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Christian cannibal: first the horror, then the meditation

[ by Charles Cameron — you may not want to watch the video – read the text first, okay? ]

Here’s what the BBC-wallah said:

The Christians were victims; now they’re on top. It’s a dangerous time to be Muslim. A charred and dismembered body is dragged through the streets. Christians have just killed a Muslim passerby. Ouandja “Mad Dog” Magloire was at the head of the mob. He was in a blind fury that day. Muslims killed his pregnant wife, his sister in law, her baby, he tells me. They broke down the door and cut the baby in half. I promised I’d get my revenge. Revenge was an act of cannibalism. First, he stabbed j\his victim. You are Muslim, Muslim, Muslim, he said. I poured petrol over him, I burned him, I ate his leg, right down to the white bone. The victim was just passing through on a bus. Most Christians are horrified, but resigned. No-one tried to help him, say these eyewitnesses. Everyone is so angry with these Muslims. No way anyone was going to intervene.

This happened at two o’clock in the afternoon, when the streets were crowded with people, just like you see today. Everyone we’ve spoken to is still at a loss to know what to make of it. Was it the act of a madman, was it somebody who’d been pushed by sectarian hatred, was it explained perhaps, by traditional beliefs in magic and sorcery. These fighters are Christians but they also believe in magic. their amulets contain soil from their ancestors’ graves. Some carry the flesh of enemies they’ve killed. These charms are a delicate subject, not often discussed with outsiders. We are bullet-proof, says the commander. Mad Dog Magloire went further. perhaps his crime resulted from his own demons, but to some Christians he’s a hero. That doesn’t bode well for this country’s future.

If you want to watch him say it, it’s powerful. Here you go:

Okay, now for the meditation: I want to rescue something out of all this horror.


The very first thing I want to note is this:

We are bullet-proof, says the commander.

I’ve run across this before, it’s a common motif. Remember the Lakota Ghost Dance shirts? Johnny and Luther Htoo, the cigar-smoking twins who led God’s Army in Myanmar…? Televangelist Wilde Almeda of the Jesus Miracle Crusade in the Philippines?

This is just to say that in my view, religion with spiritual bullet-proofing is different from religion without it, no matter what name you tag the religion with.


Next up:

Most Christians are horrified, but resigned. … perhaps his crime resulted from his own demons, but to some Christians he’s a hero.

It could be tribal. It could be magical, maybe. It could be religious, specifically Christian. It could be Mad Dog Magloire‘s “own demons”. It could be, and surely was, that he saw his pregnant wife slaughtered before his own eyes.

But he projected his thirst for vengeance not on the man — a Muslim — who had butchered them, but on a guy in a passing bus who looked like he was Muslim.


Some weeks back, Commander Abu Sakkar of the Farouq Brigades in Syria ate what he took to be the heart of one of his enemies. It turned out to be his enemy’s lung.

  • If you think Mad Dog Magloire doesn’t represent Christianity, maybe Abu Sakkar doesn’t represent Islam.
  • If you think Abu Sakkar is representative of Islam, maybe Magloire is representative of Christianity.
  • I think it is fair to say that any religions with in excess of a billion adherents will find the odd cannibal among them in time of war.


    But then consider this, in peacetime:

    In Ireland this week, a man confessed he’d murdered his landlord over a chess game, and eaten his heart. Forensics showed it was a lung that was missing


    We are, after all, human.

    6 Responses to “Christian cannibal: first the horror, then the meditation”

    1. carl Says:

      Bullets into water is especially common in sub-Saharan Africa.  During the various Congo wars over the decades that has been used many times.  It can work too.  If on force even half believes the other is bulletproof or can cause bullets to turn to water and when they shoot at that force and none of them go down that can lead to a panicked collapse of resistance.  That it is more probably because nobody knows how to use the sights may not be considered, magic is much more fun.
      I think what this is showing is more TIA (this is Africa) than being actually religious in some sort of overarching theological sense.  It is more a way of lining up I think.
      Over at the Small Wars Council a guy who goes by King Jaja posts on the Africa and Nigeria threads.  He’s Nigerian.  He warns that if the takfiris push too hard, those who identify themselves as Christians will go wild, as in you ain’t seen nothin’ yet (to include this video) wild.  TIA you know.

    2. Mark Moore Says:

      What is it with mistaking lungs for heart?  Is that significant, or just a typical amateur mistake?

    3. Charles Cameron Says:

      Many thanks, Carl.
      And yes, IMO too, belief “can work too” — even if the belief itself seems less than credible to the western mind-set.  I’ll have to keep an eye out for the “water” phenomenon, that’s new to me — thanks!
      And Mark:
      I’m guessing it’s an amateur mistake. Biut I’m not even an amateur, I’m a non-starter ; )

    4. carl Says:

      Mark Moore you rascal you.  I keep laughing at something I shouldn’t be laughing at, like on your sister Mary Tyler’s show when Chuckles the Clown led a parade dressed as a giant peanut and got shelled to death by an elephant.

    5. ZZMike Says:

      A man is a Christian or a Muslim or a Buddhist or a ,…. based on what he believes and what he does.  A Christian or a Muslim who kills another is neither a Christian nor a Muslim but a monster.

      Of course, I can only speak for Christians. 

    6. Charles Cameron Says:

      ZZ Mike:
      You have every right to view Christianity that way, and a Muslim likewise to view Islam — and I sympathize with your sense of the meaning of Chistianity, and of the equivalent sense of Islam. However, a Christian or Muslim, even one killing in this utterly macabre and disgusting way, may also be considered to have committed a sinful act — and therefore be viewed as in need of repentance, while not unaffiliated with his church or deen.

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