Sunday, August 17, 2014

Bishop of Leeds accuses Cameron of turning his back Iraqi Christians


It hasn't been for the want of trying. Numerous blog posts have been written, emails and DMs exchanged, and meeting with senior ministers held. This blog has been at the forefront. But still the Government refused to see what just about every Christian in the country had eyes to see: that David Cameron said nothing and did even less while tens of thousands of Iraq's Christians were summarily slaughtered or driven from their ancient homelands. But the moment the Yazidis were stranded up Mt Sinjar, the Prime Minister was convening his Cobra emergency committee and announcing to the world that Britain would play a leading role in their rescue and relief. We even sent the SAS.

What is this incoherent foreign policy? Who determines this hierarchy of suffering?

It is as though the Government couldn't give a damn about Iraqi Christians. But the Yazidis are a syncretic Zoroastrian tribe. They are mysterious and cool, and there is kudos to be had in saving the exotic minority. The Christians are knowable and familiar. And therein lies the contempt.

So today's headlines are wholly justified: "Church launches bitter attack on PM's 'incoherent' Middle East policy'. The story has been picked up by the BBC, ITV and Sky, and is slowly reverberating around the world. Here is the incisive letter dispatched to the Prime Minister by the Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Rev'd Nick Baines. Please note that it was sent in the full knowledge and approval of the Archbishop of Canterbury:  
Dear Prime Minister,

Iraq and the Islamic State

I am conscious of the speed at which events are moving in Iraq and Syria, and write recognising the complexity and interconnectedness of the challenges faced by the international community in responding to the crises in Syria and Iraq.

However, in common with many bishops and other correspondents here in the UK, I remain very concerned about the Government’s response to several issues. I write with the support of the Archbishop of Canterbury to put these questions to you.

1. It appears that, in common with the United States and other partners, the UK is responding to events in a reactive way, and it is difficult to discern the strategic intentions behind this approach. Please can you tell me what is the overall strategy that holds together the UK Government’s response to both the humanitarian situation and what IS is actually doing in Syria and Iraq? Behind this question is the serious concern that we do not seem to have a coherent or comprehensive approach to Islamist extremism as it is developing across the globe. Islamic State, Boko Haram and other groups represent particular manifestations of a global phenomenon, and it is not clear what our broader global strategy is – particularly insofar as the military, political, economic and humanitarian demands interconnect. The Church internationally must be a primary partner in addressing this complexity.

2. The focus by both politicians and media on the plight of the Yezidis has been notable and admirable. However, there has been increasing silence about the plight of tens of thousands of Christians who have been displaced, driven from cities and homelands, and who face a bleak future. Despite appalling persecution, they seem to have fallen from consciousness, and I wonder why. Does your Government have a coherent response to the plight of these huge numbers of Christians whose plight appears to be less regarded than that of others? Or are we simply reacting to the loudest media voice at any particular time?

3. As yet, there appears to have been no response to pleas for asylum provision to be made for those Christians (and other minorities) needing sanctuary from Iraq in the UK. I recognise that we do not wish to encourage Christians or other displaced and suffering people to leave their homeland – the consequences for those cultures and nations would be extremely detrimental at every level – but for some of them this will be the only recourse. The French and German governments have already made provision, but there has so far been only silence from the UK Government. Therefore, I ask for a response to the question of whether there is any intention to offer asylum to Iraqi migrants (as part of a holistic strategy to addressing the challenges of Iraq)?

4. Following on from this, I note that the Bishop of Coventry tabled a series of questions to HM Government in the House of Lords on Monday 28 July. All but two were answered on Monday 11 August. The outstanding questions included the following: “The Lord Bishop of Coventry to ask Her Majesty’s Government what consideration they have given to resettling here in the UK a fair proportion of those displaced from ISIS controlled areas of Northern Iraq.” I would be grateful to know why this question has not so far been answered – something that causes me and colleagues some concern.

5. Underlying these concerns is the need for reassurance that a commitment to religious freedom will remain a priority for the Government, given the departure of ministers who championed this. Will the Foreign Secretary's Human Rights Advisory Panel continue under the new Foreign Secretary? Is this not the time to appoint an Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom – which would demonstrate the Government’s serious commitment to developing an overarching strategy (backed by expertise) against Islamist extremism and violence?

I look forward to your considered response to these pressing questions.

Yours sincerely,

The Rt Revd Nicholas Baines
The Bishop of Leeds
"Or are we simply reacting to the loudest media voice at any particular time?" the bishop asks. Of course, we all know the answer to this. Most of the mainstream media segued straight from Gaza to Mt Sinjar; from bombed-out Palestinians to the massacre of Yazidis. They said little, if anything, about Mosul, and one doubts they have ever heard of Qaraqosh. The Government tends to react to the obsessive minority passions of the BBC, Guardian and Jon Snow, all of whom manifest a pathological anti-Christian bias, born of theological ignorance and spiritual indifference.

But to say that the Government's policy in Iraq is incoherent, ill-thought-through and determined by "the loudest media voice at any particular time" is brave, coming from a bishop. No doubt some will raise a highly-polished mirror, point the finger and cry "hypocrite!", reminding us that the Church is mired in its own inconsistencies, confusions and contradictions. And perhaps there is in the Church's own muddles and murkiness a temporal reflection at the heart of the State. But this is not a time for divisive diatribes of denunciation. Christians are dying in their thousands. even now, in the relative safety of their Kurdish camps, where they sweat in their fevers and faint from thirst and malnutrition.

And David Cameron stands accused by a senior bishop of the Church of England of abandoning them. And that accusation is justified, because the Yazidis have consistently taken political precedence. The Government has created a hierarchy of suffering in which 30,000 Yazidis trapped on Mount Sinjar trumps 100,000 Christians fleeing the murderous Jihadists who invaded Mosul and Qaraqosh. For Cameron and his Government, the Christians have indeed "fallen from consciousness".

There has been no response to the bishops' plea that we open our borders to asylum seekers. France and Germany are offering sanctuary, but the Bishops of Leeds, Manchester and Worcester haven't even received an acknowledgement of their letter. Bishop Nick says this is "something that causes me and colleagues some concern". Frankly, it causes His Grace consternation, disillusionment and dismay. Christians are being crucified in Iraq, and the Prime Minister can't even be bothered to convene a committee.

At least Baroness Warsi managed to do that.

120 Comments:

Blogger carl jacobs said...

Gov'ts are reacting because they have no ability to act. They are not offering a coherent strategy because there isn't a coherent strategy that is politically viable. This letter is long on general demands to do something, but decidedly short on specifics - other than providing refuge. That's not a coherent response by itself and it is also not politically sustainable. The gov't knows this. The number of refugees that could actually be admitted is pretty small and would amount to tokenism. That's not to say it shouldn't be done. It's just to admit it isn't going to make an appreciable dent in the problem. That's why it is not a coherent response in and of itself.

There is also the practical problem of precedent. The world is full of potential refugees. There is no capacity to receive an unending stream. So how does the gov't triage? Every interest group will demand equivalent treatment. The gov't knows this as well. It's between a real rock and decidedly hard place. So it reacts to images and hopes to wait out the population. Because it knows that the same population that is so exercised at present will turn as soon as the cost is apparent.

Any coherent strategy begins with soldiers. Without soldiers there is no coherent strategy. However, those calling for a coherent response are tacitly excluding the possibility of soldiers. The gov't knows this as well. So what are people actually demanding? "Do something to fix this situation but don't do anything that would actually cost us. And certainly no soldiers. But ... do something. That's what you are paid for!"

The govt doesn't have a clue what to do. You can't make it find a non-existent solution no matter how loud you yell at it.

carl

17 August 2014 03:05  
Blogger LibertyPhile said...

If you want to be even more worried read this extract from the Guardian article linked to above. It is a quote from a former head of MI6. He seems to think there is a moral equivalence between us and our enemies. What is going on is terrible but we are just as much to blame as them! So we sit on our hands!!!

"Barrett, who spent more than a decade tracking the Taliban for the UN, said the attacks on Isis "feed the narrative that America, the west, is part of the problem". He added: "If the west is part of the problem, then the question is: 'Why don't you attack the west right now?' There's a definite possible downside that action by the US, particularly if it's prolonged, could lead the al-Qaida guys and the Islamic State guys to say: 'OK, let's get back together and do this'."

.... Barrett said the west also needed to confront the dilemma that, even if Isis were defeated on the battlefield, significant problems would lie in store. "They have their own territory to defend now. Even so, they are not going to all die on the battlefield; the many thousands of foreigners ... will go back home if they are defeated with a strong sense of injustice and a strong motivation to carry on the fight. Of course, if they are not defeated, then they will want to spread their rule into their homelands anyway. You sort of lose either way.""

17 August 2014 07:12  
Blogger Martin said...

It's hardly surprising that the Prime Minister isn't that interested in foreign Christians when he ignores Christians in his own country.

Maybe Nick Baines should have been more forceful over fake marriage and the comments on extremism by the Education Secretary Nicky Morgan if he wanted the PM to hear him on other matters.

I'm afraid the bishops of the CoE are reaping the results of their liberal woolimindedness.

17 August 2014 08:37  
Blogger Ivan said...

Mere indifference towards Christians would be tolerable. One has to face the fact that Cameron is reliably an anti - Christian.

17 August 2014 09:02  
Blogger bluedog said...

Your Grace, the crisis in northern Iraq is a direct challenge to the ethos of multiculturalism, in which Cameron still appears to believe. And he is not alone.

One can imagine the debate in Number 10, with the dreadful realisation that offering sanctuary to the Iraqi Christians implicitly means discriminating against non-Christians. With a General Election just nine months away, how would such favouritism go down with the Muslim voters? Even worse, there could be defence contracts that may be jeopardised if Britain appears to be religiously partisan.

One can see a terrible and very cynical logic running through Cameron's mind, which suggests the Iraqi Christian may die so that his government may live.

