“Conservative Catholic” Zeal for the Culture of Death
The other day, we took a look at one of the great heros of human history, : Lieutenant Colonel Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov who ignored orders and did not authorize a retaliatory nuclear strike on the United States when his technology falsely reported incoming nuclear warheads from the US. I remarked:
I cannot help but wonder how many of our kill crazy trigger happy pre-emptive warriors in comboxes or on Talk Radio these days would demonstrate the steely restraint that man did in refusing to panic and push the button.
Some people thought this was mean, but then perhaps not everybody remembers the Drudge Report’s headline just before we launched out pre-emptive war in Iraq: “PUSH THE DAMN BUTTON”, nor all the neocons (led by the infallibly wrong Bill Kristol) declaring World War IV, nor the hysteria of the Rubber Hose Right cheering for salvation through torture and (in the person of Rick Santorum) the deliberate and premeditated murder of civilians in a country not at war with us as “wonderful“.
Nor do people remember some of the more colorful denizens of our comboxes, respected contributors to such various right wing webrags, calling for the nuclear annihilation of five major cities in the Mideast or fantasizing about rounding up the civilian population of New Jersey Muslims, locking them in a mosque and opening fire with tanks.
But most troubling is that it isn’t just cybermobs doing what cybermobs do. It is also well-educated, allegedly Christian, right wing legal eagles who choose to go to the mat for stuff like this:
The Army officer who once taught that the U.S. ought to consider “Hiroshima tactics” for a “total war” on Islam has put America’s top general on notice for a possible lawsuit. Lt. Col. Matthew Dooley is accusing the government of concealing “the truth about Islam” at a time when proponents of his view of an inevitable clash between Islam and the West have succeeded at fanning precisely those flames.
On Thursday, attorneys for Dooley told Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey that Dooley is considering “a potential civil action,” said Marine Col. David Lapan, a spokesman for Dempsey. The written notice does not indicate that they’ve actually filed a lawsuit against Dempsey.
But Dooley’s lawyers, who have defended one of the most prominent anti-Islam voices in the United States, aren’t just flirting with legal action against the chairman of the Joint Chiefs. They’re launching a PR strike as well. A press release announcing that Dooley has retained them accuses Dempsey of compromising “the final bastion of America’s defense against Islamic jihad and sharia, the Pentagon” to “the enemy.” And it’s language that comes as Americans worry about Islamic radicals targeting U.S. embassies in the Middle East.
As Danger Room first reported in April, Dempsey shut down an elective course Dooley taught at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia, which is under the auspices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The course instructed senior officers at the lieutenant colonel, commander, colonel and Navy captain level that “there is no such thing as ‘moderate Islam,’” and that wartime protections against civilians of Islamic countries were “no longer relevant.”
Lt. Col. Matthew A. Dooley’s Joint Staff Forces College presentation on “A Counter-Jihad Op Design Model” calls for violent measures in a war against Islam. (emphasis added)
Materials distributed by Dooley’s guest lecturers suggested inaccurately that President Obama is a Muslim. Similar material taught to the FBI in 2011 compared Islam to the Death Star in Star Wars. Dooley himself taught, “Your oath as a professional soldier forces you to pick a side here.”
Dooley considered the reduction of Islam to a “cult status” an acceptable outcome of what he considered a civilizational war. Accordingly, his instructional material is reminiscent of The Innocence of Muslims, the anti-Islam video that was used as a pretext in the Middle East over the past week for anti-American protests. Dooley was removed from the college and received an administrative reprimand for teaching material that Dempsey called “totally objectionable, against our values and it wasn’t academically sound.”
The course Dooley taught and its parallels in the FBI has become something of a cause celebre in certain right-wing American precincts. Congresswoman and former presidential candidate Michele Bachmann lamented to Glenn Beck in July, “They are purging everything from our military, from our FBI. So we’re not even teaching what the Muslim Brotherhood stands for. We’re not teaching what radical Islam even is.” Bachmann attracted derision this summer when she accused a top aide to Hillary Clinton of nebulous “ties” to the Muslim Brotherhood based on the aide’s heritage.
Dooley’s attorneys, at the Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center, have been sympathetic to such arguments. They’ve defended the Florida Pastor Terry Jones, whose burning of the Koran prompted violent protests in Afghanistan last year. They didn’t return Danger Room’s calls, but they’re portraying Dooley as another free-speech martyr.
I get that the military is not exempt from kooks going General Jack D. Ripper on us. So it doesn’t bother me too much that some guy like Dooley should turn up in the ranks. It happens. And in his case, the system worked as sane heads intervened to remove this dangerous kook from forming hearts and minds.
No. What bothers me is that, once again, the Thing that Used to be Conservatism, at the level of people who really ought to know better, manages to combine enthusiasm for crimes against humanity with a supposed dedication to American values and–sickenly–Catholic teaching. The Thomas More Center should be ashamed to be shilling for this filth and every person who is championing this filth should repent and go to confession and beg God’s mercy for creating a genuine public scandal. There is no justification–none whatsoever–for advocating genocidal war against civilian populations. Catholics who advocate this are every bit as complicit in the culture of death as Nancy Pelosi or Catholics for a Free Choice. Only, unlike Pelosi, these people lard on the disgusting hypocrisy of pretending to be “faithful conservative Catholics” while she is at least honest enough to be frankly and openly contemptuous of the Church’s teaching.
The bondage of conservative Catholics to the Thing That Used to be Conservatism is as deeply corrupting as the bondage of progressive Catholics to the Thing that Used to be Liberalism. “Therefore come out from them, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch nothing unclean; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Cor 6:17-18)