Western troop withdrawals: will they help or hurt?

By October 18, 2021

International (MNN) — Weeks after the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, Voice of the Martyrs Canada spokesman Greg Musselman describes ongoing apprehension.

“There seems to be this shift [in perception], that we are not – as Western nations – prepared to defend the innocent,” Musselman says.

“When you see what happened in Afghanistan, and with some of the (French) troops being taken out of Africa as well, there is this concern [that] Christians are sitting targets.”

Afghanistan may get most of the global headlines, but the French troop withdrawal in West Africa raises concern, too. French troops plan to leave the region at the same time as the Islamic State is gaining traction.

(Graphic courtesy of VOM Canada)

The United Nations calls the situation in Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger one of the world’s fastest-growing humanitarian crises. More about that here.

“We need to be praying and supporting ministries working in some of these dangerous places. We don’t want all the Christians to leave,” Musselman says.

Individually, believers cannot do much to reverse Western troop withdrawals. However, you can help persecuted believers in places like the Sahel and Afghanistan. Voice of the Martyrs Canada remains committed to supporting persecuted Christians in conflict zones.

Learn more about VOM Canada’s work here.

“Christians need to be praying and helping as much as we can,” Musselman says.

“These are dangerous times. And yet, God is drawing people to Himself; people are becoming followers of Jesus.”

Ask the Lord to protect His followers in active conflict zones from physical danger and harm. Pray they will mature spiritually and grow in both faith and number.



As Western troops leave conflict zones, some fear persecuted Christians are losing protectors and advocates.  (Photo courtesy of Kevin Wang/Unsplash)

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