Principle be damned.

17 August 2014 09:13  
Blogger seanrobsville said...

The plight of the Yazidis is worse than that of the Christians because as 'Mushriks'(non-Abrahamics) the Yazidis must be exterminated under Sharia law.

However the Chrisitians are 'people of the book', and are allowed to live under Sharia provided they surrender most of their property (Jizya) to the Muslims

17 August 2014 09:20  
Blogger Roy said...

As I pointed out in a comment on one of His Grace's earlier articles on persecution of Christians in the Middle East David Cameron has threatened to cut off foreign aid to countries like Uganda where gays are persecuted. He even sent an envoy to Poland, to speak up for gays - why not Saudi Arabia instead?

There is nothing wrong with complaining to the Ugandan government about anti-gay laws but the fact that Cameron also sent an envoy to Poland does suggest that he had at least one eye on British voters.

Even if his actions were completely sincere the contrast with the vastly (I almost wrote "infinitely" but retained from doing so because that is not necessarily literally true) more serious plight of Christians in Iraq does suggest that there is something extremely seriously wrong with his judgement on a matter where the distinction between right and wrong is crystal clear.

17 August 2014 09:41  
Blogger Roy said...

seanrobsville said...

The plight of the Yazidis is worse than that of the Christians because as 'Mushriks'(non-Abrahamics) the Yazidis must be exterminated under Sharia law.

That might be true in theory, but is it true in practice? Furthermore, what if IS terrorists thought the definition of "property" included attractive young women?

17 August 2014 09:47  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I see Cameron has spoken up in the Sunday Telegraph:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iraq/11039214/PM-Our-generational-struggle-against-a-poisonous-ideology.html

Goodness knows what he means though. Military prowess but no troops? Is he suggesting we sell arms, knowledge, and training to Iraq etc instead?

17 August 2014 09:58  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

The elephant in the room is Islamic Expansionism.

In a Democracy, a cohesive strategy does not being with soldiers. I begins with politicians identifying the target and establishing the aims,objectives for resolution of the threat.

What the world is in fear of is placing Islam in the Dock - and what to do when they find it guilty as charged.



17 August 2014 10:28  
Blogger 45minutewarning said...

Well said YG. There is a sense that the media finds it difficult to even say the word "Christian", let alone speak out for them. It makes them unconfortable to refer to Christianity because it does not sit comfortably with the athesitic notion that religion, especially Christian, is to be despised as nothing more than a pernicious myth. I would even dare to suggest that some of the fanatical atheists would be glad to see Christians persecuted.

Our PM is of course a hypocrite when he talks of his Christian credentials. His modus operandi revolves around empty rhetoric coupled with inaction. He is a paper tiger, a man of no substance. By the time Cameron and other politicians get their act together (if they ever will), every Christian in Iraq will be either dead or displaced.

As to the CofE, it is reassuring to see some of them coming out of the woodwork and speaking blunt truth to politicians. It is appalling that the bishop has not had his letter acknowledged by the PM. but what do you expect from a PM with a dormant conscience?

17 August 2014 11:11  
Blogger bluedog said...

Exactly right, Mr Dreadnaught @ 10.28, and it will make for unaccustomed bedfellows.

If there is one issue that can potentially unite the five nations that are permanent members of the UN Security Council, it is Islamic State. Two members, China and Russia, are likely to be less forgiving in their approach than Britain, France and the US.

China may even come to regret giving nuclear secrets to Pakistan. Certainly the existence of one Muslim atomic weapons power is going to harden opinion about the possibility of a second, Iran. One Sunni, the other Shia, now where could that lead?

17 August 2014 11:19  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

45minutewarning: "I would even dare to suggest that some of the fanatical atheists would be glad to see Christians persecuted."

Evidence?

17 August 2014 11:21  
Blogger 45minutewarning said...

Danj0

How about North Korea and the old Soviet Union for starters?

17 August 2014 11:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

45minutewarning: "How about North Korea and the old Soviet Union for starters?"

Ofgs.

17 August 2014 11:39  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

The Yazidis. You see Cranmer, unlike ten a penny Christians, it’s these people’s exoticness that will save most of their hides. What a delightfully primitive belief system they have. Of course, in reality they’re much like any other Arab and you wouldn’t want to be downwind of them. But the important thing is that they are NOT mere Christians. Most definitely not.

You see the same with the Giant Panda. A fairly useless and fussy animal that has millions spent on it in a largely futile attempt to bring their unwilling genitals together so that we may spend millions more on their rare offspring. Of course, the Giant Panda has the macabre benefit of looking like a three year olds stuffed toy that’s come to life. No one can accuse the Arabs of any cute factor.

Incidentally, you do realise a couple of hundred Arab gays stuck up a mountain in fear of their lives would illicit the same Western response. Of course you do !

17 August 2014 12:00  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

This looks like an example of states only being moved to take morally right action when they perceive a direct threat to their own immediate interests.

If Richard Barrett's views offer an insight into the political decision making going on then it helps explain the absence of action. This former head of counterterrorism at MI6 believes that military intervention in Iraq will bring terrorism to our shores. It will consolidate Islamists and lead to a concerted campaign of terror in Britain and America.

Are the British public prepared to suffer this and the economic hardships that waging a war in the Middle East will bring? No, better to let the people's of the region murder one another and let the various Islamic factions kill one another. If the cost is the extermination of Christianity in the region - so what? Better they are persecuted and butchered than we suffer terror and hardship. Do the British public really care - are they prepared to meet the cost?

This is a short-sighted and immoral position. Evil unchallenged gains strength. And fundamental Islamism will grow as a result and come to our shores in any event.

17 August 2014 12:03  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

Another elephant in the room is our dependency on Gulf oil and money. The borrower has become the lender's slave. Daren't criticise The Prophet'. But also ourcrulers and opinion leaders are determined not to recognise that Britain was better off as a Christian rather than a secularist country.

Remember Andrew Neather- the mass immigration of Muslims was done as part of a dechristianising agenda. Look at the faith schools debate. Almost everyone liked church schools with atheists/agnostics even telling lies to get their kids in. But now with the Trojan Horse maddrassas which most people want stopped, the Dawkinists are saying 'look at the state funded maddrassas turning out
Islamofascist kids! We must stop ALL faith schools.'

So that's why the Cameroons let alone Cleggs and Millibands can't admit what Islam really is. It may be they are so self-blinded by their liberal/relativistic/muticultural l that they don't even have the capacity to wakecup and smell the jihad.

If as I believe Christianity is true, then rejecting it will inevitably have significant consequences for society not only individuals..

It does my heart good to see atheists like Dreadnaught and DanJo recognising the real, existential threat that resurgent Muhammadenism (and I use that term thoughtfully) poses to western liberal pluralist society. But it was secular liberalism that opened the door to the monster.

There remsins a school of thought that is rarely articulated that a Sovereign God is behind this.

'So you reject My Son Jesus and want to make your own rules?OK try his rival Muhammed instead.'

17 August 2014 12:09  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Indeed Jack. Islamic terrorism came to these shores when the first generation of muslim immigrants children were able to start growing their unsightly beards. No point honing international policy on the premise that bombs would go off here if we upset our valued aliens. We passed that stage years ago.

17 August 2014 12:14  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

PS another thing thst modulates and dtatement or actionbon Islam is the block/postal vote. Look at George bin Galloway.

My modest proposals to end postal votes apart from travel and immobility and limit the vote to income tax payers with an additional vote for every tax band would I am sure fix that problem smartish.

17 August 2014 12:18  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

Correction.....any statement or action on...

17 August 2014 12:20  
Blogger Manfarang said...

Inspector
The belief system of the Yezidis is no less primitive than Roman Catholicism.
"Christians and Yezidis have been friends for centuries. During the Turkish-Armenian war the Yezidis saved many Christians who fled the Turkish Muslims and took them into their own homes to hide them from certain death. Some Yezidis even purchased the freedom and safety of Christians from the Turks for a certain number of gold pieces."

17 August 2014 12:33  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Thank you for that Manfarang. It’s reassuring to know you’re always somewhere in the background (unseen unfortunately) to put a fellow right.

Just been reading that IS who have captured hundreds of Yazidi women, have decreed that they are to be genitally mutilated. Well, IS have decreed that ALL women in their jurisdiction are to be genitally mutilated.

Rotters !

17 August 2014 12:49  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

RSA

I am atheist. Please, do not daub me with the tar brush that you seem to apply in such broad strokes as if it equates to being 'liberal' 'left-leaning'(they usually get linked) or anti-Christian as a consequence of not believing in the conceit of god worship.

If Christianity in the UK is weak, it is because of its own failing to evolve a survival strategy when it faced the loss of State backed legislation that penalised dissent or detachment.

Philosophy of belief has to be put aside if the present threat to Western Democracy and the rights of the individual are to be defended.

Unchallenged, today's world crisis, for that is what it is; is as bad for us as a nation and culture as it was during the preambles to WW1 and WW2. We need to adopt the same sense of recognition of realities and raise the required spirit resolution of our parliaments if those lives lost then and our children's future, are not to have been be sacrificed in vain.

People of faith or none have to realise that ideologically, Islam is at war with us until as it openly acknowledges, obliterates all opposition: it is written in it's texts and written in the DNA of Muslims, moderate for the time being, everywhere.

17 August 2014 13:00  
Blogger Len said...

It might come a shock to some people to learn that the West has no strategy to deal with radical Islam.Radical Islam (Muslim terrorists) have learned this and are pursuing an Islamic 'blitzkrieg' before the West can work out what is happening and then form committees do studies and get their collective ar**s in gear to work out some sort of response.
Firstly those in the West need to strip away all the false ideas about Islam and work out a collective strategy to deal with it.Proper intelligence about the intentions of various Islamic groups ,their funding, who supplies them arms, communication between these groups, all this cannot be beyond the sort of technology we have today as Dreadnaught has already suggested @ 10:28.
But most of all we need a group of people who are aware and ready to deal with all aspects of Islamic terrorism and perhaps some sort of liaison with Israeli counter terrorism groups would be helpful?.

