The Aramaic speaking public will soon be forced to confess that ‘Jesus was a Muslim’.
This is as real as it gets folks. This is what awaits the rest of Syrian minorities, bone crushing dhimmitude or death, if the al-Qaida led FSA is successful in reducing the Assad regime. I greatly despise and hate the present regime, but in comparison to these thugs…there’s no contest.
By Ruth Sherlock, Beirut and Magdy Samaan7:46PM BST 05 Sep 2013
Fighting raged through the picturesque mountain village of Maaloula, near Damascus, on Thursday, as the regime launched a counter-attack against the rebels.
“They entered the main square and smashed a statue of the Virgin Mary,” said one resident of the area, speaking by phone and too frightened to give his name. “They shelled us from the nearby mountain. Two shells hit the St Thecla convent.”
Maaloula, tucked into the honey-coloured cliffs of a mountain range north of Damascus and on a “tentative” list of applicants for Unesco world heritage status, is associated with the earliest days of Christianity.
St Thecla, who is supposedly buried in the convent, was a follower of St Paul who fled to the village in Syria to avoid marriage, having taken an oath of chastity. It is said that the cleft of rock in which the convent is placed opened up to allow her to escape her pursuers.
The inhabitants are mostly Melkite Greek Catholic and Orthodox Christians, but have historically lived peacefully alongside a Sunni Muslim minority. It is one of only three places in the world where Western Aramaic, a dialect of the language spoken by Christ, is still used.