Monday, May 4, 2009

As If We Don't Have Enough Challenges In Afghanistan

Speaking of religious stupidity, what is up with this?

A report by Al Jazeera English shows soldiers in Afghanistan passing around Bibles in Pashto and Dari, the languages of Afghanistan, presumably to be distributed. The chaplain leading the discussion acknowledges that “proselytizing” is against military rules, but one soldier says, “you can give gifts“[.]

Al Jazeera report: U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan have Pashto Bibles, told to ‘hunt people for Jesus.’

Let's forget about the the establishment clause for a while, and let's forget about those nit-picky little military regulations and just consider what happened to the last guy in Afghanistan who tried to convert from Islam:

The sensitivity of the issue [of apostasy laws] is highlighted by the case of an Afghan man who faced the death penalty for converting from Islam to Christianity -- creating an outcry in the United States and other countries, which pressured Afghanistan for his release.

After an Afghan court dropped the charges against Abdul Rahman, 41, Muslim clerics threatened to incite people to kill him and hundreds demonstrated against the court decision.

'Apostasy' Laws Widespread In Muslim World

It's not enough for the Bible-thumpers that they have endangered our soldiers lives with "faith-based" suicide counseling. Now they're actively encouraging Afghan civilians to endanger themselves, so they can exchange one set of superstitions for another.

It's one thing to talk about one's own beliefs with people who are interested, or even to facilitate someone's conversion if he freely expresses a desire. It's quite another to tale steps to spread a belief, particularly when we're already mistrusted by many in the Muslim world.

What's wrong with these people?

UPDATE (May 5): Apparently, the Army has noticed this and done something about it:

The U.S. military is confirming that it has destroyed some Bibles belonging to an American soldier serving in Afghanistan.

Reuters News says the Bibles were confiscated and destroyed after Qatar-based Al Jazeer television showed soldiers at a Bible class on a base with a stack of Bibles translated into the local Pashto and Dari languages. The U.S. military forbids its members on active duty -- including those based in places like Afghanistan -- from trying to convert people to another religion.

U.S. Military Destroys Soldier's Bibles

According to the story, a spokeswoman for the military said that none of the Bibles had been distributed. (h/t PZ Myers)


Comrade E.B. Misfit said...

"None of the bibles were distributed" ranks right up there with "Dick Cheney is a kind-hearted man."

Cujo359 said...

Due to the lack of available proof, or the seeming absurdity?