by Laurence M. Vance: Murder
In the last
ten years, with only a minuscule number of resistors, U.S. soldiers
have put boots on the ground – and bombed, droned, maimed, and killed
countless thousands of people – in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan,
Somalia, and Libya. Over 1 million soldiers have "served"
in Iraq. Although President Obama has announced that U.S. troops
will leave Iraq by the end of the year, he has also said that some
will be sent to Uganda in search of monsters to destroy. And then
there are the other 140 countries being occupied by U.S. troops.
I have seen
signs expressing support for the troops in front of all manner of
businesses, including self-storage units, bike shops, and dog grooming.
I have heard accounts of restaurants like Taco Bell and retail stores
like Sears asking for donations for the military as a show of support
for the troops.
seem to matter to most Americans how many wars the troops are involved
in, how senseless the war the troops are fighting, how many lies
the war is based on that the troops are fighting, how many countries
the United States has troops in, how many foreign bases the United
States has troops on, how many billions the United States spends
on the troops, how many foreign civilians are injured, maimed, or
killed by U.S. troops, or even how many U.S. troops die in vain.
It doesn’t seem to matter what U.S. troops do, where they do it,
and to whom to do it to.
None of this
seems to matter to American Christians either. Nevertheless, the
last place I would expect to see something about supporting the
troops is in a church bulletin. I must have severely underestimated
the extent of the military fetish that some Christians have because
I recently came across a church bulletin from an evangelical church
with a whole page devoted to supporting the troops. Thank God I
did not have the misfortune of having to attend the church to get
a copy of their bulletin.
Here is the
page of the church bulletin in question, verbatim, atrocious formatting
and all. I have only removed the names that are mentioned.
SUPPORT OUR TROOPS
We still need items to send to our adopted unit.
They are requesting the following items
Nuts - peanuts, almonds, pistachios, sunflower seeds,Chips
movies DVD, Music CDs - Country, Pop
socks for boots, footie/running socks
candy-red vines, jawbreakers, twizzlers, jellybeans, hard candy,
Dunkin Dounuts coffee, creamer,
Hand sanitizer, hand lotion
Individual packs of drink mix for water bottles
crackers, cheese, peanut butter, chocolate M&Ms
power bars,,snickers marathon energy bars
trail mix, granola bars
blistex chap stick,
Life savers, Pretzels
Cards, letters, pictures and holiday appropriate items.
We will be sending Leaves of Thanksgiving to our soldiers. Please
take a minute to fill one out letting them know how thankful you
for them, their service & their sacrifice. A BIG
Thank you to ____ ____ for creating the leaves.
Also, we are collecting non-breakable Christmas ornaments to
to our troops, please bring them by next Sunday if you’d like
If you’d like to contribute to the boxes we’ll be delivering
troops , please see the list in the church foyer. We are trying
Thanksgiving & Christmas items to them in enough time for
Thank you to Pastor ____ for mailing 12 boxes at the Post Office
I have only
four brief things to say about this.
To begin with,
the church should be ashamed of the horrible job of typing and formatting
that went into their bulletin. There is absolutely no excuse for
I have typed on my keyboard until my fingers were numb, U.S. troops
our freedoms, and neither do they fight
"over there" so we don’t have to fight "over here." U.S. soldiers
a lie – all 4,500 that died in Iraq and all 1,800 that died
in Afghanistan. Every death was senseless. The blood of one American
soldier was not worth any "good" or any "benefit"
in Iraq or Afghanistan that has resulted from these wars. And I
am the one who has been called un-American and worse. Go figure.
should anyone support U.S. troops fighting in unjust, immoral wars?
It is our troops that have invaded and occupied foreign countries.
It is our troops that have dropped the bombs, thrown the grenades,
launched the missiles, fired the mortars, and shot the bullets that
have resulted in the maiming and killing of hundreds of thousands
of people that were no threat to the United States. Should the politicians,
the president, the secretary of defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
and the congressmen that fund unconstitutional wars receive a share
of the blame? Of course they should. But how could any Christian
write a thank-you note to soldiers he doesn’t even know that are
invaders and occupiers engaged in these things?
what is the cause of churches adopting a unit, sending things to
soldiers, thanking the troops, and polluting their church bulletins
with such nonsense? The answer is two-fold. One, colossal ignorance
of the U.S. government, U.S. foreign policy, American history, and
the Bible. And two, holding erroneous opinions like these:
- The Republican
Party is the party of God.
- A theological
conservative should be a political conservative.
to war and militarism is an exclusively left-wing idea.
- The American
state is a divine institution.
- The U.S.
military defends our freedoms.
troops? Why would any church even think of such a thing?
M. Vance [send him mail]
writes from central Florida. He is the author of Christianity
and War and Other Essays Against the Warfare State, The
Revolution that Wasn't, and Rethinking
the Good War. His latest book is The
Quatercentenary of the King James Bible. Visit his
© 2011 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in
part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.
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