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50 Responses

  1. Babylon's Dread says:

    Well someone should definitely begin a conversation about a response to ISIS in Europe and the Middle East and definitely someone should ask if we really think more bombs is the answer.

  2. If there are to be more bombs, let them be European bombs.

  3. filbertz says:

    a stable Syria is defiinitely a major piece in solving this puzzle. Getting to that point is a conundrum. In the mean time, law enforcement has a lot of investigation to do in order to track as many leads and arrest/prosecute as many responsible parties as possible. The West needs to lead by example–that the rule of law is priority. Tit for tat responses don’t effect lasting change or safety.

  4. Em says:

    i seldom read long pontifications anymore, but this one did my heart good – a long but encouraging link

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2015/november-web-only/illusion-of-respectability-allen-guelzo.html?start=1

    if i read the above correctly, i think perhaps there are more joining the ranks against “terrorism” in the church
    …………
    RIP dear Nancy Missler

  5. Em says:

    “Tit for tat responses don’t effect lasting change or safety.” i agree with that – nor can we defeat terrorism by killing those that don’t manage to kill themselves … HOWEVER, finding and killing all the leadership probably would do the job … we can’t stop their funding which i suspect comes from all over the Middle East … would we be in better shape today if Georgie B had listened to his wise papa? i think so

  6. Michael says:

    There is no good response to this.
    We want to have reasonable, rational, solutions to irrational evil.
    Good luck with that.

    As my mentor said about another issue, there are no solutions, only choices.

    The Bible gives the state the sword…and I have no objection to them using it early and often if need be to protect us.

    The greater evil is that these demons have managed to taint all refugees from this violence as carriers of it…dooming many innocents.

    Days like today I want to just slap people who deny the reality of evil.

  7. Michael says:

    The massive, ponderous, theological question is how we love our enemies in the face of our enemies desire to slaughter us all?

    Good luck with that one too…

  8. Em says:

    “Days like today I want to just slap people who deny the reality of evil” … to tired to slap anyone today, but i can think of a few that i’d like to slap, too – i’m afraid now that i think on it, the list is more than a few – what is the population of Washington DC and its suburbs?
    … evil is very insidious, i think … we’re told to pray to be delivered from evil because we’re not smart enough to take it on ourselves – dunno, but that’s what i think

  9. Em says:

    God loves with an immutable love and yet the day is coming… so i’m not sure that loving our enemies precludes ever killing them – dunno – pray – there’s so much to pray about

  10. Michael says:

    The other thing I saw last night as I was following the news on Twitter…the constant mockery of anyone who posted a call to “pray for Paris”.

    A lot of people found time to rage against Christians while Islam was slaughtering the French.

    Some days you wish the dispensationalists were right…

  11. Michael says:

    Back to what Fil said, then I’ll have mercy and stop.

    Purely addressing the refugee problem…if we don’t intercede to help change the places that refugees are fleeing from, they will keep coming.

    Despite what the politicians are peddling, there really is no way to completely “secure the border”.
    You could build a wall as thick and high as you want and put an army on top of it and it will still not be “secure”.

    Here’s a little fun fact you probably did not know.

    “Laredo, Texas, is the fourth-biggest port—and the biggest landlocked port—in the United States, after New York, Los Angeles, and Detroit. Some five thousand trucks a day cross north, and four thousand south, over the busiest bridges in the world. But here’s the rub: although 97 percent of the transport is legal, an estimated 3 percent is contraband—invariably drugs northbound, guns and cash southbound—making this the principal crossing point for narco cartel exports and these drivers their witting or unwitting transporters.”

    Vulliamy, Ed (2010-10-26). Amexica: War Along the Borderline (Kindle Locations 4283-4286). Macmillan. Kindle Edition.

    The only way to “secure” the border would be to stop every vehicle and card every driver and passenger crossing here.

    International commerce would be choked by such a demand.

    The very people who want to build a wall would be the first to decry the harm to commerce.

    The wall will not make anyone more secure except the people paid to build it.

    The clear choice is to invest in making the places these people flee from stable…and there are no guarantees we will do that or do it well.

  12. Michael says:

    Just for historical reference, we did “secure the border” once when Kiki Camarena was murdered in the eighties.
    We did so until our international trading partners came completely unglued.

