Thursday, May 29, 2008

Winning hearts & minds

Marines pass out Gospel verse to Iraqi Muslims
By Jamal Naji and Leila Fadel, McClatchy Newspapers
Wed May 28, 2008
FALLUJAH, Iraq — At the western entrance to the Iraqi city of Fallujah Tuesday, Muamar Anad handed his residence badge to the U.S. Marines guarding the city. They checked to be sure that he was a city resident, and when they were done, Anad said, a Marine slipped a coin out of his pocket and put it in his hand.

Out of fear, he accepted it, Anad said. When he was inside the city, the college student said, he looked at one side of the coin. "Where will you spend eternity?" it asked.

He flipped it over, and on the other side it read, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16."

"They are trying to convert us to Christianity," said Anad, a Sunni Muslim like most residents of this city in Anbar province. At home, he told his story, and his relatives echoed their disapproval: They'd been given the coins, too, he said.

Whose bright idea was this? Will "a few bad apples" be blamed... probably not using that phrase; perhaps, "overzealous young Marines" honestly acting out of love for their Arab brethren.

Given publicity over the past few years regarding conservative Christian evangelism at our military academies, I'm betting that this idiotic gesture was the brainchild of some fairly highly placed Marine chaplain - LTC or above.

I'm pretty sure this is a really lousy way to secure the loyalty and support of our would-be allies - all of them Muslim!

Stop the madness!

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