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Keyword: maalulu

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  • How Assad Wooed the American Right, and Won the Syria Propaganda War

    09/10/2013 4:48:12 PM PDT · by Third Person · 56 replies
    Foreign Policy ^ | September 9th, 2013 | David Kenner
    Even before President Barack Obama put his plans to strike the Syrian regime on hold, he was losing the battle of public opinion about military intervention. Part of the credit, no doubt, goes to a successful media blitz by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime and its supporters. In an interview aired on Monday night, Assad himself advanced his government's case to Charlie Rose, saying that the United States had not presented "a single shred of evidence" proving the Syrian military had used chemical weapons. Assad has always been able to skillfully parry Western journalists' criticisms of his regime -- and,...
  • For Syrian Christians, protests are cause for fear

    04/24/2011 9:43:54 AM PDT · by MinorityRepublican · 16 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | Saturday, April 23, 2011
    DAMASCUS, Syria — In the days leading up to Easter Sunday, Syria’s Christian community should have been busy preparing. This year, however, signs of festivities were hardly visible. Following anti-government protests that have been violently suppressed, leaving about 300 people dead, street parades and other forms of public celebration have been declared illegal by authorities. Meanwhile, fear is mounting among the nation’s Christians that the uprising that has rocked this tightly controlled country over the past month will bring them only misery. For decades, the government of President Bashar al-Assad has protected Christian interests by enforcing its strictly secular program...
  • Christians and Syria - Relationship between minority, dictator more complicated than portrayed

    09/17/2013 8:05:30 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 4 replies ^ | September 17, 2013 | Alana Goodman
    The relationship between Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad and his country’s Christian minority is far more complex than the portrait drawn by Assad allies and opponents of a U.S. military intervention, according to Christians from the region and Middle East experts. Assad’s supporters often describe the Alawite leader as a protector and ally of Christians. Opponents of a U.S. strike have now picked up the argument, pointing to brutal attacks on Christians by rebel-allied jihadist groups as evidence that the West would be better off keeping Assad in power. But Assad’s critics say the anti-Christian violence by extremist opposition factions does...
  • Christianity, Islam, and a Deadly Double-Standard

    09/12/2013 5:22:52 AM PDT · by markomalley · 11 replies
    Catholic World Report ^ | 9/11/2013 | Michael Coren
    The French love their food, and being French they claim almost anything appetizing as their own. Such as croissants. But croissants are Austrian, and while we don’t know the precise origins of the pastry, one of the most likely explanations is that they were invented in 1683 to commemorate the Catholic victory over the Turks who were trying, in their “peaceful” way, to take Vienna, destroy the churches, forcibly convert the people to Islam, rape the women, and so forth. Allegedly, the city’s bakers had stayed up all night at work and so heard the Muslims trying to tunnel their...
  • Nuncio: “Syrians were moved by the participation of the whole world in their suffering”

    09/10/2013 5:58:25 AM PDT · by NYer · 6 replies
    Catholic World Report ^ | September 9, 2013 | Catherine Harmon
    Melkite Catholic Patriarch Gregoire III Laham, left, joins church leaders and worshipers in a prayer service at the Melkite patriarchate Cathedral of the Dormition in Damascus, Syria, Sept. 7. (CNS photo/Khaled al Hariri, Reuters) As tens of thousands joined Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square for the prayer vigil for peace in Syria on Saturday evening—and even more watched on TV or streaming online—a similar event took place in Damascus’ Cathedral of the Dormition. AsiaNews has a report on the event: Interviewed by AsiaNews, Msgr. Mario Zenari, apostolic nuncio in Damascus, defines the Day of Prayer as an exceptional event...
  • Syrian Christians Targeted by Outsiders, Says Bishop

    09/21/2013 6:16:58 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 3 replies
    The Catholic Herald (UK) ^ | 9/20/13 | Judith Sudilovsky
    Christians in Syria are continuing to be targeted by outside fundamentalist groups who have joined the country’s long civil war, the head of the Syriac Catholic Church in Jerusalem has said. Bishop Boutros Melki, Syriac Catholic patriarchal vicar, said Christians feared the situation in Syria will become like that in Iraq, where half the Christian population has fled since the American-led overthrow of Saddam Hussein. In an interview with the American Catholic News Service, the bishop said the historic city of Maaloula, with its ancient churches and monasteries, became the site of fighting between rebel and government forces. Attacks against...
  • Syrian government sends reinforcements to Christian village attacked by rebel fighters (Al Qaeda)

