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Islamic State, Etat Chrétien

[ by Charles Cameron — breaking news, and I hope it stays broken ]

Here’s the breaking news in French, followed by my comments, then back to the document in question:


There’s a symmetry to the names, Etat Chrétien and Islamic State — and a considerable asymmetry as to the size of the two groups — but here we have my (poor) translation of the Etat Chrétien’s message to a mosque in Molenbeek, Belgium — a Brussels municipality much in the news recently:

In the name of Christ our Lord!
Tremble, Muslim that you are!
The Christian State will avenge our brothers fallen in various attacks!
No mosque and no business of yours will be sheltered!
Your brothers will be slaughtered like pigs and crucified as our Lord was in order to convert their souls!

I’m not clear on whether the import of that last line is that the EC will slaughter and crucify Muslims to convert their souls, or that Christ was crucified to convert their souls. Either way, for those who claim to be Christians to crucify anyone under any circumstances seems a seriously aberrational act in light of what was done to Christ himself.

Crucifying others is not the Imitatio Christi.

It’s as if these people want to prove that the propaganda narrative of IS, AQ and the rest is right, and Christianity truly is at war with Islam — which in itself is a gift to IS propaganda and recruitment.

The asymmetry I mentioned, BTW, is pretty much evened out by the old saw phrased by the RAND corporation thus: Terrorists Have to Be Lucky Once; Targets, Every Time. In the present case, both sides are terrorists, and each only has to be lucky once.


I’m ashamed of my rusty French skills — in case yours are better, here’s the missive:


8 Responses to “Islamic State, Etat Chrétien”

  1. Yadid Says:

    ok, there is at least a grammatical mistake in every line. This text was written by an illeterate! The ton of the letter and the kind of mistake make me think the letter can be made up by people who speak the language orally but have not reached a satisfactory educational level to write it correctly… like what is the case in the French-speaking Muslim community.

    Besides for a devote Christian, not capitalizing “Christ” and “Seigneur” is almost an insult… as if in this text “Christ” and “Seigneur” were considered as common words.

    Correct French:
    Au nom du Christ, notre Seigneur – 2 capital missing, 1 comma, I would have written “Au nom du Pere, notre Seigneur” though. Note that “Pere” is more related to God, maybe the person who wrote the text purposely omitted to use this word…
    Tremblez musulmans que vous etes – 2 grammatical errors
    L’Etat Chretien va venger no freres tombes lors des divers attentats! – 1 grammar mistake
    Aucune mosquee et aucun de vos commerces ne seront a l’abri! – 1 grammar mistake
    Vos freres seront egorges comme des cochons et cricifies comme notre Seigneur afin de reconvertir leur ames! – 1 grammar mistake, I would have used “porcs” instead of “cochons”; I’m wondering why “reconvertir” was used instead of “convertir”, “reconvertir” means they were converted from Christianity to Islam, then back to Christianity, that’s an odd statement

  2. Yadid Says:

    btw, sorry I introduced myself some errors while copying the text… please don’t copy it.

  3. Ed Webb Says:

    Yadid is quite right that the grammar is abysmally poor.

    The “reconvertir” choice may point in the direction of the old medieval concept of Muslims as apostates, but I’m probably over-analyzing it. This is clearly not the work of sophisticated thinkers.

  4. Dave Schuler Says:

    False flag operation.

  5. Charles Cameron Says:

    Could well be, Dave.
    And yes, the grammar is horrible. Assuming for the moment it is actually a threat from some semi-literate Belgian, perhaps “culturally Christian” as Anders Breivik might say, does anyone have a sense as to how to parse the sentence about crucifixion — or is it ambiguous, and coukld mean either of the two things I suggested?

  6. Charles Cameron Says:

    You speak of the “old medieval concept of Muslims as apostates” — which I didn’t know about, but which makes some sense given the Quran’s appreciation for the Torah and Gospels that preceded it, and the strange Christology it affirmed.
    I was intrigued because today I also read a Pravmir piece about Christians and Muslims praying together on the isle of Lesbos, as the bodies of refugees who did not survive the sea crossing, and washed up on the island’s shores.
    Protopresbyter Fr. Panayiotis Papageorgiou was asked, “Did not the canons forbid us from praying together with heretics?”
    His response, given at that link, is worth your attention.

  7. Ed Webb Says:

    Here’s an interesting article on continuities from medieval othering of Muslims as heretics and Muhammad as false prophet and later orientalist tropes of the Enlightenment, in particular Voltaire’s work: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/David_Hammerbeck/publication/271130936_Hammerbeck__1_Voltaire's_Mahomet_the_Persistence_of_Cultural_Memory_and_Pre-Modern_Orientalism/links/54be1c5e0cf218d4a16a4d6e.pdf

  8. Charles Cameron Says:

    Heh, interesting that the author calls himself Pere Ubu..
    Thanks, Ed, clearly something I’ll be interested to read.

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