Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison

3/18/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Religious Freedom should be at the heart of American foreign and domestic policy.

When the U.S. demands respect for human rights, including religious freedom, we are not making any unreasonable demands. Egypt is not moving ahead toward greater democracy if 84% of Egyptians still believe-as they have told the Pew poll-that anyone who leaves Islam should be killed.

Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison

Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison

Highlights

By Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/18/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Middle East, Morsi, anti-Christian, religious freedom, Coptic Christians, Muslim brotherhood, Marco Rubio, US Aid, Islamic Jihad, Human rights, Ken Blackwell, Bob Morrison


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - If you follow the annual reports of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), you will read a sad catalog of persecution and discrimination against Christians, Jews, and members of other religions around the world.
 
It goes almost without saying that persecution in nightmare places like North Korea is horrendous. Although the media too often treats North Korea like a clown show-especially when highlighting the visits of unthinking Americans like Dennis Rodman-the brutal realities are no joke. In North Korea, it is estimated, that between 100,000 and 200,000 Christians are imprisoned by a regime that still lauds the Communist mass-murderer Josef Stalin. In North Korea, you can be shot in the head for owning a Bible.
 
But North Korea is at least recognized as a rogue state, an enemy of human rights, and a threat to world peace. The USCIRF report for 2012 has documented troubling developments in Egypt. There was much excitement in the Western media over the toppling first of the dictator in Tunisia, followed by the Feb. 2011 ouster of longtime Egyptian strongman Hosni Mubarak. Journalists hailed these events as a new "Arab Spring."
 
Where did that expression come from? Ironically, many journalists harkened back to the "Prague Spring" of 1968. In that year, liberalizing Czech party leaders sought to give their people "Communism, but with a human face."

They managed instead to get their country overrun by Soviet tanks. In the Kremlin, Czech party leader Anton Dubcek was chained to a wall. When he messed in his pants, a drunken Soviet party boss Leonid Brezhnev came in to jeer at him. Communism maintained with brute force its inhuman face.
 
Is the Arab Spring destined to follow the same bloody path? Indications so far are not good. That is why the latest move by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fl.) makes so much sense. Sen. Rubio wants to condition U.S. aid to Egypt on measurable indicators of government action there to protect religious freedom.

Sen. Rubio is offering an amendment to the 2013 spending bill that would cut U.S. aid to Egypt now ruled by the Muslim Brotherhood (MB). The amendment demands concrete demonstration that the MB will respect religious freedom and property rights of its own people.
 
The Rubio Amendment, if adopted, would send a strong message to Mohamed Morsi, the MB's front man in Cairo, that the United States taxpayers will no longer underwrite persecution of Coptic Christians, Evangelicals, Jews, and other minorities in the Arab world's largest country. 
 
Sen. Rubio told the Washington Times:"Our foreign aid is not charity. Our foreign aid is used to advance our foreign policy interests. We have a right to be concerned."
 
We have a lot of educating to do, and not only in Cairo. When Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice intervened with Afghan ruler Hamid Karzai in 2006 in an effort to prevent the U.S.-backed government in Kabul from killing Christian convert Abdul Rahman, she announced success when Karzai let the threatened man "escape" to Italy in the dead of night. Ms. Rice said Afghanistan is a young democracy and we look forward to the day when all Afghans enjoy the full range of religious and civil rights.
 
With all due respect, that's the wrong answer, Madam Secretary. For a man to have to flee for his life is not a success. And to call any country that forces him to flee a young democracy is an error. Afghanistan was not a democracy then. It is not a democracy now. It is unlikely that Afghanistan will resemble anything like a democracy when U.S. forces leave in 2014.
 
When the U.S. demands respect for human rights, including religious freedom, we are not making any unreasonable demands. Egypt is not moving ahead toward greater democracy if 84% of Egyptians still believe-as they have told the Pew poll-that anyone who leaves Islam should be killed.
 
It will not matter if 99% of Egyptians, or Afghans or Iraqis, vote if by their votes they install a murderous regime. Does anyone think that the Nazi regime was legitimate because Germans voted to affirm Hitler's assumption of dictatorial powers in 1934? You cannot vote on who gets shot. You cannot use the voting machines of democracy to kill democracy.
 
We should shed no tears for Hosni Mubarak. His iron-fisted rule of thirty-one years was a purchased peace. He agreed not to make war on Israel, but his regime circulated throughout the Arabic-speaking world a multi-part TV drama series based on the long-discredited Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
 
That libelous attack on the Jews was first concocted by the Okhrana, the Tsar's infamous secret police. And Mubarak used it the same way the tsars used it: Keep the wolves at bay by throwing the Jews off the sled.
 
Still, as bad as Mubarak was, Morsi is on course to be worse. That's why the Rubio Amendment should be adopted. It's why religious freedom should be at the heart of American foreign and domestic policy.
 
