Catholic World News

Syrian prelate: US helped create ‘jihadist monster’

March 22, 2016

Secretary of State John Kerry’s declaration that forces of the Islamic State are committing genocide against Christians cannot erase the United States’ role in the creation of the “jihadist monster,” a Syrian Catholic archbishop charged.

This role, said Archbishop Jacques Behnan Hindo of Hassaké-Nisibi, included American support for Islamist fighters against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan in the 1980s and support for “moderate” rebels in the Syrian Civil War.

“The proclamation of genocide is accomplished by pointing the spotlight on Daesh [ISIS] and censoring all the complicity and historical and political processes that led to the creation of the jihadist monster, since the war waged in Afghanistan against the Soviets by supporting armed Islamist groups,” the prelate said.

He added:

One wants to erase all the strange factors that led to the sudden and abnormal emergence of Daesh. While only until recently, there was even Turkish and Saudi pressure-- US-allied countries-- so that jihadists of al-Nusra Front would take their distance from [the] al-Qaeda network, in order to be classified and maybe even helped by the West as ‘moderate’ rebels.

Archbishop Hindo also sees the declaration of genocide as a political move designed to counter rising Russian prestige in the Middle East.

“The Russian intervention in Syria has increased the authority of Moscow in a large sector of the Middle Eastern peoples, not only among Christians,” he said. “Powerful circles in the US fear that, so now they play the card of protecting Christians.”

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  • Posted by: space15796 - Mar. 22, 2016 10:13 PM ET USA

    He's correct. The US owns this monster. "Moderate" rebels indeed - this was always fiction. Kudos to the archbishop for calling it as he sees it. We were silent for too long for anyone whose been paying attention to take Mr. Kerry's declaration as anything but a political move. Fully 2/3 of the Christians are gone. Maybe more.