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Who Are the Christian Peacemaker Teams?
http://www.frontpagemag.com/ ^ | 11/30/2005 | DiscoverTheNetworks

Posted on 11/30/2005 9:10:57 AM PST by Para-Ord.45

Anti-war NGO with a strong, pro-Palestinian militant, anti-Israel agenda Repeatedly condemns Israeli government policies, while making no mention of the Palestinian terror campaign Maintains a seasonal presence along the Arizona/ Mexico border, where it conducts what it describes as "a campaign to challenge U.S. immigration policies that result in hundreds of migrant deaths in the dessert every summer" Maintains a continuous presence in Iraq, protesting the U.S.-led invasion and blaming America for inflicting great suffering on the Iraqi people

The Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) program was founded in Chicago in 1986 as an initiative of the Mennonite Central Committee Peace Section, the Church of the Brethren Office of Peace and Justice, and similar groups. CPT describes itself as "a nonviolent alternative to war and other forms of lethal inter-group conflict," and aims to promote "nonviolent institutions, skills and training for intervention in conflict situations."

CPT is funded primarily through donations from members of affiliated churches based in Cleveland, Chicago, northern Indiana, the upper Midwest (Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin), Winnipeg, Ontario, and the United Kingdom. In 2004, donations totaled over $800,000.

CPT activities are based on short-term visits (of 7 to 14 days) by "conflict resolution teams" to Palestinian centers, both to provide "practical guidance to warring parties," and to "link communities experiencing violence with concerned individuals, churches and groups." Toward these ends, CPT has established a forum for "social change through listening, public witness, prayer vigils, [and] dialogue."

CPT also funds longer-term "peacemaker teams" based in the aforementioned areas. These individuals return to their home churches periodically, where they are active politically in "organizing, speaking, training, or other peace work within their communit[ies]." According to CPT, this activity serves to "advance the cause of lasting peace by giving skilled, courageous support to peacemakers working locally in situations of conflict."

CPT activities related to the Arab-Israeli conflict began in 1992, in parallel with delegations sent to Haiti and Iraq. CPT "violence reduction workers" visited Palestinian towns, in close coordination with political leaders such as the mayor of Hebron. (Israelis were largely ignored, making peace-related activities impossible.)

The number of CPT missions in support of Palestinians has grown steadily over time, now constituting half of the organization's worldwide activity. Ten such visits are scheduled for 2005-06, including one in coordination with the United Church of Canada and one with a Franciscan group.

Reflecting this disproportionate emphasis on the Palestinian cause, the CPT UK website provides the contact information for six "peacemaker team" members who are available for speaking engagements and comment on world affairs. Of these, five have spent most of their time in contact with Palestinian groups.

CPT publications also reflect a consistent pro-Palestinian agenda, in sharp contrast to the CPT mission statement related to nonviolent conflict resolution. One example is an article published by the Global Ministries, documenting the January 2003 CPT Ohio Conference. While repeatedly condemning Israeli government policies, there is no mention of the Palestinian terror campaign and the hundreds of murdered Israelis.

Similarly, the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation (HCEF) website includes an article titled "A Christian Peacemaker Team Member Views the Arab Israeli Conflict", urging CPT activists "to protect Palestinians under assault from settlers trying to extend their illegal domains, while diffident IDF [Israeli Defense Force] soldiers stand by and let them." Repeating the standard pro-Palestinian narrative that erases the historical context, the writer also characterizes the Palestinian people as suffering from the "cynical cruelty of the [Israeli] occupation." And a June 2005 article on "Promoting Peace in Palestine" in a Gladwin, Michigan newspaper describes a CPT tour by members of the Beaverton Church of the Brethren; in this piece, the group's one-sided support for the Palestinian agenda, and its condemnation of Israel, is made clear.

In the same way, CPT's website, including a detailed section on Hebron with photographs, consistently presents Palestinians as victims while implicitly condemning Israelis for trying to defend themselves against terror.

The one-sided political agenda is further highlighted in CPT's cooperative activities with other NGOs. These allied NGOs include the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), which employs such terms as "apartheid" and "war crimes" to describe Israeli activities. (The EAPPI has relationships with several other extremist pro-Palestinian groups such as the Alternative Information Center, the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center, and PENGON.)

Clearly, the evidence demonstrates the vast gap between CPT's claims to work for peace "through non-violent means," and its biased political agenda. CPT's strident advocacy is part of the NGO-led divestment campaign designed to promote demonization and isolation of Israel in the framework of the on-going political conflict.

