"The course of this conflict is not known, yet its outcome is certain.   Freedom and fear, justice and cruelty, have always been at war, and we know that God is not neutral between them." - Bush's address to a joint session of Congress, September 20, 2001 / __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ / rjkhh RTBRB

"The Christian god is a three headed monster, cruel, vengeful, and capricious. If one wishes to know more of this raging, three headed beast-like god, one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him. They are always of two classes: fools and hypocrites."

-Thomas Jefferson


"...And then this man stepped forward. A man that has acknowledged that he prays in the Oval Office." / / "A man that's in the White House today because of a miracle." "You think about how he got in the White House. You think about why he's there today." "And this man has been put in the White house to lead our nation in such a time as this." /


(Transcipts from NBC NEWS)/

 NBC NEWS - Oct. 15, 2003

NBC News has learned this highly decorated general has a history of outspoken and divisive views on religion - Islam in particular. These are quotes from recent speeches by Lt. Gen. William Boykin to evangelical church groups.


[PICTURE OF OSAMA BIN LADEN] "And then we began to see this facethe face of Osama bin Laden. And finally we said, 'There's the enemy. That's our enemy. That's the man that hates us. And all of those that follow him."    

[PICTURE OF PRESIDENT BUSH] "And then this man stepped forward. A man that has acknowledged that he prays in the Oval Office.

A man that's in the White House today because of a miracle. You think about how he got in the White House. You think about why he's there today."

(Click here for the 'MIRACLE')

"As Mordecai said to Esther, 'You have been put there for such a time and place.' And this man has been put in the White house to lead our nation in such a time as this."

"In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own."-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814

 "But who is that enemy? It's not Osama bin Laden. Our enemy is a spiritual enemy because we are a nation of believers. You go back and look at our history, and you will find that we were founded on faith. Look at what the writers of our Constitution said. We are a nation of believers. We were founded on faith."

"Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law." -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

[PICTURE OF SATAN] "And the enemy that has come against our nation is a spiritual enemy. His name is Satan. And if you do not believe that Satan is real, you are ignoring the same Bible that tells you about God. Now I'm a warrior. One day I'm going to take off this uniform and I'm still going to be a warrior. And what I'm here to do today is to recruit you to be warriors of God's kingdom."

"I concur with you strictly in your opinion of the comparative merits of atheism and demonism, and really see nothing but the latter in the being worshipped by many who think themselves Christians."

- Thomas Jefferson, letter to Richard Price, Jan. 8, 1789 (Richard Price had written to TJ on Oct. 26. about the harm done by religion and wrote "Would not Society be better without Such religions? Is Atheism less pernicious than Demonism?")


"And we ask ourselves this question, 'Why do they hate us? Why do they hate us so much?'
Ladies and gentlemen, the answer to that is because
we're a Christian nation, because our foundation and our roots are Judeo-Christian. Did I say Judeo-Christian? Yes. Judeo-Christian.That means we've got a commitment to Israel. That mean's it's a commitment we're never going to abandon.

"Christianity...(has become) the most perverted system that ever shone on man. ...Rogueries, absurdities and untruths were perpetrated upon the teachings of Jesus by a large band of dupes and importers led by Paul, the first great corrupter of the teaching of Jesus."--Thomas Jefferson

"Go back and read the history books. Go back and read what the early founders of this nation said about Israel, about the Jews. John Adams wrote extensively of, he called it the Hebrews, the contributions they had made to our concepts of liberty and the importance of their contributions to the founding of this great nation.

 "I have sworn upon the altar of my God eternal opposition to any form of tyranny over the mind of Man--that is why the clergy oppose me." -Inscription on the Jefferson Monument (the last line was omitted on the monument, in the interest of brevity).

"Thomas Jefferson* and Benjamin Franklin each, independently, when asked to come up with a national symbol for this new nation, both came up with a national symbol that reflected on our Jewish heritage.

"One had Moses standing over the Red Sea with his staff and the water parting.

"The other had the Israelites coming out of bondage in the desert being led by a ball of fire. They recognized the importance of our relationship to the Jews and to Israel. Ladies and gentlemen, we will never abandon Israel, we will never walk away from our commitment to Israel because our roots are there.

 Our religion came from Judaism, and therefore these radicals will hate us forever."

"Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because if there be one, He must approve of the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear." -Thomas Jefferson, Letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787

       "There was a man in Mogadishu named Osman Atto. You see him in the movie ["Blackhawk Down"], smoking a big cigar and talking philosophically. How many of you have seen the movie? Acting like a big shot. Well let me tell you something. That's not what Osman Atto did. The reality was Osman Atto was Aideed's closest ally. He was Aideed's top lieutenant. He was a multimillionaire financier for Aideed's clan. And we knew if that if we could capture Osman Atto and take him away, that we could destroy Aideed's network. So we went after Osman Atto about two weeks before the battle.... We went after Osman Atto. We got into a terrible fight. And I'm sad to say a lot of Somalis were killed as we went after Osman Atto.

But we missed him by seconds. He walked out of the facility that we raided, he walked down the street and blended in with the crowd and we missed him.

"And then he went on CNN and he laughed at us, and he said, 'They'll never get me because Allah will protect me. Allah will protect me.'

"Well, you know what, I knew that my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God, and his was an idol. But I prayed, Lord, let us get that man.

   "Three days later we went after him again, and this time we got him. Not a mark on him. We got him. We brought him back into our base there and we had a Sea Land container set up to hold prisoners in, and I said put him in there. They put him in there, there was one guard with him. I said search him, they searched him, and then I walked in with no one in there but the guard, and I looked at him and said, 'Are you Osman Atto?' And he said 'Yes.' And I said,

'Mr. Atto, you underestimated our God.'"

General Boy (a relative of Boy-kin?)


"...Lord, let us get that man."

Maybe General Boykin could ask God (or his Chosen One) why Osama is still at large?

/ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ // /

"Military intelligence is a contradiction in terms."

- Groucho Marx

NEWSWEEK  - Oct. 27 issue

And He's Head of Intelligence?  

This is surely the first time a conservative evangelical has argued that Bill Clinton's election was caused by divine intervention  

President Bush's commission on public diplomacy recently noted that in nine Muslim and Arab nations only 12 percent of respondents surveyed believed that "Americans respect Arab/Islamic values." Such attitudes, the commission argued, create a toxic atmosphere of anti-Americanism that cripples U.S. foreign policy and helps terrorists. To address the problem the commission suggested a major reorganization of the American government, hundreds of millions of dollars of funding and the creation of a new cabinet position. I have a simpler, more urgent suggestion: fire William Boykin.  



"According to The New York Times, President Bush was genuinely surprised to learn from moderate Islamic leaders that they had become deeply distrustful of American intentions. The report on the "perception gap" suggests that the leader of the war on terror has no idea how badly that war -- which must, ultimately, be a war for hearts and minds--is going.

