Rev. Franklin Graham, the influential son of beloved evangelist Billy Graham, tells Newsmax TV the pounding Russian air force strikes in Syria may end up saving countless numbers of persecuted Christians.
“What Russia is doing may save the lives of Christians in the Middle East,” Graham, president and CEO of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, said Wednesday to J.D. Hayworth and Miranda Khan on “Newsmax Prime.”
“You understand that the Syrian government for their good and for their bad over the history of this country, they have protected Christians, they have protected minorities from the Islamists.“
The strikes were carried out in rebel-controlled areas of Homs and Hama provinces of Syria, where a civil war has raged on for four years, with armed dissidents are trying to topple the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
“If the government of Syria and its institutions were to fail, there would be a bloodbath of Christians,” Graham said.
“There were would be tens and tens of thousands of Christians murdered and slaughtered and on top of that you would have hundreds of thousands of more refugees pouring into Europe.
“So Russia right now, I see their presence as helping to save the lives of Christians.”
The raids are reported to have killed at least 33 civilians, including children.
Graham believes part of Syria’s strife is caused by a lack of leadership from the Obama administration.
“If you look at ISIS [the Islamic State], ISIS came about because of the failed leadership of President Obama. His generals told him not to pull the U.S. troops out of Iraq. He did it anyway,” Graham said.
“The government of Iraq began to marginalize the Sunnis. So when the Sunnis saw that they didn’t have a seat at the table anymore, ISIS was formed and they joined with the ISIS inside of Syria.
“Syria was in the middle of a civil war, and a lot of these guys are Saddam Hussein’s former colonels, captains, lieutenants. [They] have military experience and were able to launch these attacks. It’s been brutal, horrific, and I put this at the Obama administration. They’re responsible.”
Graham says the Obama administration’s errors are the result of its skewed priorities.
“He’s more interested in policies that are against Christians in this country and going around the world promoting same-sex marriage and the agenda of the gay and lesbian community,” Graham said.
“I’m not here to bash the gays and lesbians and they certainly have rights and I understand all of that, but this administration has been more focused on that agenda than anything else.
“As a result, the Middle East is burning and you have more refugees moving today since World War II. It could have been prevented.”