Army chaplains “hunt people for Jesus”

Below is a video from alJazeeraEnglish (say what you will, but they do better reporting than any American news agency) showing how evangelicals in the army stationed in Afganistan are proselytizing. They deny that they’re doing so even as they pass out New Testament bibles translated into local languages and preach to their congregation to “hunt people for Jesus” and “get the hounds hound of heaven after them”. HOUNDS HOUND OF HEAVEN?????

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7 responses to “Army chaplains “hunt people for Jesus”

  1. “(say what you will, but they do better reporting than any American news agency)”

    This is a mind numbingly stupid assertion. For one thing, Al Jazeera is primarily the mouthpiece of the Qatari government, even other Muslim nations acknowledge this.

    This report alone is evidence enough that said claim is wrong. What these troops are doing is ill-advised and possibly against regulations but “unconstitutional” it most certainly is NOT.

    And why is this blog-worthy? Because Evangelicals, who disproportionately risk there lives to protect us, want to spread the Gospel? How terrible! I know several soldiers serving in Afghanistan and several more in Iraq. Its not uncommon for the locals to engage them on questions of faith, particularly the better educated English-speaking subset.

    What is so wrong with soldier saying “well if you really wanna know what I believe, here it is…”. Remember the Afghans probably already believe an even more pernicious superstition than Christianity.

    And what horrible crimes do we see in that clip? A group of men and women from a wide variety of ethnic backgrounds, solemnly expressing communal solidarity in the midst of a war torn hell. Is it not possible that such fellowship might serve to reduce the battle fatigue that leads to war crimes?

    Oh and by the way he says “Hound of Heaven” not “Hounds of Heaven.” The former is a reference to a famous poem that shouldn’t terrify you. Its funny that somebody who got into this “because ignorance has been running rampant for far too long now” doesn’t do even the slightest research about the news organization he’s promoting or the story that its running.

    This is why you and your ilk are a joke.

  2. The Science Pundit

    Tom,

    Thank you for pointing me to the poem “Hound Of Heaven”. I have corrected the post. I did read the poem. However this does not change my opinion. I also stand by my mind numbingly stupid statement that al Jazeera does better reporting than any American news agency with the caveats that (A) I meant major American news agencies and (B) was refering mostly to international affairs.

    As for the video, the reporter said that what they’re doing may well be in violation of the US constitution”. I doubt that there’s a constitutional violation there, but a good argument can be made in support of that. But it was CLEARLY a violation of military regulations.

    As for why this is blog-worthy, it’s because it’s news when our soldiers do this kind of stuff and I feel that people need to be made aware of this.

    Thank you for your comment.

  3. “I doubt that there’s a constitutional violation there, but a good argument can be made in support of that”

    NO, there can’t. STOP expounding on things you know NOTHING about. I would hope you would agree that Thomas Jefferson, author of the phrase “wall of separation between church and state”, would have had a thorough understanding of what is constitutional and what isn’t particularly regarding church-state issues. Yet he recommended that Congress approve a measure that provided government funds for Catholic priests to minister to the Kaskaskia Indians. Three times Jefferson signed extensions of another act that granted land to be appropriated for military services and “for the Society of the United Brethren to propagate the Gospel among the Heathen.” If these actions are constitutional then the actions of the soldiers, who were neither funded by nor acting on behalf of the government, are clearly not unconstitutional.

    Just because you children want something to exist (e.g. prohibition in the constitution of any religious expression) or believe it to exist, does not make it so.

    And your acceptance of the legitimacy indeed superiority of Al Jazeera, “the Osama bin laden channel” as its known in the Middle East in part because of the huge portrait of him that hangs in the main studio, is more than mere ignorance, its disgusting, especially coming from an alleged “Free Thinker”. I could give hundreds of examples of the most most gross bias imaginable or their loony conspiracy theories but instead I want you to answer this:

    In what way could Samir Kuntar be considered a “hero” and what business does a responsible news organization have throwing him a birthday party?

  4. “Just because you children want something to exist or believe it to exist, does not make it so.”

    Irony.

  5. Tomkinson, Jefferson was not a god. I have many issues with Jefferson and yet I also admire him for many things. He was a man and had his good points and his bad. I don’t think just because Jefferson thought it okay to do something that it necessarily makes it so. Jefferson of all of our founding fathers was notoriously two faced (a trait I do not admire in the man).

    Second, those soldiers are free to proselytize all they want if they were on vacation. But they were not. There was there representing the United States Military and they were ORDERED not to proselytize and with good reason. We are invading an Muslim land and we don’t want to make it look like this is another Crusade. Doing so would inspire more Muslims to join Al Qaeda. That would escalate this conflict and endanger our American soldiers and American citizens. It would make us less safe.

    Al Jazeera is a biased News Station. No argument there, but in this case they did a good job reporting this story. DemocracyNow has also picked up on this story and showed more footage to dispel the Pentagon’s claim that this was an isolated incident and it was taken out of context. The fact is that it wasn’t an isolated incident and it wasn’t out of context. This is a serious problem.

  6. I am an Atheist military veteran and I can say with certainty this was against very clear military regulations. Evangelizing Christianity inn Iraq and Afghanistan supports the Anti-Coalition Dogma which states that the wars in the Middle East are Zionist, Anti-Muslim, modern day crusades.

    In my unit there were people that passed out English Bibles to English speaking Iraqi’s. I had to attend mandatory prayers before each mission, mandatory biblical marriage counseling aimed at curbing the high divorce rates, and mandatory religious benedictions before awards ceremonies and change of command.

    The military is unintentionally fostering an environment which mixes religion with patriotism, leaving Atheists and non-mainstream religious adherents ostracized. For complaining about mandatory prayers before the mission, I was aloud to leave after the mission brief. This took complaining to every Sgt Major, Commander, EO Representative, Various chains of command, and the media. However, soon after I was aloud to leave, people felt uncomfortable riding with an atheist, so I was put on a detail away from my unit supervising sand-bag fillers. This wasn’t the job for a Special Operations Combat Medic from the 75th Ranger Regiment.

    The Army may be mostly Christian, but freedom of religion is not a popularity contest. There are many Atheists, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Wiccans, and Spiritualists who serve along side evangelicals. All of whom that are enlisted are forced to salute religious leaders in the Chaplains Corps.

    I believe the restriction on peoples freedom to evangelize their faith in the Middle East is a infraction on Evangelicals freedom of religion, but it is done for tactical military objectives. It is against military law for them to evangelize.

    That doesn’t mean they aren’t able to believe what they want, or otherwise express what religious practice they’d like, but quite the contrary, the military bends over backwards for religious people. They receive Chaplains, Chapels, Bibles, funding, personal time, and are allowed to erect a variety of religious items in common dinning facilities durring their holidays.

  7. Tom, they are in the military they have no rights. They are not bound by the constitution. They are given orders than act. If their orders are to not preach to Afghani’s than they are not allowed.

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