    Unfortunately we didn’t secure the CIA building which was where his killers came from…

  13. Em says:

    “The clear choice is to invest in making the places these people flee from stable…and there are no guarantees we will do that or do it well.”i am in complete agreement with the sentiment, BUT
    IMV that just isn’t possible – do we go into a country and kill every bureaucrat, every historic, entrenched power holding dynasty? we’d be chasing them all over the world … frankly, it creates a somewhat humorous mental picture … uh oh, here comes the judge, run to Brazil … they’re still after us? fire up the jet and fly to Greece … they’re still coming? run to Bahrain, to Spain, to Brussels, to the Alps … keep moving, we’ve got more money than they do …

    speaking as a dispensational Believer, God’s gonna get em – James 5 … but it’s hard now

  14. Michael says:

    Em,

    The only situations where it could be helpful is where we can help stabilize an economy so people aren’t fleeing abject poverty.

    Strangely enough, we did this to a degree unwittingly in Mexico.

    The undocumented alien seeing money back home through remittances is the single greatest and most successful anti poverty program in world history.

    There are no easy answers…and it doesn’t help that leaders won’t ask the right questions and keep pointing to false solutions to anesthetize the masses.

  15. Michael says:

    While I’m at it…I am totally opposed to the way we are bringing in Syrian refugees.

    I’m all for compassion…but we have no way to vet all these people and no plans on how to assimilate them properly.

    It’s a recipe for disaster.

  16. Em says:

    hate to see so many uninterrupted “Ems” over there on the left, but… aren’t we, in this country, living in delusion? haven’t our resources been mortgaged to the hilt to play these international power games? monetary systems are waaay beyond my ability to grasp and i know that they ebb and flow in some mysterious way…
    we may have asserted our plan for the Brave New World over the indigenous peoples of 200 years ago, but do we think we can manipulate the planet? unintended consequences
    everything from mangled soldiers to bloated student loans… we seem to be in denial of reality… i hear Russians buy whole apartment buildings in New York as investments and let them stand empty? up in my corner the Chinese nationals are buying up real estate and driving up prices, killing that American dream of homeownership… while we spend our resources and our young men’s lives doing what? not sure that the world will fall in line with ANY plan we might plan… i just can’t figure out how we’ll pay for what we’re doing now and for the consequences…
    but, yes, surely we can do better, at least – agreeing with that

  17. Babylon's Dread says:

    Isn’t ISIS really the outcome of the US destabilizing nations in the Middle East. Isn’t America’s shortsighted quest for revenge behind all of this madness. Yes, I am suggesting we have sowed to the wind.

  18. Michael says:

    BD,

    Yes.
    Just like the destabilization of Mexico and Central America can be laid at our feet as well.

    For some reason, none of this comes up in the presidential debates…sanity no longer sells in this country.

  19. EricL says:

    I think Michael is right @ 14, that the biggest help would be to stabilize a country. Sadly, we are doing just the opposite in Syria. The despotic Syrian government has invited Russia in to help them stop ISIS and other rebels. But the USA doesn’t like Assad or Putin, so it thinks it should intervene where it hasn’t been invited and wants to support a different rebel group, as if a three-way rumble will somehow help.

    Some of the warmongers are even calling for us to create a no-fly zone, which would have our jets directly confronting Russian jets. Are they that eager to start WW3?

  20. dustmyblues says:

    Removing Saddam may turn out to be one of the biggest debacles in American foreign policy in all history. Saddam, evil as he was, was a counterweight to other interests in the region, especially Iran but also other Islamic extremists since he himself was largely a secular ruler. The Iran/Iraq war in the 1980s is an example of the counter Saddam presented in the region. This is why the U.S. supported Saddam in that war, distasteful though it was.

  21. Michael says:

    The other issue I have after all these years studying border issues is that you can’t believe anything our own government says and the lies are only seen in retrospect. Leaves us helpless to discern a right it righteous way.

  22. j2theperson says:

    I think the US causes more harm then good when we get involved militarily with other countries. Going into Afghanistan made sense because the Taliban attacked us. But I don’t think we had any good justification for going into Iraq or any of the other Middle Eastern countries we’ve gone into since then. We should really learn how to mind our own business and focus on improving our own country. It’s not like we don’t have a wealth of issues at home to tackle. It’s tragic that people are dying over there, but we can’t even solve our own problems and our own government is barely functional right now. We obviously aren’t going to be able to fix things for other people.

  23. j2theperson says:

    Larry, complementarianism is all well and good when both spouses are physically and mentally healthy. But if you’re a husband who is struck down by some sort of disability you damn well better hope your wife is an egalitarian and is able to step up and fill the void and earn the money your family needs to survive and do the things you are no longer able to do–and that she is able to do that without being bitter and feeling like it’s not supposed to be her responsibility or feeling guilty that she’s stepping into a role that she’s morally not supposed to be carrying out.

  24. Michael says:

    J2… I’m not even sure it’s good for healthy couples . It’s much more complicated than that article. I think your comment was well said.

