Chicago's Iraqis split on U.S. deploying troops to Middle East - KMSP-TV

Chicago's Iraqis split on U.S. deploying troops to Middle East

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

As violent extremists seize cities across Iraq, a new opinion poll shows 3/4ths of Americans oppose U.S. Military intervention. However, refugees in Chicago are planning a rally to ask for help. Demonstrators will gather Friday in the Loop.

The Islamist militants known as ISIL have swept through a series of Iraqi cities with a murderous savagery, reportedly executing hundreds, perhaps thousands of unarmed prisoners. Reports indicate the Sunni Muslim extremists have targeted Iraq's majority Shia Muslims and its small minority of Christians.

The slaughter in his former homeland haunts North Side restaurant owner Albert Markhay, a Christian who fled Baghdad in the 1990s. He fears the worst for an uncle and other relatives in Mosul, Iraq's second largest city. He hasn't been able to contact them since Mosul was seized last week by ISIL's religious fanatics.

“Threatening all the Christians, either you become a Muslim or you leave or get killed. Like the Bloody Sunday when they bombed so many churches,” said Markhay. ”Yeah, absolutely [the U.S. military should help]. They should not wait a second.”

Other Iraqi refugees disagree, including Marcel Gamo, a Christian who grew up in Mosul. He's been unable to contact his cousins there and said he's heartsick with worry. However, he isn’t sure sending troops into Iraq is the smartest idea.

“I don't think so, you know. There was nothing in the previous 10 years done. And I don't think there's gonna be any more accomplishment even if they go back in there again,” said Gamo.

Another Christian immigrant, Joseph Tamraz, is organizing a demonstration for Friday in the Loop to plead for international intervention.

“Our churches are being destroyed. Our people are being killed…And I hope this time we'll be able to get help from the United States and also some other countries,” said Tamraz.

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