Islamic Treatment of Palestinian Christians
by Bill Koenig, White House News Reporter, March 15, 2002
Koenig's International News
In the past two days, I have had the opportunity to speak personally - eye to eye - with three people intimately involved
with Palestinian Christians in Bethlehem and Beit Jala.  Their testimonies are appalling.

In Bethlehem and Beit Jala which have been under Palestinian rule for some time, the Palestinian Christians continue to
suffer terribly at the hands of Arafat's terrorists.  Shops in Bethlehem owned by Christians have been burned to the ground
and the owners terrorized... by their OWN Palestinian 'brothers'.  Young Christian girls have been taken and gang-raped; entire
families terrorized.  While many left the area earlier in the Intifada, those still there now have no recourse, it seems.  Terrorists
in Beit Jala seize their homes to use as firing positions to shoot into Gilo, (a suburb of Jerusalem), and the families living
there have no voice.

You read yesterday that two 'suspected' collaborators were murdered (and hanged from their feet next to a large picture of
Arafat) by Palestinians in Bethlehem without investigation or trial beforehand.  You should see the pictures.  It's horrific,
outrageous... but
where is the outcry from the 'human rights' groups? In the newspapers here, the photos of murdered
Palestinians being dragged through the streets of Bethlehem by masked terrorists, right into Manger Square which many
tourists would recognize, are absolutely revolting.  Will ANY international TV news broadcast these photos for the rest of
the world to see what the terrorist organizations are doing to their OWN people?  Probably not; it's not 'politically correct'
(in their estimation).

The Palestinian Christians are suffering terribly - right along with their Jewish neighbors.  But let Israel go into Bethlehem
or Beit Jala with troops and tanks to take control - fully aware and deeply concerned about the suffering of the Christians
there - and the world that DOESN'T know about it begins to shout 'Restraint' at Israel.  One Jewish lady who has good
friends in Bethlehem said to me through her tears, '
They are trapped, completely trapped.  I asked them why they don't
speak out, why they don't try to defend themselves and they told me it's impossible.  If they do, their whole family will
be tortured.'

This is not a political situation.  This is some of the worst religious persecution in the world today.... like that in other
countries where Islamic terrorists are murdering Christians, Jews and anyone who will not convert to Islam.
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