The Pinheaded “Art” of Retreat and Surrender

God Will Never Forgive Us If . . .

Sometimes a word, a phrase, or a line from a song or a movie can ring in your ears and refuse to let go. As luck would have it, I found myself awaking this morning to an old WWII film on Turner Classic Movies – “The White Cliffs of Dover”(1944).

The movie was based on a 1940 novel by Alice Duer Miller, The White Cliffs.

“The story is of an American girl who coming to London as a tourist, meets and marries a young upper-class Englishman in the period just before the First World War. The War begins and he goes to the front. He is killed just before the end of the War, leaving her with a young son. Her son is the heir to the family estate. Despite the pull of her own country and the impoverished condition of the estate, she decides to stay and live the traditional life of a member of the English upper class. The story concludes as The Second World War commences and she worries that her son, like his father, will be killed fighting for the country he loves.”

Actually, the movie concludes with a very poignant scene between the mother, Susan Ashwood (Irene Dunn) and her war-wounded and dying son John Ashwood II (Peter Lawford). As the dying John turns his head and quietly slips away, the mother (still gazing at a military parade outside the window and unaware that he has died) speaks to her son the last line in the movie.

“God will never forgive us if we break faith with our dead again.”

The above phrase is not a theological reflection, but the angst of a fictional mother who has lost husband and son to two World Wars. She sees that war will come again and again to those who fail to heed history’s lessons. It is not God who will never forgive us. It is we who will never forgive ourselves.

Unlike the propaganda films of an earlier era designed to build national unity, America chose instead to imbed reporters who often showed more sympathy for the terrorists than for our own soldiers. Instead of nation building works of fiction we served ourselves helping after helping of enemy generated fiction and disguised it at truth. Instead of holding some of our citizens accountable for acts of treason in time of war, we turned them into celebrities. Those of us who have remained silent are as guilty as the perpetrators.

The question today is, do we break faith with our dead soldiers by staying the course in Iraq, or by cutting and running? Or are there other options beyond the widely criticized Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group Report? I propose that there is only one viable option and that it to show the world that we do have a center – a moral core – National unity – and the will to win!

Those Who Will to Forget

Those who fail to remember history are doomed to repeat history.

We parents pay our hard-earned money to send our kids off to college hear this kind of pinheaded clap-trap.

“As long as that insecurity holds America in its grip, we will make our foreign policy based on fictional images and the emotions they evoke. We won’t be able to think through our problems in a reasonable way and arrive at realistic constructive solutions. One way to ease the grip of insecurity is to recognize that Pearl Harbor was a unique one-time event, the product of unique historical circumstances that will never return. After 65 years, it’s time to retire the image of Pearl Harbor and bid it a not-so-fond farewell.”

(Author Ira Chernis is Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder.)

Here we have an example of yet another numb-skull professor pronouncing the obvious – that Pearl Harbor was a “unique one-time event” that will never return. Well duh??? Of course Pearl Harbor was unique, and so was 9/11, and so was the war in Viet Nam, and so is the war in Iraq. As a matter of fact, every instant of every day is filled with unique one-time events that will never return. However, events with elements of great similarity do occur again and again at different times, under different historical circumstances, and in different guises, but ALWAYS presenting universal lessons. If that were not the case there would be no point in telling any stories, or of ever recording or teaching history, or of keeping statistics, or of doing studies and making reports, or in fact, there would be no point in humanity itself!

Story-telling is the very essence of what it means to be human for only humans can pass on the benefits of what they have learned to another generation. Without the ability to tell its story, no culture can long survive. Those who would will a nation to forget Pearl Harbor or 9/11 have but one objective – the destruction of National Unity!

Well so much for December 7, 1941 – a day that will not live in infamy if we continue to will ourselves to forget!

Let’s Start by Learning the Historical Lessons of Appeasement.

