San Bernardino Sun

Persecuted Chaldeans: San Diego Union-Tribune delivers an Easter story with content

Persecuted Chaldeans: San Diego Union-Tribune delivers an Easter story with content

At the newspapers I used to work on, I was responsible for coming up with a splashy feature each year for Easter day. At one point, I used this opportunity to hit up my employers for business trips, such as a trip to New Mexico in 1998 for the country’s largest pilgrimage at Chimayo, just north of Santa Fe. But it never occurred to me to not have a story, as the big religious holidays were my chance to get above the fold on A1.

So this year, I surveyed a bunch of California newspapers to see which ones had made any effort to provide decent Easter coverage. The Orange County Register covered a cowboy service and a sunrise service; in other words, the minimum. 

The San Bernardino Sun covered how the local Catholic bishop did not preach on the previous week’s shootings that left a student and teacher dead and a student wounded. A story about the Easter Bunny got better play. The Sacramento Bee had an opinion column on the difficulties of explaining the Easter Bunny to foreigners. Chances are those foreigners, like the Chaldeans, knew more about Christ and the Resurrection than the Easter rabbit. 

The San Francisco Chronicle barely gave lip service to two sunrise services while devoting much of its Easter wrap-up to a Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence event featuring a contest for the best Hunky Jesus and Foxy Mary. 

I could find nothing in the Los Angeles Times other than a San Diego Union Tribune story that I’ll get to in a minute. The Ventura County Star had nothing. But the Redding Record-Searchlight had several over the weekend: An account of Easter at two local churches and the recreation of Christ’s walk to the cross by several Hispanic churches. Redding is the site of the enormous Bethel Church so religion is important to much of the local populace.

Back to the Tribune’s story on the local Chaldeans, 60,000 of whom live in their circulation area.

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Digging deeper into the Tashfeen Malik mystery: 'Another day, another slaughter'?

Digging deeper into the Tashfeen Malik mystery: 'Another day, another slaughter'?

For the past few days, Tashfeen Malik has been the flavor of the hour in press reports about the San Bernardino shootings as folks have slowly realized it was her who was the radicalized element in this murderous couple. It appears that the wife converted her husband. As tmatt said very early on of this case, it was likely that, "all roads lead to Saudi Arabia."

Here’s what the Los Angeles Times had right up top on Sunday:

Tashfeen Malik, the 29-year-old female shooter in the deadly San Bernardino rampage, was a onetime "modern girl" who became religious during college and then began posting extremist messages on Facebook after arriving in the U.S., a family member in Pakistan told the Los Angeles Times.
The family member, in Malik's hometown of Karor Lal Esan who asked to not be identified, said Malik's postings on Facebook were a source of concern for her family.
"After a couple of years in college, she started becoming religious. She started taking part in religious activities and also started asking women in the family and the locality to become good Muslims. She started taking part in religious activities of women in the area,” the family member told The Times.
"She used to talk to somebody in Arabic at night on the Internet. None of our family members in Pakistan know Arabic, so we do not know what she used to discuss," the family member said. The family speaks Urdu and a dialect of Punjabi known as Saraiki. 

If you look up at the bylines, you see three reporters and a dateline of Islamabad. Somehow they found the village this woman was from, got a translator and dug up the relatives.

Read further down in the story, and you’ll see they’re quoting from a Pakistani TV channel, from BBC, various friends at their San Bernardino mosque, the family attorney, a Pakistani who lives near Karor Lal Esan who claimed he knew the family well and that they were “extremist;” plus anyone else the Times could dig up.

What resulted was a lengthy narrative with three lead reporters and 31 contributors.

Yes, 31.

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