by David Pence and A. Joseph Lynch
IRAN NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND CHRISTIAN REALISM
The debate on the Nuclear Deal with Iran pits all sixteen Republican candidates against the deal, as well as almost all of the conservative press with the exception of 'The American Conservative.' Christian public intellectuals could help by fostering a real debate. That hasn't happened yet. At all too many Catholic forums, philosophical and theological reflections are strangely disconnected from the historical life of the nations. The antiwar political left has proven a mute ally for the President and Secretary Kerry.
AOA advocates a Christian Realism which examines the religious dimensions of a realignment in the Mideast (see: Religion and American Foreign Policy and Christian nations and the Persecution of Christians). Understanding our duty to protect Christians would put America in a de facto alliance with the Shiite states capable of facing the Salafist purification movement now splitting Sunni Islam and targeting Shiites (see: The Shiite-Sunni war - are we on the wrong side?). Understanding the religious debate within Sunni Islam will clarify our need to form alliances with true "moderates" of the Sunni world - starting with the Hashemites of Jordan and including the many non-Arab Sunni nation states which have developed over the centuries within the Islamic civilization. We would treat Israel as an essential ally but not our State Department. Christian realism would treat Russia as a Christian nation fighting a common enemy. We would reverse the militarized rejuvenation of NATO as an anti-Russian alliance. (see: Religious Nations or the Atheist West). Most vigorously we have tried to challenge the reigning silence about Saudi Arabia as the spiritual center of Islamic terrorism in the religious and civic public media.
TOO LARGE TO FAIL, TOO SMALL TO SUCCEED
One response to the 2008 financial collapse was the Dodd-Frank Law. The jobs that followed for lawmakers as regulators were one benefit of the law for a small group. Not so fortunate were the many small banks and institutions that were driven out of business by the regulatory overhead. They were too small to succeed. Barney Frank keeps showing up in all these stories.
WHEN EUROPE BOMBED SERBIA
The State of Kosovo was formed after the high-altitude punishing of Orthodox Serbia by the "West" in a President Clinton/Secretary Albright attempt to "punish genoicide" in the Christian-Muslim war fought in the heart of Serbia in the 1990's. Kosovo became an independent Muslim-dominated state. Here is a look at an apparently criminal regime by a 'NY Times' reporter who has covered them since the Kosovo war. One of the major arguments of the NATO commander in explaining why Russia should be considered Europe's most dangerous enemy is that it broke the post-WWII agreement that no states would be formed by force (Crimea annexation). However, the NATO bombing of Serbia (certainly a use of force) produced a state of its own: Kosovo.
THE WARRIORS OF WWII AND THE NATIONS THEY FOUNDED
When we asked which soldiers of the greatest generation won WWII we are told that the Russians lost the most men. Now we are reminded that the British Army was very Indian. An excellent review of a book on the military of the British Empire. And as always after men fight for a country they come back thinking they should participate in its rule. The partition of Pakistan and the rise of its first leader, Muhammed Ali, spring directly from a military role in WWII.
A POWER COUPLE TO KNOW
Patriarchy and Fraternity are the public forms of Christian love in the Church and nation. Covert kinship deals like the power couple Nuland-Kagan are our nemesis. To overcome them we must first understand them. We don't usually reference Lew Rockwell who runs a website we tend to deplore. This entry though is a very good synthesis of a story well known to Washington insiders but off the radar of the American public and most journalists. Visit for the entree, don't stay for the meal.
KILLING GOD, MARKETING BABIES
Bishop-elect Robert Barron grounds the "dignity of the human person" in the existence of God. The "dignity of the human person" is a phrase which could allow 7 billion tyrants to live out their lives as their passions find best. Or "the dignity of the human person" is a God-centered reality which bespeaks a world of gratitude, solidarity, and obligation. Pope Francis calls the new individualists "atheistic libertines." He situates the real dignity of the human being in a God-centered ecology -- most notably in his encyclical "Laudato Si."