Egypt and the other countries in the Mideast will never be stable, much less democratic, if they murder their neighbors who worship differently. U.S. tax dollars should not buy the Egypt's MB and its military the armored personnel carriers they use to run over Christians.

-----
Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison are senior Fellows at the Family Research Council in Washington. D.C.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for September 2014
Mentally disabled:
That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a dignified life.
Service to the poor: That Christians, inspired by the Word of God, may serve the poor and suffering.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Are they on to something? Judicial Watch says terrorists are operating in Mexico Watch

Image of Beto O'Rourke, a Democrat who represents El Paso in the U.S. House of Representatives, called the area offices of various government agencies in response to a report that Middle Eastern terrorists were operating across the border in Mexico.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Judicial Watch, a controversial Web site that maintains that Middle Eastern terrorists are operating just cross the border from the United States from Mexico is evidently stirring up waves. Federal law enforcement sources in El Paso, Texas say that a United ... continue reading


CLOTHES HORSE: Wasserman Schultz losing confidence among Democrats Watch

Image of Stylish  Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman has alienated members of her own party by reportedly demanding that the party pick up the tab for her wardrobe!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two "faux pas" have alienated Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz from her party. Her criticism of the White House's handling of the border crisis and comparing tea party members to abusive husbands have alienated her constituency at ... continue reading


Supreme Court justice Sotomayor warns about drones encroaching on American way of life Watch

Image of Justice Sonia Sotomayor said that she's particularly troubled by the potential for commercial and government drones to compromise personal privacy.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Unmanned surveillance planes called drones pose a threat to the privacy of American citizens, warns Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor said. Speaking to students at Oklahoma City University's law school, Sotomayor says that frightening changes in technology ... continue reading


Obama says Islamic State 'is not Islamic' - what are they, then? Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Obama vowed to "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State insurgency in Iraq and Syria, He intends to do so with airstrikes and a minimal military presence on the ground. The president also declared that the Islamic State terrorists "are not Islamic." ... continue reading


Obama vows to attack Islamic State militants 'wherever they exist' Watch

Image of There has been some progress made against the group. After more than 150 U.S. airstrikes in Iraq in the past month, Iraqi and Kurdish forces have halted the Islamic State advance.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama has vowed to attack Islamic State militants "wherever they exist." Obama will be sending a limited U.S. military presence of 475 personnel. The president also declared that the United States will act in concert with a broad coalition ... continue reading


Opinion: We Need a Blue Collar Conservative like Rick Santorum in the 2016 Presidential Campaign Watch

Image of Rick Santorum is not an establishment candidate. He threatens establishment leaders in both major political parties. he has always played the role of the underdog and been counted out by the many self professed experts. That is one of the greatest assets he would bring to the 2016 Presidential campaign. He has the potential to draw voters from across party lines and help to forge a new governing coalition which can resuscitate the American dream and set us on a course to brighter future. I sincerely hope he runs.

By Keith A. Fournier

Rick Santorum is a statesman in an age of salesmen - and women. He is a man with a chest.  I will be watching his movements over the next few months. If he decides to run, and I hope he does, he will bring along with him into his presidential campaign a ... continue reading


Pelosi favors sweeping regulations to save net neutrality and ban Internet 'fast lanes' Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's an unpopular stand for many Republicans, but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi says she wants to give federal regulators sweeping new powers over Internet access. It's a necessity in order to save net neutrality and protect Internet users, she says. ... continue reading


READY TO STRIKE: President Obama prepared to use airstrikes in Syria Watch

Image of President Obama believes he needs formal congressional approval to take that action, according to people who have spoken with the president recently.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

From admitting that he had no policy in regards to Syria, U.S. President Barack Obama is now ready for some clear decisive action. The president says that he is prepared to use U.S. military airstrikes in Syria in order to defeat the militant jihadist group ... continue reading


Real cost of Obamacare - 350,000 jobs loss and premium hikes for small businesses Watch

Image of Individual year-round employees at businesses with 50 to 99 workers lost $935 annually, while those at firms with 20 to 49 workers are out an average of $827.50 per person in take-home pay.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to a new analysis of the effects of the health-care reform law, Obamacare has taken a toll on small businesses. According to a new study, there have been millions of dollars in reduced pay and hundreds of thousands fewer jobs. In short - many ... continue reading


More emails 'lost' connected to Lois Lerner case Watch

Image of IRS teacher Lois Lerner, who was placed on leave and has since retired, has emerged as the key figure in congressional investigations.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the most recent development, the Internal Revenue Service, or IRS says it has lost emails from five more employees' part of congressional probes into the treatment of conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 15:35-37, 42-49
35 Someone may ask: How are dead people raised, and ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 56:10-12, 13-14
10 In God whose word I praise, in Yahweh whose word I ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 8:4-15
4 With a large crowd gathering and people from every ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 20th, 2014 Image

Sts. Andrew Kim Taegon, Paul Chong Hasang, and Companions
September 20: Feastday: September 20 The evangelization of Korea began ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter