here's my question. If you and someone in your neighborhood had a disagreement over a business transaction similar to this one, and then an angry mob showed up at your house, would you not defend your home and family somehow? I would....I'd probably use a gun, not a firebomb, but if I didnt think I could trust the police...or if the threat was imminent, I'd certainly protect myself and property.

I think this has more to do with Christian persecution. The Muslims in that neighborhood were using this incident as a reason to attack Christians and drive them out.

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Dennis324

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Re: Riot leaves an Egyptian village without Christians

Post by Bryant on Sun Aug 05, 2012 10:50 pm

Egypt certainly has some issues, especially when it comes to dealing with religious minorities. Unfortunately this is something you see in their history dating back to when the Coptics rioted and slaughtered the pagans in 415 AD (see the fate of Hypatia for example).
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Re: Riot leaves an Egyptian village without Christians

Post by Dennis324 on Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:58 pm

So the Coptics get what they deserve? Is that what you're implying? Well, hey, Muslims were slaughtering Pagans too. And now they are persecuting Christians.

You know...political correctness has such a double-standard on most things, but especially when it comes to Christians. Its bad when the Sikhs or Buddhists are persecuted, but if we mention something about Christians being harrassed or persecuted, someone comes along and brings up the inquisition or the Crusades, or some other even that happened hundreds of years ago....like that makes it ok.

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Re: Riot leaves an Egyptian village without Christians

Post by Bryant on Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:01 am

Dennis324 wrote:So the Coptics get what they deserve? Is that what you're implying? Well, hey, Muslims were slaughtering Pagans too. And now they are persecuting Christians.

You know...political correctness has such a double-standard on most things, but especially when it comes to Christians. Its bad when the Sikhs or Buddhists are persecuted, but if we mention something about Christians being harrassed or persecuted, someone comes along and brings up the inquisition or the Crusades, or some other even that happened hundreds of years ago....like that makes it ok.

Chill, thats not what I was saying. I stated that Egypt's religious conflicts, as despicable as they are, are nothing new. Rather, they've been going on for at least 1600 years.
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