The pope's condemnation of violence against Christians is a welcome alarm. In sounding the protest, however, he asserts that such cruelties belong under the same umbrella when, on closer inspection,they result from different causes and circumstances.
Benedict treats them all as displays of a conspiracy against the Christian faith. Thus, he lumps the ancient tensions between Egyptian Muslims and Christian Copts, a sore spot that has, like Northern Ireland, become as much cultural and political as religious, with what he perceives as a secular offensive against European Christians.
The absence of historical memory and geo-political discernment therefore weakens the credibility of his prophetic call for and end to the brutality that does face Christians in many parts of the world.
Much of the conflict that kills Christians takes place roughly along the fault line between Christians and Muslims. To assume that Christians bear no responsibility for the strife is unreasonable. Both sides have fought a long struggle for the allegiance of Nigerians, for example.