Religion

Isis Smuggling $50m of Oil Monthly to fund Medieval Caliphate in Iraq and Syria

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The Islamic State, which reportedly generates $50m (£25m) a month in oil operations in neighbouring Syria, has expanded its oil business in Iraq to fund its recently declared ‘caliphate.’ Having seized vast swathes of territory across Iraq, the jihadist group has begun selling crude oil and gasoline on black markets to fund its cross-border caliphate. Militants from the Islamic State ... Read More »

Not All Jews Support Israel

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To both Jews and non-Jews the idea of an anti-Zionist Jew can sound like a contradiction in terms—an abuse of Rabbi Hillel’s most famous ethical aphorism, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me.” But for Sam Weinstein, and for around 30 others, me included, tucked together in a small Jewish bloc at Saturday’s Gaza demo in ... Read More »

Middle East Christians Disappearing

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While the various Muslim sects, groups, tribes, factions and religions are battling it out and slaughtering each other in Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt the historic Christian communities in these countries are also disappearing claims  a top Chaldean bishop.  “We are in the process of disappearing, just as the Christians in Turkey, Saudi Arabia and North Africa have disappeared. And ... Read More »

Pope Francis’s Radical Environmentalism

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Exploiting the earth “is our sin,” the pontiff says. This past weekend, Pope Francis did something that was quietly revolutionary. In a talk at the Italian university of Molise, Francis characterized concerns about the environment as “one of the greatest challenges of our time”—a challenge that is theological, as well as political, in nature. “When I look at … so many forests, ... Read More »

Pope Francis Meets Abuse Victims, Begs Forgiveness for Church

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OME – Pope Francis begged forgiveness for the Church on Monday and cited the need for “reparation” as he met with victims who had suffered at the hands of Roman Catholic priests. The pontiff invited six victims of abuse from Ireland, Germany and Britain to attend an early-morning private Mass at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, the residence next to St. ... Read More »

The caliph as leader of the Islamic world

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Back in the news due to the success of the Islamic State (IS) in Syria and Iraq, the caliphate was the position of the putative spiritual and political leader of the Muslim world until 1924 The title of caliph was part of the Islamic world from the death of the Prophet Muhammad in 632 AD until 1924 when it lapsed. ... Read More »

China bans Ramadan fast in Muslim northwest

Police in the restive western province of Xinjiang recently underwent mock riot training Photo: REUTERS

China cracks down on students and civil servants observing fast as Xinjiang is under tighter security following attacks Students and civil servants in China’s Muslim northwest, where Beijing is enforcing a security crackdown following deadly unrest, have been ordered to avoid taking part in traditional fasting during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Statements posted in the past several days ... Read More »

ANGLICAN ministers told during confession about serious crimes such as child sexual abuse shouldn’t be obliged to keep them secret, the church has declared.

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THE ruling means ministers are only obliged to keep serious offences secret if “reasonably satisfied” they have already been reported to police. Representatives of the Anglican Church of Australia approved the amendment on Wednesday at the church’s national parliament in Adelaide. The legislation also covers other serious offences, including domestic violence. Sydney barrister Garth Blake, who proposed the amendment, said ... Read More »