IRAQ: A Priest Says All Christians Are Traumatized, Their Tears Have Run Dry

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Father Andrzej Halemba heads the Middle East Section of international charity Aid to the Church in Need. Earlier this month, he visited the displaced Christians of Iraq: “It is the most tragic thing that I have ever experienced,” he said.

Christians in Iraq
Christians in Iraq

He explains the ordeal of these Christians saying, “It is a very difficult situation. Without question, we are talking about genocide here.” “It is the most tragic thing that I have ever experienced,” he adds, “I have seen people who have been deeply wounded in their soul. In the various crises in this world I have often seen people who have lost everything. But in Iraq there are Christians who have had to leave everything and take flight three or four times. They can see no light at the end of the tunnel.”

“They are all much traumatized,” he exclaimed. “Normally in such situations it is the women who pull everything together. But in Kurdistan I have seen women who are staring into nothingness and have closed in on themselves. Their tears have run dry. It is something that I have never seen anywhere else. The men, by contrast, tend to aggressiveness. This has to do with the fact that they are no longer able to fulfil their previous role as the breadwinner and protector of their family.”