the epic influence of CUFI on this administration’s I/P policies

Pastor John Hagee’s Christians United for Israel (CUFI) is more precisely: Evangelical Christians United for their own self-serving interests.  Founded in 2006, Hagee wanted to create an Evangelical version of AIPAC to hasten Biblical end-times prophecy.  The particulars of post-Armageddon Dispensationalist eschatology vary a bit from preacher to preacher, but in general it concerns the prophecy that post-Armageddon tribulation and rapture, Christ will come again when Israel stands alone.  Although I‘ve been familiar with the rudiments for a long time, what I hadn’t known until reading this series by Whitney Webb was that ‘stands alone’ included the destruction of the Al Aqsa mosque pictured above, and has for well over a century. In other words: no more Muslims praying at their third most-holy site in Jerusalem, no I/P two-state solution, and the continued immiseration and war on Palestinians.

Hagee’s organization has a membership of seven million, 2 million more than the entire Jewish community in the US.  Never mind that these Christians believe Jews will roast in hell unless they convert to Christianity before they die; it’s all good as it’s helpful to the cause.  The following most contemporary exposé may be enough for you to read, but if you want to know more of the history, you can read below the fold (dotted line), and skip down past another dotted line to a similar story in Nazareth by the gentle, estimable Jonathan Cook, who writes from Nazareth, where he’d relocated in order to bear witness directly. By my lights, he’s among the key experts on I/P issues.

Part III of a III-Part series: ‘The Untold Story of Christian Zionism’s Rise to Power in the United States;  well before Theodore Herzl founded political Zionism and published The Jewish State, Christian Zionists in the United States and England were already seeking to direct and influence the foreign policy of both nations in service to a religious obsession end times prophecy’, Whitney Webb, July 12, 2019, mintpressnews

“Members of this organization, Christians United for Israel (CUFI), met in Washington on Monday, attracting thousands of attendees and featuring speeches from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Secretary of State and former CIA Director Mike Pompeo, Vice President Mike Pence, and National Security Advisor John Bolton. CUFI’s leader, controversial evangelical preacher John Hagee, has met with President Donald Trump several times and was recently part of an exclusive White House meeting in March on the administration’s upcoming “peace plan” for Israel and Palestine.

While organizations like CUFI and its predecessors have long seen the creation of the state of Israel in 1948, and the later Israeli victory and conquest of Jerusalem in 1967, as the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy, there is one prophecy that this sect of evangelical Christians believes is the only thing standing between them and the Second Coming. There are estimated to be more than 20 million of these Christians, often referred to as Christian Zionists, in the United States and they are a key voting bloc and source of political donations for the Republican Party.

As was explored in previous installments of this series, these Christian Zionists, much like religious Zionist extremists in Israel, believe that the Al Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock must be replaced with a Third Jewish Temple in order to usher in the end times.

These two groups of different faiths, since the 19th century, have repeatedly formed an opportunistic alliance in order to ensure the fulfillment of their respective prophecies, despite the fact that members of the other faith are rarely if ever on the same page in their interpretations of what occurs after the temple’s construction.

This alliance, based on a mutual obsession with hastening the coming of the Apocalypse, continues to this day and now, more than at any other time in history, these groups have reached the heights of power in both Israel and the United States. Parts I and II of this exclusive series explored how this branch of religious Zionism has come to dominate the current right-wing government of Israel and has led Israel’s current government to take definitive steps towards the destruction of the Al Aqsa mosque and the imminent construction of a Third Temple.” [a very lengthy historical narrative snip]

“While organizations like CUFI and its predecessors have long seen the creation of the state of Israel in 1948, and the later Israeli victory and conquest of Jerusalem in 1967, as the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy, there is one prophecy that this sect of evangelical Christians believes is the only thing standing between them and the Second Coming. There are estimated to be more than 20 million of these Christians, often referred to as Christian Zionists, in the United States and they are a key voting bloc and source of political donations for the Republican Party.

As was explored in previous installments of this series, these Christian Zionists, much like religious Zionist extremists in Israel, believe that the Al Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock must be replaced with a Third Jewish Temple in order to usher in the end times. “

CUFI is exempt from paying U.S. taxes and from publicly disclosing its finances because it is officially registered as a church, though it is often likened to an arm of the pro-Israel lobby in the United States and actively promotes and funds illegal West Bank settlements. CUFI also advocates for Israeli sovereignty over all of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount and the construction of a Third Temple.

Much has been written about CUFI’s influence in the Republican Party, which began under the George W. Bush administration soon after its founding. As journalist Max Blumenthal noted in a 2006 article for The Nation: “Over the past months, the White House has convened a series of off-the-record meetings about its policies in the Middle East with leaders of Christians United for Israel (CUFI).”

As a result of these meetings, CUFI aligned itself tightly with the neoconservatives that were well represented in the Bush administration, even appointing neoconservative and Christian Zionist Gary Bauer to its board and naming Bauer the first director of its lobbying arm, the CUFI Action Fund. Bauer is a founding member of the highly controversial and now-defunct neoconservative group, Project for a New American Century (PNAC), and has also served on the executive board of the neoconservative group Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD).

CUFI has since won powerful allies and counts neoconservative Elliott Abrams; former CIA director James Woosley; neoconservative archon Bill Kristol; former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee; Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Ted Cruz (R-TX); Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence among its staunchest supporters. At a CUFI summit last year, Netanyahu described CUFI as a “vital part of Israel’s national security.”

In addition, CUFI has close ties to casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, the top donor to President Trump and the entire Republican Party. Adelson even received a special award from Hagee at a 2014 CUFI event. “I’ve never had a greater warm feeling than being honored by Pastor Hagee,” said a beaming Sheldon Adelson at the time.
At the most recent CUFI summit, held on Monday, the Trump administration sent Pence, Pompeo, U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt, and National Security Advisor John Bolton, all of whom spoke at the summit.”

In addition to its own influence as an organization, the group has made Hagee himself a major political player. In 2007, then-Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) compared Hagee to Moses, stating:

“I want to take to opportunity to describe Pastor Hagee in the terms the Torah used to describe Moses. He is an Ish Elohim. A man of God. And those words really do fit him. And I have something else. Like Moses, he’s become the leader of a mighty multitude. Even greater than the multitude that Moses led from Egypt to the Promised Land.” 

