We have every reason to be concerned with the fate of the Christian communities of the Arab World. What is at stake is not just the survival of these important minorities; it is the future of the region, itself. Violent extremist groups like ISIS and their kin, pose an existential challenge not only to Christians, but to all Arabs and Muslims.
There is little comfort for the displaced people of Qarakosh who see the most recent attacks as perhaps the final act in their expulsion from Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Christians have left the country in the last two decades. Estimates of the remaining total number of Iraqi Christians are as low as 200,000.
Peacemaking is among the good deeds incumbent on Muslims during the holy month of fasting and prayer. Distribution of charity and food, customary at Ramadan, is needed especially by people displaced by conflict. How, then, will Ramadan be celebrated in the countries worst affected by the latest Middle East crisis?
Let's not lose sight of the grotesque reality of chemical weapons. But what about military intervention? Can we make things better? War is evil. Assad is evil. But what is the likelihood of some targeted cruise missile strikes actually improving things? In the words of the philosophers, what is the reasonable likelihood of success?