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July 31, 2012

A correspondent by the name of Bill Ludwig has written to me with some comment he added to my article: WHY COPTS BECOME MUSLIMS BY QUMMUS SERGIUS (3 July 2012). He accuses this site of showing hatred to Muslims of Egypt, and adds, “This hatred renders cynicism to the objectivity of many arguments.” This is not an accusation that can be left to pass without addressing. I have, therefore, chosen to bring it to the front while I respond to it. It may engender further comments. Here are Ludwig’s comment and my short response:

Bill Ludwig (July 30, 2012 1:41 am)

Sir, thank you for your interesting blog.

I am interested in Egyptian history and stumbled upon your blog while researching the Fatimid rule in Egypt. I just have several observations:

One cannot help but notice this underlying, sometimes blatant, hatred between Christian and Egyptian Muslims. Some Christians even claim that their fellow Muslim countrymen are not Egyptian but Arabs. This hatred renders cynicism to the objectivity of many arguments.

Egyptian Christians claim to be the direct descendants of the ancient Egyptians, whatever that means, when in fact several other ethnicities and identities lived and intermixed with the Egyptians throughout the course of History. The Hittites, Libyans, Nubians, Ptolemaics, Romans and many others have occupied and mingled with Egyptians before the advent of Islam. In fact, the Coptic language which is a descendant of hieratic/demotic uses the Greek alphabet and only some demotic script to represent Egyptian sounds (talk about a change of identity in Egypt).

Using the logic presented here in many articles of this blog one can argue that even Christianity in Egypt is an imposter on Egyptian culture! After all, this is a religion that emerged in present day Israel/Palestine came to Egypt and changed its identity!

Dioscorus Boles (July 31, 2012 12:53 pm)

Thanks for your comment. Clearly you have not read On Coptic Nationalism, or at least the relevant articles, which could have altered your view on our blog, particularly on the way we look at the Muslims of Egypt. Here are links to two articles on the subject; so, please, read them:


I also do not think you have studied Egyptian history enough or know the oppression under which Copts have been placed since 641 AD when the Arabs occupied Egypt. Copts do not hate Egyptian Muslims, as you have said in your comment, but resent, and resist, the oppression that comes from them. Copts also recognise that not all Egyptian Muslims are the same, and hence our distinction between the ‘Islamists’, who get a kind of religious ecstasy from oppressing us, and ‘moderate Muslims’ who suffer, like us, from the Islamists and support our struggle for equality and freedom.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. mindthehat permalink
    August 2, 2012 7:11 am

    I believe Bill Ludwig needs to follow the Egyptian media to get a better picture of “identity”. When the leader of the Salafists in Egypt, together with the second man in the Muslim Brotherhood, give an interview on television and say” we are DESCENDANTS of Prince Amr Ebn El Ass”, this says it all.

    Let us not trivialise the issue by presenting it as Christian v. Muslim.

    • Dioscorus Boles permalink
      August 2, 2012 8:23 am

      You are right. When they self-identify with the Arabs, then they are Arab.

  2. sparkle comet permalink
    April 7, 2015 6:31 pm

    I am Egyptian but I’ve always lived in western countries (Catholics). In my first year in Egypt I realize how much special privileges they get. Not just getting good job locations, but I cannot even as talk to people about Charlie Hebdo in front of Christians. They are soo sensetive and they play the minority card to get whatever they want. Many muslims fight with me over freedom of speech “lest we anger them” and the worst part is that they actually harm people. We aren’t allowed to post of our celebrations in our facebook group, but they can post theirs. like seriously? I have a lot of Christian friends and we openly talk about both equally. But Egyptian Christians are too zoned-out.

    • Dioscorus Boles permalink*
      April 7, 2015 7:03 pm

      Why can’t you talk to people about Charlie Hebdo in front of Christians, my dear? Christians are the ones who behead and murder, I suppose.

      • Syed Ahmed permalink
        October 21, 2015 2:25 pm

        Muslims don’t make fun of Christians by making cartoons and provoke them, we revere Jesus PBUH, maybe CHristians should show the same respect to Muslims, I disagree with those who are violent….only a few out of 2 billion.

      • Dioscorus Boles permalink*
        October 21, 2015 6:56 pm

        Perhaps you should consider your comment. Muslims say they revere Christ but it is not the Christ of the Christians that they revere. Further, revere The Christ or not, they certainly don’t treat His followers with dignity or as equal. You should try and address that.

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