I was, like everyone else, glad to read this morning of the arrival in Rome of Meriam Yahia Ibrahim Ishag, the woman condemned to die by the usual stupid Islamic tribunal after having apostatised and converted to Christianity.
I was not worried for her destiny, as we all know that once these episodes of persecution reach the headlines it is only a matter of time before some face-saving solution for all parties involved is found. I was, nevertheless, relieved, because you can never know which headline-causing case will be used by the powers that be to, say, show a change of attitude.
The reality is, I think, that in the East you are at high risk of death and persecution and violence only as long as your story does not make it to the West, and you become a face with a name. Once you do (and lucky you) people in the West react to the “individual destiny” story sufficiently strongly to motivate the Western governments to deliver; and they generally do, discreetly and efficiently. But as long as you are one of the many women savagely beaten, or a part of the anonymous, faceless mass of people chased from Mosul, you are in deep trouble and high risk of being insulted, persecuted, forced to flee, raped, or beaten to death.
We all know this is how it works, and we all know the more stupid society becomes, the more it will become so. The proles reading their dirty, semi-pornographic “Metro” or “Evening Standard” newspaper on the underground do not get a concept like “Christians are persecuted on an unprecedented scale”. Not only it is too complicated for their simple minds; most importantly, it does not provide them with the cheap shot of intravenous feel-good fix they need to feel they have some “values”. When, though, the mob sees a face and a name and a story, its dim brain starts to work, and this is exactly the moment the politics start to move.
Matteo Renzi, the Italian Prime Minister, doesn't give a fig for Christianity. He even openly supports sodomy, which makes pretty much every Muslim more Christian than him. But like every smart politician he understands when it's the time to show the face of the protector of the oppressed. The mob likes these gestures, every now and then. Therefore, Renzi enters stage left, and has on his face the smile of a podgy Ivanhoe.
Today, Matteo Renzi got his well-calculated moment of glory, only partially shadowed by the fact that Francis did what he could to steal him the show.
But this is, in the end, only an episode in a huge noise and headline industry that lives of occasional trees, and stubbornly refuses to see the forest.
Everyone knew political necessity dictated that Meriam be (definitely) freed one day. Now that she has, countless others will be beaten, raped, or killed, without the West even noticing. Until the next poor woman manages to make headlines, that is; and Renzi & Co. (Pope always in the first line) run to the rescue in front of the cameras, whilst singing to us the beauties of the “religion of peace”.
It is very, very good that “Meriam”'s (note also here: the first name. The press makes of the individual person your own very friend. “Diana”, people say as if she had known them, or would have ever cared a shit for them if she had) ordeal is going to an end. But it is a drop in the ocean if episodes like this one do not wake up the West to the cruel reality of Islam. A reality which not even the events in Iraq are going to awaken and put in front of the consciousness of the lazy, torpid, fat, atheist, emasculated West. But they will wait for the next episodes the soft-porn train magazines put in front of them, and get another fix of feel-goodism.
The Western mobs crave instant satisfaction and easily digestible feel-good feelings. Their elected rulers know it, and throw them a headline-rich morsel every now and then to show the mob how very much they care.
After which, the persecution of Christians will continue unabated.
And now excuse me, I must prepare a blog post greeting my Muslim readers, and congratulating them for the start of Ramadan. This, though, only after I receive “Meriam” in front of the press.
It will be a hoot.