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Turkey: Many Celebrate the Burning of the Cathedral of Notre Dame

​By Uzay Bulut 


Whatever the final investigation reveals, many extremist Muslims in Turkey were equally swift in their celebration of the fire that has demolished large parts of the historic structure.   The official Facebook page of the pro-government daily, Sabah, for example, is filled with praise for the destruction of the cathedral.   Reader comments included:

"While it was burning, I prayed to God, saying, 'Burn it even more, oh God, curse and ruin it.' You wonder why? One feels like rejoicing over the burning of the colonialist, brutal France, which shed the blood of about 1.5 million Muslims and then 1 million additional Muslims; which beheaded them and exhibited their heads at museums; and which falsely accuses Turkey of massacring Armenians.... What can one even say to France that mocks our prophet and wants to change the verses in the Koran?"  
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More Than 500 Hate Crimes Against Europe’s Christians Recorded in 2019

​By Courtney Mares/CNA


ROME — The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe published data Monday documenting more than 500 hate crimes against Christians in Europe in 2019. Incidents included attacks against Catholic priests, arson attacks on Catholic churches, the destruction of images of the Virgin Mary, vandalism of a pregnancy counseling center, and the theft of consecrated Eucharistic hosts from tabernacles.

France had the most hate crimes against Christians, with 144 incidents in 2019, the majority occurring against Catholic churches. The OSCE also reported 81 incidents in Germany, 75 in Spain, and 70 in Italy.  In total, there were 595 incidents against Christians documented by OSCE. Of these, 459 were attacks against property and 80 were violent attacks against people. Nearly a fourth of the data on Christians was reported directly by the Holy See.   
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Islamic State Alive and Well in Europe

​By Soeren Kern


The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the November 29 jihadi attack at London Bridge, where a Pakistani Islamist stabbed two people to death and injured three others. The suspect, 28-year-old Usman Khan, a convicted terrorist, was subsequently shot dead by police.

Khan, from Stoke-on-Trent, was convicted in February 2012 of plotting — on behalf of al-Qaeda — jihadi attacks against the London Stock Exchange and pubs in Stoke, in addition to setting up a jihadi training camp in Pakistan.  
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France's Homegrown Terrorism

​By Giulio Meotti


French police investigating a woman for suspected ties to ISIS discovered a USB drive that contained personal details, including home addresses, of thousands of French police officials. Who provided that information? 


Le Monde, France's most prestigious newspaper, ran an op-ed after the recent attack, charging the country with "Islamophobic McCarthyism." Harpon, the terrorist who murdered his colleagues at police headquarters, would have agreed. Click Here To Read


Islamism Converges With Cancel Culture

​By  Laurent Dubreuil


Samuel Paty wanted to teach his students a lesson about free speech. He ended up paying with his life. Paty, 47, a middle-school teacher in a Paris suburb, announced to his civics class in early October that he would show some of the caricatures of the prophet Muhammad that the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo published in 2015 and that students were free to opt out of viewing the images.

The teacher was immediately denounced on social media. In a viral video, the Muslim father of one of Paty’s students related a series of...

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Archbishop of Mosul decries EU’s silence on persecuted Christians, ‘I am more afraid for Europe than I am for Iraq’

​By CHRISTINE DOUGLASS-WILLIAMS


Archbishop Najeeb Michaeel Moussa of Mosul, Iraq states in this important and incisive interview that “the European Union has undoubtedly lagged behind the European peoples who have courageously mobilized to express their solidarity with the Christians of the East in general and the Christians of Iraq in particular.” He also states: “I think that the European Union was aware of the persecutions that have affected Christians in Iraq, Syria, Egypt, but also in Lebanon,” and yet has remained largely indifferent to this persecution. Click Here To Read 


France’s Other Burning Churches

​By Nina Shea (Nina Shea is a Board Member of TAS) 


COMMENTARY: The country needs to identify the circumstances and motives behind the attacks and take decisive action.

On Easter Sunday in France, a fire originating in a Notre Dame confessional received little attention. That Notre Dame was not the great cathedral in Paris, but an ordinary church in Tarascon, near Marseille. In February, Notre Dame of Dijon was vandalized, with Hosts scattered about. At Notre Dame Church in Nimes, a cross was recently drawn on the wall using excrement and consecrated Communion Hosts. Notre Dame of France Catholic bookstore was vandalized last September. None of the attacks on these other Notre Dames drew much notice, either.

The flames that ravaged Paris’ Notre Dame riveted the world because it is a legendary, architectural masterpiece at the center of France’s capital and much of its political history. For those who track religious-freedom threats, the fire itself may be less of a surprise than that it apparently was started by accident.

Hundreds of other French churches are being quietly burned or damaged — in deliberate attacks.  
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