Update (Sept. 20): Maaloula remains "the first such attack on a notable Christian community since the start of the uprising," but local Christians are "casting doubt on the jihadist threat," reports the BBC.
Update (Sept. 10): The New York Timesassesses the "public relations problem" that Maaloula presents Syrian rebels:
Their incursion into the town, led by extremist Islamists, reinforces the worst fears of Syrian Christians and could bolster President Bashar al-Assad's claims that he is the Christians' protector. It may also complicate President Obama's task as he struggles to convince Americans that a military strike against Mr. Assad will not strengthen Islamic extremists.
Meanwhile, The Economistnotes "why the ravaging of an Aramaic-speaking village is a cultural tragedy as well as a human one."
One of the few places in the world where the language of Jesus is still spoken has become the latest focal point ...1