Efforts by prominent politicians to court Hagee were once numerous, until evidence of Hagee making remarks about the Holocaust that were widely considered anti-semitic surfaced during the 2008 presidential campaign. In those remarks, Hagee asserted that Adolf Hitler had been sent by God to act as a “hunter,” and force Jews by means of the Holocaust to resettle in Palestine as a means of fulfilling Biblical prophecy. Then-Republican presidential candidate John McCain, who had aggressively courted Hagee’s endorsement, was forced to distance himself from Hagee after those comments resurfaced.”

“After the meeting, Hagee issued an urgent prayer request. ”Our topic of discussion was discussing the forthcoming peace plan concerning Israel. Israel and the Jewish people need our prayers and our advocacy like never before,” Hagee said in a video posted to the CUFI Twitter page soon after the meeting. “The Bible gives the command, ‘For Zion’s sake, I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake, I will not keep my peace.’ I urge you tonight to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”

I won’t embed the Hagee video linked above, as I have such a strong visceral reaction to him after watching him at one of the CUFI Summits years ago in which his microphone was on reverb, in an obvious attempt to make him sound like the Voice of God.

Other headings before she finishes are:

Pence and Pompeo push “holy war” 

Joining forces to target Jerusalem

Whitney Webb is a MintPress News journalist based in Chile. She has contributed to several independent media outlets including Global Research, EcoWatch, the Ron Paul Institute and 21st Century Wire, among others. She has made several radio and television appearances and is the 2019 winner of the Serena Shim Award for Uncompromised Integrity in Journalism.

p>Republish our stories! MintPress News is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 International License

 

I’d like to pause for a moment to express my appreciation to Ms. Webb for this breathtaking in-depth series.  In what could be published as a short book, she’s dug back in history of this movement and related Evangelical preachers influencing past administrations, to bring facts, quotes, dozens of archival photos, maps, and so on. One might call it a labor of love in defense of justice for not only Palestinians, but all Muslims, both secular and religious alike.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………

The following bits are from Part II of her III-Part series.  In Webb’s Part III we learn that Christian Zionism began even before Theodore Herzl.

‘In Israel the Push to Destroy Jerusalem’s Iconic Al-Aqsa Mosque Goes Mainstream;  this ancient site that dates back to the year 705 C.E. is being targeted for destruction by extremist groups that seek to erase Jerusalem’s Muslim heritage in pursuit of colonial ambitions and the fulfillment of end-times prophecy.

by Whitney Webb, June 24, 2019, mintpressnews

“The iconic golden dome of the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque, located on the Temple Mount or Haram el-Sharif, is the third holiest site in Islam and is recognized throughout the world as a symbol of the city of Jerusalem.

Some observers may have noticed the growing effort by some Israeli government and religious officials to remove the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque from the Jerusalem skyline, not only erasing the holy site in official posters, banners and educational material but also physically removing the building itself.

“In the end we’ll build the temple and it will be a house of prayer for all nations,” Glick told Israeli newspaper Maariv in 2012. A year later, Israel’s Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel stated that “[w]e’ve built many little, little temples…but we need to build a real Temple on the Temple Mount.” Ariel stated that the new Jewish Temple must be built on the site where Al-Aqsa currently sits “as it is at the forefront of Jewish salvation.” Since then, prominent Israeli politicians have become more and more overt in their support for the end of Jordanian-Palestinian sovereignty over the mosque compound, leading many prominent Palestinians to warn in recent years of plans to destroy the mosque.”

“When taken together, the threats to Al-Aqsa are clearly revealed to be much greater than the loss of a physical building, though that itself would be a grave loss for the world’s Muslim community, which includes over 1.8 billion people. In addition, the site’s destruction would very likely result in a regional and perhaps even global war with clear religious dimensions.”

Webb’s lengthy historical narrative shows that the plans to eliminate the Al-Aqsa Mosque stretch back to 1836. Later Webb quotes Dr. Ramsy Baroud:

There has been a massive increase in the number of Israeli Jews who force their way into the Al-Aqsa mosque compound to pray and practice various rituals…In 2017 alone, over 25,000 Jews who visited the compound — accompanied by thousands of soldiers and police officers and provoking many clashes that resulted in the death and wounding of many Palestinians. Since 2017, the increase in Jews visiting the compound has been very significant if compared to the previous year when around 14,000 Jews made that same journey.”

 “[The Temple Activist movement] has achieved a great deal in appealing to mainstream Israeli Jewish society in recent years. At one point, it was a marginal movement, but with the rise of the far right in Israel, their ideas and ideologies and religious aspirations have also become part of the Israeli mainstream.”

All of that behavior at the Mosque even though Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss of Neturei Karta, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish group based in New York that opposes Zionism had told Mintpress news (not that I claim to understand it):

There are only a few sins in Judaism — which has many, many laws, that lead to a Jew being cut off from God — and to go up to the Temple Mount is one of them…This is because you need a certain level of holiness to ascend and… the process to attain that level of holiness and purity cannot be done today, because [aspects of and the items required by] the necessary purity rituals no longer exist today.’

And that ‘the prophetic idea of a Third Temple was, prior to Zionism, understood as indicating not a change in physical structures on the Temple Mount, but a metaphysical, spiritual change that would unite all of mankind to worship and serve God in unison.

She chronicles the history of the many attempts to bomb the Mosque to hasten the messianic ‘visions’, the state crackdowns on Palestinians ramping up on the day that Israeli police provided cover for the extremists who’d crashed their way into the Mosque during the final days of Ramadan.  I remember having brought either Tweeted still photos or videos of the hellish pandemonium inside in an earlier diary.  Webb includes a photo of bloody shoes…and footprints.

“Israeli police used pepper spray and rubber bullets to disperse Palestinian worshippers who had gathered at the mosque during one of Islam’s most important holidays while allowing over a thousand Israeli Jews to enter the compound. Forty-five Palestinians were wounded and several were arrested.”

Webb then brings a number of abysmally disgusting quotes from Likud Party officials encouraging even more of the same behavior, as well as one declaring that the Israeli police are in charge of the site, so in effect: f*ck them, who cares?.

