The desperate plight of the people on the Sinjar mountains, as they await their fate, remind us again, if we ever need reminding, that we still have no idea what we can do to save and rescue the vulnerable peoples of the world who find themselves at the mercy of ruthless savages;  bloodthirsty bullies  who shamelessly and brutally pursue their defenceless victims , forcing them from their homes and off their land and brutally murdering their men women and children, in the most gruesome ways, in an insatiable genocidal fury.   We just don’t know what to do. We have no clear idea how to respond. We are caught without a coherent plan. Our hand to mouth efforts are limited to a few attempts to knock out some guns and drop some food parcels from the sky.  All we can do is impotently watch as the homes are blown to pieces, the children slaughtered and the families starve on the mountainside.  We have lost the will to intervene and the enemy knows it.  It makes me so sad, makes me so angry and so terribly ashamed.  If I met one of Yazidis now, and they looked me in the eye, what would I say? “I am sorry, but we didn’t want to get involved. It’s not our struggle. We have made so many messes before, we feel it’s better to stay home. we will send some tents..”  It is almost certain, if you can read anything into world affairs and understand anything of history, that when our parliament decided not to get involved in Syria, the signal was given. Every scheming warlord knew then that this was the time to advance. It wasn’t just that the western powers were looking the other way, but they had washed their hands and effectively thrown in the towel.

It all comes, I believe from a single fatal failure to understand the human condition and the reality of evil. It is based on the hopeless delusion that evil somehow will ultimately capitulate when faced with good.

But what can I, as one single person, do? I know what I would like to do. I would like to sign up tomorrow and get on a plane and be out there on the ground and do everything and anything I could to save these people. I would take up arms, if necessary, to do it. 20 years ago I wanted to do the same for the people in Sarajevo but they wouldn’t accept 45 year old recruits then and they won’t accept a 65yr old one now. That is pure fantasy. But, yes, I do know what I can do. I can make representations and petitions to the one who holds all the power and the ultimate ruler of the earth. I can cry to him for mercy for these people. I can call on him in Jesus name and I will do that, today and, with other Christians together, tomorrow.

Crawford Mackenzie

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