Brutal Christ of the Armageddonites
article makes out all Christian churches that believe the Bible to be vengeful,
hateful people, with pastors preaching about a God-inspired war. This is FAR
from the reality, as I attend several churches and have several pastors' kids
as friends, whose churches I do not attend. Every Christian I know, including
the ones from the Christian school I graduated from, are nonviolent, peace-loving
of 87 percent supporting the war leads people to believe that Christians support
the war out of vengeance, when, really, the majority of us don't see it that
way at all. We see Saddam as a cruel dictator, and, although there are plenty
of those out there we could have gone after instead, we like the fact we did
something about one of them for the sake of those under him. I have met a man
who has been in Iraq for the past four or five years bringing food, supplies,
and medicine to hospitals, ravaged by the oil for food scandal, and other places
that need it. He has reported that none of his work there of revealing God's
total and freeing love would be possible had Saddam been kept in power. I feel
this article is very misleading.
As for the Left
Behind series, it has been stated by the author that it is fiction based
on the biblical prophecies not only of the book of Revelation, which the author
of this article focuses on, but also from other books, such as Daniel, and the
Might I add, if these ancient prophecies from thousands
of years ago come true with no discrepancy, there is something to be said about
the accuracy and authority of the Bible.
(If a man blew
up your friend's home, should he be punished or let go? Now apply that to world
politics and see what you get. Should we embrace peace to the degree that we
allow evil and oppression to go unpunished?)
the Peace that passes all understanding,
you for your comments.
think the article was very specific about it not being "all" Christian
– The 87 percent
referred to evangelicals.
Washington never said it was overthrowing Saddam to help the Iraq people until
after they did not find WMD.
– Hospitals were
not ravaged by the oil-for-food scandal; they were ravaged by the American blockade
of almost everything needed to rebuild the nation after we had "bombed it back
into the stone age," as our leaders bragged in 1990 and 1991 – just search on
Google for sanctions+Iraq+children
(half a million died during the blockade).
Christians were safe under Saddam, now hundreds of thousands have fled for their
lives to Syria, Jordan, and anywhere they can be accepted.
– Christ certainly
embraced peace. And he surely taught us not to kill people who did us no harm,
unless you mean those who tried to shoot down planes that were bombing them
for years on end. Do you know that in the 1990 war we intentionally bombed their
irrigation and sanitation systems, bridges, most of their electricity production,
and so on?
I understand your
sentiments, but it is just hard for Americans to know everything that was happening
out there. Do a look on Google for lies+about+Iraq
for some of this history.
I well understand
that you and most evangelicals have good intentions, but these are distorted
by our leaders.
is one of the best sources of news available today. However, the Jon Utley story
regarding the influence of Christian fundamentalism does contain a statement
that is not only silly but injurious to my home state of Oklahoma. I should
admit that, like southern California and a good many other areas, Oklahoma does
harbor many Christian rightists. My objection is to his reference to Oklahoma,
as well as Texas, being deserts. He did not swear that they were entirely deserts,
but the implication was sweeping. In his defense, perhaps he saw a tribal governments
textbook written by an incompetent professor at Notre Dame. She made the same
ludicrous claim in reference to the land the Five Civilized Tribes received
upon removal from the southeastern states. I invite both of these authors, who
have put themselves in the goofy category of a recent television sports character,
to visit Oklahoma. Some of the most lush, fertile, beautiful, and productive
land in the world is in Oklahoma, despite one of its U.S. senators. I shall
not also quarrel with this author's rendition of history, but I must regret
that the author's ignorance detracts from his attempt to write about right-wing
The Lovett Cattle Company
you for your information and I apologize for a little literary license. Yes,
I do know that Oklahoma has some wonderful parts, and when I was a teen I saw
Oklahoma on Broadway four times; I loved it. It's also that I meet at
a luncheon group with one of your senators, who is a main spokesman for the
Armageddonites, so I did want to mention his state. America is such a great
country and experiment of brotherhood as to be an example for the whole world.
final paragraph is remarkable. He writes:
Armageddonites, despite their self-proclaimed goodness, are a brutal, ignorant,
and vengeful people. They have also become a major force dragging America to the
abyss of endless war, a domestic police state (they care little for constitutional
freedoms), financial ruin, and the enmity of the world."
change "Armageddonites" to "Israelis" and "constitutional freedoms" to "international
law," and you have a perfect match.