“Earlier this month, and not long after Miri Regev’s controversial comments, an event attended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli mayor of Jerusalem, Moshe Leon, used a banner that depicted the Jerusalem skyline with the Dome of the Rock noticeably absent. Though some may write off such creative photo editing as a fluke, it is but the latest in a series of similar incidents where official events or materials have edited out the iconic building and, in some cases, have replaced it with a reconstructed Jewish temple. “ [holding that mocked-up image as they laugh]

‘How the Third Temple Movement in Israel Rebranded Theocracy as “Civil Rights”; the Temple Activist movement is now more mainstream than ever before and its effort to destroy the Al-Aqsa mosque compound, the third holiest site in Islam, has advanced with great rapidity since the year began and has picked up precipitously in recent weeks’, Whitney Webb, July 3, 2019, mintpressnews

“Since its formation, the Temple Institute has created detailed blueprints of its vision for a Third Temple, based partially on the maps first made by Shlomo Goren in 1967, as well as 3-D computer animations and physical models of that Temple. In addition, it has created several artifacts for use in a future temple, including a golden menorah, incense altars, priestly garments and a variety of ritual vessels, among others. The menorah alone is estimated to have cost 5 million NIS (about $1.3 million USD).”

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Jonathan Cook, writing from Nazareth brings this story of a different Evangelical Zionist in his:

How Evangelical Christians risk setting the Middle East on fire; TB Joshua is the latest in a wave of pro-Zionist preachers taking an active interest in Israel – and Palestinians will pay the price’, 8 July 2019, jonathan-cook.net

“The recent arrival of Africa’s most popular televangelist preacher, TB Joshua, to address thousands of foreign pilgrims in Nazareth produced a mix of consternation and anger in the city of Jesus’s childhood.

There was widespread opposition from Nazareth’s political movements, as well as from community groups and church leaders, who called for a boycott of his two rallies. They were joined by the council of muftis, which described the events as “a red line for faith in religious values”.

Joshua’s gatherings, which included public exorcisms, took place in an open-air amphitheatre on a hill above Nazareth that was originally built for papal masses. The site was used by Pope Benedict in 2009.

The Nigerian pastor, who has millions of followers worldwide and calls himself a prophet, aroused local hostility not only because his brand of Christianity strays far from the more traditional doctrines of Middle Eastern churches. He also represents a trend of foreign Christians, driven by apocalyptic readings of the Bible, interfering ever more explicitly in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories – and in ways that directly aid the policies of Israel’s far-right government.

Much-needed tourism boost

Nazareth is the largest of the Palestinian communities in Israel that survived the Nakba, or catastrophe, of 1948, which forced most of the native population out of the bulk of their homeland and replaced it with a Jewish state. Today, one in five Israeli citizens are Palestinian.

The city and its immediate environs include the highest concentration of Palestinian Christians in the region. But it has long suffered from the hostility of Israeli officials, who have starved Nazareth of resources to prevent it from becoming a political, economic or cultural capital for the Palestinian minority.

The city has almost no land for growth or industrial areas to expand its income base, and Israel has tightly constrained its ability to develop a proper tourism industry. Most pilgrims pass through briefly to visit its Basilica of the Annunciation, the site where the angel Gabriel reputedly told Mary she was carrying Jesus.

Nazareth’s municipal officials leapt at the chance to exploit the publicity, and income, provided by Joshua’s visit. The municipality’s longer-term hope is that, if the city can attract even a small proportion of the more than 60 million Christian evangelicals in the US and millions more in Africa and Europe, it will provide an enormous boost to the city’s economy.

Political factions in Nazareth noted Joshua’s “ties to far-right and settlers circles in Israel”. He is reported to have had meetings about opening operations in the Jordan Valley, the reputed site of Jesus’ baptism but also the agricultural backbone of the West Bank. The area is being targeted by the far-right government of Benjamin Netanyahu for settlement expansion and possible annexation, thereby dooming efforts to create a Palestinian state.

A view of Armageddon

During his visits to Israel, Joshua has also enjoyed access to key government figures such as Yariv Levin, a close ally of Netanyahu’s, who has been in charge of two portfolios viewed as critical by the evangelical community: tourism, and the absorption into Israel of new Jewish immigrants from the US and Europe.

Many in the evangelical community, including Joshua, believe it is their duty to encourage Jews to move from their home countries to the Promised Land to bring forward an end-times supposedly prophesied in the Bible.

This is the Rapture, when Jesus returns to build his kingdom on earth and righteous Christians take their place alongside him. Everyone else, including unrepentant Jews, it is implied, will burn in Hell’s eternal fires.

The cliff above the Jezreel Valley where Joshua and his disciples congregated offers views over Tel Megiddo, the modern name of the biblical site of Armageddon, where many evangelicals believe the end of the world will soon happen.”

“Before he entered government, Pompeo was clear about his evangelical beliefs. Back in 2015, he told a congregation: “It is a never-ending struggle … until the Rapture. Be part of it. Be in the fight.”

This past March, he backed the idea that Trump might have been sent by God to save Israel from threats such as Iran. “I am confident that the Lord is at work here,” he told the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Pence, meanwhile, has said: “My passion for Israel springs from my Christian faith … It’s really the greatest privilege of my life to serve as vice-president to a president who cares so deeply for our most cherished ally.”

Sleeping giant awakens

Trump’s relocation last year of the US embassy to Jerusalem, pre-empting any negotiated settlement of the Israel-Palestine conflict, was designed to pander to his Christian Zionist base. Some 80 percent of white evangelicals voted for him in 2016, and he will need their support again in 2020 if he hopes to be re-elected.

Not surprisingly, the new US embassy in Jerusalem was consecrated by two prominent televangelist pastors, John Hagee and Robert Jeffress, known for their fanatical support for Israel – as well as occasional antisemitic outbursts.”

Other headings of Cook’ include:

Closer ties to settlers

Evangelical money pours in

Immune to reason  (a short outtake):

“Western governments typically have more practical and pressing concerns than realising biblical prophecy to justify divide-and-rule policies in the Middle East. Chiefly, they want control over the region’s oil resources, and can secure it only by projecting military power there to prevent rival nations from gaining a foothold.

But the uncritical support of tens of millions of Christians around the world, whose passion for Israel is immune to reason, makes the job of these governments selling wars and resource grabs all the easier.”