Why won't the administration mollify Muslims by firing Lt. Gen. William Boykin, whose anti-Islamic remarks have created vast ill will, from his counterterrorism position?

The answer is that in these cases politics takes priority over the war on terror. Moderate Muslims would have more faith in America's good intentions if there were at least the appearance of a distinction between the U.S. and the Sharon government , but the administration seeks votes from those who think that supporting Israel means supporting whatever Mr. Sharon does. It's sheer folly to keep General Boykin in his present position, but as Howard Fineman writes in a Newsweek Web-exclusive column, the administration doesn't want "to make a martyr of a man who depicts himself as a Christian Soldier, marching off to war.

Muslims are completely wrong to think that the U.S. is engaged in a war against Islam. But that misperception flourishes in part because the domestic political strategy of the Bush administration, no longer able to claim the Iraq war was a triumph, and with little but red ink to show for its economic plans, looks more and more like a crusade."

- "A Willful Ignorance", by Paul Krugman, The New York Times 10.28.03


Howard Fineman, NEWSWEEK

 "...Fear of the latent power of that same coalition (conservative Catholics , evangelical Christians and Orthodox Jews) is the logical explanation for why the Pentagon - and the president - have not penalized Lt. Gen. William G. "Jerry" Boykin for his incendiary remarks. In a series of recent speeches at evangelical Christian churches, the general, recently appointed undersecretary of Defense for intelligence, depicted the war on terrorism as a fight against a "spiritual enemy," and branded as idolatrous the Muslim faith of a militia leader he fought against as a field commander in Somalia in 1993.

       The remarks have caused a predictable firestorm in the Arab and Muslim press - and generated a cascade of negative editorials in American newspapers, too. But even though Bush distanced himself from Boykin's remarks on Wednesday, a top aide to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said the general
would not be fired.

       Why? Well, Boykin was literally preaching to the choir. Many evangelical Christians believe that the war on terrorism is a battle between good and evil - a battle predicted in the Bible as a precursor to the End of Days and the Second Coming. Even if they don't believe it in a strict scriptural sense, many Christians - led by preachers such as Franklin Graham - see Islam as a problematic faith, at best. Firing Boykin would, in these eyes, be seen as a capitulation.

       The last thing Bush wants is to make a martyr of a man who depicts himself as a Christian Soldier, marching off to war. If Boykin has to go, Bush's handlers will arrange it to look like a mass execution by the Washington mob - a mob the president had no choice but to mollify. In other words, they'll pin it on the Democrats.

       By the way: I take the White House's handling of Boykin to mean that Karl Rove's game plan for 2004 doesn't include Michigan, which has the nation's largest, most vibrant and political Arab-Muslim community."

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ q

Conservative columnist THOMAS FRIEDMAN (writing as 'SADDAM HUSSEIN'):

"So far, I feel pretty good. As isolated as I am in my bunker, I know that my view of this war - which is that you Americans have come here to put the Arabs down and steal our oil - still dominates Arab public opinion. I am bolstered by the fact that ill-qualified, intolerant Arab religious educators, spiritual leaders and "intellectuals" - who have long dominated our schools and mosques because tyrants like me found them useful - still feed this view to our youth. They think the only reason we are backward is because you put us down.

As long as the Arab street is locked in this view, I win. Because it means the people would rather have a cruel Arab leader like me or bin Laden - who momentarily lifts their pride by sticking a finger in your eye - than looking in the mirror and admitting that our society, religious leaders and culture have failed to prepare our people to succeed at modernity.

Changing all this is what this war of ideas is all about, and I am so pleased you are so bad at it. As long as you let one of your top generals and your pals on the Christian right spew hate against the Prophet Muhammad, you only strengthen the will of my young people against you."

Thomas L. Friedman, "Letter From Tikrit", The New York Times, ,November 27, 2003


"....Thanks to its war in Iraq and its unconditional support for Ariel Sharon, Washington has squandered post-9/11 sympathy and brought relations with the Muslim world to a new low.

And bear in mind that Mr. Mahathir's remarks were written before the world learned about the views of Lt. Gen. William "My God Is Bigger Than Yours" Boykin. By making it clear that he sees nothing wrong with giving an important post in the war on terror to someone who believes, and says openly, that Allah is a false idol , General Boykin denies that's what he meant, but his denial was implausible even by current standards, Donald Rumsfeld has gone a long way toward confirming the Muslim world's worst fears.

Somewhere in Pakistan Osama bin Laden must be enjoying this. The war on terror didn't have to be perceived as a war on Islam, but we seem to be doing our best to make it look that way."

- Paul Krugman, "Listening to Mahathir", The New York Times

Uncle oSAMa

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ / LT. GENERAL WILLIAM BOYKIN'S FORMAL PRESS Q&A TO QUELL FEARS OF MILITARY INSENSITIVITY TO THE SATANIC NON-FAITH OF THE GLOBAL TURBANISTA MENACE (click here) mnjneth

LT. GENERAL BOYKIN: How do I respond? War is hatred, cup of pudding. I mean no ill will to these Islamian cockroaches. I say, they have the freedom to worship whatever idols they wish to worship. No matter how false or ridiculous. They also have a right to instantaneously disintegrate before my archangel's blade. I do not spread religious hatred. I spread religious purity. Like boiling water. Kills the impurities. Clean water. Water to wash your hands in. Sanctify your hands, your holy hands. Yes. Clean. Jesus washed the feet of whores. My feet are clean. Where I walk, my footprints pool with the blood of the enemy. Muslims are Christians who don't know that until I send them to hell./

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ / / / General Who Made Anti-Islam Remarks Tied to POW Case//   By Andrea Shalal-Esa   Reuters   Tuesday 11 May 2004 /

(M.O.W. editorial insert)

  WASHINGTON - The U.S. Army general under investigation for anti-Islamic remarks has been linked by U.S. officials to the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, which experts warned could touch off new outrage overseas.

  A Senate hearing into the abuse of Iraqi prisoners was told on Tuesday that Lt. Gen. William Boykin, an evangelical Christian under review for saying his God was superior to that of the Muslims, briefed a top Pentagon civilian official last summer on recommendations on ways military interrogators could gain more intelligence from Iraqi prisoners.

  Critics have suggested those recommendations amounted to a senior-level go-ahead for the sexual and physical abuse of prisoners, possibly to "soften up" detainees before interrogation -- a charge the Pentagon denies.

  Congressional aides and Arab-American and Muslim groups said any involvement by Boykin could spark new concern among Arabs and Muslims overseas the U.S. war on terrorism is in fact a war on Islam.

