The story began with reports in "conservative" and religious media, which, tragically, is what happens way too often these days with issues linked to religious liberty and the persecution of religious minorities (especially if they are Christians).
Earlier in the week I saw this headline at the Catholic News Agency: "Patriarch urges prayer after at least 90 Christians kidnapped in Syria." The story began:
With reports circulating saying that ISIS forces have kidnapped at least 90 Christians from villages in northeast Syria, Patriarch Ignatius Joseph III Younan said prayer is the only possible response.
“Let’s pray for those innocent people,” Patriarch Younan told CNA over the phone from Beirut Feb. 24. “It’s a very, let’s say, very ordinary thing to have those people with such hatred toward non-Muslims that they don’t respect any human life,” he said, noting that the only reaction to Tuesday’s kidnappings is “to pray.”
Alas, none of these believers were cartoonists. However, as the days went past the numbers in these distressing reports -- especially this soon after the 21 Coptic martyrs video -- began to rise.
I kept watching the major newspapers and, while I may have missed a crucial report or two, I did see this crucial story from Reuters -- always an important development in global news -- that represented a major escalation of the coverage, with several crucial dots connected. Do the math.