"East and West do not mistrust each other because we are armed;
we are armed because we mistrust each other." -- Ronald Reagan
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A BRIEF BUT IMPORTANT EDITORIAL COMMENT: America, and
not just America, but also the whole world, is in trouble -- to express it in
simple language: we're in a mess. False religions with their false gods are
on the increase, speaking out against Christians, persecuting them, attacking
them, murdering them, destroying homes and churches, forcing them to flee
for their lives. But we should not be surprised. Jesus said, "Beware of false
prophets ... they are ravening wolves... ye shall know them by their fruits
... many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many." (Matt. 7:15,16;
24:11) And He warned, "Ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake ..."
(Mark 13:13) But the God who created the heavens and the earth is forever
"the King of all the earth" (Ps. 47:7), and in the language of the Living
Bible, "Stand silent! Know that I am God! I will be honored by every
nation in the world! The commander of the heavenly armies is here among
us. He, the God of Jacob, has come to rescue us!" (Ps. 46:10,11) What
more can we say? "If God be for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31)
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IT WOULD BE NICE TO SAY THE RIOTING
(OR WHATEVER) IN EGYPT IS OVER . . .
BUT WE HAVE SEEN JUST THE FIRST ACT.
NOW THE REST OF THE NATIONS IN THE
MIDDLE EAST ARE TAKING THEIR TURN.
One subject -- or a series of related subjects -- seems to dominate all of the
media attention at the present time. The revolution -- or riot -- in Egypt
has apparently run its course, and now everything is in the hands of the
military. The effect on the Egyptian Christian population remains very much
in question, with the undeniable fact that if the "Muslim Brotherhood" and
related Islamic powers take control, all thoughts of any aspect of
"democracy" are ended, and the end of the centuries-old Christian church
in Egypt may conceivably be in sight.
Meanwhile, this brief news item from the Washington Post states the present
situation in the Middle East very clearly: "Libyan leader Muammar
Gadhafi's regime showed more signs of crumbling Monday following
a volatile night in which dozens were reportedly killed in the capital,
as embattled leaders across the region struggled to contain their
As we write, Gadhafi has made what is described as a "hysterical, babbling"
speech, vowing to stay in Libya and die as a martyr. He blamed America for
using war planes to kill his people, and accused the protestors of drugging
the youth of Libya. Meantime his government leaders are resigning their positions.
Libya, Tunisia, Iran, Yemen, Bahrain . . . even Saudi Arabia and Jordan . . .
the entire area is in turmoil. As American Christians, far removed from the
rioting and protests, we have a responsibility to pray for our fellow believers
who are facing not only persecution, but destruction and death because of
their faith. And even in Egypt, the final chapter has not been written.
At the highlight of the week in Cairo on Friday, one of Egypt's leading
Islamic scholars, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, returned to preach to the 200,000 in
Tahrir Square. His message: "Don't let anyone steal this revolution from
you ... the revolution isn't over." Some time ago, in another sermon
broadcast on the Al-Jazeera network, he prayed for Allah to kill all Jews:
"Oh Allah, take this oppressive Jewish, Zionist band of people. Oh Allah,
do not spare a single one of them. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and
kill them, down to the very last one." Meantime, what passes for the
"government" in Egypt has permitted at least two Iranian warships to transit
the Suez Canal to take up positions in the Mediterranean near Syria, one of
Israel's enemies, and in relatively close proximity to Israel. As American
Christians, we might well ask: Is this the sort of "revolution" our government
should be supporting?
And there is this proposed Islamic rally -- with little media attention:
The British Muslim cleric, Anjem Choudary, who once said that the flag of
Islam would fly over the White House, and who has called Americans "the
biggest criminals in the world today," has announced a protest rally outside
the White House on March 3. Choudary told reporters, "The event is a rally,
a call for the Sharia, a call for Muslims to rise up and establish the Islamic
state in America." Of course, as we write, Mr. Choudary is in Great Britain,
and whether Mr. Obama's immigration officials will allow him entry into this
country is yet to be determined.
Is this what the world has been waiting to hear? Last week, in an
interview, Jimmy Carter gave us these reassuring words: "I think that the
Muslim Brotherhood is not anything to be afraid of. They will be
subsumed in the overwhelming demonstration of desire for freedom
and democracy. This comment, about Carter's remark, which we found
on the Internet, is as good, or better than any we might offer: "It is nice to
know that in a world of rapid change we can count on Jimmy Carter to
be as clueless a former president as he was a president."
