Opinion Roundup: Should Syria's Christians Be Our Top Priority?
Image: Hasan Shaaban / Reuters

What's best for Syria's Christians might not be what's best for the rest of Syria.

Compared to Christians in other countries in the Middle East, Christians in Syria have fared well under the protection of President Bashar al-Assad. But many have been threatened and killed by Islamist rebels amid Syria's recent political unrest. Now more than 450,000 Christians have fled their homes during more than two years of war.

Observers are generally united in thinking that an American attack on Syria would lead to increased persecution for Christians in the country, who make up 8 to 10 percent of the population.

As one Lebanese bishop told Al-Monitor, "Hear my words and take notes; the US strike on Syria has no guaranteed results whatsoever, neither on the military level nor on the political level or any other. The only certain and inevitable result is that the launch of the first rocket on Syria by NATO will be the end of Christians in this country. They will either be slaughtered or displaced."

So how should the world's Christians weigh the possible decimation of Syria's Christians? Is it enough to argue against the United States arming the rebels? Is it enough to argue for supporting a regime that has allegedly used chemical weapons to kill tens of thousands?

Geoff Tunnicliffe, head of the World Evangelical Alliance, wrote to the White House and the United Nations that it's at least enough to argue against all U.S. military action. "There is a major consensus amongst the Christian leaders in this region that any military intervention by the United States will have a detrimental effect on the situation, and in particular for Christians in Syria," he said. "Christians ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

May
Subscribe to CT and get one year free.
Read These Next
Current IssueThe Science of Sinning Less
The Science of Sinning Less Subscriber Access Only
What new research reveals about self-control and willpower.
RecommendedPersecution in the Early Church: Did You Know?
Persecution in the Early Church: Did You Know?
Beginning as a despised, illicit religious sect, Christianity endured 300 years of hostility to emerge as the dominant force in the Roman Empire.
TrendingThe Theology Beneath the Trump-Comey Conflict
The Theology Beneath the Trump-Comey Conflict
How the former FBI director’s interest in Reinhold Niebuhr shaped his approach to political power.
Editor's PickThe Church’s Three-Part Harmony
The Church’s Three-Part Harmony
Why evangelical, sacramental, and Pentecostal Christians belong together in one body.
Christianity Today
Opinion Roundup: Should Syria's Christians Be Our Top Priority?
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

September 2013

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.