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  • Thursday, August 25, 2005

    American Traitor Robertson in favour of sedition

    Right-wing religious crackpot extraordinaire and founder of the Christian Coalition Pat Robertson called this week for the assassination of democratically elected "strong-arm dictator" Hugo Chavez (perhaps out of frustration over the failure of the U.S.-backed coup against Chavez in 2002). My knowledge of the New Testament may not be quite up to par with some of our readers, so if someone could please point out what verses of the New Testament condone assassination, I would be greatful. Although Robertson's call for the assassination falls under protected free speech imagine if some of the names were changed:

    [I]f there were other people in this country doing similar kinds of things, if someone advocated, an Islamic cleric, for example, in the same level as Robertson, the murder or assassination of Tony Blair in the United Kingdom because of the Iraq war, I can tell you that cleric would be in jail in this country, and they would figure out a way to make the law say that, well, his followers were imminently going to do something about it, and advocating it helped him.... I can tell you those people would likely be in jail. If they were non-citizens, they would be jailed and deported very quickly.

    Looking a little closer at Robertson can be a rather informative experience. What does Robertson want? For one thing, he wants to throw out the U.S. government as it is and replace it with a theocracy:

    [H]e calls for the creation of a Christian America, a Christian state. And there has been an assault against the democratic system, largely unseen, I think, by the majority of the American people, ever since the early 1980s.

    In Robertson's view of the Religion of Love, violence and death are the Hand of God at work:

    Robertson, along with most of the radical Christian right, endorses violence as a kind of curative for the satanic movement, secular humanism, liberalism, Islam, whatever it is that they see outside the gate. So the final aesthetic of their movement, in many ways, is violence. This is what the whole “End Time” series is about. So if you go back and look at his statements, he repeatedly sees incredibly destructive and violent acts as the hand of God. His most famous statement coming, along with Jerry Falwell, right after 9/11, when he said that the attacks of 9/11 were caused by [God's anger against] pagans, abortionists, feminists, gays, lesbians, the ACLU and People for the American Way.

    Robertson, in all seriousness, also makes claims that could be taken as evidence of mental illness:

    He... claims that God speaks to him for the new year, and he has in the past claimed to have, through God's power, harnessed the destructive might of hurricanes, such as Hurricane Gloria in 1985, where he claimed that through his relationship with God, he steered the hurricane away from his company's Virginia Beach headquarters. This hurricane, of course, caused millions of dollars of destruction in states along the East Coast. He made a similar claim about Hurricane Felix in 1995.

    And if overthrowing the government of the U.S. and replacing it with a theocracy were not treason enough...

    [H]e indicated that... an explosion of a nuclear weapon at the State Department could be good for the country. [He made the statement] when he was asked a question about it, and he said that a small nuclear device would be good for the country, if we exploded it in the State Department.

    Robertson has also been friendly with some of the worst of the worst that the human race has to offer:

    [H]e was chose to [warlord] Charles Taylor [in Liberia], for instance. [H]e has set up alliances with some of the most despotic regimes around the globe, including a very deep involvement in the forces extremism in Central America. He was an avid supporter of the Contras in the war against -- set up by the Reagan administration against the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, a strong supporter of Rios Montt, who carried out wholesale massacres in Guatemala in the early 1980s, and the regime in El Salvador during the war at a time when the death squads in El Salvador were killing between 800 and a thousand people a month. And this was not limited to statements of support from the United States, but visits...

    Well, is Robertson just a nutcase whose radical statements can be shrugged off? Perhaps not:

    I think we have to remember that the radical fringe of this movement is violent, that those who attack abortion clinics, those who embrace this creed and are members of militia movements are people who not only believe in the use of violence but practice the use of violence. So, what you have potentially is the incitement of these fringe groups within the movements who are happy and willing to use force.

    [Source: The Cannon of Christianity: Pat Robertson Calls for the Assassination of Hugo Chavez]

    Update:

    Keeping up with Robertson is hard work. After saying "I don't know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it," Robertson went on to deny what he said saying "Wait a minute, I didn't say 'assassination.' I said our special forces should "take him out," and "take him out" can be a number of things including kidnapping. There are a number of ways to take out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted by the AP, but that happens all the time."

    Misinterpreted Mr. Robertson? No, you know that that is so untrue that you later went on to say "Is it right to call for assassination? No, and I apologize for that statement. I spoke in frustration that we should accommodate the man who thinks the U.S. is out to kill him."

    [Source]

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