LETTERS News Weekly
, July 21, 2012
Christians persecuted by Syrian rebels
I am a Christian and I am on our side, the side of the Christians in Syria. There is information to be found on good Catholic news sites (e.g., Agenzia Fides) about what is happening to Christians there.
So why does News Weekly ignore these sources but report a handout from the Israel-based organisation, Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA), through Joseph Poprzeczny (“The Moscow-Minsk-Teheran axis propping up Assad”, News Weekly, June 23, 2012)?
Christians are being targeted by Muslim rebels, according to the Vatican and other sources amongst besieged Syrian Christian communities.
According to reports by the official Vatican news agency Agenzia Fides, the US-backed Syrian rebel army are sacking churches and issuing threats that all Christians will be cleansed from rebel-held territory.
“The picture for us is utter desolation,” said Bishop Philip Tournyol Clos, a Greek-Catholic Melkite Archimandrite.
“The church of Mar Elian is half destroyed and that of Our Lady of Peace is still occupied by the rebels. Christian homes are severely damaged due to the fighting and completely emptied of their inhabitants, who fled without taking anything.”
Asked whether it was the Free Syrian Army that was telling Christians to get out, Agnes Miriam, Mother Superior of the Monastery of St James at Qara in the Diocese of Homs, said, “Yes…. it was commander on the ground, Abdel Salam Harba, who decided that there were to be no more negotiations with Christians.”
She said Christians refused to back the rebels, so the rebels used them as human shields.
Much of the Christian population of the besieged Syrian city of Qusair has abandoned the town after an “ultimatum” from the rebel military chief there, reported by Agenzia Fides (June 10, 2012).
The ultimatum expired on Thursday, June 7, the agency reported, adding that most of the city’s 10,000 Christians had fled the city, situated in the battleground province of Homs.
There is much more I could write if space permitted.
So where does News Weekly stand today? With the Christian church or with the governments of Israel and the increasingly anti-Christian NATO countries?
Patrick J. Gethin,
Industry superannuation defended
I was amazed by Jeffry Babb’s baseless attack on industry superannuation funds published under the inflammatory heading “Labor’s super rort could bankrupt retirees” (News Weekly, July 7, 2012).
I am a director of one such fund and I know from experience that industry super funds employ highly qualified professional investment staff and are subjected to very close scrutiny from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA).
Indeed, the supervision of industry funds is much tougher under Labor than it was in the Howard/Costello era.
Industry superannuation funds have consistently outperformed retail funds, thus providing superior retirement incomes for their members.
This is partly because they operate on a not-for-profit basis, whereas the retail funds draw on the contributions of their members to make a profit for their shareholders.
If Mr Babb’s views were to gain acceptance, workers’ super would be diverted from industry funds to retail funds, meaning lower returns for workers and more profits for business.
Worse still, more money could flow from industry funds into shonky businesses such as Trio Capital and Storm Financial whose collapse has actually cost many retirees their life savings.
As a paper that was once an advocate of unions and employers working cooperatively, News Weekly should support industry super funds.
Parents should boycott Girl Guides
Parents should be very wary of what their daughters are being taught at Girl Guides now that the Guides have dropped any reference to God and Queen.
This may seem to be an innocuous move to be more inclusive (I’m not sure of whom); but it is nothing more than an effort to rid the organisation of any Judeo-Christian values or moral code.
If one looks to the Girl Scouts in the United States, they have worked hand-in-glove with the International Planned Parenthood Federation and Marie Stopes International which are the biggest abortion-providers in the world.
One would hope that Girl Guides Australia will not partner with these types of organisations and their agendas.
The new swearing of allegiance states that girls be true to themselves and develop their own beliefs, which translates into “Believe in anything or nothing, and do whatever you feel like”.
Indeed, the director of Girl Guides Australia, Belinda Allen, said that the word obedient, which has also vanished from the Guides, is not an appropriate term relating to girls in this day and age.
Victoria Point, Qld