Bruce J. Malina
Thanks for your
comments. I think there is a difference. One, the Israel lobby is often mentioned,
even in "polite society" and certainly in Washington, as just another lobby.
The Armageddonite lobby is not well understood and clothes itself in such morality
and purity, far beyond the Israeli, which frankly recognizes and uses power.
The Israel lobby also is certainly not stupid; at least it has a rational purpose.
Also, today the
Israel lobby is very split and has mainly morphed into a Likud lobby. Furthermore,
it is important to distinguish Likud from all Israelis, and Israel from all
Jews, especially considering how many Jews are in the forefront of the antiwar
and anti-empire movement. One of the problems in writing about this is a vocabulary
that is often not exact.
article. It's imperative Christians should read and understand what other Christians
are doing to create a hateful and condemning religious belief. They use the name
of Jesus, but not his teachings. They profess to support Jesus, but they follow
the Old Testament with their beliefs. Which makes no sense, since Jesus is the
New Testament. They profess to believe in God; they don't understand why their
God went to such lengths to create His Son for Christian believers. Hence the
New Testament: to lead Christians away from the judgmental hatred they developed
in the Old Testament.
much for your comment and support.
article, "The Brutal Christ of the Armageddonites," it's too bad that you have
to lump true believers along with the Christian Right and their prez
because you can't read the Bible with understanding doesn't mean that things won't
happen as the BIBLE predicts (not as the deceptive Christian Righters say
the Bible says); nor because you can't understand the symbolism which is used
in the Bible, especially in Revelation. Try reading the Bible with the use of
the Hebrew/Greek dictionary, in which language the original texts were written,
or at least an Amplified Bible. Read about all the prophecies the Bible predicted
which happened EXACTLY as the Bible said, and compare today's headlines with prophecy
yet unfulfilled, but in the making. The Left Behind book is NOT the Bible,
and does not accurately portray what the Bible says by a long shot. It is as deceptive
as the rest of the Christian Right.
can be assured of one thing, Mr. Utley: that if you continue to accuse the true
believers, by not distinguishing them from the deceptive Christian Right, of being
a part of such deception, you will surely be held accountable for the blood of
many innocent people in the not too far future.
that happen, I feel sorry for you.
comments, I think if you reread the article you will find that I try very much
to distinguish true Christianity from the usurpation of most of the leadership
of the Christian Right. I reach out also to identify evangelical leaders of
the Christian Right who do not subscribe to the dominant theories. A difficult
problem is that of simple vocabulary, in that these words are new and have different
meanings to different people, and by no means are all evangelicals or religious
activists also trying to hurry up the second coming. Hence the spreading use
of the word "Armageddonite," which is becoming recognized as identifying them.
Secondly, I do
not deny biblical prophecy in the article. The whole point is referring to those
who have moved beyond prophecy to trying to bring it about, to "hurry up God."
Surely the Bible does not encourage such actions.
Christian "true believers," as you identify yourself, who disagree with the Armageddonites
also, I believe, have a duty to try to expose them and the damage they are doing
to our foreign policy, to the image of America in the outside world, and to Christianity
itself. They may not be written about much in the U.S., but in the Arab and Muslim
world, their writings and political power are very much identified. And Christians
in the Muslim world are also suffering from the identification of America with
warming – on a cold day like today, it sounds like a blessing. But let's
face facts. Anthropologists, paleontologists, and scientists who observe extreme
long-term climate variations will tell you that the earth today is in a cool cycle,
and that warming is natural and good – not to mention inevitable. In fact,
humankind has made more progress during warm cycles than cold.
roughly 1350 and the late 1800s, the earth underwent a "mini ice age," in which
the climate became brutally cold. Even then, of course, there were cycles within
cycles – with a few years or decades a bit warmer and others going back to
the larger trend of cooling.