  "This will be taken as proof that what happened at Abu Ghraib (prison) is evidence of a broader culture of dehumanizing Arabs and Muslims, based on the American understanding of the innate superiority of Christendom," said Chris Toensing, editor of Middle East Report, a U.S.-based quarterly magazine.

  One Senate aide, who asked not to be identified, said any involvement by Boykin could be explosive. "Even if he knew about the abuse, that would be a big deal," he said.

  Boykin has declined comment, and defense officials could not say what the extent of his involvement or knowledge about the mistreatment of Iraqi prisoners might have been.

  Boykin touched off a firestorm last October after giving speeches while in uniform in which he referred to the war on terrorism as a battle with "Satan" and said America had been targeted "because we're a Christian nation." He said later he was not anti-Islam or any other religion.

  President Bush distanced himself from Boykin's remarks, but the Pentagon said it would not fire the general, who played a role in the 1993 clash with Somali warlords and the ill-fated hostage rescue attempt in Iran in 1980.


  Hussein Ibish, communications director for the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee, said his group and others had repeatedly called for Boykin to be reassigned to a less sensitive job until the Pentagon inspector general completes his investigation of Boykin's remarks.

  Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John Warner and congressional Democrats have also urged Boykin to step aside, but the Pentagon has defended his right to free speech.

  Defense officials said the IG investigation, begun last fall, was nearly done and a report could be issued next month.

  "I'm not saying Boykin is directly responsible. ... But there is a collective failure here," Ibish said. "There is a tolerance in our society, in our government, in our media for hateful rhetoric when directed against Arabs and Muslims.

  "It definitely contributes to a climate in which these young MPs apparently felt it was ... OK to abuse Muslim and Arab men like this."

  Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American Islamic Relations, chided the Pentagon for not acting promptly to discipline Boykin and the delayed engagement of top military leaders on the prisoner abuse scandal.

  "It creates a climate in which ... the perpetrators believe they're carrying out the policies of those above them, whether those policies are explicit or not," Hooper said.



"As the contempt of the religion of a country by ridiculing any of its ceremonies, or affronting its ministers or votaries, has ever been deeply resented, you are to be particularly careful to restrain every officer from such imprudence and folly, and to punish every instance of it. On the other hand, as far as lies in your power, you are to protect and support the free exercise of religion of the country, and the undisturbed enjoyment of the rights of conscience in religious matters, with your utmost influence and authority."

- George Washington, to Benedict Arnold, September 14, 1775 from The Washington papers edited by Saul Padover

/ "Watch how a democracy deals with wrongdoing and with scandal" / - Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, testifying before Congress on the Abu Ghraib scandal, May 7, 2004  t/ergtwq / "Instead of being fired for the grotesque military-political fiasco in Iraq and the shameful torture scandals, Rumsfeld has just managed to create a new, Pentagon spy/special ops organization, blandly named "Strategic Support Branch," that will replace or duplicate many of the CIA's tasks." \ \  ______________________________________________________________ dcdcd U.S. "S.S." CREATED BY RUMSFELD the "Strategic Support Branch" APPOINTS BOYKIN HEAD (NOT a joke)  ______________________________________________________________ / "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." / - Sinclair Lewis / "...the Pentagon's new special-ops units are headed up by notorious religious fanatic, Lt. Gen. William Boykin, who calls the U.S. Army "the house of God" and Islamic insurgents "agents of Satan." He warned Muslims, "my God is bigger than your god, which is an idol."      Boykin's command will now dispatch post-modern Christian crusaders to cleanse the world of Satanic Muslims and other miscreants. The Pentagon's new special forces will be able to run operations of which the CIA knows nothing." "... In other words, using U.S. soldiers to kill or arrest Americans, acts that have been illegal since the U.S. Civil War." "They're now going to lock up anybody they want to, silence anybody they want to. Those powers are now theirs, the dreamed-of powers for the state. The state will come out of this very, very powerful, and We the People, in or out of Congress assembled, will come out much weaker. That said, we glory in the fact that we are the United States of Amnesia. We won't remember a thing the next day. What has emerged is nothing less than a police state. There's no euphemism for it." - Gore Vidal /  Paranoia Grips the U.S. Capital     By Eric Margolis     The Toronto Sun

     Sunday 06 February 2005

     The film Seven Days In May is one of my all-time favourites. The gripping 1964 drama, starring Burt Lancaster, depicts an attempted coup by far rightists in Washington using a top-secret Pentagon anti-terrorist unit called something like "Contelinpro."

     Life imitates art. This week, former military intelligence analyst William Arkin revealed a hitherto unknown directive, with the Orwellian name "JCS Conplan 0300-97," authorizing the Pentagon to employ special, ultra-secret "anti-terrorist" military units on American soil for what the author claims are "extra-legal missions."

     In other words, using U.S. soldiers to kill or arrest Americans, acts that have been illegal since the U.S. Civil War.

     This frightening news comes as Washington is gripped by reborn, Cold-War-style paranoia, ominous threats of war against Iran from the real president, Dick Cheney, and a titanic bureaucratic battle just won by Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

     Instead of being fired for the grotesque military-political fiasco in Iraq and the shameful torture scandals, Rumsfeld has just managed to create a new, Pentagon spy/special ops organization, blandly named "Strategic Support Branch," that will replace or duplicate many of the CIA's tasks.

     The CIA has been sent to the doghouse. Too many CIA veterans criticized or contradicted Bush's and Cheney's phony claims over Iraq and terrorism. So Bush has imposed a new, yes-man director on the agency, slashed its budgets, purged its senior officers, and downgraded CIA to third-class status.

     Rumsfeld's new, massively funded SSB will become the Pentagon's CIA, complete with commando units, spies, mercenary forces, intelligence gathering and analysis, and a direct line to the White House. The Pentagon has just effectively taken over the spy business.

     Used Terrorism Hysteria

     Mind you, the Pentagon and its Defence Intelligence Agency have been deeply involved in intelligence around the globe for 50 years. U.S. Army intelligence and its covert sub-branches have long conducted "black ops," including missions in the U.S. as well as assassinations and sabotage abroad. The Pentagon consumes three-quarters of the total U.S. intelligence budget.

     Rumsfeld has skillfully used terrorism hysteria to wrest control of intelligence and make the Pentagon supreme in Washington's bureaucratic power struggles.

     The Pentagon's new spy arm will be largely excluded from Congressional oversight or media examination. Its special operations teams will roam the globe, all under cover of "deep black" missions of which no records will be kept, and no questions asked.

     Equally worrying, the Pentagon's new special-ops units are headed up by notorious religious fanatic, Lt. Gen. William Boykin, who calls the U.S. Army "the house of God" and Islamic insurgents "agents of Satan." He warned Muslims, "my God is bigger than your god, which is an idol."