17 August 2014 13:00  
Blogger Martin said...



"Evidence?"

You mean you don't use Twitter? Come to that perhaps you don't read your own posts.

17 August 2014 13:15  
Blogger seanrobsville said...

@ Dreadnaught
People of faith or none have to realise that ideologically, Islam is at war with us until as it openly acknowledges, obliterates all opposition: it is written in it's texts and written in the DNA of Muslims, moderate for the time being, everywhere.

Any politician who openly acknowledged this would be committing himself to the inevitability of World War Three.

This is not a vote winner. People prefer leaders who will bring Peace in Our Time.

17 August 2014 13:28  
Blogger Roy said...

Dreadnaught said...

If Christianity in the UK is weak, it is because of its own failing to evolve a survival strategy when it faced the loss of State backed legislation that penalised dissent or detachment.

On the contrary, non-Conformist churches thrived when the State backed legislation that penalised them.

17 August 2014 13:36  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Martin: "Come to that perhaps you don't read your own posts."

Feel free to quote some of them here to back up your claim, or be revealed as a liar ... and a homophobic one at that as you demonstrated so very well recently.

17 August 2014 13:38  
Blogger Martin said...

DanJ0

I rest my case.

17 August 2014 13:46  
Blogger Roy said...

Len said...

It might come a shock to some people to learn that the West has no strategy to deal with radical Islam.

Yes it does. The West's strategy is to combat Islamophobia in the hope that that will make Moslems grateful to us. It is a broader, international version of the policy pursued by the Blair government of allowing dangerous Islamic radicals sanctuary in Britain in the hope that they would leave us alone and confine their terrorist activities to foreign countries.

That form of appeasement led the French security services to refer to London as "Londonistan." Melanie Phillips wrote a book the title "Londonistan" that was very critical of British policy and had great difficulty in getting in published.

17 August 2014 13:47  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Martin: "I rest my case."

And there we have it. A blatant liar in all his immoral and godless glory.

17 August 2014 13:49  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

seanrobsville

This is not a vote winner. People prefer leaders who will bring Peace in Our Time

We have fought for Peace by going to War twice in the 20th Century. Going to war in self-defence will never be put to the vote and going to war for Peace again, should not be a discounted option.

Roy

On the contrary, non-Conformist churches thrived when the State backed legislation that penalised them.

I talk of Christianity essentially as the state religion and you talk in the past-tense of vagueries of 'thriving' non-conformism.

Please, enlighten me why is relevant today?

17 August 2014 14:01  
Blogger Roy said...

Dreadnaught said...

I talk of Christianity essentially as the state religion and you talk in the past-tense of vagueries of 'thriving' non-conformism.

Please, enlighten me why is relevant today?


State churches are not doing very well. In those countries where Christianity is doing well today it is not the established state religion.

17 August 2014 14:19  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Inspector

The cowardice from our government has encouraged extreme Islam in places like Tower Hamlets. The moderate and more secularly minded Muslims - yes, they do exist - have been overwhelmed by the corruption and bully-boy tactics of a well organised minority in that Borough. And the authorities do what? Nothing!

17 August 2014 14:24  
Blogger Roy said...

In fairness to David Cameron his article in the Sunday Telegraph does contain the word "Christian." It occurs once in a sentence that reads:

It [the struggle against the Islamic State] is a battle against a poisonous ideology that is condemned by all faith leaders, whether Christian, Jewish or Muslim.

I am relieved to read that "the poisonous ideology" is condemned by all Christian leaders. Does that include those bishops who could not be bothered to sign the letter to the government that is the subject of the previous article in this blog?

Perhaps someone should tell the Islamic State that their ideology is condemned by all Muslim leaders? Perhaps those Muslim leaders could do that themselves.

17 August 2014 14:26  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ Dreadnaught (13:00)—Britain’s situation today is worse than during the world wars. Then, the enemy lived in other countries and Britain was a socially cohesive nation with leaders, temporal and spiritual, who shared the people’s patriotism. Today, the enemy lives among us, Britain has given up nationhood and social cohesion for multiculturalism, and patriotism is reviled.

Across the Channel, the ‘recognition of realities’ occurred when Muslims formed ten per cent of the population and the consequences of allowing Islam to enter France could no longer be swept under the carpet. That gives Britain a couple of decades to produce her own Marine Le Pen.

17 August 2014 14:42  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught

It begins with politicians identifying the target and establishing the aims,objectives for resolution of the threat.

That's fine, Dreadnaught. Establish your aims and objectives. Do requirements analysis and trade studies and anything else you like. If at the end of the process you come to any conclusion that doesn't involve sending a military force to suppress ISIS you have reached a non-viable conclusion.

That isn't an argument to send a large force to occupy Syria and Iraq in perpetuity. It is a recognition of reality. The only way to stop ISIS from killing is to take from it the ability to kill, and take it from ISIS by force. That is the harsh truth the gov't knows. It also knows its population will never tolerate that answer no matter what emotions that population might express.

carl

17 August 2014 15:02  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Jack can't help but wonder how Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Regan would respond to this latest manifestation of evil in the world.

In 2002, a few months after 9/11 she wrote:

"Perhaps the best parallel is with early communism. Islamic extremism today, like bolshevism in the past, is an armed doctrine. It is an aggressive ideology promoted by fanatical, well-armed devotees. And, like communism, it requires an all-embracing long-term strategy to defeat it."
(Advice to a Superpower)

She recognised Islamism as the greatest threat facing the modern world.

Each generation has to bring forward leaders capable of resisting the next round of evil. Jack takes hope from knowing that ultimately God governs human affairs and that all rulers and the tyrannies are permitted for a time and then dispatched by the God's Hand over history.

"And he changeth times and ages: taketh away kingdoms, and establisheth them."

Regan and Thatcher played their parts in bringing down the evil that confronted the world during their time. Who will do it today?

17 August 2014 15:06  
Blogger Manfarang said...

DAESH head eyes ‘attack’ on Kuwait - MoI vigilant

17 August 2014 15:08  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

In as much and with due respect, to Cranmer’s Christian emphasis in the OP, the wider issue if it is to be resolved, will require all differences of religion, politics, race, nationality or gender/orientation to be put aside in an act of forceful defence of Western oriented idealism.

The West is embroiled in a generational struggle against a poisonous brand of Islamic extremism that will bring terror to the streets of Britain unless urgent action is taken to defeat it, David Cameron warns today.
Writing in The Sunday Telegraph, the Prime Minister says the world cannot turn a blind eye to the creation of an extremist caliphate in the heart of Iraq.
Warning that Islamic State fighters already control thousands of square miles of territory, Mr Cameron says that if these “warped and barbaric” extremists are not dealt with now, they will create a “terrorist state” on the shores of the Mediterranean

Daily Telegraph.

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iraq/11039214/Our-generational-struggle-against-a-poisonous-ideology.html

JR

Anti-Semitism is thriving and extreme amongst European Muslims rather than the sterio-typical White Supremacist Neo-Nazi movements.

I take this opportunity to remind you and others that the only truly Western State at immediate close risk of annihilation is Israel. They will no doubt be held as hostage to Western fortunes eventually, as will Christians and Jews wherever they abide.

Where does that leave you and the BNP? Whose side will you be on when we have to physically jump in to bolster and defend Israel to preserve our own existence?

Maybe you should have a chat with Ms Le Pen and whomever is pulling on the Jack-Boots over here these days.

17 August 2014 15:17  
Blogger Jay Bee said...

The idea that 3rd world immigrants would abandon their backward cultural and religious practices having tasted the fruits of Western materialist enlightenment doesn't seem to be working out too well.

According to the PM "What we are witnessing is actually a battle between Islam on the one hand and extremists who want to abuse Islam on the other."

What we are really witnessing is a Government that has gone into headless chicken mode. With Islamists openly recruiting for ISIL within the UK, fifth column nightmares of IED's alongside motorways, containers exploding in the Channel Tunnel during election year etc no longer seem quite as silly as they did a few months ago. What seems almost certain is a rise in inter-communal violence as happened in Sheffield last week where Kurdish immigrants attacked Palestinian protesters for waving a black flag.

17 August 2014 15:26  
Blogger Shadrach said...

Your Grace,
An excellent post and an excellent letter from the Rt. Revd. Nicholas Baines. Seems like a good man and unusual. To come from Southwark and not be gay is exceptional.

I ask, what is an Islamic extremist? Is it someone who believes the whole of the Koran, or at least the later half? Or have they added things to make them 'off the wall'.

I think they are the former, the ones we don't want to believe can just believe the Koran for what it is. The average modest Muslims just believe what they want to believe in order to keep themselves acceptable to society.

To my mind then, all Muslims if they believe the Koran are potentially 'extremist' because it is in the book.

I have castigated Cameron many time on this blog despite our being asked to be nice to him because he is a fledgling Christian. Pity his mother didn't tip him out of the nest BEFORE he could fly.

The Prime Minister is reported in the telegraph as saying he fears the struggle will last “the rest of my political lifetime”. My prayer is that will be in May 2015. (The end of his political career that is).

Politicians have an uncanny way of ignoring difficult questions by talking about anything but.

Come on May 2015. I can't wait.

17 August 2014 15:27  
Blogger Shadrach said...

Jack,
I like that bit about Margaret T.

The main difference between Christians and Muslims of the IS type is that Christians seek to spread the Gospel by talking to people and explaining the truths of God. The Muslims however...... Well, we are seeing the fruit of their expansion policy.

17 August 2014 15:32  
Blogger Anglican said...

Decades ago many of our universities accepted vast sums of Saudi money to set up departments of 'Middle Eastern and Islamic studies'. Perhaps we should have said that this was acceptable provided we could set up departments (or colleges) of 'Western Democratic and Christian Studies' in Riyadh and other Saudi cities.

17 August 2014 15:42  
Blogger Anglican said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

17 August 2014 15:43  
Blogger Anglican said...

Decades ago many of our universities accepted vast sums of Saudi money to set up departments of 'Middle Eastern and Islamic studies'. Perhaps we should have said that this was acceptable provided we could set up departments (or colleges) of 'Western Democratic and Christian Studies' in Riyadh and other Saudi cities.

17 August 2014 15:43  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

That's fine, Dreadnaught. Establish your aims and objectives...

Hahahaha - sorry but...

Like that can be done by one person on a Blog? Get over yourself man.

Has it not sunk in, that shoot first ask questions later is pure Cowboy fiction? This may be how the US decides its foreign policy - in fact it would explain a lot. Obama's already had his 'mission on the mountain accomplished' moment and pissed off back on holiday.

You've still got your G-Dubya Bush Hollywood goggles on and obviously not even learned the lesson of the Iraq 2 venture that got to this position in the first place.

Hows about discussing the construction of a formula for responding to Islamic Expansionism and then on to an exit plan from the entire Middle-East as it stands today - then how we secure future Peace while securing our oil based economic interests?

17 August 2014 15:51  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Splendid article Your Grace, so thank you. It was well worth waiting for.

We do indeed have a totally reactive, confused and incoherent series of knee jerk reactions to news stories, and no recognisable, credible "Foreign Policy" as such, in respect of the global pattern of attacks and brutalities. Why ?

Well the detailed, close up reasons are legion, but at bottom it is because we are, as a nation, are pretty confused and incoherent in understanding who we are, and what we now believe in, collectively, if anything. The recently aired phrase "British values" in the context of "The Birmingham Trojan Horse" is meaningless. So with no clear understanding of ourselves, it is unsurprising that we fail to articulate a clear set of policy objectives for dealing with what, may indeed, become the defining feature of the next 100 years or so, a struggle for the very survival of the west against virulent Islam, again.
Without Christianity the west is nothing. Even the secular or atheistic must start actively acknowledging our Christian underpinnings, and reversing their incessant media attacks on those who are still active and sincere in the faith. Otherwise the incoherence and vulnerability of our fractured society can only increase exponentially. Preaching an incoherent mixture of inclusiveness, multi-cult. and Human Rights will cut no ice in binding our society into a cohesive, steely, hardened society resolved to not only survive, but to prosper, even in the face of outright existential aggression.
Cameron's head in the sand approach to our nations' bedrock system of values, Christianity, is driven by the fact that having burnt his bridges with many Christians, the national faith is now an embarrassment to him; indeed due his to prioritisation of meaningless multi-cult., diversity and inclusiveness , whatever all that adds up to, he is clearly a rudderless ship. Cameron's Britain, like that of his mentor Blair, is about never, ever giving priority to Christians or Christianity, here, there or anywhere. He echoes Obama of course.

A country that is incoherent spiritually will always, also be incoherent intellectually and militarily as well I conjecture, since our values and actions spring from our faith. The pagan Roman emperors understood that link between faith and commitment to the society as a whole. Cameron and his predecessors do not. Even Dawkins describes himself as an "a Christian Atheist" acknowledging his ancestral heritage. Therefore even he has changed, slightly towards a more honest acknowledgement of where we came from as a society.

I am pleased that a few bishops have delivered a verbal broadside, and whilst I am unaware of the precise leanings, of these signatory bishops, the C of E is culpable in all this, in the broader cultural sense; indeed many in the hierarchy have for a quiet life conformed to the general air of dilution of the orthodox faith and over tolerance of those things clearly outwith conventional Christianity. But better late than never I suppose, so well done Bishops. But where the heck have have you been all this time ? Politically only the derided Ukip, the recent political child eschewed by many of the Anglican episcopacy, state unequivocally that it supports our UK Judaeo-Christian heritage. Please note that plain if undigestible fact. Wake up Bishops, all of you. The establishment parties would like to use the Church as an institution for delivering social programs, but they distance themselves from any support for the faith itself. Oh no, how yesterday ! The ignored plight of the Iraqi Christians tragically reflects and extends the pattern and drift of our culture for these past few decades, led of course by the media, the celebrities and the politicians.
Those who still pray should pray for all the oppressed, and especially the Christians, as well as taking practical steps to help, as few else will I fear.

17 August 2014 16:11  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

JayBee

The idea that 3rd world immigrants would abandon their backward cultural and religious practices having tasted the fruits of Western materialist enlightenment doesn't seem to be working out too well.

"Third world"is too broad a category in this context. Brazil is a third-world country but how many Brazilians have been the cause of trouble in the UK, apart from Jean Charles de Menezes, who made the mistake of getting himself shot in a Tube train? For that matter, how many Sikhs, Hindus, or Tibetan Buddhists? It's really only one clearly identifiable group that's giving everyone else a headache, including other third-world immigrants.

17 August 2014 16:16  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught

Ummm ... No, actually you have it exactly backwards. I don't want any military intervention because I know how it will end. People get all exercised over pictures. They say "Send in the Army!" The the bill comes due and they say "We didn't sign up for that! Get the Army out of there." All they manage to do is get a bunch of GIs maimed and killed to no good purpose. I have seen enough of dead soldiers deserted on the battlefield by the kinds of attitudes that have been expressed on this weblog for the last two weeks.

People won't face reality. They keep demanding a solution when there isn't one. They keep thinking that if only the political leadership tried hard enough, it could solve the problem. It's almost as if the lack of a solution is considered prima facia evidence of bad faith. It isn't. It's evidence that there isn't an acceptable solution.

I want people to face the truth. There are two consistent responses.

1. Go in with soldiers, kill people, and impose the rule of law over a very long period of time.

2. Accept that nothing effective can be done.

What I hate is all the blustering about 'doing something' when the limits on the 'something' preclude anything effective. Then it's not about changing anything. It's about us being able to tell ourselves we didn't just stand around while Iraq burned. It's about salving western conscience. I have no use for that motivation.

carl

17 August 2014 16:29  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl

"The only way to stop ISIS from killing is to take from it the ability to kill, and take it from ISIS by force. That is the harsh truth the gov't knows."

Agreed ... then why don't they get on with it?

"It also knows its population will never tolerate that answer no matter what emotions that population might express."

And the reason for this is? We have grown lazy and inward looking, thinking only of our own comforts. God willing, there will never be a better opportunity to demonstrate the necessity for military intervention to combat fanatical Islamism. The deaths and horror it brings are there for all to see with every beheading, crucifixion and the rapes of women and children.

Why don't our politicians speak openly about this? In a representative democracy the function of government is to educate and to lead and to prepare people for the unpalatable. At some point a violent showdown will be required. Better sooner than later when the sacrifices required will be even greater.

You wrote recently WW1 was essentially a war of self defence, suggesting Belgium was the pretext for resisting German expansionist ambitions. Viewed in this way, a war against ISIS is an act of self defence and what is going on in the Middle East is sufficient cause to declare such a war.

All this dithering is simply proving Osama bin Laden's assessment of Western democracies as "paper tigers" to be correct. Now is the time to "bomb the bastards" and to "give war a chance". The cause is just and greater threat is real.

The malignant source also has to be rooted out - Wahhabism. This puritanical movement is intent on purging Islam of its impurities. The alliance with the House of Saud provides it with political and financial power where its teachings are state-sponsored and through oil wealth spread around the world. This has to be addressed too.

17 August 2014 16:39  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

Sorry if I got you wrong Carl but you did say

Any coherent strategy begins with soldiers. Without soldiers there is no coherent strategy.

I say coherent 'strategy' begins long before deployment. That we need soldiers is a given, and no reflection on their importance within that strategy was implied.

We both know what soldiering means and how it shapes life during and after events.

17 August 2014 16:58  
Blogger Jay Bee said...

Uncle Brian@16:16

The only Brazilians that cause trouble in the UK are footballers. They have an annoying tendency to outclass us with their skill.

Would that certain others had creative rather than destructive objectives. Your final sentence is right on the money.

17 August 2014 17:27  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Can we avoid the subject of football, please?

17 August 2014 17:49  
Blogger Albert said...

Bravo the bishop and bravo the blog.

Christians have indeed "fallen from consciousness".

I think we need to view this in the wider cultural context of what is going on in the UK. Secularism is an anti-Christian movement. It always was. I don't mean that secularism is only an anti-Christian movement, or that it has no other concerns. I also don't mean that secularists actively want IS to kill Christians, I mean secularism is an ideology which has needed to desensitize people from the humanity of Christians.

It's at this point that I want to put in a provisional word for David Cameron. He is clearly inching towards some kind of more robust response. Perhaps he has wanted this for some time. Perhaps he realised that going after IS to defend Christians was not politically viable, even though he wanted to. If this is the case, then Cameron is perhaps being somewhat skilful.

17 August 2014 17:49  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught

You are correct in what you say about strategy preceding deployment. I was just cutting to the chase. Force must be met with counterforce. That is the truth that so many are willfully avoiding.

carl

17 August 2014 17:52  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

then why don't they get on with it?

OK, so here is the first thing you do. You cash in a huge chunk of your NHS benefits and start building troopships. Then you start drafting regiments. Lots of regiments, because you will need a lot. And don't forget to purchase all the material they will need. Then you send all those regiments to Iraq. Make sure to tell your population they will be there for the next 50 years.

Now you send out your regiments to occupy the country. That won't be too hard. But wait. We are here to fight militant Islam. So where are these militants? How do we find them? How do we oppose them? Do we arrest or kill their leaders? Do we burn their books? Do we imprison them for agitating? Do we demolish their mosques? Do we demand they recant on penalty of death? Do we kill they if they don't comply? The problem, you see, won't be occupying the place. The problem will be fixing it.

You want to go strutting onto a Muslim country and make it safe for western civilization. But you are the west. You carry with you all the baggage of the west. Even those Muslims who need your protection will come to see you as crusaders and infidels there to dominate Islam. They will learn to hate you in direct proportion to the security you provide. What they will want is for you to give them power so they can kill their own enemies. You won't do it and so they will come to see you as the obstacle to their aspirations.

And so your soldiers will start to die. And then your home front will get impatient. "Didn't we go there to help them, and now they kill us? Fine! Let them slaughter each other." That is the end of all this.

ISIS may ir may not be a threat. But you have to address the threat credibly. Right now you don't have any direct connection between what is happening in Iraq and a threat to the west. In fact, I wonder if ISIS isn't good for the west in a perverse way. It will balkanize and fracture the Arab world. That way is weakness and impotence. You can always control an enemy by dividing him into warring factions.

But I guarantee it. Barging in with an army may be emotionally satisfying for a bit, but it will end badly for all concerned. You don't have the ability to change the true face of Islam.

carl

17 August 2014 18:20  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ Dreadnaught (15:17)—I like the idea of Israel. In fact, I would urge all Jews to go and live there: they would be as happy as Larry in their little homeland and the West would be free of their meddling. It’s unfortunate that the demographic changes resulting from one particular piece of meddling, the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, will eventually result in the withdrawal of American support for Israel, leaving the country friendless and vulnerable, but there we are. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I must polish my jackboots for tonight’s torchlight rally.

17 August 2014 19:03  
Blogger Roy said...

I think we ought to praise the Kurds who are fitting ISIS. Presumably most of the Kurdish fighters are Moslems themselves. Because they lack many modern weapons they have not (yet) been very successful. Nevertheless they have, through their bravery and their sense of justice, done more to combat Islamophobia in Britain that all the taxpayer funded diversity parasites put together.

17 August 2014 19:07  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl

Jack wasn't thinking in emotional terms.

If fanatical Islamists pose a long-term threat to the West and we fail to confront them, aren't we are just encouraging and feeding their ideology? True, it's a question of balancing the difficulties against the odds of success. Perhaps you are correct in your analysis. The cause is just but if the effort will ultimately prove futile and fail to yield results, then its best avoided.

If you are right, then there's little that can be effectively done. Arming and supporting the Kurds may be the best option and then just letting Sunni and Shias turn on one another. Some analysts argue that balkanising the Middle East is the policy goal of the West, anyway. It doesn't help the Christians in the region who must either leave their ancient homelands or be massacred.

17 August 2014 19:12  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

It's not a question of whether to confront it but how. The task is essentially a religious war. How does the secularized West fight a religious war when it has spent so much effort establishing religion as incidental to civilization? Western liberalism is ideologically committed to the proposition that Islam is compatible with the West because the West is independent of Religion. So how then do you go to the ME and say "We must suppress Islam." You don't. You say "We must suppress 'bad' Islam." Good luck making that differentiation work.

This is also a prime example of why I despise Just War doctrine. It's not just about telling you not to fight when you might want or need to fight. It's about telling you when you should fight even though you shouldn't or don't want to fight. The concept of Justice inevitably leads to moral obligation. It no longer matters if the war would be wise or prudent. What matters is whether it is the right thing to do. And suddenly the lives of soldiers become expendable chits in someone else's morality play.

Btw. If there is an obligation to intervene for the sake of justice, then there is a responsibility to create the capability to intervene. Too few people make that connection.

carl

17 August 2014 19:41  
Blogger IanCad said...

Really, truly, the bloodthirsty wing of Islam needs to be disabused of the notion that they are in any way powerful.
If we send in our military - by no means unlikely - they cannot be shackled with absurd Rules of Engagement. The gloves must come off.
It will be much kinder in the long run.
It does the West no good at all to elevate IS above what it is.
A rabble. Nothing more.

17 August 2014 19:48  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl

"The concept of Justice inevitably leads to moral obligation. It no longer matters if the war would be wise or prudent. What matters is whether it is the right thing to do. And suddenly the lives of soldiers become expendable chits in someone else's morality play."

You are wrong about Just War theory and its requirements. Indeed, in your arguments above you've actually used it.

Here's the CCC's list of criteria to be considered:

- the damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or community of nations must be lasting, grave, and certain;

- all other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;

- there must be serious prospects of success;

- the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power of modern means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.

17 August 2014 20:06  
Blogger Jay Bee said...

Although we should never say "never" I would be extremely reluctant to support putting an army into the field in Iraq.

Better to assist the Iraqi & Kurdish forces to clear IS out. The West can hit IS heavy weapons and transport. Hammer their supply lines. Starve them of ammunition, food and water. Preferably from the air but no more than quick surgical raids by airborne special forces.

We should encourage the locals to recover their territory not end up as occupiers and the hated infidel yet again.

Our main struggle may turn out to be counter-insurgency at home

17 August 2014 20:27  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

It no longer matters if the war would be wise or prudent. What matters is whether it is the right thing to do.

I think you need to explain that, because at the moment, it looks like Happy Jack more than has the upper hand. What do you mean by "wise" or "prudent"? I can't see how, in the light of the just war tradition, an unwise or imprudent war could be just. So you need to clarify your meaning.

Beyond that, your argument just seems opposed to defending justice in general, and JW gets attacked on the back of that.

17 August 2014 20:28  
Blogger Roy said...

Meanwhile back in Britain the Enemy Within has been active.

Sainsbury's strips kosher food from its shelves over fear of attacks by anti-Israeli protesters picketing as Gaza demonstrators run amok in Tesco branch

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2727266/Sainsbury-s-strips-kosher-food-shelves-fear-attacks-anti-Israeli-protesters.html

The protests have been supported by a "British" MP, Shabana Mahmood who has been stirring up trouble for a while. There is a video on YouTube showing her speaking at an earlier demonstration against Sainsburys.

Shabana Mahmood MP at the Gaza Protest outside Sainsbury's 2nd August 2014
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GsF3xnAGRGY

17 August 2014 20:36  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Johnny R @ 19:03

I thought the 1965 Immigration Act was the brainchild of Bobby Kennedy?

But you're dead right about the effect. In 'High Noon to Midnight', Stephen Steinlight, himself Jewish, argues that liberal American Jews have ensured their own destruction by backing liberal immigration policies that will result in more Muslims than Jews in the US. (As he puts it, it's not because of evangelical Christians that you already need bullet-proof glass.)

And once there are enough US Muslims - backed by Saudi money - to influence US policy, you will see the change in US support for Israel.

(That actually seems to be happening already, but perhaps not for the reasons he says.)

17 August 2014 21:15  
Blogger Martin said...

Dreadnaught

Do you not realise that Britain's unity in the past has been based on an at least nominal acceptance of Christianity.

17 August 2014 22:34  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ The Explorer (21:15)—The subject is so vast, I can only refer you to Chapter 7 of The Culture of Critique, ‘Jewish Involvement in Shaping US Immigration Policy’. The author, Kevin MacDonald, provides an outline of the argument in another of his books, Separation and Its Discontents:

‘In The Culture of Critique I review data indicating that Jewish organizations have vigorously promoted the ideology that America ought to be an ethnically and culturally pluralistic society and that they have pursued an open immigration policy with the aim of preventing religious and ethnic homogeneity in the United States. A multicultural society in which Jews are simply one of many tolerated groups is likely to meet Jewish interests, because there is a diffusion of power among a variety of groups and it becomes impossible to develop homogeneous gentile ingroups arrayed against Jews as a highly conspicuous outgroup.’

With their media ownership and control, American Jews are well-placed to influence public opinion. Joseph Sobran wrote in 1995:

‘It’s permissible to discuss the power of every other group, from the Black Muslims to the Christian Right, but the much greater power of the Jewish establishment is off-limits. That, in fact, is the chief measure of its power: its ability to impose its own taboos while tearing down the taboos of others—you might almost say its prerogative of offending. You can read articles in Jewish-controlled publications from the Times to Commentary blaming Christianity for the Holocaust or accusing Pope Pius XII of indifference, but don’t look for articles in any major publication that wants to stay in business examining the Jewish role in Communism and liberalism, however temperately.’

17 August 2014 23:02  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

All that stuff from the catechism is well and good. It's also irrelevant to what I said. I can hypothesize a situation that meets everyone of those criteria and yet still does not warrant a fight because fighting is contrary to the national self interest. What after all is the fundamental criteria for a Just War? Is it national self interest? It is not. Just War doctrine would force a nation's leadership to submerge national self interest for the sake of principle. That would cut both ways. It may be in the national interest to fight, but Just War doctrine says "No." It may be in the national interest to not fight but Just War doctrine says "Yes." If Just War doctrine exists to compel behavior against national interest, then that compulsion will inevitably be applied both ways.

Which brings me to ...

Albert

Do you not remember flat out asserting to me that Britain would have declared war on France over Belgium? Do you not remember telling me that Britain would have fought a major war with Germany over Belgium alone? In both cases because it was the right thing to do? Do you not remember saying that the convergence with national interest made it easier for Britain to do the right thing regarding Belgium?

You are my explanation, Albert. It was your explicit argument to which I was tacitly referring.

carl

18 August 2014 05:04  
Blogger Ivan said...


JR, Joseph Sobran is the type of literary man, the West had in profusion until just a couple of decades ago.

18 August 2014 05:41  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

Mr Dreadnaught Sir, @ 13.00 yesterday.

I try to be reasonably respectful, fair and accurate, but admit to using the 'broad brush'. This is after all a blog not an Oxford Union debate.

However, I will stick to my point. which is that Britain, Europe and the USA (i.e. western civilisation) have enjoyed the inestimable benefit of the Christian Gospel, which is from God and is true. And have now rejected that Gospel. And that has consequences, some predictable (e.g. the catastrophe of large scale marriage breakdown) others not predictable.

I would argue that Islam moving into the vacuum was fairly predictable.

There IS a dechristianisation agenda, although of course it does not go by that name. 'Equalities and diversity, multiculturalism, 'science', modernisation, rationalism, libertarianism and many another warm word and phrase. But the guts of it is the old cry 'We will not have this man (Jesus) to reign over us!'

D H Lawrence, Bertrand Russel, John Lennon, Roy Jenkins and many others have done all they could to build a Christless society. They have largely succeeded.

Thousands of activists who detest, reject and actively loathe Christianity have been working steadily through our institutions (law, medicine, education, civil service, government etc, etc) to 'make religion history' in our civilisation.

People like Malcolm Muggeridge, Mary Whitehouse, Billy Graham and MANY others warned that rejecting our Christian heritage would lead to deep trouble.

They were right. That is all.

I believe that because we rejecting Jesus, we are getting Muhammed. Because I can read, I know that you recognise Islam as 'worse' than Christianity but would prefer neither. The Utopia of sweet reason and humanity? Please insert your own preferred phrase. Ain't gonna happen.

God is a bit like that, as we see from the history of Israel, whom God, although he loved, punished for their disobedience. Just as God allowed Marxism to reign over a large part of the world for 70 years (the lifespan of a man, I find that interesting) in order for secular man's best effort at Utopia could be seen to spectacularly fail.

God is also, I believe, giving us the chance to see what happens to a civilisation which, having enjoyed the benefits of Christianity, rejects Christ. I think its bad enough already and a real collapse is coming when the funny money and cultural remnant of Christian ethics run out.

Because Christ WILL be seen as Lord before the whole world. This will happen at the end of history. May not be much longer now.

PS and yes of course you're right, the church could and should have done better. Some of us have tried our inadequate best, but generally we were shouted down with contempt, like the prophet Jeremiah. He was vindicated, but the judgment he warned against came because his message was despised and rejected.

Could I be wrong? we'll see.

kind regards.

18 August 2014 07:56  
Blogger IanCad said...

A wonderful comment RSA

Yes! Yes! Yes! and Yes!

18 August 2014 08:50  
Blogger Preacher said...

The current lack of direction is due to the fact that in an attempt to be acceptable to the E.U, we have lost our identity as a nation, since the treacherous surrender of the U.K by Heath, Prime ministers have either been hamstrung by Brussels or lost the confidence & ability to make decisions for us as a Nation.
Our Christian foundations have been sacrificed on an alter of unity at all costs expediency.

Cameron experimented with his secularist policies to test the waters of how far the populace would accept the introduction of anti Christian ideologies to see if we were ripe for the picking of the E.U new Babylonian Empire.
We are now seeing in the ignoring of Christian suffering in Iraq the outcome of the erosion of the Christian faith in this country.

The Church must also accept part of the blame for staying silent on many issues which once would have been staunchly & vociferously opposed by Ministers of all denominations.

Cameron now finds himself in a cleft stick, hence the dithering, a rudderless ship under full sail, heading to run aground with the captain issuing orders about the deckchairs.

Until we become a Christian Nation again & cut loose from the lost & sinking E.U, we will continue to suffer.
Freedom of individual belief is sacrosanct, but the U.K is founded on it's Judaic Christian heritage & this must remain the pillar of our strength & Government.

18 August 2014 09:12  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

RSA

I would argue that Islam moving into the vacuum was fairly predictable.

Look, for the umpteenth time, I post here as an individual and that is why I object to you attaching any imagined formal group association to my submissions.

How in His name can you blame Him for the corruption of 'large part of the world for 70 years' by a Jew named Marx to teach mankind a lesson in rejection - Some odd kind Christian you are for sure, blaming Christ for Stalin, Mao, Trotsky and Lennin etc.

You see this 'logic' just does not wash anymore.

The CoE is very much still at the top table of Establishment Britain yet fails spectacularly well at attracting any credibility of relevance in the affairs of Faith or national cultural identity.

Back to your main point(I think) Surely this is a result of a massive increase in Muslim immigrants in the past two decades, demanding equal status with other religious adherents and taking a more vocal and political line in promoting their presence.

IanCad
Stop wetting your girly knickers and pull yourself together.

18 August 2014 09:29  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

I can hypothesize a situation that meets everyone of those criteria and yet still does not warrant a fight because fighting is contrary to the national self interest.

Where in the Catechism does it say that a country must fight in a war to defend another country, because the war would be just? Where does it say that when there is a just war, everyone must fight it? Simply because something is just doesn't make it obligatory. The Catechism speaks of "legitimate self-defence", and perhaps in such contexts of self-defence, if the criteria are met, war is an obligation (although if the criteria are met, it would hardly merit discussion, unless the nation is pacifist). The criteria are negative: a war would be unjust unless these criteria are met.

You are my explanation, Albert.

Well that's just bizarre. To infer from my judgement about one rather complex historical situation, to a universalised rule is just irrational.

But the cases do not fit. The particular duty to fight for Belgium was because of the Treaty of 1839. Given that agreement, Britain had a moral duty to fight, because she had said she would. I do not say that her moral duty towards Belgium would have been decisively strong had that Treaty not been in place. The fact that Germany was violating that Treaty - she too was obligated to defend Belgium - added to the outrage.

But I still say that the problem with your argument is that you are condemning any argument from justice (or you would be, if the argument can be made to work). And this is the problem I have with your position. You come across as being so Christian and so moral, until violence is involved, when suddenly considerations of justice and morality fly out of the window, and you resort to a secular, utilitarian account of self-interest.

18 August 2014 09:43  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Rambling Steve @ 07:56

I appreciated your post.

In 'Hamlet', a branch breaks and Ophelia drowns.

So what caused the death of Ophelia?

1. The broken branch. (Naturalist/materialist perspective)

2. Shakespeare, who wrote the plot. (Theistic perspective)

Do things just happen, or are they part of some wider plan?

That's not precisely the point that you were making: which was more that God will allow us to ignore him, but we then get the consequences of doing so.

I totally agree with your point that if we reject Christ we don't get Utopia, we get Mohammed. I think Dawkins has realised that.

Not very coherent, sorry. Just some thoughts that arose as a result of reading your posr.

18 August 2014 09:47  
Blogger The Explorer said...

post, even rather than posr. (Although 'poser' might also be relevant.)

18 August 2014 10:11  
Blogger Len said...

Fighting a spiritually energized power with no knowledge of the spiritual realm is like fighting someone in the dark with one hand tied behind your back.
This is exactly what the West is trying to do with radicalized Islam.

'For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.'(Ephesians 6:12)

The only people enabled and authorized to fight malignant spiritual forces on a spiritual level are Holy Spirit filled Christians.

And our secularized Western Governments have all but silenced the corporate Christian voice which is exactly as these ruling evil spiritual powers planned.

When the Christians are completely silenced (for whatever reason) all hell will break loose.

18 August 2014 10:18  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Len @ 10:18

According to 'Revelation', one day all hell WILL break loose.

We all agree about that. What we don't all agree about is when it will happen in relation to the Millennium.

18 August 2014 10:30  
Blogger Shadrach said...

Well said Len.

Come May 2015 we need a Government with a measure of Biblical Integrity and spiritual discernment.

18 August 2014 10:53  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ Len (10:18)—Pat Robertson is in no doubt who has silenced ‘the corporate Christian voice’ in the United States: ‘...the part that Jewish intellectuals and media activists have played in the assault on Christianity may very possibly prove to be a grave mistake.’ Noting Christian support for a Jewish homeland, he expresses dismay that ‘American Jews invested great energy in attacking these very allies.’

Joseph Sobran, whom I quoted above, wrote in 1996: ‘Survival in public life requires that you know all about it [Jewish control of the major media], but never refer to it. A hypocritical etiquette forces us to pretend that the Jews are powerless victims; and if you don’t respect their victimhood, they’ll destroy you. It’s a phenomenal display not of wickedness, really, but of fierce ethnocentrism, a sort of furtive racial superpatriotism.’

Sobran rejects the charge of Jewish wickedness and would also, I assume, draw the line at fingering Jews as the ‘evil spiritual powers’ of your comment but there’s little doubt that Christian influence has been diminished by Jewish activity, opening the door to evil.

18 August 2014 11:49  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Ivan and JR

Let's lay this one out. According to the authors you've been referring to 'Secularisation comes from the Jews' because of some sort of group survival strategy, or a hatred of Christianity, or a combination of both. It therefore follows that the "real" enemy is the Jew, not the Muslim. This has an uncomfortable feel about it.

18 August 2014 12:24  
Blogger David Hussell said...

So many excellent comments from,

Rambling Steve A. @ 07.56

then,

Preacher @ 09.12

and finally,

Len @ 10.18

All are spot on target, and to which I say,

"Exactly!"

As I said earlier, without Christianity the west is nothing. It is only if, a majority indicates once again, at least at a nominal, working level, acceptance of the key teachings of Christianity, and respects them, reflecting Christian teachings on how to live our lives in our laws, accompanied by a visible, strong, thriving minority of committed, Spirit filled Christians, and with at least some of the key positions of our society filled by Christians, that we as a nation and the west generally, will survive let alone prosper.

Rebelling against God in so many ways, whilst being directed politically, and therefore legally, through the Christianity denying constitution of the EU, we are as a nation on a downward path. The only question is how long will it take us to reach the bottom ? Freedom, genuine self-fulfilment and prosperity for the vast majority cannot flow from the policies and laws currently being pursued. There are still many now decaying vestiges of the country's former, widely followed faith, but our position is clearly, visibly unstable and untenable. The evidence mounts daily for this who open their eyes. Eventually the house of cards will tumble down.

18 August 2014 12:25  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Johnny R @ 11:49

I'm sure what follows will be well known to you. I'm trying to draw a distinction for the sake of other readers.