Neville Chamberlain “is perhaps the most ill-regarded British Prime Minister of the 20th century, largely because of his policy of appeasement towards Nazi Germany regarding the abandonment of Czechoslovakia to Hitler at Munich in 1938. Also in 1938 giving up the Irish Free State Navy Ports, in practical terms making it safe for German submarines to stay about 200 miles west of the Irish coast (and therefore out of range of the British Navy) where they could pick off the merchant marine at will. His unpopularity lead to his derogatory nickname “pinhead”.”

The Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group Report – A Pinheaded “consensus for surrender and an outline for retreat”?

· Kills America’s bargaining power by setting an arbitrary pullout deadline of early 2008
· Recommends dialog with terrorist nations
· Emboldens the enemy by projecting an image of American weakness
· Will intensify the war

The Elephant Bar says: “The Iraq Study Group Report is the consensus of a bi-partisan elite, only one of whom has been outside the Green Zone. It satisfies the left’s demand for acknowledgment of the quagmire, but it fails to deliver on hyped expectations and has been widely panned by the critics as little more than a consensus for surrender and an outline for retreat. It could also be called aid and comfort for the other side. Iran and Syria can hardly contain themselves such is their glee at having humbled the Great Satan. Israel thinks the report is an embarrassment for both major American parties. Nancy Pelosi also calls for consensus.”

Revisiting Sun Tzu’s The Art of War

Since there were no high ranking members of the military invited to participate in the Iraq Study Group, it’s a good bet that the group was not too familiar with this ancient military classic. If we were to look at the following seven military conditions, how would we rate America at war today? How would we rate the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group Report?

“Therefore, in your deliberations, when seeking to determine the military conditions, let them be made the basis of a comparison, in this wise:–

(1) Which of the two sovereigns is imbued with the Moral law?
(2) Which of the two generals has most ability?
(3) With whom lie the advantages derived from Heaven and Earth?
(4) On which side is discipline most rigorously enforced?
(5) Which army is stronger?
(6) On which side are officers and men more highly trained?
(7) In which army is there the greater constancy both in reward and punishment?

By means of these seven considerations I can forecast victory or defeat. . . .

Now, when your weapons are dulled, your ardor damped, your strength exhausted and your treasure spent, other chieftains will spring up to take advantage of your extremity. Then no man, however wise, will be able to avert the consequences that must ensue.”

One final thought. . . Diversity without unity is nothing more than a smoldering ember before the inferno. Any nation without consensus and at war with itself, any nation that has lost belief in its moral superiority, and any nation that has lost trust in a God who will call its citizens to account, is a nation that cannot win any war, any time, any where!

This post linked to:
The Uncooperative Blogger, Woman Honor Thyself, USS Neverdock, Independent Conservative, Talk Wisdom, My Weekly Thoughts

A Progressive God Responds to the War on Christmas

Yesterday I was forwarded a rather long e-mail letter from God, so I thought you just might be interested. If you are reading this, then you will most likely receive it too. I was really disappointed, however, that I wasn’t on God’s initial list of friends, but I guess I should be thankful that the e-mail finally made it into my inbox.

The letter starts out . . .

“Dear Children,

It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you’ve forgotten that I wasn’t actually born during this time of the year and that it was some of you’re predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a time of pagan festival. Although Ido appreciate being remembered anytime.

How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don’t care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth just, GET ALONG AND LOVEONE ANOTHER. . . .”

The letter goes on to suggest that we all stop worrying about the War on Christmas, and start acting like real Christians by performing acts of Christian love and charity etc. Now who can argue with that? And more to the point, who would dare argue with God???

Well, for starters, how can I be sure that God actually wrote this e-mail? I did notice that there were a few grammatical errors, but perhaps God doesn’t really care much about grammar either or perhaps His secretary was off for the day?

The next question I had was that if God really did write this e-mail, which person of the Trinity was actually involved in the writing? The implication is that it must be Jesus because God is talking about “MY birthday.” We Christians all know that God the Father “Is, Was, and Always Will Be.” God the Father never had a birth date. If Jesus is writing about “My name” and “My birthday”, why didn’t He even once mention His name??? He could have at least signed the letter but HE didn’t.