what was the consequence of that era of "global cooling"? Well, for one thing,
the ground was more moist and marshy, due to less evaporation of water, and as
a consequence there was slightly less arable land for the growth of crops. Even
a few degrees of cooling, especially combined with the dampness of the soil, had
a domino-like impact on human lives. Colder weather and failed crops were often
the outcome. And this, in turn, led to poor health and undoubtedly played a role
in the plagues that ravished Europe in those centuries.
the other hand, during the warm period that preceded the five-century "mini ice
age," population grew at an unprecedented rate because growing seasons were longer,
marshlands dried up (and took with them malaria-causing mosquitos), and food production
was increased. In short, people thrived when the climate warmed.
how is it people can claim we face global warming? Well, for one reason, accurate
temperature readings were not recorded until the 19th century, a time when weather
was in a cool cycle. So anything compared to the 1860s is generally going to be
regarded as comparatively warm. It's like stepping into a walk-in refrigerator
at a restaurant. It's bound to be warmer when you come out.
earth probably – hopefully – is entering a warmer climate trend. But
it's far from what existed in the prehistoric times, as proved by fossilized palm
trees in places like Wyoming.
will the coastline change, putting Washington and Manhattan under water? Someone
wrote in the Washington Post that this is exactly what will happen 50 years
into the future. Wrong. The effect of warm trends in the past as been to see an
increase in evaporation of water from low-lying lands, not the opposite. I wish
I had another 50 years to live so I could die laughing – in their faces.
Twain famously said "everyone talks about the weather, but no one ever does
anything about it." Now, that was funny a century ago, and ought to be no
less funny today. But somehow it isn't. There are far too many people extant who
have somehow got it into their heads that "we" – which certainly
doesn't include any physicist I know – can do something about the weather.
No, worse yet, can do something about the climate! Better to concentrate on trying
to do something that might be possible – keeping nuclear weapons out of the
hands of terrorists.
and other New Age loonies do not represent the view of most people who consider
themselves to be environmentalists. Most Greens and environmental activists,
of whom I consider myself one, are quite rightly against the war in Iraq and
the warmongering against Iran seeing them as a huge threat to our planet's ecosystems.
opposition to BOTH war parties is one reason I read Antiwar.com everyday, and
I normally enjoy Dr. Prather's articles. This one misses the mark though by lumping
all "greenies" in with the minority position of Dr. Lovelock. To Dr. Prather I
would ask: why are you alienating yourself from your natural allies against the
war party's schemes in the millions of people who are genuinely concerned with
the fate of the planet's ecosystems?
~ Matt Rogers,
gather that Bush has failed with his Kyoto Protocol gambit to placate you and
others who are opposed to nuclear power – to say nothing of all-out war with
nukes – because of the adverse effect it will likely have on existing ecosystems.
Having read your article I have had the following e-mail exchange with the BBC
[regarding the phrase, "The United Nations nuclear watchdog has voted to report
Iran to the Security Council over its nuclear activities," from "Iran
Reported to Security Council"]. Just wondered whether you have any comments?
David Sketchley, Seville, Spain
difference is significant between what the mainstream media misreported; namely
that the IAEA had "reported" (some even said "referred") Iran to the Security
Council – as opposed to what the IAEA Board actually did, namely; "requesting"
that ElBaradei "report" to the Security Council what the Board had required
– in violation of the letter and spirit of the IAEA Statute and the NPT – Iran
to do. Because, weeks after the resolution passed, ElBaradei had not only NOT
made such a report, but was engaged in serious "discussions" with the sponsors
of the resolution with respect to the adverse consequences to the IAEA, its
safeguards system, and the NPT, itself, of his making such a report.
The IAEA Board
requested ElBaradei report to the Security Council that they had "required"
Iran to give up its "inalienable rights," guaranteed by the NPT, the IAEA Statute,
and the Iran-IAEA Safeguards Agreement. That the Board had "required" the Iranian
Parliament to ratify an Additional Protocol to their existing Safeguards Agreement.
And worst of all, that the Board deemed it necessary for the sovereign nation-state
of Iran to resume negotiations with the Brits-French-Germans, negotiations to
which the IAEA was not a party, said negotiations having been broken off by
the Iranians for cause.
