Jun. 13, 2019
- “Fatah regularly exerts heavy pressure on Christians not to report the acts of violence and vandalism from which they frequently suffer, as such publicity could damage the PA’s image as an actor capable of protecting the lives and property of the Christian minority under its rule…. That image could have negative repercussions for the massive international, and particularly European, aid the PA receives.” — Dr. Edy Cohen, Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies.
- Considered another way, the bread and butter of the PA and its supporters, media and others, seems to be to portray the Palestinians as victims of unjust aggression and discrimination from Israel. This narrative could be jeopardized if the international community learned that Palestinians themselves were persecuting fellow Palestinians — solely on account of religion.
- “Far more important to the Palestinian Authority than arresting those who assault Christian sites is keeping such incidents out of the mainstream media. And they are very successful in this regard. Indeed, only a handful of smaller local outlets bothered to report on these latest break-ins. The mainstream international media ignored them altogether.” — Dr. Edy Cohen, Israel Today.
- As Justus Reid Weiner, a lawyer and scholar well-acquainted with the region explains, “The systematic persecution of Christian Arabs living in Palestinian areas is being met with nearly total silence by the international community, human rights activists, the media and NGOs… In a society where Arab Christians have no voice and no protection it is no surprise that they are leaving.”
At a time when Christians throughout the Muslim world are suffering from a variety of persecution, the plight of Palestinian Christians is seldom heard.
It exists. Open Doors, a human rights group that follows the persecution of Christians, notes that Palestinian Christians suffer from a “high” level of persecution, the source of which is, in its words, “Islamic Oppression”:
“Those who convert to Christianity from Islam, however, face the worst Christian persecution and it is difficult for them to safely participate in existing churches. In the West Bank they are threatened and put under great pressure, in Gaza their situation is so dangerous that they live their Christian faith in utmost secrecy….The influence of radical Islamic ideology is rising, and historical churches have to be diplomatic in their approach towards Muslims.”