    09/06/2013 6:20:54 AM PDT · by jimbo123 · 18 replies
    Washington Post ^ | 9/6/13 | AP
    The Syrian government has dispatched reinforcements including tanks and armored personnel carriers to a predominantly Christian village north of Damascus where rebels have clashed with regime troops this week, a monitoring group said Friday. Opposition fighters led by an al-Qaida-linked rebel faction attacked the mountainside sanctuary of Maaloula on Wednesday, and briefly entered the village a day later before pulling out in the evening. The assault has spotlighted fears among Syria’s religious minorities about the prominent role of Islamic extremists in the rebel ranks fighting to overthrow President Bashar Assad’s regime.
  • Frontline: Dramatic report as Syria Army battles jihadists in ancient Christian village (VIDEO)

    09/12/2013 8:50:36 AM PDT · by cunning_fish · 15 replies
    RT via Youtube ^ | September 12, 2013
    The Syrian army is battling small groups of rebels who remain in the ancient Christian village of Maaloula. Opposition fighters linked to Al-Qaeda have been in control of the area for almost a week - reportedly looting religious sites and forcing residents to convert to Islam at gunpoint. RT's Maria Finoshina made it to the village following reports that government troops have re-captured it - but found pockets of resistance remain.
  • Syrian Rebels Continue to Plunder Christian Villages

    09/11/2013 6:22:28 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 22 replies ^ | September 11, 2013 | Nightwatch
    Japan-China: Two Chinese navy ships sailed through the international waters between Okinawa and Miyako in the Ryukyus. Yesterday two bombers flew between the two islands. Syria: The fighting has continued with no let up. The government has made small gains in multiple areas. However an al-Qaida-affiliated group of the al Nusra Front drove government forces from the village of Maaloula. This is one of the three villages in the world that still speak a variation of Western Aramaic, which is the language thought to be closest to the language spoken by Jesus of Nazareth. As occurs whenever a Christian village is captured,...
  • Al-Qaida-Linked Syrian Rebels Attack Regime-Held Christian Village

    09/05/2013 6:51:23 AM PDT · by Rusty0604 · 4 replies
    CNS News ^ | 09/05/2013 | By KARIN LAUB and ZEINA KARAM
    Syrian government troops battled al-Qaida-linked rebels over a regime-held Christian village in western Syria for the second day Thursday... The rebels launched the assault on the ancient Christian village of Maaloula — which is on a UNESCO list of tentative world heritage sites — on Wednesday after an al-Nusra fighter blew himself up at a regime checkpoint at the entrance to the mountain village. The four-decade iron rule of the Assad family over Syria long has rested on support from the country's ethnic and religious minorities, including Christians, Shiite Muslims and Kurds. The Assad family and key regime figures are...
  • Syrian village 'liberated' by rebels... who then forced Christians to convert to Islam

    09/08/2013 4:03:49 PM PDT · by mware · 38 replies
    The Daily Mail ^ | Sept 08,2013 | Tara Brady
    A Maaloula resident said the rebels, many of them sporting beards and shouting God is great, attacked Christian homes and churches shortly after moving into the village overnight. They shot and killed people. I heard gunshots and then I saw three bodies lying in the middle of a street in the old quarters of the village,' said the resident, reached by telephone from neighboring Jordan. 'So many people fled the village for safety.' Now, Maaloula 'is a ghost town. Where is President Obama to see what befallen on us?' asked the man. Another resident who fled the village of 3,000...
  • Syria: Al Qaeda-Linked Rebels Target Christians

    09/05/2013 8:42:09 AM PDT · by kronos77 · 6 replies
    Residents of a Christian village in western Syria have taken shelter in a convent as it was bombarded by al Qaeda-linked rebels. The rebel fighters stormed a hotel atop a mountain overlooking Maaloula to carry out the attack, said a nun, speaking on condition of anonymity from a convent in the village. "It's a war. It has been going from 6am in the morning," she said. Some 80 people took refuge in the convent, which houses 13 nuns and 27 orphans. A protest in Damascus against potential US stikes The dawn assault was carried out by rebels from the al...
  • Al-Qaeda-linked Syrian rebels fight army near Christian village

    09/05/2013 10:56:55 AM PDT · by tobyhill · 12 replies
    fox news ^ | 9/5/2013 | AP
    Syrian government troops battled Al Qaeda-linked rebels over a regime-held Christian village in western Syria for the second day Thursday, as world leaders gathered in Russia for an economic summit expected to be overshadowed by the prospect of U.S.-led strikes against the Damascus regime. Residents of Maaloula said the militants entered the village late Wednesday. Rami Abdul-Rahman, the director of the Britain-based Observatory for Human Rights, said the fighters included members of the of Al Qaeda affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra group. Despite heavy army presence in the village, Abdul-Rahman said the rebels patrolled its streets on foot and in vehicles, briefly...
  • Al-Qaeda Vows to Slaughter Christians After U.S. ‘Liberates’ Syria

