- JetBlue pilots vote to unionize; 2 previous attempts failed
- Pentagon plans to replace flight crews with ‘full-time’ robots
- Navy’s military dolphins may meet Putin’s porpoises in Black Sea
- Forget the Porsche — it’s the guy with the Prius that attracts the ladies, poll shows
- Fired Russian Facebook CEO says site has fallen in the hands of pro-Putin supporters
- Sen. Boozman of Arkansas has emergency heart surgery
- Brazil embraces drones to save the Amazon rain forest
- Teen stowaway shows holes in vast airport security
- Supreme Court to decide if passports can say ‘Jerusalem, Israel’
- Cries of anguish as South Korea ferry toll tops 100
DECKER: China’s Diocletian
Beijing cracks down on faith in officially atheist state
Easter is a dangerous time to be a Christian in communist China. Holy Week - which commemorates the arrest, torture, crucifixion and eventual resurrection of Jesus Christ - witnessed an increase in government-directed violence and persecution against followers of Jesus. China’s Communist Party cracks down on believers because trust in an all-powerful God undermines blind allegiance to the idea of an all-powerful state.
The toppling of Egyptian strongman Hosni Mubarak and uprisings in other authoritarian regimes in the Middle East have communists panicking in the Middle Kingdom. The average Arab potentate has a tighter grip and a much smaller population to control than Beijing. If Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi, Syria’s Bashar Assad or Arabia’s House of Saud can be threatened by people-power movements, there’s no doubt the People's Republic of China (PRC) is vulnerable to mass unrest among its 1.3 billion oppressed souls.
Beijing’s reaction to democratic protests around the world has been to clamp down hard on its own people to discourage any public manifestations of discontent. On Easter morning, 500 Christians were put under house arrest to prevent them from going to services that day, according to ChinaAid. Countless more have been arrested nationwide. This is part of “Operation Deterrence,” a new tyranny unleashed against churches late last year.
In December, the Politburo of the Chinese Communist Party officially branded the community of house churches in the entire country a cult, and thus outside the law. David Aikman, author of “Jesus in Beijing,” compares today’s PRC policies to the worst period of repression in the late Roman Empire. Mr. Aikman, the former Beijing bureau chief for Time magazine, calls the communist government “China’s Diocletian,” referring to the Roman emperor who unleashed the legions on Christians in 303 A.D.
The percentage of Romans who were said to be Christian during Diocletian’s time - about 10 percent - is the same number some estimate to be Christian in contemporary China. The butchers in Beijing consider this spiritual growth dangerous to their grip on power. That’s why the communists are throwing so many Christians to the lions.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Brett M. Decker, former Editorial Page Editor for The Washington Times, was an editorial page writer and editor for the Wall Street Journal in Hong Kong, Senior Vice President of the Export-Import Bank, Senior Vice President of Pentagon Federal Credit Union, speechwriter to then-House Majority Whip (later Majority Leader) Tom DeLay and reporter and television producer for the legendary Robert ...
TWT Video Picks
Feds who send arms against ranch families betray American values
Get Breaking Alerts
- Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hailed as patriot, renegade
- CARSON: When government looks more like foe than friend
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
- IRS revokes conservative group's tax-exempt status over anti-Clinton statements: report
- America is an oligarchy, not a democracy or republic, university study finds
- Michelle Obama: Obama family Sundays are more for napping than church
- Supreme Court upholds Michigan affirmative action ban
- Bonuses given to IRS employes who owed back taxes