In addition to its activities in the Middle East, CPT also maintains a seasonal presence along the Arizona/ Mexico border, where it conducts what it describes as "a campaign to challenge U.S. immigration policies that result in hundreds of migrant deaths in the dessert every summer." CPT "team members" conduct "cross-border prayer vigils, remain alert to vigilante threats and monitor border patrol officers' treatment of migrants." Founded on the premise that America immigration policies are unjust and oppressive, this campaign is conducted in close cooperation with the open-borders organization No More Deaths, which supports blanket amnesty for all illegals and a removal of all restrictions on future immigration.

Moreover, CPT maintains a continuing presence in the Magdalena Medio region of Colombia, where "team members support Christians working for a peaceful end to Colombia's 40-year-old civil war through public prayer, fasting and nonviolent action." According to CPT, activities include "accompanying communities along the Opón River formerly displaced by paramilitary violence and responding to widespread killings and huge infusions of foreign military aid."

Finally, CPT has maintained a continuous presence in Iraq since October 2002, five months before the start of the March 2003 U.S.-led invasion. Said CPT in November 2005, "The primary focus of the team for eighteen months following the invasion was documenting and focusing attention on the issue of detainee abuses and basic legal and human rights being denied them [by the U.S.]. Issues related to detainees remain but the current focus of the team has expanded to include efforts to end occupation and militarization of the country and to foster nonviolent and just alternatives for a free and independent Iraq." Notably, CPT said nothing about the insurgent terrorists' relentless stream of suicide bombings and beheadings aimed at innocent civilians in Iraq. The organization's entire focus was on alleged instances of misconduct by a small percentage of U.S. troops.

As the war has progressed, CPT's mission has evolved accordingly. For example, beginning in October 2002, when the threat of war loomed but open conflict had not yet begun, CPT sought to "support the UN Weapons Inspection Program as an alternative to war" (though it gave no credit to the large U.S. military presence that was ultimately required in order to persuade Saddam Hussein to allow even the most cursory -- and inadequate -- inspections of suspected weapons sites. CPT also worked to "expose the injustice and deaths from the US-led economic sanctions," and to "put a human face on Iraq, helping people in the U.S. understand that Saddam Hussein was not the only person living in Iraq." The organization chose not to publicly acknowledge that the actual cause of the Iraqi people's poverty and suffering was Saddam himself, who diverted billions of dollars from the ostensibly humanitarian UN Oil-For-Food Program and used those funds only to increase his own wealth and finance his own pet projects.

Once the war began in March 2003, CPT team members stayed in Baghdad to "stand alongside Iraqi families; provide an alternative voice to the reporters 'embedded' with Coalition forces; use their bodies to protect critical civilian infra-structure such as water treatment facilities, electrical plants, and hospitals; . . . raise an alternative perspective on the invasion based on interviews with Iraqi friends; . . . document abuse of detainees by Coalition forces; assist Iraqis in gaining access to loved ones in detention; [and] launch the Adopt-a-Detainee Campaign asking churches to advocate on behalf of Iraqi detainees." Again, the organization's emphasis has been consistently focused on America's alleged culpability for Iraqi suffering.

On November 29, 2005, it was reported that a radical Islamist group known as the Swords of Righteousness Brigade had kidnapped four CPT members (including one American), claiming that the captives were spies working undercover as Christian peace activists.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: hostages; iraq
A radical left wing group who blames the USA,not the terrorists who will probably proceed to slice their heads off.
1 posted on 11/30/2005 9:10:58 AM PST by Para-Ord.45
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To: Para-Ord.45
I don't believe they consider Zarqawi, bin Laden, the PLO, Hamas, Hezbullah, et al to be terrorists.

Someone should ask them.

Hint, hint...

2 posted on 11/30/2005 9:13:02 AM PST by mewzilla (Property must be secured or liberty cannot exist. John Adams)
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To: Para-Ord.45

A bunch of idiots is what they are.

I hate to say this ... but maybe if their heads are loped off they'll finally get it - terrorists don't want peace - they want to KILL you.


3 posted on 11/30/2005 9:15:44 AM PST by nmh (Intelligent people believe in Intelligent Design (God).)
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To: mewzilla

Wonder if that kid that got decapitated was working for this group?...what was his name Linhd?


4 posted on 11/30/2005 9:18:04 AM PST by kajingawd (" happy with stone underhead, let Heaven and Earth go about their changes")
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To: nmh

As posted by a clever sort in another forum:

"Christian Peacemakers, meet Muslim PIECEmakers."