Standing against Israel’s enemies  (a brief outtake)

“Seen this way, any enemy Israel claims to have – whether the Palestinians or Iran – automatically becomes the sworn enemy of tens of millions of evangelical Christians.

Netanyahu understands the growing importance of this uncritical overseas lobby as his and Israel’s standing drops precipitously among liberal US Jews, appalled by the rightward lurch of successive governments.”

Cook ends with:

“The truth is that these Christian Zionists view the region through a single, exclusive prism: whatever aids the imminent arrival of the Messiah is welcomed. The only issue is how soon God’s “chosen people” will congregate in the Promised Land.

If the Palestinians stand in Israel’s way, these tens of millions of foreign Christians will be quite happy to see the native population driven out once again – as they were in 1948 and 1967.”

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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k9disc's picture

is in on it too.

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

wendy davis's picture

@k9disc

refresh my mind, please? but 'gog and magog' in general works for me w/ this crew.

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k9disc's picture

back in the 00s.

It was a BIG part of his gut. French PM, IIRC, freaked out about it and thought he was completely looney.

Gog is the place, Magog are "of Gog". When Gog and Magog descend on Jerusalem, it's over. So complete Rapture shit - not my strong suit, although I am interested.

Anyway, I was looking at an old map recently and Gog showed up. North east Asia - just southwest of China. Mongolian, perhaps? Sliding into the Caucuses? Anyway, it was creepy and memorable.

@wendy davis

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

k9disc's picture

Russo-Asian clan to storm Jerusalem.

Although I have heard that the "real" Jerusalem is NOT in the ME. It's in the Gog region... dum dum DUUUHM! lol

Seriously though, history is a mess. As a History major (3 years - no degree - also Marine Science for 3 years, again no degree... but I can surf and scuba dive) I have no faith in what was taught.

@k9disc

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

wendy davis's picture

@k9disc

sounds like a good bet. history keeps getting revised, updated, from the times the 'victors' scribed it, yes?

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@k9disc

Who can make cultural sense out of the Middle East?

Absolutely fucking NOBODY.

So don't blame anybody for not being able to do it.

Dr. Marty Leipzig, PhD Geologist from the old FidoNet HOLYSMOKE Echo, didn't call it "the Muddled Yeast" for nothing!

Wink

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

Pluto's Republic's picture

@thanatokephaloides

I've been trying to pin down the discipline that has given you the rich and embelished perspective and humor that you bring to so many topics, here. Never stop doing that/.

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The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
thanatokephaloides's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Are you an historian, then?

No, just a "history buff" who enjoys reading about our shared past.

I've been trying to pin down the discipline that has given you the rich and embelished perspective and humor that you bring to so many topics, here. Never stop doing that/.

Thank you! Smile

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

k9disc's picture

t writes some bad ass essays as well, but, like me, is focused more on engaging in dialogue rather than starting it; I like that.

It also helps that we see eye to eye on most things, as do we, @Pluto's Republic ...

I often wonder what our backgrounds really are... we're an eclectic crew, and a bunch of us have been conversing for 10+ years. Love to have a beer with a bunch of you cats...

PeacE~

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

thanatokephaloides's picture

@k9disc

thanatokephaloides Is One of My Favorite Commentators.

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

Alligator Ed's picture

@thanatokephaloides Well done, Bro!

Who can make cultural sense out of the Middle East?

Absolutely fucking NOBODY.

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thanatokephaloides's picture

@Alligator Ed

Middle East psychology encapsulated to its core! Well done, Bro!

Wink

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"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

k9disc's picture

ditto

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

wendy davis's picture

@k9disc

ezekiel are lets say...interpreted rather differently as far as to which lands are represented in the story of the wars. : )

but i did score the bush version for you ($1.99; please pay the cashier at the door on your way out) at the guardian, aug. 2009, 'Bush, Gog and Magog' andrew brown

"Just when you thought it couldn't get crazier, a well-sourced story claims Bush invaded Iraq because of Bible prophecies
Here's a story we should all be ashamed of missing: George W Bush attempted to sell the invasion of Iraq to Jacques Chirac using biblical prophecy.

In the winter of 2003, when George Bush and Tony Blair were frantically gathering support for their planned invasion, Professor Thomas Römer, an Old Testament expert at the university of Lausanne, was rung up by the Protestant Federation of France. They asked him to supply them with a summary of the legends surrounding Gog and Magog and as the conversation progressed, he realised that this had originally come, from the highest reaches of the French government.

President Jacques Chirac wanted to know what the hell President Bush had been on about in their last conversation. Bush had then said that when he looked at the Middle East, he saw "Gog and Magog at work" and the biblical prophecies unfolding. But who the hell were Gog and Magog? Neither Chirac nor his office had any idea. But they knew Bush was an evangelical Christian, so they asked the French Federation of Protestants, who in turn asked Professor Römer.

He explained that Gog and Magog were, to use theological jargon, crazy talk. They appear twice in the Old Testament, once as a name, and once in a truly strange prophecy in the book of Ezekiel:

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,
And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal:
And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:
Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:
Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee." and so on.

fun stuff, though, k9disc; thanks.

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k9disc's picture

prophecy. And you might think Biblical Prophecy is the realm of nutters, but it's not "crazy talk". It's Religious prophecy - which is often pretty crazy but a substantial number of people believe in it, and as a result it's got socio-politico-economic juice. It's a real thing.

Freaked me right the hell out when I saw Gog on a 15th or 16th century map.

I'm completely sure we're screwed on the Western Civilization timeline. I have no idea what I KNOW these days as a result.

I think most of the stories are true, but I don't think they're attributed to the correct people in the correct timeline.

It's been a rough year or so on the "what I know" and my political situational awareness front. It seems like the moment the Democrats went McCarthyite Fascist the world came apart at the seams.
@wendy davis

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

k9disc's picture

like in the corporate media, that the Mainstream theologians and historians are wildly off the mark. They're starting from a polluted, machinated starting point. "Winners write the history."

They also erase and pervert it. I think we're looking at a complete bait and switch on historical reality. Sheep and livestock are far too apt descriptions of humans on planet earth.

Let me put it this way. I think Battlestar Gallactica is far closer to the truth than mainstream anthropology, archeology, and paleontology - FAR closer to the truth. "Mainstream" anything is pretty much full of shit or predicated upon shit.

Sorry if this comes out of left field.
@k9disc

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“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

wendy davis's picture

@k9disc

but i guess that what i was implying by 'historical revisionism', but i've really admiring some of the websites and journalists who deconstruct the 'patriotic' (often rubbish) history that we learned in school, i.e., 'Written by the Victors'. too many examples are pinging in my mind, but even now, the US ruling class tells us which tyrants and miscreants should not survive lest... which nations are 'enemies', and they provide justification for war, no matter how facts are tortured and torqued, or simply made up. "North Koreans are one third shorter than South Koreans" sort of stuff. never mind milosevic who died inside the prison at the hague...was posthumously vindicated of war crimes (another of bill clinton's wars), lies about WWII and truman dropping the a-bombs on japan, soviet contributions (and massive civilian deaths) to 'winning' WWII have been airbrushed out of post-modern history, etc.

as for this: 'It seems like the moment the Democrats went McCarthyite Fascist the world came apart at the seams.', i suppose i'd have to say that it was unsurprising, but to me what is surprising is the belief that the Next Gen dems will change/reverse it.

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wendy davis's picture

@k9disc

a place on the map, as per miz webb's exposé, yet has somehow become the term for the apocalypse that will bring the Second Coming. on edit per the OP, not that you'll be back:

"The cliff above the Jezreel Valley where Joshua and his disciples congregated offers views over, the modern name of the biblical site of Armageddon, where many evangelicals believe the end of the world will soon happen."

so....the believers hasten it as they will. yeah, i think it's crazy and dangerous in its political power. but how many wars have been fought over 'religious supremacy'?

i'm trppin' and cart-wheeling thru the crusades, benevolent rule under Saladin, and more...but look at Bibi's tweet at the bottom of the OP. will he begin the bombing war on iran with his 'low yield bunker-busting nukes' at the buechehr power plant? hell, he could do it just because he's in some hot water himself.

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@k9disc @k9disc
thinking, "Religious Prophecy" is definitively crazy talk. There is not -- cannot be -- any kind of talk any crazier.

Yeats -- who was deeply afflicted by magical thinking -- created a character he named "Crazy Jane," who had a very contrary way of looking at the world; a way that was vexing to the local clergy.

Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop

I met the Bishop on the road
And much said he and I.
'Those breasts are flat and fallen now
Those veins must soon be dry;
Live in a heavenly mansion,
Not in some foul sty.'

'Fair and foul are near of kin,
And fair needs foul,' I cried.
'My friends are gone, but that's a truth
Nor grave nor bed denied,
Learned in bodily lowliness
And in the heart's pride.

'A woman can be proud and stiff
When on love intent;
But Love has pitched his mansion in
The place of excrement;
For nothing can be sole or whole
That has not been rent.'

(sounds like Crazy Jane knew something of Macbeth, I think)

Crazy Jane on the Day of Judgment

'Love is all
Unsatisfied
That cannot take the whole
Body and soul';
And that is what Jane said.

'Take the sour
If you take me
I can scoff and lour
And scold for an hour.'
'That's certainly the case,' said he.

'Naked I lay,
The grass my bed;
Naked and hidden away,
That black day';
And that is what Jane said.

'What can be shown?
What true love be?
All could be known or shown
If Time were but gone.'
'That's certainly the case,' said he.

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3 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

k9disc's picture

and institutions are involved and BELIEVE this shit.

That makes it FAR different from "crazy talk". It is bonkers, the topic IS crazy, and I think the people who ascribe to it are crazy - but it's not just crazy talk. It has value to hundreds of millions of humans and, most likely trillions (or hundreds of trillions) in Swiss and other "off book" banks. Writing it off as crazy talk is missing the magic that creates our reality. (again with the Suskind article...)

A number of powerful people have been grooming that shit for centuries, and to dismiss it as "religious nonsense" is, IMHO, irresponsible - just as irresponsible as ignoring Dominionists or "following the money", because "that shit's crazy!".

Just a heads up. I think Dominionism/Theocracy, Mammon, and religious prophecy are all peas in a pod. They track together and are likely the perverse hegemony we've existed under since the Dark Ages. The new upgrade due to the growing pains of the Industrial Revolution is just a moment's respite - a welcome breath between painful contractions.

@UntimelyRippd

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5 users have voted.

“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

@k9disc
"crazy talk" to only instance of delusional gibberish that have no manifest power over anything other than the babbler's own state of mind and the listener's immediate sense of social discomfort, then go right ahead.

However, my definition of crazy talk includes the delusional gibberish that has slaughtered hundreds of millions of humans over the centuries, whether that delusional gibberish is "religious prophecy" or "imperialist nationalism" or "patriotic fervor" (think: 1914), or whatever. That's my understanding, and there's no point whatsoever in your gainsaying it, because you have no particular reason to exclude those kinds of delusional gibberish from the definition, you just decided to do so. Which you're free to do. I can't think, however, why it's of any importance to you to argue with someone who uses the phrase outside of the arbitrary, personal constraints you've placed on it.

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3 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

k9disc's picture

gave Chirac?

"It's just crazy talk..."

I'm not ok with that answer. It's not a complete answer. It allows the true asshattery (or evil, take your pick) to go unnoticed.

Knowing about religious prophecy should be a pre-requisite for any competence in the ME and much of geopolitics. Dismissing shit like this, or reporting on it to the PM or the public as "religious nonsense" or "crazy talk" is a problem. It discounts and hides it's power. It also hides the evil bastards who traffic in it and work hard to bring it to fruition.

I do understand what you are trying to say, and largely agree with you. The only difference is that I don't dismiss knowing about it or trying to understand it and deal with it.

If that dude really advised Chirac that it was "nonsense" he did a great disservice to a head of state. I completely dismissed that shit based upon that reportage back in the day, and that was a mistake.

I have to say, when I saw Gog on an old map, I nearly shat my pants. The whole prophecy revolves around Turkey too, and Erdogan is a history chasing maniac.

Knowing and understanding religious belief and prophecy is a key to situational awareness in the ME and to a lesser extent global politics. It's a huge gap in the science minded athiests' grasp on reality. I say that as a former science minded agnostic. Still agnostic, but not so science minded. I see modern science as a replacement for the cultural and social hegemony of the church.

Peace~

@UntimelyRippd

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3 users have voted.

