Raymond Ibrahim is a widely published author who specializes in the Middle East and Islam. He describes Christian persecution as "the world's ignored pandemic." He tells American Family News that the persecution of Christians is consistently on the rise, increasing by nearly 70% over the last five years. In fact, Breitbart recently reported that more than 360 million Christians are facing high levels of persecution.
In light of the report from Breitbart, Ibrahim accuses the mainstream media of largely failing the public by neglecting to report how frequently acts of persecution actually occur.
"The [mainstream] media talks about spectacular incidents, like the one that took place in 2015 when 21 Coptic Christians had their heads carved off by ISIS on a seashore in Libya," he observes, "[but] rarely mentions the ongoing, slow-motion bleeding type of persecution that's occurring almost daily."
But outside of incidents like that one seven years ago, Ibrahim points out, much of the persecution that occurs around the world isn't mentioned. The banning of churches by governments, as well as attacks on blasphemers and apostates, is constant, he explains – adding that persecution is also on the rise in non-Muslim countries.
"But it's telling that incidents like the desecration of churches in France and Germany occur precisely in areas heavily populated by Muslims," he points out. "It also goes hand in hand in Europe – and in America – with this extreme Leftist secularization that enables and covers for Islamic hostility while it's also being very anti-Christian itself."
What's unfolding in South Asia, he argues, is a recent example of the West's limited knowledge of the scope of the problem. "Afghanistan has always been really bad, [but] the Biden administration's chaotic withdrawal from the country has made it much worse," says Ibrahim.
For the first time since World Watch Research reports were published, Afghanistan has topped North Korea as the most dangerous place in the world to be a Christian.
"The Taliban consider anyone who's a Christian to be an enemy or an apostate," Ibrahim notes. "Christian persecution is wide open in Afghanistan under the [rule of the] Taliban – and there's no end in sight."
Raymond Ibrahim is author of "Sword and Scimitar: Fourteen Centuries of War Between Islam and the West" (2018), and "Crucified Again: Exposing Islam's New War on Christians" (2013). His most recent book is "Defenders of the West: The Christian Heroes Who Stood Against Islam" (2022).