Perhaps God was avoiding any mention of Jesus in order to keep Christians and Non-Christians alike from Christmas-time divisiveness? But that doesn’t ring true. It’s really hard to imagine a God “who sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him” (John 4:19), not even wanting to mention that fact on his only son’s birthday.

But this letter is hard to figure out, kind of like trying to figure out God. So I’m just not sure. Isn’t it funny that God would remind folks to read John 15: 1 – 8 (“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. . .), tell folks to pray, and to send money to missionaries who would spread his name, but fail to spread His name in this very letter???

And why wouldn’t God want folks to heed Jesus’ own words?

“And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father.” (John 14:13)

God made several good suggestions in his e-mail but I was struck by the fact that God had little interest in keeping alive the Christian tradition of Christmas. I would assume from reading this e-mail from God that He’s not at all opposed to secularizing the day.

“Stop worrying about the fact that people are calling the tree a holiday tree, instead of a Christmas tree. It was I who made all trees.”

That got me to thinking about the importance of tradition – to humans at least. Why should protecting our cherished religious traditions be important to all Americans regardless of our differing faith perspectives?

Oddly enough I found the answer from an Australian – Professor Mark Cooray. Dr. Cooray was once a socialist/progressive activist but he turned from socialism because, “I have come to believe that socialism and progressivism are in practice, as far as human development is concerned, retrogressive philosophies.”

Here’s a quote from a very interesting chapter on Tradition from the book, The Australian Achievement: From Bondage To Freedom by Dr. Mark Cooray.

“The Internationale contains a line “No more tradition’s chains shall bind us.” This is one of the fundamental ideas of socialist/progressivist thinking. Man must be freed from tradition. Reason is to be the guiding light. The devil can cite scripture for his purposes. Reason can often be used to support any position. If men and women are freed from tradition, the experiences of history and the family environment, they can be manipulated and used by ideological and religious leaders, eccentrics and maniacs. If tradition declines, ideologues can mould and influence individuals.”

Note: The Internationale is the international song of both Marxist and non-Marxist socialist parties. It was written in French by Eugene Pottier, a woodworker from Lille, after the fall of the Paris Commune of 1871, and set to music by P. Degeyter.

Now it’s just possible, even plausible, that perhaps God didn’t really write this e-mail letter. And if the devil can cite scripture for his purposes, then who is to say who really wrote the letter? That got me to thinking about “inversion” – the turning of faith or any philosophy inside out.

Now anyone can be susceptible to ideologues who would manipulate faith, and those who are only too willing to overthrow tradition for political correctness are often the most susceptible. The clever part about the inversion of faith is that it is often very subtle. The primary rule of inversion is that the big lie is usually hidden amid much truth. And that big lie is often hidden through the process of expanding definitions and redefining commonly accepted theological truths. We usually call it “revisionism”.

I don’t know who wrote the letter and most likely it was written by someone who has the best of Christian humanistic intentions. I do know that the letter was forwarded to me from one of my liberal/ progressive friends who is a member of a very liberal/progressive Christian denomination. I won’t mention the particular denomination’s name but you can usually tell which Christian denominations have a liberal/progressive bias. They are the denominations with well known old names that are rapidly losing membership due in no small part to the fact that they subtly promote moral equivalency with any faith perspective, and they avoid, at all costs, the mention of sin. The easiest way to spot them is that they quote every Biblical verse devoted to Love but recoil from any passage having to do with the cost of sin. And if you read any of their literature you will find that they have quite neutered the language by never referring to God as “He”. The most extreme of the progressives refer to God as “He/She”.

My friend sent the e-mail on to all of her many church friends and to me because she was afraid that we Americans are “politicizing our God.” But somehow this letter from God feels just like a politicized message especially when God tells us to pray for George.

I do not doubt the sincerity and devout faith of my friend and of most liberal/progressive Christians. But what I do know is that, as Dr. Cooray aptly pointed out concerning the progressives, “they can be manipulated and used by ideological and religious leaders, eccentrics and maniacs.”

If anyone would like me to send them the entire e-mail from “God”, please e-mail me.