Pope Francis is believed to be one of the top terror targets for the ISIS. Following the reports, Italy and the Vatican have beefed up the security of his holiness. However, these threats are being downplayed by the Vatican, and there are some interesting justifications to the same.
Pope Francis is against any kind of violence, and given the fact that ISIS is beheading Christians, the Pope condemned their actions recently. Having just denounced their actions, Pope Francis automatically made it to the list of ISIS. As all terrorists love to keep a “bucket list” of high-profile personalities to threaten, Pope Francis qualified for inclusion way before he even chose to make his views about the terror organization clear.
Italian media agency Il Tempo claims that Francis has been singled out as “the greatest exponent of the Christian religion,” and consequently a “bearer of false truth.” However, the Vatican feels that the ISIS won’t dare attack the Pope. It strongly believes that the Pope isn’t a target for the ISIS.
Why isn’t the Vatican concerned? Interestingly, the Vatican takes all threats against the Pope very seriously. Moreover, as The Inquisitr had reported, about 80 Italians have been recruited by the ISIS and are fighting for the terrorist organization. The ISIS has certainly proven that it is an international terrorist organization, and will continue its barbaric acts even against people who are Muslims, but not of their particular sect.
Despite these serious concerns, the Pope and the Vatican aren’t the top priorities for the Islamists, reported Newsweek correspondent Nicholas Farrell.
“There are fewer checks on terrorists in Italy and they can circulate more freely. Islamists regard Italy as a strategic place to launch attacks, not the main enemy like America or Britain”
Nonetheless, ISIS leader and self-proclaimed Caliph of the Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has previously made a speech announcing the group’s intention to “conquer Rome and own the world, if Allah wills.”
Apart from his intentions, the Pope has taken to ditching his bullet-proof Pope-mobile to freely mingle with his flock and has, on multiple occasions, used unusually strong language to condemn jihadist militants and expressed concern for the plight of Christians and other minorities in Iraq. He even appealed to the world to seriously consider proposals for intervention in the region and tackle the “unjust aggression.”
Thousands of Christians have been forced to flee as the march of the ISIS continues mostly unabated across the region. Under such dire circumstances, is the Vatican intentionally downplaying the threat?
[Image Credit | EPA, Max Rossi/Reuters/Landov]