    09/07/2013 3:53:02 AM PDT · by kronos77 · 18 replies
    While U.S. leaders continue pushing for war against the Syrian government, today “Al-Qaeda-linked rebels,”reports AP, “launched an assault on a regime-held Christian mountain village in the densely populated west of Syria and new clashes erupted near the capital, Damascus, on Wednesday… In the attack on the village of Maaloula, rebels commandeered a mountaintop hotel and nearby caves and shelled the community below, said a nun, speaking by phone from a convent in the village. She spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.” Arabic news agency Al Hadath gives more information concerning this latest terror attack on Syria’s Christians,...
  • St. Sergius Church - site of oldest altar

    06/07/2005 1:53:16 PM PDT · by NYer · 27 replies · 462+ views
    About our church here in Maaloula, it must be built before 325 A.D. for three reasons: Infact, the main and first proof is this altar inside made of marble; it has a border semi-circular which is a pagan architecture. Pagans used such borders in their altars to forbid the blood of sacrifices to go on the ground, so they used to make a hole in the middle to drain it properly; they used also to sculpt  or design on this border some illustrations of animals to be sacrified. The Church used this architecture at the beginning before it had its...
  • Christians Fearful Over US Syria Strike ("American Strike Will Destroy And Displace Us")

    09/10/2013 10:31:34 AM PDT · by 11th_VA · 17 replies ^ | September 6, 2013 | Jean Aziz
    Voices were loud and tones were clear in the closed conference held Monday, Sept. 2, in a Christian monastery in Mount Lebanon, about 20 kilometers [12 miles] from Beirut. The participants included representatives of the 11 Christian churches in Lebanon, along with a number of Lebanese Christian intellectuals and politicians, including Al-Monitor’s correspondent. The hottest topic was about the fate of Syria and Lebanon’s Christians in light of a potential US strike against Damascus. One of the participating bishops addressed his fellow bishops and others with a sharp tone, saying, “Hear my words and take notes; the US strike on...
  • Syrian village is 'liberated' by rebels... who then forced Christians to convert to Islam

    09/09/2013 5:21:10 AM PDT · by NotYourAverageDhimmi · 17 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | September 8, 2013 | Mail Foreign Service
    Terrified Christians claim Syrian rebels ordered them to convert to Islam on pain of death when they ‘liberated’ their ancient village. Opposition forces, including fighters linked to Al Qaeda, gained temporary control of the Christian village of Maaloula after fighting with regime forces. The reports have reignited fears about western support for the rebel groups, which are increasingly being infiltrated by Islamic extremists. One Maaloula resident said the rebels, many of whom had beards and shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ (God is great), attacked Christian homes and churches shortly after moving into the village.  ‘They shot and killed people. I heard gunshots...
  • Al-Qaeda-linked rebels take Syrian Christian village, activists say

    09/08/2013 5:39:12 AM PDT · by tobyhill · 28 replies
    cbs ^ | 9/8/2013 | staff
    Rebels including al-Qaeda-linked fighters gained control of a Christian village northeast of the capital Damascus, Syrian activists said Sunday. Government media provided a dramatically different account of the battle suggesting regime forces were winning. Independent information has been nearly impossible to come by in the 2.5-year-old conflict in Syria. Maaloula, a scenic mountain community, is known for being one of the few places in the world where residents still speak the ancient Middle Eastern language of Aramaic. The rebel advance into the area this week was spearheaded by the Jabhat al-Nusra, or Nusra Front, exacerbating fears among Syrians and religious...
  • Syrian war makes sudden appearance at convent in historic Christian town

    09/10/2013 12:08:01 PM PDT · by ek_hornbeck · 10 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | 9/10/13 | Liz Sly
    BEIRUT — High in the mountains above Damascus lies a town so remote that Syria’s war had passed it by, so untouched by time that its inhabitants still speak the language of Jesus.The violence ravaging the rest of Syria has finally caught up with Maaloula, renowned as the oldest Christian community in the world — and the last in which the same version of Aramaic that prevailed 2,000 years ago is the native tongue. On Sunday, Syrian rebels, including some affiliated with al-Qaeda, swept through Maaloula for the second time in four days, after an assault a few days earlier...
  • The Christian Exodus

    09/13/2013 6:45:17 PM PDT · by chessplayer · 5 replies
    As I write, the city of Maaloula in Syria has become a ghost town after being briefly occupied by members of the al Qaeda–linked jihadist group al-Nusra Front. Conflicting reports claim that al-Nusra fighters have desecrated churches and statues in what may be one of the oldest Christian cities in the world, a place where residents still speak Aramaic, the language presumably spoken by Jesus. Sadly, the experience of Maaloula’s residents is becoming all too common in the Middle East, where examples of brutality against Christians have been mounting in recent weeks. In Egypt, the coup against President Mohamed Morsi...