(M.O.W. editorial insert)

     Boykin's command will now dispatch post-modern Christian crusaders to cleanse the world of Satanic Muslims and other miscreants. The Pentagon's new special forces will be able to run operations of which the CIA knows nothing.

     The 9/11 Commission called for improved intra-agency co-operation and data sharing -- instead, the U.S. will get far less co-operation, as the Pentagon goes its own, secret way.

     Now, George W. Bush, who clearly believes he holds the mandate of heaven after being re-elected by the less mentally active half of American voters, has decided to "unleash" special forces and all sorts of irregular units, including mercenaries, uniformed bounty hunters, and mutants sporting t-shirts proclaiming "kill 'em all, let God sort 'em out." These militarized thugs and video arcade Rambos are sure to run amok, dragging America's once good name ever deeper into the mud.

(MOW editorial insert)

     We have evidently learned nothing from the wars in Indochina and Central America.

     Have we reached Seven Days in May?

     Not yet, but the second Bush administration has been taking dangerous steps that continue to curtail personal rights, further emasculate the supine, cowardly U.S. Congress, and empower ideological or religious extremists and shadowy agencies with unrestrained powers that endanger Americans at home, and all abroad suspected of troubling the Pax Americana.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ // / "I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man's reasoning powers are not above the monkey's." / - Mark Twain, "Mark Twain in Eruption" /


Playing the Atheism Card Against Pat Tillman's Family http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20060728_worm_dirt/ By Stan Goff Posted on Jul 28, 2006

Pat Tillman, father of former Arizona Cardinals football player and Army Cpl. Pat Tillman, speaks during a memorial service for his son in San Jose, Calif., May 3, 2004. Cpl. Tillman was killed by "friendly fire" in Afghanistan

ditor's note: The author of this essay, Stan Goff, is a retired veteran of the U.S. Army Special Forces. During an active-duty career that spanned 1970 to 1996, he served with the elite Delta Force and Rangers, and in Vietnam, Guatemala, Grenada, El Salvador, Colombia, Peru, Somalia and Haiti. He is a veteran of the Jungle Operations Training Center in Panama and also taught military science at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Goff is the author of the books "Hideous Dream-A Soldier's Memoir of the U.S. Invasion of Haiti," "Full Spectrum Disorder-The Military in the New American Century" and "Sex & War."
In this article Goff writes on the events surrounding the fratricidal death of Army Ranger and former NFL player Pat Tillman, and the possible military coverup that ensued.
Goff argues that Tillman's commanding officer, in a recent ESPN magazine interview, made a series of shockingly callous statements about the Tillman family's search for the truth because the officer was trying to divert attention from the role he may have played in the alleged coverup.

Goff's previously published articles on this subject can be found at the online publication From the Wilderness.
His research for those articles included a detailed review of more than 2,500 pages of official briefings and documents from three investigations, in addition to extensive interviews with Tillman family members and some of the soldiers in Tillman's unit.

Lt. Col. Ralph Kauzlarich has taken Christ into his heart, or so he says.  Like my old colleague, Lt. Gen. William G. ("Jerry") Boykin, he has also carried the organically entrapped messiah onto the heathen-infested battlegrounds of Southwest Asia.  Kauzlarich is the subject of my exposition today, but Boykin is his context.
You all remember Jerry Boykin-the general who, as part of the Bush 2003 civil relations effort in Iraq, called Muslims idol worshippers.

Back in the Reagan days, Boykin and I were simultaneously assigned to the allegedly super-secret Delta Force.  He was a major then, and he would organize prayer breakfasts for the unit, driving many of us out of the building to purchase sausage-biscuits.  His evangelical lunacy was already under siege then.  Special Operations is a motley fraternity, in which operators are as likely to worship Odin or an oak tree as they are to attend Sunday services.

Boykin's recent rise is symptomatic of War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's fascination with Special Operations-in spite of its generally dismal record.  Kauzlarich was on the same career fast track when he was the 75th Ranger Regiment's executive officer* (see editor's note #2 above) at Forward Operating Base Salerno, Khoust, Afghanistan, in 2004.

Bishop Boykin, shooting from the lip, asserted in 2003 that the U.S. military adventures in Afghanistan and Iraq involved "an Army of God" squaring off against Satan.

Beelzebub himself!  Can't say Jerry lacks ambition.  Of course, the Satanists in this case were the very Muslims that the administration was trying to recruit as political puppets in the oil patch.

For this subtle bit of international relations, Boykin was punished by promotion to the position of deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence.  Yes, the pun is nearly unbearable.

And so Boykin ascended. As the Haitian proverb says:  The higher the monkey climbs, the more you see his ass.

Lt. Col. Ralph Kauzlarich, on the other hand, is not exactly being placed center-stage at the Pentagon.  More than any other single person below the rank of general, he is probably most responsible for the Pentagon's embarrassment when NFL-player-turned-Army-Ranger Pat Tillman was killed on April 22, 2004, by his own comrades.

Kauzlarich has been energetically avoiding responsibility for the fratricidal incident ever since.

"When you die," [Tillman's commanding officer] Kauzlarich said, "I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right?  Well, if you are an atheist and you don't believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to?  Nothing. You are worm dirt."

It appears from reading the documents in the incident that he and others in the military may have violated multiple laws-including obstruction of justice, evidence tampering and conspiracy.

Kauzlarich may have conspired with others to award an inappropriate Silver Star, complete with a phony account of the events surrounding Tillman's death.  Members of Tillman's chain of command attended Tillman's memorial service without breathing a word to the family about what really happened, and it appears, again from the documents, that Kauzlarich deep-sixed the original investigation, which he then had redone under his personal supervision.

The Army's criminal investigation division and the Pentagon's Inspector General are currently investigating Tillman's death and the events that ensued.
Kauzlarich now looks to Nov. 7, 2006, with a gnawing disquiet. Only a thin congressional majority that stand between a nemesis like Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and the chairmanship of the House Judiciary Committee. Subpoena authority might transform a mere gavel into a mighty political weapon.

But in the meantime, a recent ESPN.com exposé by Mike Fish aired an interview with Kauzlarich, who was the "cross commander" of the Rangers in Khoust, Afghanistan, in April 2004.  Kauzlarich, in a stunning display of Christian empathy, blamed the family for continuing to ask questions about the circumstances of Pat's death, and suggested that the reason they'd found no closure was that infidels such as themselves (the Tillmans did not belong to a church), when they die, are only "worm dirt."

A choice of words worthy of Bishop Boykin, who is surely beaming with pride at this officer's devout diction.
"His parents continue to ask for it to be looked at," Kauzlarich told Fish petulantly. "And that is really their prerogative. And if they have the right backing, the right powerful people in our government to continue to let it happen, then that is the case."

