Miriam Fekry, a 22-year-old Egyptian, savored her life as she updated her Facebook page. “2010 is over. This year has the best memories of my life. Really enjoyed this year. I hope that 2011 is much better. Plz God stay beside me & help make it all true.” She was to die coming out of New Year’s Eve mass at St. Mark and St. Peter Church in her hometown of Alexandria. More than a score of her fellow Copts were killed, and about a hundred wounded, in the most brazen deed of terror against the Coptic minority.
The Copts, of course, are rooted in Egypt; the very word itself, in Arabic, once designated the Egyptians as a whole. Islam had found them there when it came to Egypt in the seventh century. A majority of them went over to Islam, and the Coptic and Greek languages yielded to Arabic. A 10th of the population would stay true to the Coptic faith. Yet today, in one of the great intellectual swindles, they are made to feel unwanted, interlopers in their own homeland.