It's not a contradiction to speak of a Jewish atheist, because of ethnicity. Speak of a Christian atheist and the difference is apparent: one of any ethnicity who has retained the ethics and rejected the metaphysics.

When Luther thought of Jews (until he went so bitter upon rejection), he thought in religious terms. He wanted unity with them.

When the Nazis thought of Jews, they thought in ethnic terms. They wanted separation. Belief was irrelevant. A Jew who had converted and become a nun was still a candidate for Auschwitz.

The Jewish members of the Frankfurt School were atheists by definition. Their attack on the US hegemony was from an ethnic perspective: to dilute Anglo-Saxon dominance by greater ethnic diversity. They attacked Protestantism for its political, not religious significance. One might say it was their atheism that did the damage, not their Jewishness.

They are very different, it seems to me, from Jewish believers who disagree with the beliefs of Christianity.

18 August 2014 12:43  
Blogger The Explorer said...

I didn't express myself very clearly above, but I suppose I was thinking of Marcuse.

Marcuse probably did more damage to the US hegemony than any other member of the Frankfurt School, but Marcuse, as far as I know, wasn't Jewish.

He did the damage because he was a Marxist and an atheist; not because he was Jew.

18 August 2014 13:00  
Blogger Ivan said...


HJ, Sobran was set upon by the establishment because he did not toe the line on Israel or the Holocaust narrative. To be clear, I mean by the Holocaust narrative, not the number of dead or otherwise, but the tendency on the part of the Jewish establishment to bestow its aura on those it chooses, homosexuals and such like and on the other to berate those who like Pius XII who can no longer defend themselves from calumny. And they do this without any sense of irony, since the role of Jews in the rise of Communism and the resultant torment of the Soviet peoples in the days before Stalin put them through the furnace in their turn, is too well known to repeat here. Sobran became a Catholic only late in life, I expect that his finely honed sense of justice (he wrote numerous articles that had nothing to do with Jews or their influence) could not abide the sheer hypocrisy of the Jewish establishment in America as outlined in the quote above. Speech codes, hate laws, banning of Christmas creches and the like, you name it, before the Muslims engaged in their me-too-ism, some Jewish organisation was there first. Now all this is being used very effectively by Muslims and others to stymie any kind of coherent response towards their depredations. Therefore I have to conclude that these entities have played a role, inadvertent or not, in weakening the defences of the West.

18 August 2014 13:37  
Blogger IanCad said...

And Preacher and Len

Great posts all.

18 August 2014 13:53  
Blogger The Explorer said...

HJ:

What's happened in the US as I understand it. Tell me if you agree.

In 1925, there was a moratorium on US immigration while the US consolidated itself.

The thinking then was that the US was essentially another Europe, Anglo-Saxon Protestant in origin.

The 1965 Act came from a total different perspective: instead of being a microcosm of Europe, the US should become a microcosm of the world.

Kennedy, as a Catholic, wanted to break the Protestant hold. So did Jewish liberals. Both drove the 1965 Act.

American support for Israel has come from a) its Jewish population, b) Christians influenced by 'Romans' 9-11.

As a result of the 1965 Act there are now as many Muslims in the US as there are Jews. (Or more). This starts to have a bearing on policy towards Israel. And as America has declined as a Christian nation, this too has a bearing on its Middle-East attitudes.

18 August 2014 13:59  
Blogger Hannah said...

Well hi all, How strange that this post by Cramer is about how Iraqi Christians and others are being slaughtered by Islamic fanatics and what the response by policy makers should be and what we as individuals can do. And yet we have Johnny and Ivan spouting their silly tales and quoting pseudo academics as "evidence" of a Jewish conspiracy(when will you guys ever learn?)!

I don't know what makes me more upset. That you'd use a thread about what is in effect a genocide to attack Jews or the utter bare faced chutzpah of blame everything on "the Jews" when Jews have zip,zero to do with the slaughter of Christians and yazidis. Either way this discussion is about them and their fate.

18 August 2014 14:00  
Blogger IanCad said...

Don't worry Hannah I'm sure there are several on this blog, including me, who have resolved to stop shopping at Sainsbury's.

18 August 2014 14:42  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ Happy Jack (12:24)—I’m uncomfortable with ‘enemy’. I’ve said that I admire Jewish solidarity and that I wish Europeans showed more of the same spirit. However, if Jewish solidarity is being paid for by damage to the countries where they have settled, it has to be faced. By the way, ‘damage’ hardly conveys the scale of it: mass immigration to destroy homogeneity, Islam, and the assault on Christianity.

@ The Explorer (12:43)—It isn’t just in the last century, though. Wherever Jews have settled, there have been outbreaks of hostility between them and the indigenous population; as I’ve said before, early examples of the inadvisability of multiculturalism. Perhaps Jewish atheists were to blame in every case but it seems unlikely.

@ Ivan (13:37)—Well said.

@ Hannah (14:00)—Sorry. Dreadnaught (15:17 yesterday) raised the question of Israel and things developed from there.

18 August 2014 15:30  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Johnny Rottenborough
and Ivan

On the whole I try to resist the temptation to express an opinion about an author whose books I have never read. But I’m prepared to make an exception in Joseph Sobran's case. He began his career as a lecturer in an English department, specialising in Shakespeare. Then he found there was a market for books propounding crackpot theories about who “really” wrote Shakespeare’s plays. Later still he turned to Holocaust denial and became, for a time, a David Irving sidekick. On the whole I think leaving Sobran’s books unread is the most sensible course to follow. Nevertheless, I look forward to reading what others have to say on the subject, in particular Avi Barzel.

18 August 2014 15:32  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

It would be a better idea if Shabana Mahmood took herself and her gangs of violent protesters off back to Gaza to help her people try and negotiate some sort of deal to start peace there instead of stirring up unrest, hatred and violent mayhem in one of the oldest supermarkets in Britain for selling Kosher food, they have done nothing to deserve this behaviour. Keep your bloody war out of our country, and that goes for any Jews too that are so good at winding them up.

18 August 2014 16:00  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi Johnny, OK well if it was a response to a question,then I'll forgive you. You are still wrong about Jews and the sources you use. Perhaps one day you will see that.I am a boundless optimist! What I find ironic is that your cheerleader is an India Roman Catholic;somewhat ironic.

18 August 2014 16:23  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi ian, yes! Very kind comments there (: If and when I have to use a supermarket, I'll use Marks and Spencer or waitrose, much more "respectable" and middle class than Sainsbury...housemate says he'll still shop at Aldi though ....

18 August 2014 16:28  
Blogger Manfarang said...

Hundreds of Yazidi volunteers are being trained to handle weapons and fight to drive the Islamic State from their homes.
Refugees who fled to Syria to escape the jihadists' onslaught in neighbouring Iraq are joining military training camps run by Kurdish armed factions and forming a volunteer army against the jihadists.

"Until now the Yazidis have always relied on someone else to protect them," said Rostan, 33, the Kurdish commander at the training camp, who refused to give his full name. "Now they are learning to protect themselves."

Civilians who fled their homes in Sinjar are taught how to assemble an AK-47 rifle by Kurdish PYG fighters

18 August 2014 17:36  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

Where in the Catechism does it say that a country must fight in a war to defend another country, because the war would be just?

To be honest, I was kind of surprised when Jack quoted the Catechism because I don't actually associate the two. I never realized the CCC contained Just War Doctrine. It's certainly not the definitive source on the subject - at least not for me. But I understand now why you must defend it.

But really now. No positive duty attaches? Have you never heard of Rwanda? Because I sure have. Does the phrase 'Duty to Protect' trigger any recollection? Because it does with me? Do you remember the cries of double standard when the Western Powers raced to save Bosnia but couldn't find a mall cop to send to Rwanda? Because I remember them. I was just reading last week a post by a woman who was writing about Iraq. She was complaining about Just War and its concomitant Duty to Protect because it was pushing aside her idiot idea du jour - in this case something she called Just Peace. This Duty to Protect stuff is all worked out. It's been developed by learned scholars who hold symposiums and write papers and conduct intense discussions. All they lack is (you know) an Army to carry out their plans. But they are looking. This assertion of a moral obligation to intervene is already out there.

What is the military for, Albert? You say my view is utilitarian. But what I am really asserting is that a military force is an instrument of national policy. It does not exist to right wrongs in the world. It is precisely this conception of military purpose that Just War seeks to constrain. It wants to place limits on the missions that a military force may be employed to achieve. Not in service to the national policy, but in service to some higher good. Its first responsibility would then not be to the nation but to an international abstract. This is where this 'duty to protect' stuff is coming from. JW doctrine wouldn't allow you to fight a war to secure access to oil resources. That's self interested national policy intended to maintain a standard of living. So why then does the the military exist? It's supposed to be selflessly deployed to save Rwanda. This is where you should replay all those tapes of all those people who castigated the West for doing nothing as Rwanda descended into slaughter. Their whole argument was "You had a duty to protect them."

Not if the military is an instrument of national policy, I don't. If it exists to defend and support the interests of its own people, then there is only a duty to intervene of behalf of those people. That responsibility to its own people is far broader that JW would allow. And that is my problem with it. It wants me to constrain my responsibility for the sake of others when I have no responsibility to those others. The US military is not obligated to protect Rwanda. The US govt is not obligated to restrict its operations for the sake of Rwanda. The US military is obligated to defend and advance the interests of the US at the expense of other nations. That is its sole and solitary purpose.

Once you subordinate national policy as the defining criteria for the employment of military force, you must inevitably transform military force into an arm of international social justice. And that is when all those positive obligations begin to attach. That is when it begins to move inevitably in the direction of international law enforcer. There are plenty of intellectuals who know that, and they move deliberately in that very direction.

carl

18 August 2014 18:49  
Blogger Martin said...

Dreadnaught

Perhaps you should read the Bible & see how God punished Israel by allowing other nations to invade them when they had strayed from the paths of righteousness.