5 posted on 11/30/2005 9:18:10 AM PST by MeanWestTexan (Many at FR would respond to Christ "Darn right, I'll cast the first stone!")
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To: Para-Ord.45
"who will probably proceed to slice their heads off."

I'm going to go with Limbaugh on this. It will probably turn out this is a fake kidnapping set up by these hippie idiots in order to get attention and sympathy.

If it turns out this is a real kidnapping and the idiot hippies get their heads out off, then all I can say is "hey, more oxygen for me".
6 posted on 11/30/2005 9:18:34 AM PST by Lockbar (March toward the sound of the guns.)
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To: Para-Ord.45

Are we sure PCUSA isn't involved?


7 posted on 11/30/2005 9:22:43 AM PST by Kimmers
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To: nmh

But but but, they offered the terrorists some brownies and coffee. Why would they want to kill people on their side?


8 posted on 11/30/2005 9:25:00 AM PST by Holicheese (Would you like a beer? No thanks, I will have a bud light.)
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To: Para-Ord.45
While there is likely to be human tragedy, I suspect that the kidnapping may give the left pause to contemplate their belief that the "terrorists" are really polite and well motivated people who are morally opposed to the Coalition invasion of Iraq.

Hopefully, the left will finally realize that terrorists have no morals and don't place any value on the life of non-Muslims or even Muslims who are of the wrong political beliefs.

From another article a description of this group......
In a statement, Christian Peacemaker Teams said it strongly opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq and blamed the kidnapping on coalition forces.

``We are angry because what has happened to our teammates is the result of the actions of the U.S. and U.K. government due to the illegal attack on Iraq and the continuing occupation and oppression of its people,'' the group said.

Christian Peacemaker Teams does not consider itself a fundamentalist organization, a spokeswoman said.

``We are very strict about this: We do not do any evangelism, we are not missionaries,'' Jessica Phillips told The Associated Press in Chicago. ``Our interest is to bring an end to the violence and destruction of civilian life in Iraq.''

The group's first activists went to Iraq in 2002, six months before the U.S.-led invasion, Phillips said, adding that a main mission since the invasion has been documenting alleged human rights abuses by U.S. forces.

9 posted on 11/30/2005 9:25:26 AM PST by Robert357 (D.Rather "Hoist with his own petard!" www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1223916/posts)
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To: Para-Ord.45
I can just imagine these naive idiots in Iraq: "But, But we're on your side. Owwwww!"
10 posted on 11/30/2005 9:25:39 AM PST by sportutegrl (People who say, "All I know is . . ." really mean, "All I want you to focus on is . . .")
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To: MeanWestTexan

Well put!

You know though, these idiots will see them as martyrs. But, I bet they won't be so quick to follow in their footsteps.


11 posted on 11/30/2005 9:25:41 AM PST by nmh (Intelligent people believe in Intelligent Design (God).)
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To: Para-Ord.45

Hmmmm...know thy scripture...and they'd know peace is NOT always Our Lord's answer when all else fails.


12 posted on 11/30/2005 9:30:46 AM PST by shield (The Greatest Scientific Discoveries of the Century Reveal God!!!! by Dr. H. Ross, Astrophysicist)
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To: Para-Ord.45

I love human shields, they make great aiming points for DaisyCutters.


13 posted on 11/30/2005 9:31:54 AM PST by RightCanuck
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To: Para-Ord.45
Wanted: The Christian Peacemaker Teams is currently looking for volunteers to serve in the Baghdad area.
14 posted on 11/30/2005 9:33:34 AM PST by beltfed308 (Cloth or link. Happiness is a perfect trunnion.)
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To: Lockbar
I am not so sure that it is a fake kidnapping.

CPT activities are based on short-term visits (of 7 to 14 days) by "conflict resolution teams" to Palestinian centers, both to provide "practical guidance to warring parties," and to "link communities experiencing violence with concerned individuals, churches and groups." Toward these ends, CPT has established a forum for "social change through listening, public witness, prayer vigils, [and] dialogue."

I suspect that Muslim fundamentalists who seem to be in with the terrorists are not thrilled about Christian pray vigils being held in Muslim areas. I would expect that in Irag, this kind of thing is even more of an "insult" to the Muslim terrorists.

The History channel had an interesting set of specials on regarding the Crusades and interviewed Muslim scholars. One of the surprising things from that TV show was that most Muslims blame the fall of Arab empire on Christians and that even today Westerners and especially their armies in the middle east are viewed from a Middle-Ages perspective regardless of their true motives.

Personally, unless a really politically smart terrorist steps forward these folks are all going to be dead pretty soon.