But if we take our eyes off the Middle East, even here at home there is
unrest and protests on a scale we have not previously experienced. There is
the intense protest in Wisconsin, now in its second week, with labor unions,
enjoying the support of our president, pitted against the government of the
state, and against the clearly expressed views of the people of Wisconsin.
And those labor union protests have spread to other states -- Indiana and
Ohio among them -- even as Mr. Obama traveled to Ohio to rally support
among his labor union supporters for his 2012 presidential campaign.
But that constitutes civil unrest -- as Christians we must also have serious
concern about the moral deterioration in our country with the growing
victories of the liberal left in their goal to destroy traditional marriage and
the family, as additional states move to approve homosexual unions. The
president's support of abortion through the catch phrase "freedom of choice,"
and his promise to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, plus the continuing
"legislating from the bench" by the nation's judicial system are evidences of
our national departure from the Judeo-Christian principles upon which this
nation was founded.
There is this one positive approach to one of the major moral issues affecting
America -- the killing of individuals through abortion. Pennsylvania's newly
elected Republican Governor Tom Corbett has announced sweeping
changes in two state departments which failed to end the atrocities being
committed in Kermit Gosnell's abortion clinic in Philadelphia -- resulting
in murder charges in the deaths of 7 babies and one woman. Governor
"This doesn't even rise to the level of government run amok. It was
government not running at all. To call this unacceptable doesn't say
enough. It's despicable ... people died." Obviously, we need more leaders
in government like Tom Corbett to address the moral issues confronting us.
And toward that end, here is our weekly reminder: there are now just
622 days until our next national Election Day, November 6, 2012. There
are 622 days to pray for our nation and wisdom for its leaders, and for
guidance as we vote to elect new leaders to reclaim America to what it was
always intended to be: "One nation, under God . . ."
Like it or not, this is still "The Age of the Polls." Ben Franklin in his
wisdom said, "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except
death and taxes." Today Ben could add these words: "and polls."
President Obama and his administration must find the results of all the polls
very disturbing. Consider the Rasmussen Daily Presidential Tracking poll,
for example ... after months of double digit negative numbers, Mr. Obama's
ranking crept into the single digit negatives, but this week he is back down
in double digit negatives at -20. Two of his key administration leaders are
also faring very poorly: only 24% of US voters have a somewhat favorable
view of Treasury Secretary Geithner, a consistent number for the past two
And only 25% have a favorable opinion of Attorney General Holder,
down 10 points from August, 2009. And as for Obamacare, 56% favor
its repeal. And of interest is the ongoing strife in Wisconsin where 48%
favor Governor Walker, against 38% who favor the unions -- and unions
carry the support of Mr. Obama. It would be nice if once -- just once --
the president would act according to the views of the American people.
Every week we point out that there is much to be learned from "What
Others Are Saying" ... and because the media generally ignores these views,
we do the research to bring you the other side of the news.
Timothy Lee (Pres. Americans for Prosperity):"Two years ago
President Obama gave one of his infamous 'teachable moments'
when his massive $814 billion government stimulus boondoggle
passed Congress. The president promised his $814 billion spending
spree would keep unemployment below 8 percent; it didnâ•˙t happen.
He said it would save or create millions of jobs; but millions of jobs
in the private sector were lost while the number of government
bureaucrats increased... His scheme failed, like most liberal ideas...
Now President Obama and his friends on the Left don't even utter
the word 'stimulus!' (Editor's note: now the chosen word is "investment.")
President Obama's stimulus spending spree demonstrated to millions
of Americans that his rhetoric about changing the tone and substance
in Washington was all talk and no action."
N.J. Gov. Chris Christie (at American Enterprise Inst.): I heard
the president's State of the Union speech and and he said America
was about doing the big things... He says the big things are high-
speed rail. The big things are high-speed internet access for 80
percent of Americans ... 1 million electric cars on the road by some
date ... That is the candy of American politics; those are not the big
Thomas Sowell (Economist, political commentator): "One of the
sad signs of our times is that we have demonized those who produce,
subsidized those who have refused to produce, and canonized those
Larry Elder (radio and TV commentator): "Obama ignores the
recommendations of his own bipartisan deficit-reduction commission,
as well as polls showing voters want smaller government, and smugly
proposes more spending, higher taxes, and even bigger government.