I have been reading
your postings on Antiwar.com for some time now. You have me, a layman, convinced
that Iran is not a threat, as I well knew Iraq couldn't possibly be a threat.
The commonsense analysis I used with Iraq is not as readily apparent with Iran.
In other words, I have to trust in your statements of fact regarding the various
international agreements, etc., since I have neither the time nor inclination
to check them out thoroughly.
With Iraq it should
have been readily apparent to anyone with a modicum of common sense that if:
Jordan, Syria, Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Israel were not concerned or
threatened by "Iraqi WMD," then how could the U.S., with the world's most powerful
military, the largest stockpile of nuclear weapons, the most powerful economy,
and located halfway around the world, possibly have anything to fear from a
country with a fifth-rate military, which we had bombed at will and with impunity
for the 12 years prior? It is totally incomprehensible and can only be explained
by the use of fear to create an extraordinary illusion and a maddened crowd
What I would like
to pose as a question for you is how do we get your analysis in front of every
single congressperson? Or are all the Democrats (spineless as they are) in cahoots
with the fascists who call themselves neocons and conservatives in the Republican
Party? How do we get the brain-dead major media to look at this and analyze
it for themselves? Or are they simply too incompetent or already paid off? What
can be done to head off yet another calamity of epic proportions? When Iraq
War II started, I said it would be a boondoggle of 200 to 600 billion dollars
wasted. I apparently was wrong to the tune of what today is being estimated
as close to $2 trillion
. Not a great job of estimating on my part, but
at least I'm light years ahead of those bozos in this administration.
never been a conspiracy theorist, having viewed firsthand how difficult it is
to accomplish anything in our nation's capital. But how else to explain the wall-to-wall
agreement across the political spectrum – supported by the domestic and international
media – that Iraq was (and Iran now is) a threat to our national security
because of nuclear weapons programs that the IAEA inspectors on the ground can
find no "indication" of?
must say that Ms. Napoleoni really surprised me. I understand how something
like that could have come from an utterly ignorant person (like, say, Bush),
but not from someone who has had at least rudimentary education.
Getting to the
point, this is not the first time when a movement like Hamas has won a democratic
election: that's exactly how Hitler's National Socialists came to power. I suggest
that Ms. Napoleoni ask herself whether she would have written this type of an
article about the results of German elections in 1933, remembering that at the
time Germany had been wronged and robbed by the winners in WW I, and Germans
had a lot of legitimate grievances. If the answer is "yes," she is wrong, but
at least consistent. If the answer is "no," I would like to know why is she
using double standards.
I would also
like to remind Ms. Napoleoni that as of today Hamas does not recognize the right
of Israel to exist and still expects someone else to pay the bills of the Palestinian
government. Moreover, Hamas trains, finances, and glorifies murderers of innocent
people that blow themselves up in cafés, libraries, at bus stops, etc.
I believe that in this situation the donors have not only a perfect right, but
an obligation to refuse to subsidize the regime with leaders of a terrorist
organization who are openly proud of their crimes
is not the perfect form of government; however, it is the closest one to perfection
we have. In 1933, the National Socialist Party was democratically elected by
the German people, whatever the reason. Therefore, it was allowed to rule. It
was only when Hitler destroyed democracy and replace it with a ruthless dictatorship
that his legitimacy ended. Had Europe, in 1933, applied the Bush doctrine of
"preventive strike" and attacked Germany for having elected Hitler, they would
have waged an unjust war because it would have violated the sovereignty of Germany.
You need a reason to go to war, a good one, one that can justify the loss of
innocent lives; it seems that many people today forget about that. Of course,
Europe should have stopped Hitler when he annexed Austria; that would have been
a good motive to wage war, but it did not happen.
Hamas was democratically
elected, so far it has honored the cease-fire, plus it was allowed to run for
election under the supervision of the EU. The fact that it refuses to recognize
the state of Israel is not a sufficient justification to violate the will of
the Palestinian people. Perhaps the majority of the voters agree with Hamas
and do not recognize the state of Israel not so much because Israel has not
recognized the state of Palestine, but because the latter state does not exist.
Therefore, we cannot technically speak of Palestinian sovereignty.