  25. j2theperson says:

    I don’t personally think it’s great for healthy people either, but I believe it could work in that situation. Realistically it seems like that’s the only situation it could work well in–one where both spouses are healthy and the man is, on his own, able to earn enough money to support the family. Once you step out of that nice white, middle-class 1950s ideal, complementarianism starts to crumble like sand.

  26. once a cc guru says:

    # 12 Unfortunately we didn’t secure the CIA building which was where his killers came from…

    “You have meddled with the primal forces of nature Mr, Beale…”

  27. John S says:

    I just received a note from our senior pastor, asking everyone to forgive his mistake. They had sent an email that invited everyone to “bring a financial gift of one week’s income” to the “giving celebration” on Thanksgiving weekend.

    The pastor wanted to emphasize that this was an error, and that “bring a financial gift of one week’s income” was really supposed to read “give a portion of your earnings”!!

  28. Jean says:

    My reflections from last evening to the Paris massacre:

    To my dear Christian brothers and sisters who were murdered today, God bless you brothers and sisters. You are blessed to be this night with our Lord in paradise.

    To my non-Christian neighbors who were murdered today, I pray that God would have mercy on you.

    To the family members, and particularly the dependents, of the murdered, you above all are the victims of this horrific event. I grieve with you in your loss. I pray that Christ’s Church would minister to you. I pray for your welfare, comfort, faith in Jesus Christ, and salvation.

    To the Government of France: You have failed miserably to carry out your vocation and responsibility to protect your citizens from evil. I pray that you will repent from your failures. I pray that you will redouble your efforts to protect your citizens.

    To the terrorists: I pray that God will repent you. I pray that you will either surrender yourselves to temporal justice, or that God’s temporal justice will be brought upon you. Before you face temporal justice, I pray that you will hear the gospel and believe in the Christ who died for the sins of the world.

    To the rest of us: We are reminded once again that our lives are like vapor. Here today and gone tomorrow. Where are we with family and friends? With God? Is there forgiving that needs to be given, unconditionally, to someone? Are there requests for forgiveness that need to be made? Let us not tarry in matters with our family, friends and God.

  29. Scott says:

    So, let me see, BD. You are suggesting that what those islamic terrorists did last night in Paris is America’s fault? C’mon man, you can’t be serious?

  30. Em says:

    amen to Jean’s thoughts…

    did we cause this mess?
    i think back over my lifetime and try to figure out who is at fault for the fix we’re in… must be the Jew… they caused all those problems for Hitler and then later for the prospering residents of the area called Palestine… after all, the Jew abandoned their country, took down the Israeli sign and left for no good reason some 2,000 years ago, invading the whole of the known world stubbornly hanging onto their Jewishness, forcing others to convert or die – terrorizing the land wherever they settled… or maybe i have that one backwards?
    or was it the Christian who took umbrage as the followers of Muhammed forced them to leave the land of their Christ, those Christians of the Crusades who turned to fight back causing untold pain on the innocents… ? – yeah, i know that was king and Pope driven
    that was an absurd bunch of rationalizing, but the devil is good at twisting things… someone wiser than i will have to untangle this – if that’s even a possibility – and for the reader of prophesy, there is much to ponder now as we watch the momentum build…

    i don’t think the U.S. caused the mess we’re looking at… but our solutions to the self righteous envy and greed that is behind all this isn’t that great, to put it mildly

    just sayin … again

  31. Babylon's Dread says:

    REALLY!

    Let’s see, we invade Iraq under false pretenses because we are united in our temporary lust for revenge, destroy the nation, withdraw without stabilizing the nation we destroyed, weaken our presence for political partisanship, leaving arms accessible for the takers, a new enemy arises that is as apocalyptically motivated as American religious radicals and reap the whirlwind. YES I am suggesting that actions have consequences and that we have unleashed hell on the nations of the world.

    I will say more. I will say that American policies have destroyed the Christian populations of the Middle East fueled by all kinds of wrong thinking partisanship… I would suggest that if the whole world armed themselves to protect themselves against us the way we act toward others …well the dispensationalist would have their apocalypse.

    Now that does not excuse Islamic radicals who are directly at fault and who are sowing into the cycle of death every chance they get.. BUT YES our own failed and flawed policies are creating enemies that will not be appeased.

  32. Michael says:

    Well said…and you didn’t even get to drone warfare that takes out families as collateral damage to targets we choose to execute.

  33. Do you suggest we go back to Viet Nam style B52 carpet bombing?

  34. Michael says:

    Not at all.
    However, we have targeted people with dubious connections to any real threat and took out lots of innocents in the process.
    Those who loved those people become terrorists in the making.