“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

@k9disc @k9disc @k9disc
and it is not going to be conciliatory, nor a concession in the slightest degree.

A. The quoted article doesn't say "just" crazy talk. It says, "were, to use theological jargon, crazy talk." You are the person who applied your own pejorative sense of the characterization "crazy talk" as something not only dismissive, but dismissive in a way not requiring that it be taken seriously. That's your own interpretation, and nobody else's but yours (at least, nobody else in this conversation.). You have no way of knowing, and no good reason for thinking, that the french scholar didn't mean, by his characterization, "dangerously cuckoo fucking bananas -- these guys are a bunch of nutcases."

B. The phrase itself is coming from the Guardian reporter. It isn't a direct quote. The odds are that the academic didn't even answer in English, though it's possible -- and it's even possible that he answered with the colloquial English expression, "crazy talk". However, the article itself never says that's the case.

You're getting very, very exercised here over nothing at all. You're assuming that the French guys just made that little "puh" sound, rolled their eyes, and sexted their mistresses, when for all you know, they shook their heads in disbelief, asked each other whether the President of the US was in fact a raving religious loony, and set about trying to navigate some sort of safe diplomatic course with that horrifying understanding. You simply don't know, yet you're adamant in your distress.

up
2 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

k9disc's picture

I know how I took the original statement 13 or 14 years ago, and I know how you took my words here. I can read the exchange just fine.

I happen to have a new interest in things like these, and am no longer immediately dismissive of them. Have a nice evening.

@UntimelyRippd

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3 users have voted.

“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” ~ Sun Tzu

@k9disc
angry.

i have never taken these things lightly. they've scared the hell out of me, probably from the first time i read a comic book or something that mentioned sacrificing people to volcanoes. it blows my mind that somehow, despite the intellectual revolution of the 20th century, our civilization is still in thrall to these psychopathic fantasies.

up
1 user has voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

boriscleto's picture

This is the Al-Aqsa Mosque...

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" In the beginning, the universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry, and is generally considered to have been a bad move. -- Douglas Adams, The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy "

wendy davis's picture

@boriscleto

i pretty much went w/ the image whitney webb had used, and had found in bingled images, although a couple look like your photo.

the wiki on dome of rock shows it like this, so i'm a bit at a loss.

hope you found the diary interesting, in any event.

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5 users have voted.
Deja's picture

I ran across a YouTube video that is long and difficult to watch because of the commentator's difficulty with reading aloud, but there are clips within it showing people in both of the "end times" groups in this essay. Disturbing would be a good word to describe it.

I commented a while back (Feb) about it here: https://caucus99percent.com/comment/400494#comment-400494

Here's the video. Disclaimer: there's a stretch where he talks about hidden symbolism in Game of Thrones. I skipped ahead because I've never seen GoT as it's called, and always sucked at literary symbolism, so there's that.

.
Edit add: Somewhat of a timeline so you don't have to watch the whole thing. Times are approximate.

3:50-4:50 Christian Zionists talk about the dome being destroyed -- maybe Iran will accidentally blow it up or earthquakes.

6:55 Boys in classroom are asked about Arabs/Secular Jews and Jerusalem in 10 yrs.

12:03-13:19 Bibi in 1990 speaks with "the rebby" who's like the pope according to guy making the YouTube video. Bibi told he's not bringing the messiah fast enough.

16:53-20:16 US Res 104 in 1991 and extra rights for Jews according to Noahide laws.

36:49-37:52 Bibi on Bill Maher. Bill talking about Christian Zionists.

38:57-40:53 Bibi at US Embassy in Jerusalem opening speech. Stupid repeats but still creepy imo.

43:00-45:45 Goyim stuff pulled from various online sources. Some Jews questioning the morality.

45:46-46:28 2 Jewish men filmed discussing how many slaves they'll have after their messiah shows up, but until then, we build their cars and houses for them????

After that he discusses how he's been called anti-semetic for reading mainstream sources to his audience, is named in a Huffpo piece, attacked by ADL and when he tried to respond to the ADL attack in a video, his video was pulled from YouTube. I think he also points out how 2 Jewish orgs are in charge of online hate speech censoring (could be elsewhere in the video).

Rabbit hole!

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wendy davis's picture

@Deja

on that thread. how do you link to a comment, anyhoo? but ach, i'm so sorry, but a 54 minute video is too long for me...anything over 15 minutes i require a transcript so i can buzz thru it. but others may love to watch, so there's that.
; )

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis

“When taken together, the threats to Al-Aqsa are clearly revealed to be much greater than the loss of a physical building, though that itself would be a grave loss for the world’s Muslim community, which includes over 1.8 billion people. In addition, the site’s destruction would very likely result in a regional and perhaps even global war with clear religious dimensions.”

Sincere thanks for digging so deeply into your work, as you do for almost all your essays and comments. A comment here, not a criticism: your work is so all-encompassing that minds such as mine have difficulty taking it all in.

So, the above quote from your essay is the main take-away for me: End Times For Sure when the Christian Zealots, allied with Christian Zionists gets into to political power in Amerika. The thought is horrifying beyond any comprehension FUBAR.

What say you? Inquiring gators want to know.

The below drawing is sized in accordance with one of your comments---see! I remember. It is 450 wide. Right?

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

is that they pollinate as they draw nectar, and in that case they do sit still. that upside-down bowl flower is sea mist, one of my faves, for cut flowers as well. they're said to require milkweed pollen to make their caterpillars, but although two have flown thru here briefly this summer, neither stopped for a tickle at sea mists nor milkweeds, nor had the two swallowtails who'd zipped across our (now wee) garden.

i appreciate your appreciation, gator, although now i mainly do copy/paste of others' work. but you may laugh when i say that i'd actually begun all this with part I,I,III in order, rewriting, decoding, all that...when it finally dawned on me that Part III was the main big deal, and exemplified the title. ergo: i was relieved to find that it was all labeled CC, and i could tear up what i'd written...and start over...legitimately w/ copy/paste.

i did mention it was a long un, and folks could skip reading between the dotted lines if they chose, although being the swamp critter you be, you'd prolly read it as permission to: 'color outside the lines', eh wot? ; )

and yes, i aggree completely with your takeway/s, and how cool that you've down-sized your image, too. bless yer heart, amigo.

