What an interesting coincidence that on the same day that I report Montgomery McFate’s comment in Nature News critical of anthropological opponents of the Human Terrain System (“Why should anthropology be some leftist religion?” she asks. “I mean, it’s supposed to be a science; it’s not supposed to be a political platform, a substitute for the Peace Corps, or a cult”), that an anti-Islamic Christian website writes an article specifically about the Human Terrain System, and condemns it. In the Christian Clarity Review we find an article for Oct. 8, 2008, titled, “Human Terrain Project: Multifaith lies impressed on US troops.” Apparently if anthropology were some right wing religion, then HTS would still do no better.
The main complaint appears to be that with the aid of HTS, U.S. troops are trying to win hearts and minds in the absence of Jesus Christ. In fact, the complaint is that George W. Bush has not gone far enough, and has instead bolstered Islam. One of the great sins is the imposition of an “inter-faith” ideal on U.S. troops, who themselves are imperfect carriers of Christ given the hours they spend swilling beer and gazing at porn :
The culture of interfaith and multi-faith is being forcibly impressed on US troops in the field in exactly the same type of hyped ‘psychology’ of the Vietnam era that is nothing more than occult lies and indoctrination not of the indigenous populations who do such things as bugger little boys or grow poppies to sell as heroin but of those who supposedly are taught to “use the techniques to teach peace” with such while the teachers swill beer and get internet porn off duty.
Agreed. One should never swill beer.
The Human Terrain System and Project Minerva are the “new masterpiece of Satan used against U.S. troops.” One should not think that anthropologists who oppose HTS receive any special blessings from the writers at the Christian Clarity Review — no sir, for we have been defending something that is already evil for being secular.
Minerva was the name of a pagan/Greek so-called goddess of war who actually protected or empowered none. No problem with the name in religious circles apparently as long as the project isn’t Christian. Indeed, supposedly, because Jesus Christ does not exist, and the honesty of Him as Truth can supposedly be sterilized from total reality by the zeal of the “Human Terrain Project”, all the actual lies of Satan make the sense that is common sense among those who laud the military’s latest occult offerings. Having the military use it even gives the anthropoligst an excuse to swoon over their discipline as a supposedly a pure thing being wrongly “weaponized”. No end of white papers will no doubt be written with bizarre titles defending the purity of what the anthropologist will call secular/generic “knowledge” that out to be defended from an evil use as if it were not already evil and simply complex lies they love to tell among themselves.
I take no offense at this: I have never written a white paper.
I am too tired and too amused to write a significant response here. I am curious to know if others think that the authors of the above article I quoted might not be native English speakers. (The language I spoke for the first six years of my life was not English, so I don’t intend this as a snide Anglo-centric comment.)
13 thoughts on “Christian Clarity Opposes the Human Terrain System and Anthropology”
Thanks for pointing out this piece of tripe. It highlights one of my own problems with the Minerva initiative – they need to be looking at radicalization period, not just Islamic radicalization. I have a suspicion that the authors’ definition of a “real Christian” is limited to the likes of Torquemada and Savonarola.
That was quite good Marc, thanks for that. I wish there were an easy way to find out who the Christian Clarity people are, their history, even their location which seems obscure. They take aim at everyone it seems, reminding me a little of that Baptist branch that protests funerals of U.S. troops while slamming gays at the same time.
Your headline caught my eye because I’ve a bit of interest in anthropology and religion. However, I blinked many times while trying to read the quotes; I backed up, started over, and squinted while thinking I must try harder to focus! I realise now that no matter how many times I re-read them, I still don’t understand what the author is trying to say. I know absolutely nothing about HTS or the Minerva Initiative (I am interested now in learning) but I do know a little something about writing. You are correct in your wonderings about whether or not the author of this drivel has a real grasp of the English language. More importantly, perhaps, the author doesn’t seem to have a grasp of reality. I withhold stronger comment!
Fine post. Now, I’m off to educate myself on this obviously controversial issue.
Thanks for the visit caffempath. The paragraphs I selected read more like tag clouds. I left out a lot of equally interesting and perplexing quotes that were “focused” on other subjects (like Obama being a Muslim, according to them). I think the best way to “understand” them, in the absence of clarification, is that they are taking aim at everyone.
