Nytt

Det er neppe dristig å spå at forfølgelse av kristne i muslimske land vil få større internasjonal oppmkersomhet i 2012. Selv om Vesten er sekularisert vekker forfølgelsen reaksjoner.

Selv kjølige Economist ser poenget.

CHRISTIANITY is growing almost as fast as humanity itself, but its 2.2 billion adherents cannot count on safety in numbers. That is partly because the locus of the world’s largest religion is shifting to hotter (in several senses) parts of the world. According to a report published by the Pew Forum in December, the Christian share of the population of sub-Saharan Africa has soared over the past century, from 9% to 63%. Meanwhile, the think-tank says, the Christian proportion of Europeans and people in the Americas has dropped, respectively, from 95% to 76% and from 96% to 86%.

But moving from the jaded north to the dynamic south does not portend an easy future. In Nigeria scores of Christians have died in Islamist bomb attacks, targeting Christmas prayers. In Iran and Pakistan Christians are on death row, for “apostasy”—quitting Islam—or blasphemy. Dozens of churches in Indonesia have been attacked or shut. Two-thirds of Iraq’s pre-war Christian population have fled. In Egypt and Syria, where secular despots gave Christianity a shield of sorts, political upheaval and Muslim zeal threaten ancient Christian groups. Not all Christianity’s woes are down to Muslims. The faith faces harassment in formally communist China and Vietnam. In India Hindu nationalists want to penalise Christians who make converts. In the Holy Land local churches are caught between Israeli encroachment on their property and Islamist bids to monopolise Palestinian life. Followers of Jesus may yet become a rarity in his homeland.

Hvordan vil Vesten stille seg? Å gripe inn, spesielt i den arabiske våren, er følsomt. Amerikanerne gjorde nesten ingenting for å beskytte de kristne i Irak.

Economist drar inn Kina, men der vokser kristendommen med myndighetenes stilltiende velsignelse. Det er i muslimske land at forfølgelsen er dødelig og hvor den ender med masseflukt. 100.000 koptere er allerede flyktet til USA.

Even if Western powers no longer see promoting Christianity’s interests as a geopolitical priority, it is hard to imagine American evangelicals ignoring a full-scale clampdown on house churches in China. And whatever their own beliefs, Western voters have other reasons to worry about the fate of Christians. Regimes or societies that persecute Christians tend to oppress other minorities too. Sunni Muslims who demonise Christians loathe Shias. Once religion is involved, any conflict becomes harder to solve.

Christians and lions
The world’s most widely followed faith is gathering persecutors. Even non-Christians should worry about that