Playing the victim.  A broadly effective tactic in the case of international military aggression, domestic battery (she made me do it) and politically motivated coverups.
In fact, powerful people in government have had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the case by the dogged persistence of Pat's family.  So far the government's efforts have been to assign aides to do enough to get the family off its back, and submit queries to the military that are answered with the same contradictions and equivocations that provoked the family's suspicion in the first place.

"But there [have] been numerous unfortunate cases of fratricide," Kauzlarich told ESPN, "and the parents have basically said, 'OK, it was an unfortunate accident.' And they let it go. So this is-I don't know, these people have a hard time letting it go. It may be because of their religious beliefs."

Nothing to do with the fact that the Department of Defense lied to them until the impending redeployment of in-the-know Ranger batallion back to the U.S. made the revelation of fratricide inevitable oh no.

The office of Defense Department public relations official Lawrence Di Rita should have purchased high-quality shredders for all commanders. The documents pertaining to the first three of six investigations contain generous and often gratuitous redactions.  They were given to the Tillman family, and through them to CNN, to ESPN-oh yes, and to me.  They show that it was the impending redeployment of the 2nd Ranger Battalion, Pat Tillman's unit, in which the real story of his death was general knowledge, that compelled the Department of Defense to come clean, sort of.

"When you die," the Reverend Kauzlarich explained to ESPN's Fish, "I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right?  Well, if you are an atheist and you don't believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to?  Nothing. You are worm dirt."

A theological term perhaps.

"Kauzlarich, like Boykin and all their ilk, has the spiritual depth of his own skin, which is what he is trying to save whether in an exchange of faith for immortality or in deflecting the sorry truth onto a bereaved and angered family with cheap revival-tent accusations of 'atheism.' "

I don't doubt for a minute that Kauzlarich's version of spirituality is a kind of quid pro quo-a simple exchange of belief for immortality would strike the hardest of bargainers as a pretty good deal.  It even trumps the dissonance of the Warrior Jesus, the Prince of Peace mounted on a Humvee, perhaps manning the .50-cal, in Mazar-i-Sharif or Fallujah.
If you can sustain that contradiction, it is not particularly remarkable to believe you are a Lamb of God at the same time you deploy religious belief as a disingenuous dodge in defense of your career.

"So for their son to die for nothing, and now he is no more," continued Kauzlarich, "that is pretty hard to get your head around that. So I don't know how an atheist thinks. You know what? I don't think anything will make them happy, quite honestly. I don't know. Maybe they want to see somebody's head on a platter. But will that really make them happy? No, because they can't bring their son back."

So we get to it at last.  Kauzlarich imagines himself as John the Baptist, and Mary Tillman as Salome.  Poor, poor man.  Wretched, wretched woman.
I imagine a fish decal on Kauzlarich's car, one that has a double significance:  Jesus, of course, cloning fish for the starving masses, but also
a red herring.
Kauzlarich is in a state of dread-not the existential variety, since he has already cut the deal to survive death.  His dread is more immediate and secular.

A Ranger captain was assigned to investigate the death of Pat Tillman-Richard Scott, then commander of Headquarters Company, 2/75 Rangers.  Scott carried out his task with integrity, and the Article 15-6 investigation was completed in two weeks.  That investigation determined two things:  (1) The fellow Rangers who shot Tillman (and an Afghan that the military has never credited with a human being's name) violated their own rules of engagement and were possibly criminally negligent and (2) that the order that led to splitting the platoon--one vigorously and rightly opposed by the platoon leader on the ground-was responsible for setting up the communications breakdown that resulted in the incident. 

It is not legal in the military to dispose of investigations or to compel or allow witnesses to change statements, and then make the original statements disappear, but that is precisely what happened in the case of Pat Tillman.  When Kauzlarich took over the investigation from Scott, Kauzlarich's role in the alleged coverup disappeared and criminal charge recommendations were transformed into wrist-slapping nonjudicial punishments.

Even before the first investigation was complete--nay, even before Tillman's unit returned from the field to conduct an "after-action review" to determine what happened--everyone in Tillman's chain of command, including Kauzlarich [http://www.fromthewilderness.com/free/ww3/062306_tillman_files4.shtml], appears to have conspired to draft a recommendation for a Silver Star award as part of the intentional development of a fictional account to cover up the fratricide.

This was in April-May 2004. And for those who don't remember, these months were a catastrophic cascade of setbacks, bad news and rank scandal, including the dual rebellion in Iraq and the first public release of the Abu Ghraib photos.  The death by fratricide of a famous young man (who was resisting the Department of Defense efforts to turn him into a jingo icon) ran headlong into the DoD public affairs narrative of precision and professionalism (in an elite unit).  That was very bad news.

But with every stick, there is a carrot.

If this story could be covered up, for just a while, it had spin capacity.  Pat could be turned into a martyr-jingo iconAn account could be constructed that would map directly onto the television-stunned social imagination of the American public.  A tale worthy of the arrested development of a nation that believes in the fantasies of masculine adolescence.

And that is precisely what they did, Kauzlarich included.  They drafted a Silver Star and a docudrama lie about an intense encounter with a determined enemy in which the obedient patriot sets an example worthy of a recruiting poster.  A Tom Clancy joint.  The real Pat Tillman was not only of no use, he was a net negative.  Real people get in the way.

They never counted on his brother Kevin discovering that there was an initial investigation that vanished.  They never counted on a mother and father who were strong enough to demand the truth about what had happened, and determined enough to rescue the real person that was Pat Tillman from the spin machine into which the Pentagon tried to feed his body.

Pat himself, after seeing the Iraq war firsthand and declaring it to be "so fucking illegal," quipped to his fellow soldiers that the military seemed to be so inept that it couldn't even construct a credible lie.  How prescient was that?

Kauzlarich, like Boykin and all their ilk, has the spiritual depth of his own skin, which is what he is trying to save, whether in an exchange of faith for immortality or in deflecting the sorry truth onto a bereaved and angered family with cheap revival-tent accusations of "atheism."

Mary Tillman, Pat's mother, showed me a page from Pat's journal when he was 16 years old.  It was Pat's reflection on why he had decided, once and for all, that he didn't need organized religion.  The entry was motivated by Pat's grief at the death of an old family cat.  Pat wasn't comfortable with the idea that one could love another creature that was being excluded from the bargain in the afterlife.  He and his brothers grew up between a river and the mountains, where they roamed countless miles and delighted in the ceaseless interplay of geography, climate, flora and fauna.  In his journal entry, Pat speculated about this singular universality, and made up his mind that one didn't need some anti-material monarchy buzzing with angels to accommodate himself to mortality.
Pat never felt separate enough from the world to despise the worms. And so Kauzlarich's expression of fear and loathing for the world would have amused Pat.
Pat's ashes are adrift from where they were scattered along the Pacific Ocean, mixing back into the elements with which he was so at home; while Ralph Kauzlarich and the Pentagon fret about a five-foot-two-inch mother who refuses to
make them an offering of her fear.  Surely Pat Tillman is laughing.

