Apart from having her as their French presidential poster child, alt-right news website Breitbart, whose spread of fear, hate, xenophobia, and racism under the guise of “political-uncorectness” had a lot to do with the rise of Trump and friends, decided that Marine Le Pen is in Lebanon to meet the country’s persecuted Christians.
Of course, the purpose of this visit was always for the French far-right candidate to “express solidarity with Middle Eastern Christians.” As I said in my post on the matter, perhaps that purpose is better served in areas where Christians are actually persecuted?
Not according to Breitbart, of course. To them, what are countries over there *points disgustingly to the Middle East* but a pile of horrifying terrorist places feeding off Christian pure-blood and ruining the world for everything else?
So dear Breitbart, can you please point me – a Lebanese who was raised Maronite Christian – in the direction of this scary entity that is persecuting me, as I enjoy this fine Lebanese morning while Marine Le Pen enjoys her visit to the only country that’s accepted to host her so far, while I get nauseated reading your website?
I am sorry to inform you that your feisty title to get your Western Islamophobic readers up in arms and to portray Marine Le Pen as the Joan of Arc of France’s fight against the world will not come at the expense of my country or your dramatization of my situation in it.
You see, if you had any inkling about Lebanon or about the Middle East in general apart from it being one big blur in your eyes, you’d know that the political system in Lebanon allocates political power to Christians and Muslims equally. You’d have known that the president Marine Le Pen met has to be Maronite by law and that to be elected that persecuted Christian man held the entire country hostage for almost two years. But please, by all means, tell me more about how I’m persecuted.
I don’t feel unsafe in my country for being a Christian. I won’t get beheaded for going to Church. I won’t be shot down for reciting an “Our Father.” I won’t be knifed for crossing myself. Please, keep your disgusting concern to yourself and don’t reflect it on this country to try and pass on your agenda.
Are Christians persecuted in the Middle East? Sure, they are. But that persecution is happening in actual war zones, where everyone is getting killed regardless of how they pray. It’s sort of like the war zone in your minds where facts and common sense are getting massacred. Should we hold vigils for those? R.I.P. Logic. Waiting for their article about Marine Le Pen refusing to wear a veil to meet the mufti. That one should be exquisite.
Does Breitbart know what threatens Christians in the Middle East? It’s their constant advocacy – both Breitbart’s and those Christians – for far-right politics that only serve to fuel the hate in the poor minds of those who persecute those Christians in the first place. But I would assume that’s a lot of conjectures for them to wrap their heads around.
I daresay we can’t blame Breitbart for being this ignorant. It comes with the territory of being them. Even the comments on that Marine Le Pen article are horrendous, of which here’s a sample:
The more troubling part is that their sentiment is echoed by some Lebanese politicians and a lot of Lebanese-French (check the comments on these pictures 1 – 2 – 3 – 4):This is also not the first time that this level of misinformation and ignorance is spread about the situation of religious communities in Lebanon. During the American presidential campaign, Jeb Bush said: “if you’re a Christian in Lebanon, you’ll be beheaded.”
I suppose both Jeb and Breitbart would be disappointed to learn that I still have my head?
In Lebanon, everyone is screwed. The beauty of it is that it’s not the threat-to-their-lives kind and they are all screwed together, for better or for worse. Sorry to disappoint you Breitbart, but you’re barking up the wrong tree here.
Although I completely agree with the idea that spreading fake news and facts is completely intolerable, I do think that there is a sort of alienation of Christians in Lebanon. Hezbollah runs the country in any way it wants, having its state within a state policy in the Banlieue and in the South, while the Islamic Brotherhood and extreme Sunnis and their militias are untouched in Tripoli, most of the North, and the Bekaa. The problem lies in fear. We’ve always prided ourselves in being the example of existence but to be fair, co-existence is mostly visible in Christian areas, because as Christians, we were raised on the values of respect of others. The problem lies in the areas where Muslims are a majority, and are forcing their extremism on others: banning the sale and consumption of alcohol, and forbidding women from running in a marathon. Let’s not also forget that extremism breeds extremism. Again, I’m not supporting but explaining. This explains why Christians in Lebanon are afraid, and why they’re showing signs of hostility and Islamophobia. The problem can be solved in two ways: either say it as it is, Christians and Muslims are too divergent to be living in co-existence, and let’s work on a more federal state approach, or have Muslim clerics and leaders denounce the acts of disrespect and non-acceptance of people (both Muslims and Christians) who are more open and moderate. In my humble opinion, as much as I like the second option, I think in out situation that the first is more viable. Anyhow, as long as the situation is as it is, Christians will always moan, and Western leaders will always look to benefit from it given how the Lebanese vote in the West can easily affect any election, especially in the US and in France.
Not that it’s THAT important but Marine’s name is actually Marion Anne (thus Mari-ne). Such details may let the reader assume you haven’t checked facts either, and reject an otherwise interesting article!
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Reblogged this on Mikepouraryan’s Weblog and commented:
He echoes what many of us feel about the rise of the alt-right media in the United States…..
Let me start this by saying I was not a big fan of Trump’s candidacy, or Breitbart; I’m Western, moderately conservative, not American.
But that persecution is happening in actual war zones, where everyone is getting killed
I’m gonna take your word for it that Christians, including Maronites like yourself are safe in Lebanon, and rural Northern Lebanon, (because you said it was where you were from in another post), and I suspect Jordan may also be above average.
If I had to give you one that is not obviously a war zone as far as foreigners can see, (i.e., Iraq or Syria) it would be certain parts of Egypt, particularly Minya.
What I’ve heard is that summer was pretty bad; there was:
– a type of repeated incident where people (Muslim) heard paranoid rumors that an expansion on someone’s house (Copt) was an illegal crypto-church and a mob formed and decided to burn the structure down,
-the thing where an elderly woman (Copt) got stripped in public by people who were mad about her son (also Copt) being in a relationship with a Muslim,
-the kidnapping occurrence where girls get kidnapped, the kidnappers make the girls get married to one of them and convert, even though I believe most Muslims are okay with marrying Christian women and not worrying about conversion.
Okay, here’s a link: http://www.dailynewsegypt.com/2016/07/25/rate-of-sectarian-violence-incidents-is-alarming-pope-tawadros-ii/
I understand you have been blessed not to have this happen to you, though.
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