Private First Class Naser Abdo has reportedly been arrested by Texas police near Fort Hood, Texas. Abdo wasn’t assigned to Fort Hood; he was assigned to Fort Campbell in Kentucky. The Army said Abdo was AWOL from Fort Campbell.
USAFA has its “Falcon Circle,” and just down the street Fort Carson has its unique religious “chapel” as well.
As previously noted, the Turkey Creek ranch US Army facility of Fort Carson has been used for some years to support the religious freedom of men and women in the US military of all kinds. The kind of worship? A native American sweat lodge.
According to a June 24 report from the Defense Department’s director of operational test and evaluation, the critical error came when the drone’s operator accidentally pressed the spacebar with a wire from his headset — launching the self-destruct mechanism on the vehicle.
US Air Force General Stephen R. Lorenz recently retired as the head of Air Education and Training Command. (He is also a former Commandant of the US Air Force Academy.) He frequently wrote commentaries alliteratively entitled “Lorenz on Leadership.” On July 19th, the Air Force published his most recent article, in which he recounted a Chaplain’s run-in over pre-mission prayer:
As the troops were preparing to board the helicopters to an FOB that had recently been under attack, several Soldiers asked the chaplain if he could lead them in a prayer. A lieutenant colonel happened to be with the group and the chaplain, who was a captain, thought as a common courtesy he would ask the senior officer for permission to say a prayer for the troops about to enter combat. The lieutenant colonel replied to the chaplain that, “It would not be necessary” and walked away. The chaplain followed this senior officer’s guidance and did not lead the men in a prayer.
Detective Andrew Gordon of the South Charleston Police Department was surprised when a package arrived at the police department all the way from Kuwait. Inside were an American flag, a plaque and a certificate Continue reading →
Daniel Blomberg at the Alliance Defense Fund has an interesting article over the negative impact of DADT repeal implied even by those championing it:
If this change is risky enough that even the President scrambles to prevent it from happening “too quickly,” the Secretary of Defense who championed it focuses on limiting damage wrought by it, and most combat troops anticipate harm from it, why are we forcing it on our service men and women at all?
If you recall, some were asking how DADT repeal would improve the US military’s effectiveness. Blomberg points out it seems most say they’re doing what they can to “mitigate” the negative.
The American arm of the ministry known as “Campus Crusade for Christ” will begin phasing out that name and officially become “Cru” over the next year or so.
Amazingly, that’s been big news, even at Fox, CNN, and the Washington Post.
In a classic case of “can’t win,” critics from both sides have blasted the organization. Some supporters are disappointed to see what they feel is bowing to political correctness. Some detractors think it is a weak attempt to mask the ‘true mission’ of evangelizing the world.
The US Navy got a lot of grief for posting a list of “Sexual Assault Prevention Tips” on its Facebook page that was derided at different times as uncouth, offensive, and “dumb.”
Navy spokesman Lt. Alana Garas told Fox News that the Navy post should have included more context from the start.
“The intention of posting this poster was to encourage discussion on a serious issue,” Garas said. “It is a crime that will not be tolerated … and the Navy will continue to explore ways to reach our sailors on this serious issue.”
Eventually people realized the “poster” wasn’t the work of the Navy, but of a feminist blog (which actually only created the poster, not the text, which was the source of another feminist blog…). FoxNews noticed the blog the Navy credited went out of its way to deride Christianity:
“They say there’s no atheists in foxholes, but there’s probably no atheists in rockets,” said Catholic astronaut Col. Mike Good, who believes his faith in God was solidified by the awe-inspiring views he saw from space.
The article notes the infusion of faith in the local community and NASA:
NASA employees fill pews in churches surrounding Johnson Space Center, including Webster Presbyterian Church, called the “church of the astronauts” when John Glenn, Buzz Aldrin, Jerry Carr, Charlie Bassett and Roger Chaffee were active members of the congregation. Later this month, the church will honor the anniversary of Aldrin’s Holy Communion on the moon, the first meal ever eaten on its surface.
Nearby, the Catholic Church St. Paul the Apostle in Nassau Bay depicts Hubble images in its stained glass windows, a design collaboration with space-loving parishioners.
The publication is a refreshingly positive perspective on what men and women of faith can do while serving in the US military. So often critics have emphasized (or created an environment focused on) impermissible conduct; as a result, some military members (or religious persons considering military service) may assume their religious exercise is restricted.
An Army article notes an innovative attempt at supporting the religious free exercise of US servicemembers in the field:
The easily deployable tent structure, also known as a “sacred shelter” by developers at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Systems Center, provides units with a small worship facility that can be set up rapidly in the field.
“This provides a facility for spiritual fitness, whether or not a chaplain is available, in an austere environment,” said Chaplain (Capt.) Andrew Shriver, 421st Multifunctional Medical Battalion chaplain.
The “portable chapels” were based on Chaplain Shriver’s own design from 2007 in Afghanistan for Soldiers who were constructing new FOBs. They are designed to be cheap, easy to assemble, and even have partitions so separate faiths can be exercised simultaneously.
Interestingly, when the unit at Wiesbaden, Germany, tested out the prototype, the tent had a demo set up. While a “stereotypical” religious demo might have included something like a cross, Chaplain Shriver showed a setup for an Islamic prayer room: Continue reading →