A U.S. Army training instructor equated mainstream religious groups and anti-Islamization proponents with Islamic terrorist groups as examples of religious extremism during a briefing with an Army Reserve unit. Apparently, she got her list from the notoriously anti-Christian, pro-Islamist Southern Poverty Law Center.
FOX NEWS The incident occurred during an Army Reserve Equal Opportunity training brief on extremism. Topping the list is Evangelical Christianity. The military also listed “Islamophobia” as a form of religious extremism.
“We find this offensive to have Evangelical Christians and the Catholic Church to be listed among known terrorist groups,” said Ron Crews, executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty. “It is dishonorable for any U.S. military entity to allow this type of wrongheaded characterization.”
Army spokesman George Wright told Fox News that this was an “isolated incident not condoned by the Dept. of the Army.” “This slide was not produced by the Army and certainly does not reflect our policy or doctrine,” he said. “It was produced by an individual without anyone in the chain of command’s knowledge or permission.” (Yeah, sure it was)
The Archdiocese for the Military Services was shocked to learn that the Army considered Catholicism to be an example of extremism. “The Archdiocese is astounded that Catholics were listed alongside groups that are, by their very mission and nature, violent and extremist,” the Archdiocese said in a statement.
They want the Dept. of Defense to “ensure that taxpayer funds are never again used to present blatantly anti-religious material to the men and women in uniform.”
The officer who conducted the briefing and she told him that she got her information from the Southern Poverty Law Center. (SPLC has listed websites Atlas Shrugs, Jihad Watch, BNI and others as hate sites)
In the notes it was clearly stated that the presenter was not a subject matter expert, and produced the material after conducting Internet research,” Wright said. So if the presenter was not an expert, what were they doing presenting the material, Crews asked. (And why wasn’t she named or demoted?)
“Why is there such dependence upon the work of the SPLC to determine hate groups and extremist groups,” Crews said. “It appears that some military entities are using definitions of ‘hate’ and ‘extreme’ from the lists of anti-Christian political organizations. That violates the apolitical stance appropriate for the military.”