Now while none of the nations of Europe or the Americas are as Israel is, the people of God, a nation can still expect judgement from God for it's corporate wickedness.

You only have to look at the way people behave on Twitter & the like to see the level of depravity in the West.

18 August 2014 19:34  
Blogger David Hussell said...

The pushback from the Kurds, now with their newly militarised allies the Yazidis, is most heartening. Maybe western air power providing cover for local fighters, drawn from acceptable, decent groups, is the way forward. Thousands of western boots on the ground is neither affordable or likely to be wise in the long term.

18 August 2014 19:42  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Hannah, IanCad,

Sainsbury.

Agreed ! Quite unacceptable.

The shares will be "revisited" and I shan't be pushing their trolley again !

18 August 2014 20:02  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ The Explorer (12:43)—A further thought on your Jewish atheist hypothesis. If it is true that the attacks on Christianity in the US are the work of Jewish atheists, are the attacks and the atheists condemned by devout Jews? If condemnation does occur, Pat Robertson, for example, would seem to be unaware of it.

@ Uncle Brian (15:32)—If the Jewish-controlled media in America do turn out newspaper articles, television programmes and feature films about the less savoury consequences of Jewish influence, Sobran is wrong. If they do not, his point is worth bearing in mind.

18 August 2014 20:03  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Johnny R:

I was wrong: Marcuse was Jewish.

I need to think about and research the whole topic some more, and am counting myself out of any further discussion.

18 August 2014 20:33  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi Explorer, #gasp# someone with a political view you disagree with was Jewish. St Paul was Jewish.do u think he is in any way representative of Jewish thought? And there have been some pretty terrible Christians, as atheists remind us here. But does that mean all Christians are like that? Why no. So try not to do the same with Jews. If u wish to be drawn into Johnny's conspiracy theory world up to you,just think where you are going.

18 August 2014 21:10  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

But I understand now why you must defend it.

Obviously, I am going to defend the teaching of the Church. But I would say that I would support Just War Theory anyway, because I think it follows from the premises of my whole moral theology. The shape of that thinking, naturally attends to what the Church actually says, and I have always believed that JWT is a negative doctrine: a war will be unjust unless these criteria are met. It does not, in itself, oblige - although, as I say, perhaps in the case of a country under attack, it might.

And it's here that I disagree with your interpretation of the doctrine. All these people who go on about the duty to protect, are you seriously telling me that they are natural law theorists, like me? Aren't they more likely to be universalising humanists of some kind? Are they opposing same-sex "marriage"? Are they opposed to the use of artificial contraception, and to abortion? I don't think so: they are arguing from a set of political commitments, which in all likelihood, have very little to do with natural law, and therefore with JWT. I think you are jumping to a conclusion in joining them with us.

If anything, I suspect they like all this stuff, because they dislike the whole idea of states and nationalities. I have no problem with these, indeed they follow nicely from my natural law commitments. Under this conception, a nation has a duty to protect her own citizens.

So I don't have to agree with those who cry "Duty to Protect" to disagree with this comment of yours:

But what I am really asserting is that a military force is an instrument of national policy.

That's what the Kaiser's army was, and Hitler's. By what moral standard will you condemn their wars (I'm not speaking of their additional atrocities, which of course you would condemn), if not by the criteria of just war? Or will you leave their wars uncondemned?

If you do not have some kind of JWT, by what moral standard do you hold your own national forces to account? The nation is a man-made thing. It is a good thing in my opinion, but it is not an idol, it must, in all its actions, be subordinate to natural justice. Just as I can appeal to natural justice to oppose abortion or other sundry secular abominations, so I can appeal to natural justice to condemn the misuse of military force. Claiming "national policy" will not do. I never sing the first verse of "I vow to thee my country all earthly things above" because I don't place my country above all earthly things.

Now of course, I could take a duty to protect view in certain situations, but JWT wouldn't make me do so. So if I argue about a duty to protect, it would be from wider considerations like shared humanity, love of neighbour etc.

To put all this into a wider context, I was opposed to military action in Syria - however much people said we had a duty to protect, the fact was, it could not meet JW conditions, because it plainly would have violated the following:

- there must be serious prospects of success;

- the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated.


And that judgement has been proved right. I think action in Iraq now would be just because it does meet just war conditions. But that does not commit me to action. I believe we should, not because of JWT, but because I think we have a duty to those whose country we messed up (by violating JW conditions) and because I think the success of IS there would be a disaster, for the security of all of us, including my own country. As a Christian, I naturally feel a bond with my brothers and sisters out there. As a Christian I believe that bond is deeper and stronger than that with my fellow countryman - or don't you believe that? But all of that would be constrained if I could not see the conflict as just.

18 August 2014 21:12  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Hannah @ 21:10

Relax, I'm not being drawn anywhere.

I was just retracting my erroneous comment @ 13:00 that Marcuse wasn't Jewish.

I'd still say it was his atheism and Marxism that drove him. I'd say the same about Lukacs. (I'm pretty sure HE wasn't Jewish, but that's what I mean about needing to do my research.)

18 August 2014 21:31  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi explorer,

cool (:

Sorry just a bit stressed out at mo..

18 August 2014 21:34  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl

"But I understand now why you must defend it(JWD)."

Low blow - JW is not defended because its Church teaching and in the Catechism. Its put forward because it is moral. You haven't actually made a case against JW as it applies to the actions of individual nation states, btw.

Your real gripe is against the 'Responsibility to Protect', a very recent arrival on the international scene. It was the 1990's genocide in Rwanda and ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, that focussed the UN on the legitimacy of acting across national borders to stop grave human-rights violations.

The UN has declared each state has the responsibility to protect its populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity and, if they fail to do so, the international community sees it has the right and obligation to act.

You hold that there is no "international community" and foreign policy should be determined solely by national self-interest and not by moral responsibility to other nations and peoples. Responsibility to Protect is based on a different set of norms i.e. that crimes against humanity cannot be considered an internal affair of a nation. The principles of state sovereignty and non-interference in their internal affairs is central but it does not mean states can act with impunity. The UN has restricted action to the gravest abuses of human rights - genocide, ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.

There are problems with it, granted. It is also open to potential abuse. In practice it may be difficult to implement. However, surely you can see the morality in it?

18 August 2014 22:15  
Blogger bluedog said...

Hannah @ 16.28, you shouldn't allow yourself to think that Sainsbury's are anti-Semitic.

18 August 2014 23:06  
Blogger Ivan said...


Uncle Brian, thanks for letting me off lightly. I replied to Happy Jack as he has always been courteous to me. All morning I was troubled by the thought that I had caused offense to the many readers here, by sneakily sidetracking the thread into an irrelevant matter.

19 August 2014 08:47  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi bluedog,

I never said Sainsbury's as a corp was anti-semitic,clearly it is not, but i still won't use it. Why? What I found appalling was the bowing to what a mob might do, that is enough.Why weren't police involved? It wasn't just Israeli food (bad enough,btw, as I strongly oppose boycotts of Israel) that was removed,but kosher foods- i.e. something that is more than Israeli.

I ask in my heart what's next, a pogrom? A Kristallnacht? Are we going to be forced out of the UK? This is my country too...A couple of years ago I'd have dismissed such thoughts, but now I'm not so sure.

The second thing is about the attitude of the chattering classes, there was a good blog on the telegraph about this to quote from the article:

"Imagine if a Sainsbury's manager suggested that the best way to deal with a racist in his store was to remove the black employees who were offending him. There would be outrage. Yet this weekend, in central, apparently civilised London, a manager decided that the best way to deal with people possessed of a possibly anti-Semitic outlook was to hide away the Jew stuff, lest they see it and feel disgusted by it".

19 August 2014 10:20  
Blogger Albert said...

Hannah,

Well said.

19 August 2014 10:44  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Well said indeed, Hannah! Sainsbury's have surrendered to the mob. Louis XVI did that and it ended badly...By the way, to show absolute solidarity, I would like you to tell me how I can make my hobnobs kosher...

19 August 2014 15:39  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi Albert and Mrs Proudie,

Thanks (:

19 August 2014 18:56  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

How to produce kosher hobnobs?
Ummm ... an interesting question from Mrs Proudie Jack has had a couple of ideas.

*chuckle*

Hannah

A well reasoned post. You don't ever appease evil hoping it will go away.

20 August 2014 00:49  
Blogger Hannah said...

Hi Happy Jack,

Well quite. Next time any of my Israeli friends or relatives are here, we are going to go to Bradford...

20 August 2014 11:16  
Blogger Albert said...

Hannah,

I wonder if enough Christians protested against halal meat on the grounds of what is going on in Iraq, if Sainsburys would remove halal.

Not for moment that I would want that to happen (either the protest of the policy), but if the answer is no, then it seems the policy against kosher was simply racist.

20 August 2014 18:56  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Hannah :"I ask in my heart what's next, a pogrom? A Kristallnacht? Are we going to be forced out of the UK?"

I don't think it would be just me coming together to link arms to try to stop that happening if things looked like they were moving in that direction. I've been appalled by what has been happening in Paris recently and I think we as a country should be asserting that it will not be allowed to happen here. Obviously, in Paris it is criminality by some private citizens and a poor response from the State, rather than an action by the State with passive and active co-operation of private citizens in your historic example. As for that thing with Sainsburys, surely it was just a local store thing that someone there did thinking to avoid a trigger for civil unrest due to the demonstration? Ill-considered, yes, but not a policy thing.

21 August 2014 04:46  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

What the store manager should have done is called the police instead, and the police should have immediately arrested anyone damaging the produce or threating shoppers. The store should then have run a promotion of those goods the following week as a \/ sign to the protestors if their intention was to intimidate rather than demonstrate.

21 August 2014 04:55  

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