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis For anatomical reasons. I can only manipulate a crayon. For this reason and lacking a fine-motor coordination center in my reptilian cerebrum. Thus, the proverbial scribble. Hard to stay within the boundaries.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

wide grin.

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Deja's picture

@wendy davis @wendy davis
Each comment title/subject line creates a link, so on mobile you press and hold the title and choices pop up. Choose copy link, then paste elsewhere. Desktop users should be able to right click the title and do same. I've no idea on Apple devices unless it's same as mobile.

If I were to give you times in the video to skip to, to say, the footage of the school boys (do girls have school like this too?) being asked about we goyim, and how they said we'd either be killed or enslaved after the temple is built? They were asked about Muslim boys too iirc. Or the parts where fringe Christians say the dome's gotta go, and some high ranking Jewish religious leader says, to a much younger Bibi, he's not getting the temple built fast enough?

Think I'll do it just because the commentator seems pretty fringe himself and I can skip past those parts, not to mention how he reads aloud is so distracting.

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1 user has voted.
wendy davis's picture

@Deja

on comment urls; it worked! here's a hint for you: each time you edit a comment, it adds @s above the text. if you delete all but the first one, then hit enter to make more space below your comment text, it reads much more easily.

if you choose to take on such a chore, i'll try (but can't promise) to follow your instructions on chore breaks, but i have so many today that i'm trying not to panic, but breathe... processing, then blanching 3 gallons of fresh basil will be the most time-consuming, but there are so many other similar must-do-now chores callin' my name. ; )

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wendy davis's picture

@Deja

i did watch 7 or 8 of the clips, but one take-away is that bill maher is as much of a pig as bibi: 'when jesus comes again he'll kill all the jews', OMG!

the second is that if you'd noticed even the titles of webb's Parts I and II, yes, this has all been going [on edit: Evangelical zionism came] before theodore herzel had even written about a jewish homeland in historical palestine in the mid-19th century, iirc, so of course many of the children are indoctrinated in that fashion.

third is that a 'rebbe' is a 'rabbi', a teacher, a scholar, and that was only one. yes, he was toxic and in a hurry, but in one part webb had spoken of an ulttra-orthdoxic rabbi who'd told her:

"...the prophetic idea of a Third Temple was, prior to Zionism, understood as indicating not a change in physical structures on the Temple Mount, but a metaphysical, spiritual change that would unite all of mankind to worship and serve God in unison."

but i'll add that i'd initially put in a tweet of bibi's that linked to a JP piece titled close to: 'christians helping fight anti-semitism' (forcing anti-BDS laws in amerika), but it flipped out my laptop and sent out sirens, warnings...so i did manage to get my laptop shutdown w/difficulty and removed the tweet.

added later: the videos on 'we'll make the our slaves' was new and horrid.

but of course being anti-zionst is anti-semetic! look at what's been happening to corbyn and labour in the UK! a good man left the café a few years ago after i'd asked why he was leaving firedoglake. 'was it over zionism?' i'd asked, proving to him that was an anti-semite. okay. but just using that word proved it to him. how do you prove a negative? it's not possible.

another jewish blogging ally did something similar later, and thank the gods i hadn't taken him up on transferring what he gave annually to FDL to fund the café, eh? but ye gods and little fishes, what a touchy subject for so many folks. and yes, there have been decided anti-semites who'd come to the café to comment, and boy, howdy, did i show then the door. in fact, one ma just today showed me a piece at what was perhaps his website, perhaps not...but i did remind him that not all jews support likud nor zionism, gave him a few demonstrative links, etc.

another commenter today had noted that too many jews have orgotten their own history (the warsaw ghetto, and so on, so i said aha! peter paul & mary tried so hard to issue that same clarion call so long ago.

light one candle
for the wisdom to know
when the peacemaker’s time is at hand
light one candle for the strength that we need
to never become our own foe….

thanks for your efforts, deja; i know we all appreciated it. ; )

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Do you take MasterCard?

I feel I owe you for a useful education. I can now confidently make small talk about the Rapture, should I find myself in a hospitality suite at a convention for elite Evangelicals. What's disturbing is picturing the current foreign relations authorities of the United States doing the same thing.

Actually, I'm pretty conversant on the psychocultural distortions of mind that must be maintained to fully assimilate the Rapture, while also holding a day job. The Evangelicals are neck and neck with the Mormons, these days, in the fine art of suspending disbelief. And there is a race, after all. As I recall, however, the goal posts have been moved. The Second Coming is being held in Independence, Missouri rather than Israel. An olympic-sized stadium is being built. I'm told all of that is true, but there is a persistent rumor that Jesus is bringing along his three wives.

I'm reallly glad I had the time to delve into your essay. Thanks.

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7 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
wendy davis's picture

@Pluto's Republic

i'd forgotten joseph smith's golden tablets and mormon eschatology, and we live in a mormon- settled canyon (they can make water run uphill, as we say around these parts)! now my mind is swirling with images, including the mountain meadow massacres bu mormons (i done cheated, and had mr. wd bingle it while i sponged out my crap eyes out with water again), only way for unmarried women folk to get into hebben is to sit on god's knee is to convert already dead people to mormonism, they own coca cola co. now, so the faithful can drink the swill now, 'qutting the LDS churh is all but impossible, and i dunno what all. so your additions to my memory hole are well done.

'The Second Coming is being held in Independence, Missouri rather than Israel. An olympic-sized stadium is being built. I'm told all of that is true, but there is a persistent rumor that Jesus is bringing along his three wives.'

which reminds me that mega-polygamst warren jeffs, whose name you'll recognize, bought a spread just north of here. at the time, i'd put a notice up at the local grocery store with my phone number for any of the teen 'brides' to call me if they needed to be...extricated.

yeppers: long ago i'd put the only bumper sticker i ever had on an ancient datsun i drove: COME THE RAPTURE...CAN I HAVE YOUR CAR?

oh, the fundies would wait for me in parking. 'no, you don't get it! i'm just saying that i'm not gawdly enuff to rise with y'all!' but with this admin, the fundie evangelical zionists rule policy.

nah, since you loved it, no charges, pluto. i'm so pleased you had the time and dedication to read it (i'd considered it to be a bit of a waste of space given: electoral arguing and all.that.jazz.

