Latest ISIS threat: Egyptian Christians are “our favorite prey” (VIDEO)

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ISIS, Egypt, Islam, Christian
ISIS, Egypt, Islam, Christian

On February 20, 2017, ISIS released a new video urging their followers to terrorize and slaughter Christians in Egypt. The 20-minute video was titled “Kill all the Kuffar” (kuffar means infidel, or non-Muslim).

Also in the video, one of the jihadists says: “Allah gave orders to kill every infidel”.

ISIS described Egyptian Christians as their “favorite prey.” There were also photos of the suicide bomber who conducted the church attack in Cairo on December 11, 2016.

The ISIS video also included clips of the Egyptian Christian pope and other prominent Christian leaders and businessmen who have been outspoken about protecting the Christians in Egypt. But according to the narrator of the ISIS video, “Christians are not deserving of protection because they are infidels”.

The narrator in the ISIS video says the Cairo church attack in December was “just the beginning”. ISIS accused Egyptian Christians of insulting Islam, and said ISIS will be carrying out more attacks against them. Two days after this video was aired on social media, ISIS killed two Christians in al-Arish.

Saad Hana, 65, was shot and killed, and his son Medhat, 45, was burned alive.

Authorities in Egypt examined the video carefully and concluded that: “The most prominent observation in the ISIS video is the absence of the name Islamic State in “Sinai Province” and that it instead used “Islamic State in Egypt”. This gives the impression that the Islamic State’s “Sinai Province” operations now exceed the Sinai and have reached Cairo, especially following the Cairo Church attack.”

One jihadist in the ISIS video, who calls himself Abdullah al-Masri (Abdullah the Egyptian) says: “Oh worshipers of the cross (Christians) the soldiers of the Islamic State are watching you.”

Abdullah al-Masri urged jihadists in different parts of the world to help liberate detained Muslims in Egypt [meaning Muslim Brotherhood members and other terrorists that are currently in prison in Egypt].

Authorities in Egypt believe that the video aims to create sectarian strife between Egyptian Muslims and Christians.

Though sectarian strife in Egypt has always existed, it has been escalating, starting in 2011 when the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafists began taking control of the country and implementing the ideology of the Quran and the teachings of Muhammad.

In December of 2015, Egyptian president Abdel al-Fattah al-Sisi went to al-Azhar University and asked its top instructors to reform their teachings. But al-Azhar dismissed Sisi’s plea.

Sheik Ahmed al-Tayeeb, Egypt’s highest Muslim authority and Grand Mufti of al-Azhar University, the Muslim world’s most prestigious Islamic University in Sunni Islam, was recently interviewed on Egyptians TV.  Tayeeb said: “Al-Azhar doesn’t change religious discourse — al-Azhar proclaims the true religious discourse, which we learned from our elders”.

By “elders”, Tayeeb is referring to Islamic literature written during the Medieval era.

Tayeeb defended al Azhar’s heavy reliance on books written over a thousand years ago—during a period of insidious cruelty and violence conducted by Muslims against Christians.

Islamic reformers are trying to eliminate teachings from these Medieval books because they teach the most violent ideology of Islam—including killing apostates, burning infidels, and persecuting and torturing Christians and other non-Muslims.

Also according to these Medieval teachings, Christians are not permitted to build churches, must not complain or ask for equal rights, and must be grateful for being allowed to live.

Last month, on January 3, 2017, a Muslim man snuck up behind a Christian shopkeeper and slit his throat. The Christian made it into his shop where he collapsed and bled to death. A surveillance video captured the moment of the attack.

The victim was Lamei Yousef. His brother said: “The killing of my brother was planned because the killer visited the shop many times before committing the crime and knew that my brother used to sit at that spot [in front of his shop].”

He said Lamei was well-known as a peaceful man who even agreed to close his shop for the entire month of Ramadan so as not to offend his neighbors. He even closed his shop during the five daily prayers.

Lamei’s brother said: “He obeyed them to prevent any kind of trouble.”

Lamei’s son, Tony, was inside the shop when his father was killed: “He was slain in front of my sight. I’m sad that we live in a country that doesn’t have security and safety. He was my father, friend, everything sweet in my life.”

Every few weeks, major attacks on Christians occur, usually due to a rumor that Christians are trying to build a church or are meeting at some place to pray.

In southern Egypt, where there are large Christian villages, mobs of Muslims often attack a village, smashing and burning Christian businesses, homes and other property, and beating Christians in the street.

Last summer in Minya, Muslims, including women and children, shouted “Allahu Akbar!” and “We’ll burn the church, we’ll burn the church.”  The police were called, but did nothing. They stood by while the Muslim mob set Christian homes and vehicles on fire. The Muslims then performed the afternoon prayer outside Christian homes that they had not destroyed — with loudspeakers pointed at their doors.

Also in Minya, last May, a 70-year old Christian woman was stripped naked, spit on, beaten and kicked all over her body, and dragged in the streets as mobs of Muslims cheered them on yelling “Allahu Akbar”.

There have been other attacks on Christians in Egypt, almost daily, but these were the most notable because of their insidious nature.

February 16, 2017 marked the two year anniversary of when ISIS beheaded twenty-one Egyptian Christians, documenting the killings on video, and posting it on various social media. Attacks on Christians have worsened since that time.

Egypt’s Christians are afraid.

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Cheri Berens lives in Egypt working as a researcher for the Egyptian Ministry of Culture. She experienced Egypt’s 2011 and 2013 revolutions and witnessed the Muslim Brotherhood takeover and violence that followed.