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Pope brings 12 Syrian Muslim refugees to Italy aboard his plane

24 Comments
By DEREK GATOPOULOS, NICOLE WINFIELD and ELENA BECATOROS

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24 Comments
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I think it's a little more complex than that Mr. Pope. Try 1200 next time and get back to us. Plus, it must be nice to pick and choose who goes with you. Empty gesture.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

How many people can his airplane can load?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Is he, or the Catholic Church, going to continue to support them in the Vatican or is that for the Italian government to provide?

7 ( +8 / -1 )

I wish Pope Francis were as compassionate with victims of child abuse (even when it involves is church buddies) as he is with those refugees.

Good old europe taken hostage, again.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Well, the vatican had better get ready for the coming epidemic of rapes and molestations of women that these rapefugees bring whether they go. What a moron the pope is.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Nice gesture, but let's be real here, 12 is not enough to lead by example. He wants countries to accept more refugees, so why can't the pope bring in thousands of refugees? The Vatican sure has the money to do it. Just beware that there may be some defacing of the Vatican when that happens. Such imagery and portrayals of deities is bad.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

"Francis insisted his gesture to bring the 12 refugees to Italy was “purely humanitarian,” not political. But in comments on the flight home, he urged Europe to not only welcome refugees but better integrate them into society, so they are not left in ghettos where they can become prey to radicalization."

This kind of statement is very revealing. Treat these people well or they may become people who will kill you after moving towards a dangerous and possibly murderous ideology. Of course efforts should be made to improve the situation of all people in society. It also has to be said that it's difficult to integrate those who don't want to integrate. It also has to be said that other marginalized groups don't seem to have a history of orchestrated murders of innocents to the same degree.

It seems to me the pope is basically saying these people are more susceptible than others to extremism. This is a belief I share with him. I doubt if Europe was taking in Quaker refugees we'd be talking about avoiding radicalization.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Considering the Catholic church is loaded to the eyeballs with wealth think they could do a bit more for humanity...

2 ( +4 / -2 )

JimizoAPR. 17, 2016 - 12:05PM JST It seems to me the pope is basically saying these people are more susceptible than others to extremism.

They are. But whereas you imply the susceptibility to be a consequence of their religion, the Pope rightly recognizes that their susceptibility is a result of their potential isolation and vulnerability. Happy people with stable jobs who are allowed to integrate into their non-war-torn communities tend not to commit violence no matter what their religion is. People who are demonized by bigots and small folk, that's another story.

Still, it's always entertaining to see someone who made (an admittedly token) effort to make the world better get blasted for not doing enough by anonymous people on the Internet who haven't lifted a finger to help.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

Compassionate acts will weed out terrorism, and thus the major part of refugees' problem in the end. Good news, I believe.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

The Pope is a classic SJW. it's all about that warm, virtuous feeling you can advertise to others, and less, much less, about what you actually do to help. And the actual, long-term effects of the policy you promote? Someone else can deal with those.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Incorrect word choice: replace the b-word with the phrase: "people who last summer correctly predicted the security, crime and logistical nightmare Merkel's insane decision would create."

You say potato...

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Interesting to read the comments (as usual), especially in light of the Kumamoto earthquake. Whereas most seem to be sympathetic to their hardships down there in Kyushu, the hostility when it comes to refugee talk feels out of place. Sure, it's a political gesture by the Pope, but the message is the right one. I cringe as much as the next guy when the religious talk starts, but in principle, il Papa is correct. We gotta help out. That goes for all people, not just those close to home.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

As a Catholic, I understand where the Pope is coming from, but first and foremost as Christians we must protect our own. We've done a terrible job of protecting Christian minorities in predominantly Muslim countries. Bringing Muslims into Christian countries in Europe is a terrible idea.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

"Happy people with stable jobs who are allowed to integrate into their non-war-torn communities tend not to commit violence no matter what their religion is. People who are demonized by bigots and small folk, that's another story."

