Over the Christmas holidays I read William Dalrymple’s fantastic book From the Holy Mountain. In the book Dalrymple travels around the various Christian communities of the Middle East. The book opened my eyes to the plight of various religious minorities in the Middle East. While the world’s media focus is upon the current conflict between Israel and Palestinians, other communities face incredible persecution and violence all away from the world’s attention.
Islamic sects that are considered heretical by mainstream Islam such as the Alawites and the Druze, Gnostic and monotheistic groups such as Mandaeans,the Yazdani and the Bahai, ethnic minorities such as the Kurds and the Armenians, the various ancient Christian communities all face incredible discrimination, violence and persecution. Some experts predict that these minorities will be non existent in the Middle East in 50 years. We are witnessing a silent and hidden ethnic and religous cleansing. For more on the current crisis for Christians in the Middle East check out this article