/__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ (M.O.W. editorial insert) ? The Religious Warrior of Abu Ghraib   By Sidney Blumenthal   The Guardian U.K.   Thursday 20 May 2004 / An evangelical US general played a pivotal role in Iraqi prison reform. /   "There can be little doubt that he envisages the global war on terror as a crusade. the Geneva conventions apparently suspended, international law is supplanted by biblical law."

  Saving General Boykin seemed like a strange sideshow last October. After it was revealed that the deputy undersecretary of defence for intelligence had been regularly appearing at evangelical revivals preaching that the US was in a holy war as a "Christian nation" battling "Satan", the furore was quickly calmed.

  Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, explained that Boykin was exercising his rights as a citizen: "We're a free people." President Bush declared that Boykin "doesn't reflect my point of view or the point of view of this administration". Bush's commission on public diplomacy had reported that in nine Muslim countries, just 12% believed that "Americans respect Arab/Islamic values". The Pentagon announced that its inspector general would investigate Boykin, though he has yet to report.

  Boykin was not removed or transferred. At that moment, he was at the heart of a secret operation to "Gitmoize" (Guantanomo is known in the US as Gitmo) the Abu Ghraib prison. He had flown to Guantanomo, where he met Major General Geoffrey Miller, in charge of Camp X-Ray. Boykin ordered Miller to fly to Iraq and extend X-Ray methods to the prison system there, on Rumsfeld's orders.

  Boykin was recommended to his position by his record in the elite Delta forces: he was a commander in the failed effort to rescue US hostages in Iran, had tracked drug lord Pablo Escobar in Colombia, had advised the gas attack on barricaded cultists at Waco, Texas, and had lost 18 men in Somalia trying to capture a warlord in the notorious Black Hawk Down fiasco of 1993.

  Boykin told an evangelical gathering last year how this fostered his spiritual crisis. "There is no God," he said. "If there was a God, he would have been here to protect my soldiers." But he was thunderstruck by the insight that his battle with the warlord was between good and evil, between the true God and the false one. "I knew that my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol."

  Boykin was the action hero side of his boss, Stephen Cambone, a conservative defence intellectual appointed to the new post of undersecretary of intelligence. Cambone is universally despised by the officer corps for his arrogant, abrasive and dictatorial style and regarded as the personal symbol of Rumsfeldism. A former senior Pentagon official told me of a conversation with a three-star general, who remarked: "If we were being overrun by the enemy and I had only one bullet left, I'd use it on Cambone."

  Cambone set about cutting the CIA and the state department out of the war on terror, but he had no knowledge of special ops. For this the rarefied civilian relied on the gruff soldier - a melding of "ignorance and recklessness", as a military intelligence source told me.

  Just before Boykin was put in charge of the hunt for Osama bin Laden and then inserted into Iraqi prison reform, he was a circuit rider for the religious right. He allied himself with a small group called the Faith Force Multiplier that advocates applying military principles to evangelism. Its manifesto - Warrior Message - summons "warriors in this spiritual war for souls of this nation and the world ... "

  Boykin staged a travelling slide show around the country where he displayed pictures of Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. "Satan wants to destroy this nation, he wants to destroy us as a nation, and he wants to destroy us as a Christian army," he preached. They "will only be defeated if we come against them in the name of Jesus". It was the reporting of his remarks at a revival meeting in Oregon that made them a subject of brief controversy.

  There can be little doubt that he envisages the global war on terror as a crusade. With the Geneva conventions apparently suspended, international law is supplanted by biblical law. Boykin is in God's chain of command. President Bush, he told an Oregon congregation last June, is "a man who prays in the Oval Office". And the president, too, is on a divine mission. "George Bush was not elected by a majority of the voters in the US. He was appointed by God."

"Go forth and smite, my Chosen One. Forget all that other peace stuff I said before."

  Boykin is not unique in his belief that Bush is God's anointed against evildoers. Before his 2000 campaign, Bush confided to a leader of the religious right: "I feel like God wants me to run for president ... I sense my country is going to need me. Something is going to happen."

(M.O.W. editorial insert)

  Michael Gerson, Bush's chief speechwriter, tells colleagues that on September 20 2001, after Bush delivered his speech to the Congress declaring a war on terror, he called Gerson to thank him for writing it. "God wants you here," Gerson says he told the president. And he says that Bush replied: "God wants us here."

  But it's Bush who wants Rumsfeld, Cambone and Boykin here.


  Sidney Blumenthal, a former senior advisor to President Clinton, is Washington bureau chief of Salon.com

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. t r u t h o u t has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is t r u t h o u t endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)



"Military intelligence is a contradiction in terms."

- Groucho Marx

General: It's 'fun to shoot some people'

Commandant gives counsel, acknowledges wrong word choice

CNN, February 4, 2005

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A three-star Marine general who said it was "fun to shoot some people" should have chosen his words more carefully, the Marine Corps commandant said Thursday.

Lt. Gen. James Mattis, who commanded Marine expeditions in Afghanistan and Iraq, made the comments Tuesday during a panel discussion in San Diego, California.

"Actually it's quite fun to fight them, you know. It's a hell of a hoot," Mattis said, prompting laughter from some military members in the audience. "It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right up there with you. I like brawling."

"You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil," Mattis said. "You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them."

- Lt. Gen. James Mattis, who commanded Marine expeditions in Afghanistan an Iraq. CNN, February 4, 2005

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ / Sending comforting messages to the Muslim world: _____________________________________________________________________________


Bush, turning over new leaf?
Mr Bush is not known for being well-read

BBC Thursday, 22 August, 2002, 16:08 GMT 17:08 UK

According to Laura Bush in a recent interview, at night the president and the First Lady eat dinner together, 
watch television together and read together before they go to bed.
Karl Rove, one of Mr Bush's most powerful advisers, says he often gives the president history books to read. 
And, he says, they often chat about them afterwards.
One such recommendation was Richard the Lion Heart and Saladin in the Third Crusade, by James Reston. (Great choice, Karl!)
Mr Rove told the New York Times that the president was "sort of dismissive in the beginning of the Saladin book - but then he got into it".
So what does the president do for lighter entertainment - to give the little grey matter a rest?
According to his wife they watch movies - Austin Powers is one of their favourites, she confesses.