Wow, she says, looking around and turning her head from side to side. Nice site, Max! I mean we aren’t talking new throw pillows, you really repainted, refloored, and bought all new furniture. Okay, I promise something more sensible in the future but I am just blown away by the decor.
Hi Pam! It’s been a while since we were in touch, I have been following your blog and got the sense you were hit hard by the hurricane, and I wasn’t sure if you were back on your feet yet or not, but I was very relieved you made it through. Thanks very much for the visit. I gathered you were speaking about the openanthropology.org site? Well, even if not, many thanks for the kind comments.
Yes, I am referencing the openanthropology.org site. I have been trying to catch up and I followed an announcement you posted and then clicked on the site and the visuals and music were awesome! I played them twice and may go back for more. Eventually, I found my way back here.
Things are moving along. My house is intact with no water damage but somewhat broken by the wind. On the plus side, I have a FEMA number. And I, physically, saw an insurance adjuster. I am grateful that we did not require Michael Moore and Spike Lee. The relief lines with food, water, and ice proceeded fairly smoothly–at least in my diverse neighborhood. I have some struggling students but score one for our College, our administration has stepped up to the plate.
Well, here’s a bit more about “them”, although it seems to be a single person (http://members.aol.com/telder1/about.html). From the looks of it, he seems to be a rather theologically illiterate pseudo-Calvinist with delusions of grandeur. I’ve seen this type of reaction before in some of the Charismatic groups I looked at a long time ago – he’s caught in a “paranoia” phase but, because he doesn’t appear to be operating in any actual tradition, he doesn’t have the structure (either doctrine or teachers) to get him out of it. After reading a bit more of his drivel, it really does remind me a lot of Savonarola and the style of the Fraticelli.
He’s also a really good example of how one type of radicalization works and reminds me a lot, at least at the process level, of UBL and some of his people.
Totally different note:
Pam, glad you made it through okay!
Thanks very much Marc, interesting notes, and one more piece in the picture of this incredibly complex mosaic of politically active religious groups that seem to point in every imaginable direction. Given this complexity, and some of the messages that strike me as unpredictable (because I know little of the Christian landscape in North America), I won’t be surprised when we finally hear of Christian Atheists armed with passages from the Bible that prove god doesn’t exist. Barely more serious, I have read a tiny bit about Sarah Palin’s own much vaunted religiosity, which seems to be strongly tied with a movement to convert Jews to Christianity: she should try that angle when speaking to AIPAC.
Well, I just caught up with almost all my reading and it seems I missed a lot. A lot.
Anyway, we have a pseudo-Calvinist student group that operates on our campus. They call themselves the “Campus Christians”. One of them has stood in our student center every day for the last 18 years that I have been there, trying to recruit students to his cause. His literature is home-made and reads much like the “Clarity” post, above. A few years ago, two of them signed up for a Philosophy course (in order to remain on college grounds they have to register for a course). I think the discussions were a bit above their heads but I noticed that new phrases, of a “philosophical” nature, started showing up in their literature. They read like a student who is trying to take notes about a topic they don’t quite “get”,–little snippets of words the Prof said and they managed to get down on paper. The point is, it could be non-native English speaker or it could be someone trying to push the boundaries of their functional vocabularly.
I was widely speculating because its kind of fun to think about some lone individual somewhere hunting down our supposed “left-wing” bias to bust it wide open, hearing some anthropologist”s comments on HTS, and feverishly posting their response. Unless, we can trackback the 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon, we may never know.
Pam, I am having the hardest time trying to remember which church it is that protests the funerals of U.S. troops and waves “God hates fags!” signs, and by protest I mean that they seem to be cheering the deaths of those soldiers. Do you hear much about them where you are?
@Max Westboro Baptist Church, led by the laughable, lovable, squeezable ball of hate bearing the name Fred Phelps. I went to school for two years with some of his congregants during high school. I can promise you those interactions were formative.
Thanks Erik! No wonder my searches were a failure — I had convinced myself it was called Hillsboro Baptist Church. I am glad you survived the encounter with them.
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