15 posted on 11/30/2005 9:35:47 AM PST by Robert357 (D.Rather "Hoist with his own petard!" www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1223916/posts)
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To: nmh
"I hate to say this ... but maybe if their heads are loped off they'll finally get it"

These morons seem to think that the only problem with the militant islamics is that they weren't breast fed or they were toilet trained too early or something like that, and if we just sing Koom By Ya everything will be fine. If this ends badly for a few of them, then it might help the rest of them understand just what this war is all about.
16 posted on 11/30/2005 9:37:04 AM PST by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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To: Robert357
``Our interest is to bring an end to the violence and destruction of civilian life in Iraq.''

So what were they doing while Saddamn was in power?

17 posted on 11/30/2005 9:41:59 AM PST by mewzilla (Property must be secured or liberty cannot exist. John Adams)
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To: mewzilla

So what are they doing on the side of the terrorists?


18 posted on 11/30/2005 9:44:05 AM PST by Dallas59 (“You love life, while we love death"( Al-Qaeda & Democratic Party)
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To: Para-Ord.45

A group should be started and called the "Islamic Peace Makers"...then go around and bad mouth the Muslims..


19 posted on 11/30/2005 9:45:32 AM PST by Dallas59 (“You love life, while we love death"( Al-Qaeda & Democratic Party)
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http://groups.google.com/group/soc.culture.canada/browse_frm/thread/a0cc6639e5659327/36edfb6e13e902d6?lnk=st&q=%22Christian+Peacemaker+Teams%22&rnum=3&hl=en#36edfb6e13e902d6

Date: 27 Jul 2003 16:51:31 -0700
Local: Sun, Jul 27 2003 6:51 pm
Subject: IRAQ : Christian PeaceMaker Teams


Christian PeaceMaker Teams

IRAQ: Dates to be announced. Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is
recruiting peacemakers to travel to post-war Iraq. Delegates will
assess war damage, listen to the Iraqi people, and gain an
understanding of the nature of the U.S. occupation of Iraq. They will stay in Baghdad and may travel to Basra, Falluja or other cities. They will visit hospitals, schools, churches, mosques and markets, and may have the opportunity to stay in the homes of Iraqi families. They will meet with representatives of
governmental and non-governmental agencies, including the U.S.
military. A nonviolent public witness will be planned as appropriate.

Participants accept the risks to personal safety and uncertainties of
travel inherent in being in a conflict zone. Cost is $2500 US.

CPT is a faith-based group that seeks participants for all delegations who are interested in human rights work, committed to nonviolence, and willing to participate in team worship and reflection. The delegation experience culminates in a nonviolent public witness that challenges structural violence. Delegates should have plans to share about the trip upon return to their home communities and congregations.

Cost covers round-trip airfare from a designated U.S. or Canadian
city, all on-ground travel, two meals a day, simple accommodations, and all honorariums and delegation fees. For more information or to apply, contact
CPT at the address below, or see CPT's website at: http://www.cpt.org.

Claire Evans
Personnel and Delegation Coordinator
Christian Peacemaker Teams

Christian Peacemaker Teams is an initiative of the historic peace
churches (Mennonites, Church of the Brethren, and Quakers) with
support and membership from a range of Catholic and Protestant
denominations.
http://www.occupationwatch.org/ [non-working link]


20 posted on 11/30/2005 9:56:55 AM PST by syriacus ('Tis strange that I turned out to be -- the Con in a Lib family tree.)
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To: Para-Ord.45
"The Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) program was founded in Chicago in 1986 as an initiative of the Mennonite Central Committee Peace Section, the Church of the Brethren Office of Peace and Justice."

I listened to a presentation about Mennonite/Amish history by an Amish woman in northern Ohio.
When she was done, what struck me was that they'd been run out of every European country they fled to from the last European country they'd lived in.
Maybe their failed model of, "just leave us alone while we buy up all your property, and don't pay taxes on much of it.... and by the way, we're not going to help you defend your stupid country", irritated some of their neighbors.
21 posted on 11/30/2005 9:58:11 AM PST by yer gonna put yer eye out (Will quip for food...)
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To: syriacus
January 4, 1997 , Christian Peacemakers Challenge Toys-R-Us
CHICAGO -- "Little drummer boy" Sam Stackhouse, 9, of North Suburban Mennonite Church, led Christian Peacemaker Teams' fourth peace witness against violent toys on New Year's day. Some 40 people marched to the Toys-R-Us store on State Street in downtown Chicago, calling on the retail chain to stop selling war toys, violent video games, and action figures that teach children violence.

