Wednesday, January 20, 2010

With the Bible in its sights

From the House of Abraham came three main branches and three great books. The three Houses of Abraham have in common the notion of One God, but seemingly not much else.

The Jews started with their Torah.

The Christians followed with their Bible.

And the Muslims came after with their Koran.

The modern world identifies these three branches as separate religions and associates each religion with its respective great book.

This very basic and widely accepted knowledge is important to bear in mind when thinking about the following story. And remember, they all believe and trust in one God.

Marine Corps Concerned About 'Jesus Guns,' Will Meet With Trijicon
Following an ABC News report that thousands of gun sights used by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan are inscribed with secret Bible references, a spokesperson for the Marine Corps said the Corps is 'concerned' and will discuss the matter with the weapons manufacturer.

As ABC News reported Monday, the sights are used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the training of Iraqi and Afghan soldiers. The maker of the sights, Trijicon, has a $660 million multi-year contract to provide up to 800,000 sights to the Marine Corps, and additional contracts to provide sights to the U.S. Army.

U.S. military rules specifically prohibit the proselytizing of any religion in Iraq or Afghanistan and were drawn up in order to prevent criticism that the U.S. was embarked on a religious "Crusade" in its war against al Qaeda and Iraqi insurgents.

One of the citations on the gun sights, 2COR4:6, is an apparent reference to Second Corinthians 4:6 of the New Testament [i.e., the Bible].

Other references include citations from the books of Revelation, Matthew and John dealing with Jesus as "the light of the world."

Trijicon confirmed to that it adds the biblical codes to the sights sold to the U.S. military. Tom Munson, director of sales and marketing for Trijicon, which is based in Wixom, Michigan, said the inscriptions "have always been there" and said there was nothing wrong or illegal with adding them.

Munson said the issue was being raised by a group that is "not Christian." The company has said the practice began under its founder, Glyn Bindon, a devout Christian.

A video on YouTube that discusses the Bible verses had close to 20,000 views. "I love it. I love it. Yes, Trijicon, those guys are Christians. On all of their different sights they have verses on there."

"For those of you who aren't Christians, well, you know, get over it."

Michael "Mikey" Weinstein, an attorney and former Air Force officer, said coded biblical inscriptions play into the hands of those who call the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan "a Crusade."

However, a spokesperson for CentCom, the U.S. military's overall command in Iraq and Aghanistan, said he did not understand why the issue was any different from U.S. money with religious inscriptions on it.

"The perfect parallel that I see," said Maj. John Redfield, spokesperson for CentCom, told ABC News, "is between the statement that's on the back of our dollar bills, which is 'In God We Trust,' and we haven't moved away from that."

Maybe not away (since all Abrahamic Houses trust in God), but certainly towards the Biblical Christian version. That interjects a divisive religious element into our military, labels America as Christian-only, and will inflame those whose hearts are at the other end of the sights.

Guambat hopes ABC follows up on this story to see where it goes from here.
"We are aware of the issue and are concerned with how this may be perceived," Capt. Geraldine Carey, a spokesperson for the Marine Corps, said in a statement to ABC News.


Unfortunately, it was Fox that weighed in, and the commentary there was "they started it", they being the Muslims.


ABC has now reported the Bible references will be removed by the contractor: " ... our decision to offer to voluntarily remove these references is both prudent and appropriate," said Stephen Bindon, Trijicon president and CEO.



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