Mosul’s massive, stone-walled monastery of St. Elijah, dating from the sixth century and distinguished by an entryway etched by Christian monks with Chi Rho, the first Greek letters of the word Kristos, “Christ,” has been obliterated. From satellite photos of the isolated hill where it had stood, it was confirmed today that the monastery was pulverized into a field of grey dust by ISIS fanatics, evidently using some determined application of sledgehammers, bulldozers and explosives.Built before Christianity’s sectarian divisions and having gathered Christian worshipers for one and a half millennia, this ancient sacred edifice, now reduced to rubble, represents yet another irreparable loss to Christian patrimony at the hands of these Islamist extremists. But, even more importantly, its destruction also symbolizes the genocide of Iraq’s Christian people and their civilization. It gives shocking reminder that Nineveh has been inalterably changed. Its pluralistic cultural mosaic since antiquity has been shattered and putting it back together may prove impossible in this generation.