Daniel Pipes wrote "Enough now with this turning the other cheek! It's our duty to protect ourselves." Thus spoke Monsignor Velasio De Paolis, secretary of the Vatican's supreme court, referring to Muslims.
Glad you woke up, Monsignor.Explaining his apparent rejection of Jesus' admonition to his followers to "turn the other cheek," De Paolis noted that "The West has had relations with the Arab countries for half a century … and has not been able to get the slightest concession on human rights."
Jesus said to turn the other cheek, but he never said continue doing it for over 50 years.De Paolis is hardly alone in his thinking; indeed, the Catholic Church is undergoing a dramatic shift from a decades-old policy to protect Catholics living under Muslim rule. The old methods of quiet diplomacy and muted appeasement have clearly failed. The estimated 40 million Christians in Dar al-Islam, notes the Barnabas Fund's Patrick Sookhdeo, increasingly find themselves an embattled minority facing economic decline, dwindling rights, and physical jeopardy. Most of them, he goes on, are despised and distrusted second-class citizens, facing discrimination in education, jobs, and the courts.
That is what it means to be a DhimmiThese harsh circumstances are causing Christians to flee their ancestral lands for the West's more hospitable environment. Consequently, Christian populations of the Muslim world are in a free-fall. Two small but evocative instances of this pattern: for the first time in nearly two millennia, Nazareth and Bethlehem no longer have Christian majorities.... Obtaining the same rights for Christians in Islamdom that Muslims enjoy in Christendom has become the key to the Vatican's diplomacy toward Muslims.
That is a very good objective. Let me know if you ever get it.This balanced, serious approach marks a profound improvement in understanding that could have implications well beyond the Church, given how many lay politicians heed its leadership in inter-faith matters. Should Western states also promote the principle of reciprocity, the results should indeed be interesting.