Military spending millions to urge soldiers to kill for Jesus
Over the past decade, the U.S. military has embraced evangelical Christianity to an absolutely shocking degree:
- AlterNet: “Birth of the Christian Soldier: How Evangelicals Infiltrated the American Military”
- Harper’s: “Jesus killed Mohammed: The crusade for a Christian military”
- OnlineJournal.com: “Evangelicals exploit Air Force Academy; military officials interlocked with local activists”
- The Freethinker: “Evangelical Christian tyranny and persecution is rife in the US Military”
This has outraged not only Jewish and Muslim soldiers (and, I presume, atheist soldiers) but also many non-evangelical Christian soldiers. Catholic soldiers seem especially angry.
Beyond the very serious religious freedom problems, the evangelical Christianization of the U.S. military also undermines the U.S. military’s ability to operate effectively in Muslim countries we currently occupy and intensifies other nations' fears of the U.S. military.
In response, a former soldier established The Military Religious Freedom Foundation to fight the religious radicalization of the U.S. military that has strong support even from many generals and admirals and at U.S. military academies, esp. the Air Force Academy.
Here’s an example:
For the past several years, two U.S. Army posts in Virginia, Fort Eustis and Fort Lee, have been putting on a series of what are called Commanding General’s Spiritual Fitness Concerts. As I’ve written in a number of other posts, “spiritual fitness” is just the military’s new term for promoting religion, particularly evangelical Christianity. And this concert series is no different.
On May 13, 2010, about eighty soldiers, stationed at Fort Eustis while attending a training course, were punished for opting out of attending one of these Christian concerts. The headliner at this concert was a Christian rock band called BarlowGirl, a band that describes itself as taking “an aggressive, almost warrior-like stance when it comes to spreading the gospel and serving God.”
…The father of the three Barlow sisters who make up the band was also quoted in the [Army post’s newspaper], saying, “We really believe that to be a Christian in today’s world, you have to be a warrior, and we feel very blessed and privileged that God has given us the tool to deliver His message and arm His army.”
The U.S. military also appears to be paying Christian rock bands millions of dollars — perhaps tens of millions — to whip soldiers into a lust to spill blood for Jesus:
In the Army.mil article, Maj. Gen. Chambers was quoted as saying, “The idea is not to be a proponent for any one religion. It’s to have a mix of different performers with different religious backgrounds.” But there has been no “mix of different performers with different religious backgrounds” at these concerts. Every one of them has had evangelical Christian performers, who typically not only perform their music but give their Christian testimony and read from the Bible in between songs….
These concerts aren’t just small events with local Christian bands. We’re talking about the top, nationally-known, award-winning Christian artists, with headline acts costing anywhere from $30,000 to $100,000, and even many of the opening acts being in the $10,000 range.
The cost of these concerts led MRFF’s research department to start looking at some of the DoD contracts for other “spiritual fitness” events and programs, and what we found was astounding. One contract, for example, awarded to an outside consulting firm to provide “spiritual fitness” services, was for $3.5 million.
Posted by James on Friday, August 20, 2010