Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Christmas photograph that will enrage Islamic jihadists


Shiite tribal leaders attend Christmas mass at an Assyrian orthodox church in Baghdad, Iraq, Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2007. The church, which is located next to a Shiite mosque, hosted their neighbors for Christmas mass as a gesture of friendship. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)

This is not the kind of gathering that Bin Laden had in mind for Iraq. In fact, it is the opposite: Al Qaeda's goal is an Islamic caliphate ruled by radical Muslims who expel Westerners and non-Muslims. Robert Spencer points out radical Muslim clerics have directed their followers to not participate in the infidels’ festivities, not wish them holiday greetings, and not endorse in any way what Muslim hardliners see as celebrations of infidelity and the rejection of God.

The photograph above shows Shiite tribal leaders in Baghdad extending friendship to Assyrian Christians. And by doing so they are also publicly rejecting the goals of Bin Laden, Al Qaeda Iraq, and the radical clerics.

Thanks to Christmas 2007 in Baghdad, we can be optimistic the western values of pluralism and the dignity of the individual are taking hold. The radical jihadists get it. It's too bad the western multiculturalists don't get it.