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December 11, 2006

Four generals and three colonels filmed evangelical video in Pentagon

Now that's what I call brazen... Several high-ranking military officers appear in a commercial for an evangelical Christian group shot inside the Pentagon:

A military watchdog group is asking the Defense Department to investigate whether seven Army and Air Force officers violated regulations by appearing in uniform in a promotional video for an evangelical Christian organization.

In the video, much of which was filmed inside the Pentagon, four generals and three colonels praise the Christian Embassy, a group that evangelizes among military leaders, politicians and diplomats in Washington. Some of the officers describe their efforts to spread their faith within the military. [WaPo]

And get this...the former acting secretary of the Air Force, Pete Geren is in the video talking about how helpful Christian Embassy was to him when he and the Air Force Academy were sued for inappropriate proselytizing to cadets.

Pete Geren, a former acting secretary of the Air Force who oversaw the service's response in 2005 to accusations that evangelical Christians were pressuring cadets at the Air Force Academy, also appears in the video. The Christian Embassy "has been a rock that I can rely on, been an organization that helped me in my walk with Christ, and I'm just thankful for the service they give," he says. [WaPo]

Defense Department regulations forbid service members to appear in uniform at non-military functions such as rallies, picket lines, and speeches. Presumably the ban extends to commercials.

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Comments

The blatancy of evangelical Christians is astounding - and they wonder why people suspect, fear and loathe them?

I can tell you that one other thing that Jak Catton is- an oathbreaker. He swore to put the Constitution first when he entered the military and somehow it barely makes third on his list. So I guess the role of the Christian Embassy is to undermine the efficiency and loyalty of the American military.

Both Christian & serving their country with distinction for years!!!

They must be stoped..

(yes a clear violation of our constitution)

If we have a fair number of officers capable of convincing themselves that Adam rode around on a Brontosaurus, that would explain a lot about our current predicament.

>Both Christian & serving their country with distinction for years!!!

>They must be stoped..

...if they violate the oath they took to the Constitution! Well said, Fitz. Yes, they should.

84 - A little simplistic isn’t it? Hinging the way it does on your understanding of what’s required under the constitution.

Fitz, this is a blackletter violation of military regulations. Don't play the victim card.

>84 - A little simplistic isn’t it? Hinging the way it does on your understanding of what’s required under the constitution.

Hey, I said "if."

The issue isn't Consitutional; it's a matter of obeying the law as set by Pentagon regulations.

Anyway:

Go to a local atheists meetup.

Find an atheists meetup in your city with MeetUp.com.

It's pretty damn important for the Army to be a religiously neutral institution. Guys like this just play into the hands of bin Laden when he says that Al Qaeda is fighting a crusader army.

Andrew Bacevich's New American Militarism has a fascinating account of how evangelicals embraced the military, and vice versa.

It wasn't always the case. Evangelicals used to abhor the military because they saw it as worldly, corrupting, pragmatic (as opposed to being guided by black-and-white morality) and as a tool of the elite establishment.

During and following Vietnam, they began to embrace the military as a bastion against the atheistic commies and the decadent hippies. And the military, losing the ties to the wider public it had enjoyed since WWII, reciprocated. Cut off from the mainstream, both groups began to reinforce the others' worst tendencies and began to see themselves as morally superior to society as a whole.

Defense Department regulations forbid service members to appear in uniform at non-military functions such as rallies, picket lines, and speeches. Presumably the ban extends to commercials.

Well, evidently Presidential stump-speeches are A-OK, so I wouldn't hold your breath.

Was one of those officers Jesus' General? That would be OK in my book.

None of the uniformed officers mentioned the xian embassy by name, nor xianity. And much of the footage looked like stock footage. All of the people who mentioned xianaity and the bible, etc., by name, were out of uniform.

I've got links to the Christian Embassy videos here.

Uh, hey guys, I think I'd feel a little safer if you put more faith in weapons, tactics, logistics, command structure, etc. and a little less in your invisible pal.

It is fundamental to a military organization that it suppress all allegiances outside the chain of command. Religious, racist, gang, Beatles vs. Monkees, Peanuts v.s. Bloom County, Unix v.s. Windows, vi v.s. emacs... all of it.

High-level officers who condone evangelizing on company time (let alone with the power of the uniform) should be booted out.

From the way most of you are posting, it's obvious that Christianity should be outlawed and those of us with enough conscience to serve both our God and our country should be imprisoned. So much for the land of the Free and home of the Brave. Intolerant morons.

The oath for commissioned officers in the US Army reads as follows:

"I, _____ (SSAN), having been appointed an officer in the Army of the United States, as indicated above in the grade of _____ do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter; So help me God."

Notice that the oath says that “I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States”. It does not mention supporting or defending God, Jesus, Mohammed, Vishnu, Allah, Buddha, Guru Nanak Dev, the Virgin Mary, Rishabha Deva, Apollo, Melek Taus, Zoroaster, Freyja, Isis, Mithras, Huitzilopochtli, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or my cat: The Great Fat Chester.

Before you say “Bu-bu-but the oath says ‘so help me God!’”, understand that the person being sworn in may affirm the oath with any deity he or she may choose or none at all.

A U.S. soldier’s job is to defend all of us: Christians, Jews, Muslims, Santeria and Voodoo worshippers, Mormons, animists, Scientologists, Rosicrucians, Wiccans, Jains, Bhuddists, Druze, Yezdis, Sikhs, Hindus, and yes, may the Good Lord help us, atheists. So pray, burn candles, dunk yourself in holy water, swallow ritual poisons, sacrifice chickens or whatever makes your particular gods or spirits or whatever, happy, just don’t do it in uniform and don’t do it on my dime.

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