Iraqi Christians endure persecution

The April cover story for the “Lynx” magazine features an Iraqi student who at 21 determined to strike out for freedom, leaving behind his memories of religious and political oppression under Saddam Hussein’s regime.

Steven Ishak Darmo, an Assyrian Christian, competed for the opportunity to pursue his dream in the United States, winning sponsorship from theĀ Global Youth Exchange Student program.

One might expect that the situation for Christians in Iraq had improved since Darmo’s experience and Hussein’s fall. But while the dictator has been removed, in fact, persecution of Christians has escalated in Iraq to the level of a purge since then.

My son, who is stationed in Baghdad with the U.S. Army, talks about an Iraqi Christian who interprets for his unit. She has to hide her name, he says. Persecution is especially bad in western Baghdad.

Easter is a good time to remember that while we enjoy the freedom to worship or not as we will in the U.S., many who share our various faiths are still experiencing persecution in other parts of the world. While human rights organizations lobby for freedoms across the world, let’s not forget the dire circumstances of the Assyrian Christians in a land we have “liberated.”

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2 thoughts on “Iraqi Christians endure persecution

  1. Janice Semmel says:

    On this day and everyday, we should be thankful that we live in the United States where we can worship as we wish. Thank you for showing the religious situation in Iraq. It’s too bad that people can’t get to know each other without making their first impressions only be about the person’s religion.

  2. prags21 says:

    A while ago, I saw some news about how the situation in Iraq has improved and many locals think it is a safe place, so its interesting to see that Iraqi Christians are still not safe. I hope things improve.

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