I know that the
Israeli far Right is using the parallel with Hitler, which is completely out
of context. Hitler would have taken power in other ways, as Mussolini did with
a coup. The National Socialist Party did not agree to a cease-fire, after a
decade of violence, to participate in a democratic election; it bullied its
way to power manipulating the democratic system.
Donors will make
their decisions based upon the will of the people, because donors are democracies.
As donors, including the U.S., let Hamas run for elections they will have a
lot to explain to their voters if now, after Hamas has been democratically elected,
they ostracize Hamas financially.
Let me say that
it is thanks to democracy that I can write my articles on Antiwar.com and that
people like you can challenge and question my academic background for what I
write. It is thanks to democracy that people can read our interchange and make
up their minds. If we lose democracy, we lose the right to say what we think.
Better to live in an imperfect form of democracy than to live without freedom
Finally, who has
the authority to decide if Hamas should rule or not? If we take it away from
the Palestinian people, then who should decide? Israel, the U.S.? Why them and
not Saudi Arabia and Iran? What about the UN? Or the IMF, the World Bank, the
EU, who send most of the financial aid to Palestine? If we select any of these
players, then my question is: why have elections in the first place? Why spend
money when the decision will be taken somewhere else?
and Iran: At the Brink of the Abyss
people like me reading articles like this at the brink of an abyss like this can
only cry, again.
possibly, life on this planet will have become even more painful, horrible,
and unpredictable than it is today. And today is already awful, even from the
privileged seat in which I sit.
is what you did to the joy of my life, GB. You haven't yet physically sent my
child to the hell you made of the Middle East, but you have ruined a young life
us a petition to sign, a letter to write, a march to make, Antiwar.com. I can't
just sit here, reading, grieving over the lost future of my darling, my grandchildren,
my neighbors, my fellow citizens, my fellow humans, my fellow mammals, my fellow
beings. My eyes are dry; I am out of tears.
Give me something
to do. Even if it's hopeless. Even if foolhardy. Anything is better than just
sitting here, unable to move, waiting for the Ides of March.
E. van Loon
you for your heartfelt comments. Here is one suggestion: StopWarOnIran.org
collects signatures and donations to put ads in newspapers, and provides help
to write letters to Congress and to spread the word. I am not affiliated with
the organizers in any way, but I think it's an excellent effort that we should
Dear Mr. Lind,
I appreciate your
efforts in the antiwar movement; however, your latest article seems to support
Bush's fatwa – "If you are not with us, you are with the terrorists." It is
true that many in Pakistan are against Musharraf because of his overzealous
(sycophantic?) support of the Bush administration, but hardly anyone wants a
confrontation with the U.S. It is true that some mullahs are the most vocal
opponents of Musharraf, but it is also true that they cannot overthrow the government.
Only the elite class – seasoned politicians, military, and top civil bureaucracy
– can overthrow the government. None of those would want a confrontation with
the USA. Yes, they would perhaps try to regain a modicum of sovereignty and
deal with the U.S. administration on a more equal basis. But that should not
mean a confrontation. A less docile Pakistan will help the moderates within
the U.S. administration.
It may come as
a surprise to most readers because of the amount of "war on terror" propaganda,
but the fact is that practically no one in Pakistan (including what you might
call Islamists) likes Osama's tactics. He is one person who has caused enormous
harm to Muslims around the world in general and those living in Pakistan and
Afghanistan in particular. To say that Osama will become a de facto president
is a baseless claim. By making such a claim, you are in fact supporting the
current ruler of Pakistan as well as the war party who want to keep him in power
and take physical control of Pakistan in the event that Musharraf is overthrown.
Isn't there such a contingency plan? The ostensible reason would be to take
control of the nuclear assets, but that would require taking control of the
entire military establishment and by default the entire country.
There are many
things a more nationalistic government in Pakistan would do that the Bush administration
may not like, but that should not lead to an armed confrontation. I am sure
there are enough moderates in the U.S. government who would not want to initiate
an unnecessary and costly war. Regardless of all the the talk about nuclear
bombs and missiles, Pakistan's military is no match to that of USA, and everyone
in Pakistan, including the militants, knows that.