For many years, Jews in France, and other parts of Western Europe, have lived under the threat of Islamist violence. They are also accustomed to their governments’ apathy. More recently, some of this violence has been directed at Christians. Itxu Díaz writes:
Two years ago, Islamic State ordered its followers to attack churches in Spain. Now, it seems that the call is being heeded. On January 25, a Moroccan man attacked two churches in Algeciras, Cadiz, in southern Spain. Armed with a machete and clad in a djellaba, the man seriously wounded a priest at the church of Maria Auxiliadora y San Isidro, attacked those attending Mass, destroyed sacred artifacts, and praised Allah. At Nuestra Señora de La Palma, he killed the sacristan, likely mistaking him for a priest. The perpetrator then unsuccessfully attempted to break down the door of a third church. He walked through the city, brandishing the machete and inciting terror, until the authorities apprehended him.
Since 2014, around 60 jihadist terrorist attacks have claimed 300 lives in Western Europe. The attacks usually occur in waves; the recent aggressions seem to indicate the beginning of a new wave. Up until now, church attacks mostly occurred in France. Nice has suffered the most jihadist attacks on churches in recent years. But Spain is seeing more and more of these attacks.
The government has also been downplaying recent events. . . . We’ve seen all this before, especially in France: time and again, European social democracies minimize jihadist attacks and acts of vandalism against churches, to the detriment of both Muslims and Christians alike.