    There are evil ones who need eradicated…but does anyone trust how we’ve prosecuted these recent wars?

  35. The fact that terrorists put their own family in harms way is on them … not us.

    War is hell. But I am glad these latest events have happened in Eurpoe. Now perhaps they will get mad enough to finally do something, and they can show us the more honorable way to defeat evil..

    I used to live in France and they have been Eurpoe’s biggest critic of US policy going back to the days of Charles De Gaulle. Now let them lead and we can fade to the background.

    I suggest we sell them the bombs at a 10% discount.

  36. Ixtlan says:

    @34

    Didn’t work then, I doubt it will work now, although the terrain wasn’t really in our favor in ‘Nam.

    The war on terror is an open-ended, lack of clear objective type of war. That is why we leaped frogged from Afghanistan to Iraq. The reality is, terror does not confine itself to one sovereign. A democracy will have great difficulty enduring such an extended process. We must find the right resolve without allowing a tyrant to rise up and find it for us. Times of war are idea for governments to consolidate power over their constituency. And we need to blow their unregenerate souls straight to hell.

    Good night all.

  37. Josh the Beloved says:

    The US doesn’t win wars anymore and its on purpose.

    1) War sustains the (very) profitable log-rolling contracts for supplies in key congressional districts for both parties.

    2) 3) Starting wars is the historic way for kings (and presidents) to gain popularity and avoid doing tough domestic reforms for problems that cry out for solutions

  38. brian says:

    I tend to agree with Josh on the economic side, that was is and always will be the key motivation for war, and that is why it is always justified in some folks eyes. I would love to see an honest adult conversation among our leaders concerning this, that will not happen and never will, but I would like to see it.

  39. uriahisaliveandwell says:

    I would like to see the day that leaders come together being clean sober.

  40. Steve Wright says:

    Let’s not rewrite history. Iraq, whatever hindsight is now used as to the start of that war, had nonetheless stabilized greatly after the surge. Ask the vets who served there.

    Then President Arab Spring and Mr. erasable red lines came along and blew it all to hell.

    How anyone can talk about Iraq only and not in the same breath talk about Egypt, Libya and most of all Syria (as well as the deterioration of Afghanistan) in criticizing US foreign policy as if the last 7 years did not take place is beyond me. But we are 40 posts into this thread…..so I thought I would chime in.

    (Side note – the biggest opponents to the Iraq war was France. That’s how grateful the Muslims are to that country)

  41. Jim says:

    Steve,

    If you’re denouncing all US intervention, I’m with you. If you’re trying to imply that Obama’s interventions are worse than Bush’s, you’re just being partisan.

    If Bush would have listened to his own CIA, he would have known that the people of the region have no interest in democracy, so “stability” equals occupation or tyrant replacement.
    This assumes that his (or Obama’s) intent was for the good of something other than the war machine.

  42. Muff Potter says:

    Josh @ # 38 :

    You’re right on the money (pun intended).
    War is and always has been one of the most profitable enterprises an investor can be into.

    “There is no such thing as a just war, there is only war and the waging of war.”
    ~ Unknown ~

  43. Em says:

    #41 is food for thought… i didn’t like Cheney (Wyoming calls themselves the Cowboy state, but they’re not), i didn’t think that Bush Jr. was the man his father was – i’m sure that he loves his father, but too bad he didn’t appreciate how smart and principled his father is, too bad Jr. listened to lesser men like Cheney … or maybe, Bush senior wasn’t the best of fathers? dunno – but it isn’t just war machine greed creating what we’re facing now
    this is a good time for followers of Christ to focus on Christ as, more and more, the world calls good evil and evil good – we need more Pastor Wrights and more Pastor Newnhams

  44. filbertz says:

    Islam., as a wide and varied religion, is the most powerful agent in ending terrorism. If its leadership will disavow jihad and police its own adherents, including local Imams, most terrorism will cease. Strangely silent on this front–both in proclamations and in media questioning.

  45. Uriahisaliveandwell says:

    One person: The Ayatollah (s)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruhollah_Khomeini

  46. Em says:

    #45 – hmmm… Islam has its silent majority? … is their privileged class secretly hoping to pick up the pieces of a destroyed Western world when the dust settles? …

  47. Fil (46) – if Islam does not denounce or police, that does not make them neutral – it makes the complicit which makes them all terrorists.

  48. filbertz says:

    yes, I suppose that was my point–the ones who ‘control’ the religion, whether Sunni or Shia (sp), and could end this terrorist mindset, fail to do so…and are thus complicit or plain ol’ responsible for it. The fact that media and politicians refuse to label the terrorists “radical Islam(ists)” means Islamic leadership is getting a free pass.

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