22 posted on 11/30/2005 10:01:04 AM PST by syriacus ('Tis strange that I turned out to be -- the Con in a Lib family tree.)
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To: Para-Ord.45

So they took me into a small spare room with a video camera trained on a single wooden chair. A large muslim flag with crossed swords made a backdrop.

They were handling me pretty roughly but I figured they were just trying to impress the Al Jazeera guy who was pissed off because he had been waiting so long.

"I've been here since eight o'clock ths morning! I have to get to an IED site by noon, lets get this thing on!" he was yelling in Arabic.

They quickly tied me to the chair and blindfolded me. I could feel the cold steel of the saber against the back of my neck.

"Infidel!", Amar shouted in English, which was pretty decent. "Filthy Christian! American pig! You will renounce your government, your president! You will admit to the Zionist plot against the Arab people! You will renounce your filthy religion or, by Allah, I will cut your head off!"

The room was silent for a moment until the true meaning of his request sunk in and I started to laugh - a giggle at first and then outright laughter which turned to tears.

"Is that it?" I asked. "Thats all? Of course I do!"

We all had a pretty good laugh about it later at the reception in the French embassy.


23 posted on 11/30/2005 10:05:15 AM PST by keat (Who the f___ is I. Lewis Libby?)
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To: Robert357

I found their website, http://www.cpt.org

You can learn a lot about a group just by the bible they quote from. I knew the NSRV sounded familiar but I couldn't place it.

"the NRSV was quickly adopted as a replacement of the RSV in the liberal denominations associated with the National Council of Churches." - from http://www.bible-researcher.com/nrsv.html

in other words... it is the bible of choice for communists, socialists, and others that want to destroy the Christian community from within. This goes hand in hand with the goals of the CPT to "get in the way" of Israelis defending themselves and America trying to spread democracy in the Middle East.

Let me ask CPT something. In all the New Testament, in whom did Jesus find the greatest faith? The protestor? the preacher? No, a soldier (Matthew 8:5-13).


24 posted on 11/30/2005 10:08:44 AM PST by xusafflyer (Mexifornian by birth, Hoosier by choice)
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To: Para-Ord.45

They are in no danger - they are with their fellow America-haters...


25 posted on 11/30/2005 10:25:26 AM PST by talleyman (Who would Osamma vote for?)
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To: yer gonna put yer eye out
Maybe their failed model of, "just leave us alone while we buy up all your property, and don't pay taxes on much of it.... and by the way, we're not going to help you defend your stupid country", irritated some of their neighbors.

Umm, these folks aren't Mennonites or Brethren, no matter what they say.

There is a huge difference between actively fighting against the country you live in, vs. yourself, personally, deciding not to use force.

The difference is that between someone who chooses not to become a Marine, vs. someone going out and spitting on Marines.

26 posted on 11/30/2005 10:34:38 AM PST by ikka
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To: Para-Ord.45
A Peaceful Religion vs a Religion of Peace:

Starry eyed & hopeful, a band of U.S. peace activists' journey was cut short by bfeaking (see FR yesterday) reality.

Katrina and Peacenik fatigued, I wish them luck.

27 posted on 11/30/2005 10:35:33 AM PST by add925 (The Left = Xenophobes in Denial)
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To: ikka
I'm not following your logic, but nontheless it doesn't change the fact that Mennonite/Amish history is riff with tales of being run out of host countries.
This isn't a personal opinion...it's presented as factual history by them...
28 posted on 11/30/2005 10:40:05 AM PST by yer gonna put yer eye out (Will quip for food...)
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To: ikka
There is a huge difference between actively fighting against the country you live in, vs. yourself, personally, deciding not to use force.

I'm curious, could you explain how they are 'actively fighting' against the country they live in?

29 posted on 11/30/2005 10:48:17 AM PST by billbears (Deo Vindice)
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To: billbears
I'm curious, could you explain how they are 'actively fighting' against the country they live in?

Poor choice of words, sorry. I meant "actively undermining" the country. There is a difference between saying "I won't join the military" and "You shouldn't join the military because they are corrupt and malicious."

30 posted on 11/30/2005 2:41:04 PM PST by ikka
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To: ikka
Poor choice of words, sorry. I meant "actively undermining" the country.

Ah, so I can hold my Christian values as long as they don't get in the way of my supposed required nationalist values. Must have missed that verse in the Bible

There is a difference between saying "I won't join the military" and "You shouldn't join the military because they are corrupt and malicious."

And yet for the life of me after searching their front page on the site I can't see where they've made that comment have they?

31 posted on 11/30/2005 5:15:09 PM PST by billbears (Deo Vindice)
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