I know that many are asking whether or not this is a hoax.
After posting the urgent prayer request, one of my friends linked me to this: http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/prayer/seanmalone.asp. Was this a hoax? Would this statement undermine the credibility of the Christian’s prayer?
Let me just say a few things:
1. You are missing the point, hoax or no hoax
This message is aimed to spread the word to all fellow Christians, so that we are aware of the ISIS atrocities as well as to pray for the people who are being persecuted. The aim of the message is to unite the Christian community in prayer, regardless of whether or not ISIS is killing adults, men, women or children. If you read the entire message and then just narrow down into ‘Are they really beheading the children?’ then you have the wrong emphasis. You are missing the point.
To me, it’s the same as reading an article about what the Nazis did in the concentration camps in WWII, and after reading about the gassing, starvation, human experiments and torture etc, you look at one part and say ‘Did they really do that? I think we should verify this fact. They may not have done this.’ Then you’re missing the point. LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE.
2. Is it really that hard to believe?
Already there have been years of tension between the Shiites and Sunnis. These are extracts from the Amnesty International Report:
“In recent months, Shi’a militias have been abducting and killing Sunni civilian men in Baghdad and around the country.”
“The victims were abducted from their homes, workplace or from checkpoints. Many were later found dead, usually handcuffed and shot in the back of the head. Reports by families of the victims and witnesses have been corroborated by Ministry of Health workers, who told Amnesty International that in recent months they have received scores of bodies of unidentified men with gunshot wounds to the head and often with their hands bound together with metal or plastic handcuffs, rope or cloth. Photographs of several bodies shown to Amnesty International by victims’ relatives and others viewed at Baghdad’s morgue, reveal a consistent pattern of deliberate, execution-style killings.”
The truth is that ISIS is killing people, Christian or not Christian, although it seems to be Christians especially. If ISIS is willing to behead someone live on camera to the world, then following inductive reasoning and correct premises, then I don’t see why they won’t kill children as well. Throughout history, many organisations and individuals have murdered people – adults, toddlers, babies – why is it so hard to believe that ISIS will do the same?
Why has there been no news from major news broadcasters?
I’m not saying that this is true, but think about it, the situation in the message is dire, the UN has withdrawn and governments are not doing anything to verify the beheadings or remedy the situation. This is a political issue: a significant piece of news that could potentially shatter the reputation of states and politicians for the lack of action. To broadcast it would possibly incite public discussion and anger.
When people focus on that little point, it feels like children being beheaded is infinitely worse than adults being beheaded. At the end of the day, if you remove the sensationalism of children being beheaded, it still remains that the situation is dire. It doesn’t make it better, and it definitely doesn’t make it okay.
*Disclaimer: I am not an expert in this area. These are just my thoughts. Feel welcome to comment.