It's about time our government acknowledged this genocide.
It's been a long time coming.
In the face of mounting pressure by Congress, Secretary of State John Kerry has finally acknowledged the genocide
of Christians and other ethnic minorities by ISIS in the Middle East, which has been ongoing for over two years.
For some unknown reason, the Obama administration has been loath to acknowledge this ongoing genocide, even to the point where the State Department has refused to accept Christian refugees from the region, leaving aid organizations scrambling to find other free Western nations that will take them.
But after the House voted 393-0 to back a non-binding resolution recognizing that the slaughter of the Yazidis, Christians, and others by ISIS is genocide, Secretary Kerry backed down from his previous reluctance to use the term "genocide" to describe ISIS's actions:
My purpose in appearing before you today is to assert that, in my judgment, Daesh is responsible for genocide against groups in areas under its control, including Yezidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims. Daesh is genocidal by self-proclamation, by ideology, and by actions – in what it says, what it believes, and what it does. Daesh is also responsible for crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing directed at these same groups and in some cases also against Sunni Muslims, Kurds, and other minorities.
Side-note: Apparently, it is now cool to refer to ISIS as "Daesh," which is an acronym for the Arabic phrase "al-Dawla al-Islamiya al-Iraq al-Sham" (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant). Not that the whole ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State thing wasn't confusing enough, but the terrorists aren't fond of "Daesh" due to its similarity to the Arabic words Daes, (one who crushes something underfoot) and Dahes, (one who sows discord). Personally, I'm okay with adding another name into the mix if it pisses the terrorists off.
At this point, it is unclear as to just what, exactly, this classification will change in the United States' efforts to fight Daesh in the Middle East - Secretary Kerry said as much in his speech - but if it will mean finally opening up the U.S. to Christian refugees, that will definitely be a good thing.
One sad aspect of this declaration is that it took this long because to acknowledge the genocide is, in some respects, to put the Obama administration at odds with itself. We are told over and over by President Obama and others in his administration of the peacefulness of Islam, and how having any problem with Islam in any way, at any time makes us horrible Islamophobes who should be shunned and ostracized from modern society. To hear the President tell it, one would think that Mohammed was a cross between Buddha and Gandhi, and came riding into the world on a unicorn that pooped rainbows. A more honest look at Islamic history reveals that Islam has been fraught with violence throughout its history, from its inception to today.
Daesh thrives on the publicity it garners from publicly releasing videos of its horrific acts. We have known that this genocide has been going on for years now - not only are they killing the Yazidis and Christians in the region, they even go after Shiite Muslims. Basically, if you don't conform to their particular definition of Islam, you have two options: convert or die.
The question now is, how long will it take for the Obama administration to recognize the truly global threat posed by Daesh? The terrorist attack in Paris last year should have been a wake-up call, but its effects don't seem to have had much longevity. The attack in San Bernardino was only a concern as long as the administration could use it to restrict Americans' gun rights; when that didn't pan out, it didn't seem to be a major concern any longer.
After the slaughter in Paris, French authorities raided several mosques with ties to terrorist organizations, and they ended up finding and seizing sizable weapons caches in those mosques.
After the slaughter in San Bernardino, a whistleblower in the Department of Homeland Security revealed that the Justice Department had shut down an investigation
into a radical Islamic group - an investigation that included the mosque attended by the San Bernardino terrorists. It makes one wonder how seriously the Obama government will take this genocide when an investigation into terrorists within our own borders is considered too politically incorrect to continue.
But credit where credit is due: at least they're finally starting to step (small and slowly) in the right direction.