// "The God of Islam is not the same God of the Christian or the Judeo-Christian faith. It is a different God, and I believe a very evil and a very wicked religion." - Evangelist Franklin Graham, Bush spiritual advisor /s/ / "And I just -- I cannot speak strongly enough about how we must collectively get after those who kill in the name of -- in the name of some kind of false religion." - Would that be Islam, Dubya? (Or a false Christianity?) Press appearance with King Abdullah of Jordan, Aug. 1, 2002 /s "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity. We weren't punctilious about locating and punishing only Hitler and his top officers. We carpet-bombed German cities; we killed civilians. That's war. And this is war." - Ann Coulter on The Muslim Problem. This got her fired from the conservative National Review. http://www.nationalreview.com/coulter/coulter.shtmlu /

" Once we put it all together, we can see quite clearly that "George sees this as a religious war," as reported by a close relation of the president's in The Bushes: Portrait of a Dynasty, by Peter and Rochelle Schweizer.

So this is not just a geo-political game, or just a bid to hog the global oil supply. It is fundamentally a religious war.  The guy who's now in charge of counter-terrorism efforts in the theater of war is William "Jerry" Boykin, who used to go to fundamentalist churches in his full dress uniform and talk about the enemy being a guy named Satan, and claim that Bush was chosen by the Lord to be our president. The guy is a fanatic.  And far from urging him to curb his zealous outbursts, his bosses at the Pentagon promoted him after that controversy.  Now he is one of the most influential people giving orders in Iraq and thereabouts. You may also recall that our troops were given pamphlets urging them to pray for Bush, and to pray that he stand tough against all criticism.

- From"Talking with Mark Crispin Miller, Author of Cruel and Unusual:  Bush/Cheney's New World Order", A BUZZFLASH INTERVIEW, July 23, 2004 http://www.buzzflash.com/interviews/04/07/int04037.html ____________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________ / __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


"We're sure that (Billy Graham's son) Franklin's deep and sensitive understanding of Islam- -which he calls "a very wicked and evil religion"- -will serve him well as, with the president's blessing, he spreads the good news of Christ Militant amongst the smoldering ruins and uranium-choked dust of Basra and Baghdad." //

Hell for Leather

Bullets, Bombs, Bibles and Bush By CHRIS FLOYD April 5, 2003 hfsbvdfb "Finally, the ritual supplications adjure our well-rested Crusader chieftains to "recognize their divine appointment" and rule according to holy scripture--perhaps by following the postwar policy of the Lord Himself (Numbers, Chapter 31) after His troops routed the Midianite army: / "Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man." 

Even as the sleek techno-wizardry of "Shock and Awe" gives way to the old-fashioned slog of "Blood and Guts" on the battlefields of Iraq, the Bush Regime's postwar plans continue apace. It's now clear that the Bushists aim to turn Iraq into an American protectorate--a supine dependency like Guam, Puerto Rico or Britain--by controlling every aspect of life in the conquered land.

The blueprint for colonial rule, being drawn up by Project for the New American Century alum Paul Wolfowitz (without any input from those silly-billy Brits or--it goes without saying--that discarded hunk of junk, the UN), will install an American arms merchant, former general Jay Garner, as civilian supremo, the Guardian reports. Garner--who has publicly declared his admiration for Israel's highly successful methods of administrating occupied Arab territories--will oversee a coterie of American proconsuls and Iraqi factotums, including the self-proclaimed, Washington-paid "leader" of the Iraqi opposition, Ahmed Chalabi, a convicted bank fraudster who has not lived in his native land since 1956.

The divinely appointed Chalabi. "He's our kind of people"' say the Neocons.

American masters will determine Iraq's domestic government, foreign policy, economic system, even the education of its children. (The ones who haven't been killed by their liberation, that is.) Reconstruction contracts will be awarded to favored American companies, and the Bushists will seize control of the UN's "food-for-oil" program to finance this ladling of prime political pork. As imperial architect Wolfowitz himself puts it: "There's a lot of money out there. To assume we're going to pay for this war is just wrong."

But you mustn't think that all this moolah-mongering means Iraq' spiritual needs are being ignored. As always with your classic Anglo-American imperial conquest, sword, flame, bullet and bomb will be accompanied by the maniacal whacking of Biblical leather. Just this week, Bush of Arabia's favorite preacher announced he was mustering an evangelical army to Christianize the defeated heathen hordes, Newhouse News Service reports.

Of course, Christianity has existed in Iraq for two thousand years--rather longer than in, say, Texas--but such nuances are lost on the Bushist Party's much-coddled "core supporters" in the hardline Christian Right. And so the Reverend (sic) Franklin Graham, son of famed evangelist Billy Graham, declared that his relief group, Samaritan's Purse, will follow the Anglo-American invaders with blankets, food--and Jesus on tap. He was quickly joined by America's largest--and most Bushist--Protestant sect, the Southern Baptists, who proclaimed their plans to launch a second front of their own in the bread-for-souls campaign.

As we all know, Daddy Graham sealed his place in history about 15 years ago by convincing the booze-guzzling, nostril-burning--but eminently well-connected--George W. Bush to trade Jack Daniels for Jesus Christ. Graham also schooled his acolyte in the inherent damnability of perfidious Jewry--a lesson little Georgie was a bit too apt to repeat in mixed company, until his handlers finally got him under control.

[Yes, we know about the influence of the small group of Likud -leaning, war-whooping Jewish "neo-conservatives"--Wolfowitz, the disgraced Richard Perle, the convicted perjurer Elliot Abrams, etc.--whom Bush has brought into power. But these figures--representing a tiny, extremist sliver of the vast and variegated glory of Jewish thought--are merely useful tools for the "Dominion Christians" who serve as the fedayeen of the Bushist Party. For believers of Bush's primitivist ilk, Israel's only importance is its role as the staging ground for the universal genocide of Armageddon--a feast of carnage and obliteration for which the Dominionites yearn with a deep, erotic fervor. Come the Rapture, they will joyfully ship the Jews to Hell.]

Now, with Billy ailing, son Franklin has taken over the pastoring of Bush's soul (or the "Jack Daniels watch," as it's sometimes called). He even gave the invocation at Bush's inauguration (or the "Loser Takes All Ball," as it's sometimes called). We're sure that Franklin's deep and sensitive understanding of Islam--which he calls "a very wicked and evil religion"--will serve him well as, with the president's blessing, he spreads the good news of Christ Militant amongst the smoldering ruins and uranium-choked dust of Basra and Baghdad.

But of course, the war is not yet won. Young American men and women are still in the field, caught in a vortex of fear, death, rage and atrocity. And so another group of busy Bushist beavers is helping these war-battered troops stay focused on the most important thing of all: praying for George W. Bush.

Leather-whacking televangelist Charles Stanley has supplied thousands of U.S. soldiers with a list of daily prayers for the Dear Leader--and his holy family too. There's even a tear-out card to mail the pledge directly to the White House: "I have committed to pray for you, your family, your staff and our troops." (Note the careful ordering here--gotta get your priorities straight!) Soldiers are directed to ask that God keep the precious Bushist leaders "safe, healthy, well-rested and free from fear" (unlike the poor suckers praying for them).