Many of the radical preachers spouting hate in UK mosques are not at the bottom of the pile. The bigot Anjem Choudary was a qualified solicitor. The ex-radical Maajid Nawaz was radicalized by a qualified doctor. I don't hear of extremist Christian, Jewish, Hindu or Buddhist leaders preaching murderous ideas in Europe. If you know of any, I'd welcome the information. More importantly, I don't read of their acolytes mirdering people.

Unfortunately, discrimination and inequality exist. This cannot be eradicated overnight. You are avoiding the simple question of why people of this particular group are more susceptible to joining extremist and violent religious groups than others. Many groups suffered and still suffer discrimination but don't go down this path.

You cannot divorce the atrocities carried out by Muslim extremists in Europe and young European Muslims joining ISIS from Islam. It's very dangerous to attempt to do this.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Where are the likes of Saudi Arabia, Iran & the UAE in all this? Hmm? So much for helping their Muslim brethren...

7 ( +8 / -1 )

"As a Catholic, I understand where the Pope is coming from, but first and foremost as Christians we must protect our own. We've done a terrible job of protecting Christian minorities in predominantly Muslim countries. Bringing Muslims into Christian countries in Europe is a terrible idea."

It's perhaps worth pointing out that Pope Francis could be viewing this situation in a similar way as Merkel. Some see Merkel's refugee policy as some kind of atonement for Germany's past. The Vatican did apologise for the crusades under John Paul II but as far as I know hasn't apologized for supporting the fascist European regimes which culminated in the final solution.

He does seem to be a man of genuine honesty although as others have pointed out, I'd like to see him walk the walk in terms of helping the poor.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@ fuben, don't think anyone is saying Pope's gesture is 'not nice' nor compassionate, it sure is. But at the same time it's also a bit irresponsible and could end up being counter productive: europe and europeans do not have the ability nor the responsibility to welcome all people unsatisfied with how their country is doing (politically, economically etc).

Imo he's sending the wrong message to migrants already in europe and also potential ones elsewhere:' if europeans don't welcome you in their country this is because they dont want to rather than they can't'. Which is obviously an heresy. not everything in life is about being kind. The world is a bit more complex than what religious ppl think. Just my 2 cents.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

"Compassionate acts will weed out terrorism,..."

Nope. That's just what the Jihadis want -- to be untouched in their comfy subsidized Western enclaves. Belgium has been very generous to its Muslim refugees and immigrants, with housing, benefits, etc. The mayor of Molenbeek from the 80s was a full-on multiculturalist who actively encouraged Muslims to settle there.

The result: the creation of a "hotbed of Jihadism." This tiny country will continue to pay a terrible price for its "compassion."

9 ( +10 / -1 )

As long as the Vatican pays to support all they bring with them then fine. Forcing sovereign nations that do not have ties to the Vatican is a different story. I somehow think Papa-san ain't footing a long term bill though.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I think Pope created different Catholic culture. He calls Catholic people who are divorced "divorced Catholic" instead of ignoring. Only 12 maybe but other people might be encouraged to bring orphans back to their countries. I doubt about anyone in Japan, though.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Europe has been the most receptive of all entities to refugees. To suggest otherwise would be unfair. If the Pope wants to target a group that has done next to nothing, try Saudi Arabia and other wealthy arab states which have accepted none. They openly state that these refugees are a security risk. Well, they are an even bigger security problem for Europe, which has welcomed them only to watch many create problems already. And down the road, there will be many, many more incidents and Europe will wonder how it could have been so stupid to welcome people who want to change their culture and perhaps even destroy them

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This pope is an embarrassment.

If he really wants to simulate the European situation, he should open the gates of the Vatican to all invaders who want to come in, without any control whatsever.

Also how telling that he was unable to find any Christians, Yazidis, or Druzes to bring back to Italy, who are being genocided by ISIS and should certainly be the first to receive any help.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

This pope is an embarrassment.

Yeah, all that compassion. How embarrassing.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

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