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis

yeppers: long ago i'd put the only bumper sticker i ever had on an ancient datsun i drove: COME THE RAPTURE...CAN I HAVE YOUR CAR?

oh, the fundies would wait for me in parking. 'no, you don't get it! i'm just saying that i'm not gawdly enuff to rise with y'all!' but with this admin, the fundie evangelical zionists rule policy.

Chutzpah 30+ years ago. Go, gal! Would not like to have any religious debates with you, not that my agnostic soul would care about such in the least.

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4 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

to actually debate the religious as a total waste of time, but i have indeed pushed back on some by way of 'non-violent questioning'. as it turned out, i married into a family of fundie Xianists, and was catechized early on to hush.my.mouth. come to that, my odious sister changed protestant sects as often as she bought new cars: often, then disavowed her previous beliefs and religious rants

but one local, and known to me, fundie wanted to 'discuss' my bumper sticker, i said no thank you, which riled him to no end. now this is at a as station, i've paid, and need get on my way. "wait! you claim to admire Tolerance, and won't give me fifteen minutes to (whatever)?"

on a related note, and please consider this is a half-baked thought, but watching some of the recent rather heated discussions here over (roughly) cynical 'giving up' v. Hope, it occurred to me how often 'hope' became 'belief', and that belief in some candidates and elected officials stretched almost into religious fervor for so many. On edit: i could easily expand on the quasi-religious fervor, but for many: 'facts be damned, i believe!' or 'those facts don't really matter; he/she had to vote that way, you purist'.

me, i'm not even an agnostic, just an apatheist in the vein of iris dement.

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis That's why we had Obummer. And then reality reared its ugly heads. Sold down the swamp I say. Nice song too.

Your neologism is beautiful--Apatheist = apathetic theist. Sounds like your sister couldn't find a church with enough comfortable pews--or--fire and brimstone. Did she try Falwell?

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

more like i'm not even interested in deciding if i believe, if i'm an agnostic, an atheist...wot? i'm gonna live my life differently if i believe there's one god ruling?

no, my sister wasn't a fundie, although i've long forgotten which 'brands' of churches she and her hubbie had joined. but one fundie nephew by marriage taught at a southern reconstructionist (flags and all) college in idaho whose name i've forgotten; the college kinda bought up the whole little town for their own use. back in the day i'd posted about it, but it was so fucking racist that i finally emailed him that he was No Longer welcome in our home.

we have an adopted black/azteca son, and a Ute indian adopted daughter, who wanted an asshole like that in our midst? i think he married a daughter of one of the Naval Commanders that was tied to the place. that nephew's mother believe that our daughter's problems (she'd been brutally abused, we took her as a foster kid at six months old), were down to her birth mother having practiced..wait for it...witchcraft. so they'd send us those 'doctor' james dobson books advising that parents educate their 'strong-willed chirren' by hitting them with a stick, which was important so the kid knew it wasn't the parent, but the stick, that was punishing them.

one christmas i told mr. wd we should send them a fooking ouija board for a gift. ; )

ping: i found the dude bingling. doug wilson, moscow, idaho. (not homework, just glad i found it.)

yeah, save me from most of the religious. sigh.

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3 users have voted.

@Pluto's Republic
Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

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1 user has voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

Pluto's Republic's picture

@UntimelyRippd

One must consider that Yeats was dreaming the old patterns that our fears compel us follow for yet another cycle. The waste of it all. Americans are currently locked into fighting the ancient battle of the Desert Religions, where the next empires will fall. They use their daily labor and reduced circumstances to pay for the continuing battle, which promises to quicken the Return of their Deity. But it is never enough, so they borrow against the labor of their unborn descendants, enslaving them forever to the evil cycles of the Desert Religions. And so forth.

America is the modern plantation that provides the money, the soldiers, the weapons, and the sacrifices to continue the battle of the Desert Religions down through the generations, until one day their God finally returns to punish their enemies.

At this elevation, the falcon has forgotten all the falconer's lies about freedom.
The the broader perspective provides the vision to escape the gyre.
She will not look back.

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3 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
wendy davis's picture

i know most folks here are night-owls, but me...i'm an early morning meadowlark, and with a hegg-ache to boot.

i know this isn't the metaphor that the song was about, but all day i've been hearing this song in my mind, imagining that the white bird is a peace dove:

'White bird must fly
Or she will die...'

g' night, sleep well. will the dove of peace ever fly?

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4 users have voted.

write all this. With Pompeo and team basing our foreign policy in the Middle East on beyond delusional thinking should be scaring the hell out of all the American people, and yet few have heard of this. I've been involved with separation of church and state groups for over 20 years, and these groups saw Hagee coming into power for a long time.

My spouse and I rented a cabin on a mountain above Gardiner MT. The cabin was nice, but full of God and Jesus stuff. When we went over to the main house for dinner (we were the only guests), the hostess had the TV tuned to Hagee (she was a big fan). Hagee was standing on some hill near Jerusalem and saying that it was the exact spot where a big gate would appear that Jesus would walk through to start the Second Coming.

We only stayed one night.

These people surrounding Trump are certifiable Christian lunatics and they are powerful. This combo has never boded well for a nation in the history of the world. The faster this country becomes more atheistic, the better off we will be. It will bring balance to the political world, and maybe even save this country from its black hole Christians.

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1 user has voted.

"Without the right to offend, freedom of speech does not exist." Taslima Nasrin

wendy davis's picture

@Fishtroller 02

but as i laughed about above: in the end i'd copy/pasted Part III altogether, after re-writing/translating Parts I and II. whiteny webb blew me away on this series, though, and i hope you can take the time to even look at the vintages images in those parts.

myself, i'd use 'fundie Christianists' in this case, but i do take your meaning. and as per whitney webb he was likely standing near or below:

"Tel Megiddo, the cliff above the Jezreel Valley where Joshua and his disciples congregated offers views over, the modern name of the biblical site of Armageddon, where many evangelicals believe the end of the world will soon happen."

i don't mind the casually religious, but i do sincerely mind those who foist their beliefs on us, including by law. (anti-abortionists, anti-BDS israel, zionists whether likud or fundie Christianist Billy graham, jerry falwell, et.al.: they can kiss my grits.

but hagee, oh hagee... i can't even look at him by now. sorry to hear you were kinda forced to.

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