Finally, the ritual supplications adjure our well-rested Crusader chieftains to "recognize their divine appointment" and rule according to holy scripture--perhaps by following the postwar policy of the Lord Himself (Numbers, Chapter 31) after His troops routed the Midianite army: "Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man."

Yep, that old whacked leather is just chockfull of handy wartime hints.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ /


The Crusaders
"The Christian Taliban is running the Department of Defense"

Tribune Media Services
May 3, 2007

//ISixteen words may be all that stand right now between the apparatus of government and the Founding Fathers' worst nightmare. And those words are starting to give.

//I"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . ."

//IWhen George Bush, in the wake of 9/11, puffed himself into Richard the Lionheart and declared he would lead the country in a "crusade" against terrorism - you know, crusade, as in slaughter of Muslim infidels - turns out . . . oh, how awkward (if you're on White House spin duty) . . . he may have been speaking literally.
What's certain, in any case, is that a lot of people in high and low places within the Bush administration - and in particular, the military - heard him literally, and regard the war on terror as a religious war:

//I"The enemy has got a face. He's called Satan. He lives in Fallujah. And we're going to destroy him," a lieutenant colonel, according to a BBC reporter, said to his troops on the eve of the destruction of that undefended city in post-election 2004.

//I"I knew my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol," Deputy Undersecretary of Defense Jerry Boykin notoriously boasted a few years back, speaking of a Muslim warlord in Somalia. And by the way, George Bush is "in the White House because God put him there."
And, of course, just the other day, Lt. Col. Ralph Kauzlarich, who conducted the first official investigation into Pat Tillman's death, opined that Tillman's family is only pestering the Army for the, ahem, truth about how he died because their loved one, a non-believer with no heavenly reward to reap, is now "worm dirt."

//IUntil I read the newly published "With God on Their Side" (St. Martin's Press), Michael Weinstein's disturbing account of anti-Semitism at the U.S. Air Force Academy, I shrugged off each of these remarks, and so much more, as isolated, almost comically intolerant noises out of True Believer Land. Forgive them, Lord, for they know not what they do . . .

//INow my blood runs cold. Weinstein, a 1977 graduate of the Academy and former assistant general counsel in the Reagan administration, and a lifelong Republican, has devoted the last several years of his life to battling what he has come to regard as a fundamentalist takeover of the Academy, turning it, in effect, into a taxpayer-supported Evangelical institution. He charges that the separation of church and state is rapidly vanishing at the school, which routinely promotes sectarian religious events, tolerates the proselytizing of uniquely vulnerable new recruits and, basically, conflates evangelical interests and the national interest.

//IIf you think this is just a fight over some abstract principle, with ramifications only for atheist, Jewish, Buddhist and other cadets who may be "offended" by fundamentalist God talk, I urge you to check out Weinstein's book or website. He documents a chilling phenomenon: The whole U.S. military, up and down the chain of command, is coming to be dominated by members of a small, characteristically intolerant sliver of Christianity who truly regard themselves as Christian soldiers, on a God-appointed mission to harvest souls and battle evil.

//IWeinstein, whose family tradition of national service is pretty impressive, does not do battle lightly with those who now run his alma mater. One of his sons is a recent graduate of the Air Force Academy and the other is still a cadet there. The fact that both of them endured anti-Semitic harassment initially spurred him to take action. But this goes deeper than disrespect for other faiths. The attitude he has encountered in his attempt to hold the institution, and the rest of the military, accountable smacks of a coup: "The Christian Taliban is running the Department of Defense," he told me. "It inundates everything."

//ICan you imagine a contingent of religious zealots, with their contempt for secular values (and such manifestations of secular order as the U.S. Constitution) - and with their zest for holy war - in control of the most potent fighting force and weaponry in human history? Is this possible?

//IWell, said Weinstein, consider the 523rd Fighter Squadron, based at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., which calls itself The Crusaders, and whose emblem consists of a sword, four crosses and a medieval knight's helmet. Check 'em out at globalsecurity.org, which reports that the payload on the F-16s they fly consists of "a wide variety of conventional, precision guided and nuclear weapons."

//IAnd listen once again to Commander-in-Chief Bush, speaking in 2003 to Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, according to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz: "God told me to strike at al-Qaida and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did, and now I am determined to solve the problem in the Middle East."

//IIf this is a religious war - a "clash of civilizations," waged by competing agents of God's will - victory may be indistinguishable from Armageddon. God help the human race.

Robert Koehler, an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist, is an editor at Tribune Media Services and nationally syndicated writer. You can respond to this column at bkoehler@tribune.com.

/ / "Our world faces a crisis as yet unperceived by those possessing the power to make great decisions for good and evil. The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and thus we drift toward unparalleled catastrophe."

- Albert Einstein

' "War is the no-win, all-lose option." / - Gore Vidal / Q: How do you think the current war in Iraq is going to play out?

/GORE VIDAL: I think we will go down the tubes right with it. With each action Bush ever more enrages the Muslims. And there are a billion of them. And sooner or later they will have a Saladin who will pull them together, and they will come after us. And it won't be pretty." '/ - "Uncensored Gore" , LA WEEKLY, Nov. 14 - 20, 2003




/ "Choose your leaders with wisdom and forethought. / To be led by a coward is to be controlled by all that the coward fears. To be led by a fool is to be led by the opportunists who control the fool. To be led by a thief is to offer up your most precious treasures to be stolen. To be led by a liar is to ask to be lied to. To be led by a tyrant is to sell yourself and those you love into slavery." / - Octavia Butler /


"The Christian god is a three headed monster, cruel, vengeful, and capricious.

If one wishes to know more of this raging, three headed beast-like god,

one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him.

They are always of two classes: fools and hypocrites."

-Thomas Jefferson



And in some cases, BOTH AT ONCE.h






Epitaph King Crimson (excerpt) / The wall on which the prophets wrote Is cracking at the seams / Upon the instruments of death The sunlight brightly gleams / When every man is torn apart With nightmares and with dreams / Will no one lay the laurel wreath As silence drowns the screams

Confusion will be my epitaph
As I crawl a cracked and broken path

If we make it we can all sit back
and laugh

But I fear tomorrow I'll be crying
Yes I fear tomorrow I'll be crying


Between the iron gates of fate The seeds of time were sown / And watered by the deeds of those Who know and who are known

Knowledge is a deadly friend
When no one sets the rules

The fate of all mankind I see


Is in the hands of fools.



From the album "In the Court of the Crimson King"
© 1969 EG Records Ltd.



/ /bzdbzs

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