Obama then holds a press conference and, with a straight face that
would have shamed Baghdad Bob, claims his budget 'will not be
adding more to the national debt.'"
Because you like them -- we found these "One Liners" . . .
"If you hated trickle down economics, wait until you taste trickle
up poverty" -- Lisa Shanks
"Obama isn't another Ronald Reagan. He's Jimmy Carter Lite."
-- Ralph Peters
And there are always a few random "Afterthoughts" . . .
How much more can we stand from those "peace loving Muslims?"
The latest affront on civilized behavior by "pirates" from Somalia, an Islamic
country operating under Shariah law, has been the murder of 4 Americans
on board their private yacht, sailing to remote ports of the world to distribute
Bibles in those countries. Already the Somalis hold an estimated 30 ships
which they have high-jacked at sea, with more than 600 hostages held
captive, and under threat of death. This probably is not the aspect of Islam
which Mr. Obama said merits our mutual respect.
News stories like this in the Washington Post do make you wonder:
"Drone attacks in Pakistan killed at least 581 militants last year, according
to independent estimates. The number of those militants noteworthy enough
to appear on a U.S. list of most-wanted terrorists: two."
More on our dwindling determination to support Israel . . . it is true
that Rep. Ron Paul did withdraw his proposed bill to cut off all U.S. aid to
Israel -- after expressed outrage (probably from Christians) from across the
country. And it is true that Mr. Obama's Ambassador to the U.N., Susan
Rice, did veto a Security Council Resolution which condemned Israel for
its settlements in so-called "disputed territories," but it must be noted that
Ms. Rice offered an apology for her negative vote (which killed the
resolution for the time being) in these words, "We agree with our fellow
Council members, indeed with the wider world, about the folly and the
illegitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity ..." and she added,
"We therefore, regrettably, have opposed this draft resolution." And
Obama's Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, in an ABC-TV interview
described those Israeli settlements as being "illegitimate." Israel must
feel that it is in this kind of a relationship with America: "With friends
like these, who needs enemies?" One commentator expressed it this
way: "Proving once again that the only thing consistent about the
US Middle East policy is its inconsistency."
An intriguing question from Chris Carmouche, writing in GrasstopsUSA:
"What part of the phrase 'This Country is Broke' do Barack Obama and
our elected officials NOT understand? What part of the phrase 'We
Simply Don't Have the Money' do they NOT understand?" To which we
might add this question for the Obama administration: "What part of the
Tenth Amendment don't you understand?"
Another Obama "success" . . . temporarily deferred: One of the first
things Barack Obama did on his first day in office was to sign an executive
order to shut down the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention center within a
year. As he did so, many critics pointed out that he might find it difficult to
follow-through on that executive order. Now over two years after signing the
order, and over a year after the deadline for its execution, even the Obama
administration insiders are beginning to concede that "Gitmo" might never
close. Secretary of Defense Gates in testimony before the Senate last week
said: "The prospects for closing Guantanamo as best I can tell are very,
very low given the very broad opposition to doing that here in the
Congress." Gates added that it has become harder to release detainees
because he has to certify they will not be a danger. Later Leon Panetta, head
of the CIA testified that if Osama bin Laden or Ayman al-Zawairi were ever
captured, they would be sent to Guantanamo. This seems to be a case of:
"Wait for me . . . I'm your leader."
Our Founding Fathers had such great thoughts on current issues.
We can learn so much from them. One could wish today's national leaders
would take time to read what the men who created the United States
thought about the nation they had founded.
Thomas Jefferson, on leaders (even presidents) telling the truth:
"It is of great importance to set a resolution, not to be shaken, never to
tell an untruth. There is no vice so mean, so pitiful, so contemptible;
and he who permits himself to tell a lie once, finds it much easier to do
it a second and a third time, till at length it becomes habitual; he tells
lies without attending to it, and truths without the world's believing him.
This falsehood of the tongue leads to that of the heart, and in time
depraves all its good disposition." --Thomas Jefferson, 1785
James Madison on "progressive" views of our Constitution:
"I entirely concur in the propriety of resorting to the sense in which the
Constitution was accepted and ratified by the nation. In that sense alone
it is the legitimate Constitution." -- James Madison, 1824