With the recent news about what is happening in Iraq with the ISIS and the persecution of the Yezidis, it makes me anxious about what would eventually happen over in the Middle East in years to come. The Yezidis are a minority ethnoreligious group in the Middle East (mostly in Iraqi Kurdistan), numbering less than 1 million now due to many attempts at genocide for centuries. The ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria)-which I found out is a terrorist group that is trying to kill anyone who does not surrender to Islam. I heard about the Yezidis because I had a Yezidi friend-best friend-in grade school before I moved away. When I was friends with her, I knew that she was a Kurdish refugee who was originally from Iraq, and then moved to Syria before coming to Lincoln, Nebraska-which has half of the Yezidis in the country. Around February, a mutual friend added us both on Facebook and we found each other from there. But I never talked to her-I mean, we were both high school seniors, and the last time we talked was at the end of 3rd Grade because after that, I moved across state. I saw on Facebook that she was a Yezidi, and it made me wonder what it really was. So I did a little Internet research (Wikipedia, lol) on the subject. And then the pieces started to come together because I knew she wasn't a Christian or a Muslim. But she never directly told me what she was. And it's not like I was about to pry on her religious beliefs, either. Because their group was so persecuted, I don't think they really like explaining what they are. NBC News went to Lincoln this week, and I saw her on the Nightly News on Friday night being interviewed about the situation of the Yazidis because their relatives in Iraq are being directly affected by this, some of them even killed.

http://www.nbcnews.com/watch/nightly-news/in-nebraska-yazidi-community-fears-for-loved-ones-in-iraq-318641731783

About two weeks ago, she and 70 or so Yazidis in Lincoln traveled in vans to protest in Washington D.C. She was also in the LA Times on August 11. I'm guessing that she's one of the mainly involved Yazidi people in Lincoln and I like that about her-she's concerned for her people. Before this genocide even happened, she always had Yazidi awareness posts and photos of what the extremists have done to children and she says things like, 'If this was in Gaza then this would be all over the news'. But I'm glad that people are finally turning their attention to other groups that need help, too, obviously her group and the Chaldeans. And people in America are finally being educated on what they are. The ISIS is not just targeting Yazidis, but any minority religion that will not convert to Islam. Even if they did, they would still kill them anyway. This past week and a half I have cried at least once every single day because of everything that is happening over there, and mostly from the personal connections I have with this. And honestly, the things that they're doing to the Chaldeans is actually worse than what's going on with the Yazidis. They're beheading Chaldean Christians, and the Christian history in Mosul is being destroyed by these ISIS terrorists. There were about 500 Yazidis being killed-if not more, and there were thousands of Chaldean people that were killed. All in the name of religion. I don't understand how this sick violence to innocent people could be rooted in anything Divine. A lot of these Christians over the years have left the Middle East due to the persecution. What makes me concerned is that all these countries used to be Christian majorities-Egypt used to have mostly Coptic Christians, Syria had the Chaldeans, and the only somewhat Christian country left over there now is Lebanon. And they all immigrated to other countries because of Muslim persecution. That's what my grandparents did several decades ago, and they came back to Lebanon after retirement. I could think like, 'This probably wouldn't happen to Lebanon'-yeah, just like it didn't happen to these other countries. But then again, Lebanon is more Westernized than the other Middle Eastern countries. I'm worried about this because that's my heritage-I'm a 3rd Generation American who is half Lebanese, and my family and I follow the Maronite Catholic Rite while attending regular Catholic Mass. But this violence is all based on religion. Honestly, I know my heritage and religious identity, but I know that all religions are man-made, and even holidays are based on pagan traditions. And there was no religion in the beginning of time, so for those people, the only 'natural' religion was finding God himself. Even with my beliefs, I feel like I have the same belief system that goes with Christian Deism. I've finally had it with these wacko Islam extremists. Which is giving a bad name to Muslims who don't believe this way. Like, this was the last straw. Before this, I didn't like it when people hated on Muslims, and now I understand why some people might feel that way, whether or not I agree with them. I saw a clip on YouTube from Brigitte Gabriel-who is an Arab Christian-who had an argument with a Muslim law student. She was asking why Muslims were portrayed so badly in the media when not all of them are like that. And then Brigette Gabriel was saying how a certain percentage of Muslims were considered radical. Basically, her message was that any peaceful majority is irrelevant when other people are causing violence.
jpk29 jpk29
18-21, F
Aug 17, 2014