National Catholic Register

Vatican

Vatican Media Watch

Keeping an eye on the news from the Vatican.

BY John Lilly

December 10-16, 2006 Issue | Posted 12/7/06 at 10:00 AM

 

Hackers Launch Attack on Vatican Website

ISRAEL INSIDER, Nov. 29 — The Vatican website came under attack in an effort organized by the leadership of “electronic jihad” to down the site, according to the Israeli news service.

The online Islamist terrorists, or e-jihadists, distributed programs to dozens of hackers around the world in order to stage a multi-pronged attack on the site as Pope Benedict XVI visited Turkey.

The attack that came in the wake of the Pope’s visit was successfully thwarted by Vatican authorities. One blogger, noting that the website withstood the attack, remarked, “Kudos to the Swiss Guards of the cybersphere for doing an excellent job.”

The attack on the website of the Holy See was cited in part as a response to the Pope’s Regensburg comments and anger related to his conciliatory visit to Turkey. In a speech during the visit, Pope Benedict declared that religious leaders must “utterly refuse to sanction recourse to violence as a legitimate expression of religion,” and referred to the situation in the Middle East as “disturbing.”

Al Qaeda: Pope Is on an Anti-Islam Crusade

AKI, Nov. 29 — In a statement published on the Internet, the Al Qaeda terrorist organization based in Iraq said Pope Benedict’s recent visit to Turkey was a first step in the Christian offensive against Islam, reported the international news agency.

“This visit of the Pope has the aim of preparing a crusade against Muslim countries following the failure of crusade heads such as (U.S. President George W.) Bush, (British Prime Minister Tony) Blair, (former Italian Premier Silvio) Berlusconi and (Australia Prime Minister John) Howard to extinguish the flame of Islam lit by Muslim brothers in Turkey,” said the statement.

Despite repeated comments by the Pope that his trip to Turkey was one of peace, the organization’s statement continued to spew vitriol at the Holy Father. The Al Qaeda statement said that Benedict’s trip was aimed at “canceling Islamic tradition and cutting Islamic roots ... to send them (Turkey) into the arms of the European Union and stop the Islamic wave.”

More Than 4 Million People Visited Museums in ’06

AGI, Nov. 23 — Pope Benedict thanked workers at the Vatican Museums for their stewardship, and how they helped make it possible for more than 4 million people to visit in 2006, the news agency Agenzia Giornalistica Italia reported.

The Holy Father received the workers in an audience prior to his trip to Turkey. The delegation was led by Museum Director Francesco Buranelli. The Pope said this institution had an extraordinary responsibility for the Christian message because there were many non-Catholics and non-Christians among the visitors.

The inscription on the museum’s door reads: “To promote the splendor of Rome and affirm the truth of the Christian religion.” Pope Benedict said the writing was put there by Pope Benedict XIV, who wanted to say the artistic and cultural expression of the Christian art appeals to the intelligence and sensibility of people who did not belong to the Catholic Church and sometimes had prejudices against it.