According to his own statements reported at a Washington Post blog, Michael Weinstein (of his self-founded Military Religious Freedom Foundation) met at the
Pentagon on April 23 where they discuss[ed] religious issues in a group that included several generals and a military chaplain.
The blog was written by Sally Quinn, who has been friendly to Weinstein’s cause in the past. Weinstein seems inimitably pleased at the invitation, as likely any private citizen in America might be if US Air Force leadership had a personal meeting with them on “religious issues in the military.” It’s unclear what grants Weinstein that legitimacy, beyond a spate of failed lawsuits and a series of self-published op-eds that would put even the most advanced thesaurus to shame (save the one he apparently plagiarized).
It would seem at least one senior leader was there, as the article claims one attendee was LtGen Richard Harding — The Judge Advocate General of the Air Force, who is the senior legal advisor to the Chief of Staff, General Mark Welsh:
At the meeting at the Pentagon, according to Weinstein, Air Force Lt. Gen. Richard C. Harding said the instruction booklet, scheduled to be released in a few weeks as a blue pamphlet, will be a panacea to all religious issues.
At Breitbart, Ken Klukowski — from the faculty at Liberty University School of Law — noted the privilege Weinstein received, and minced few words in calling Weinstein an “Anti-Christian Extremist” (something that will likely raise Weinstein’s blood pressure and earn Klukowski a nasty letter from Weinstein’s lawyer).
Weinstein will be a consultant to the Pentagon to develop new policies on religious tolerance, including a policy for court-martialing military chaplains who share the Christian Gospel during spiritual counseling of American troops…
Many media outlets are silent on this disturbing new alliance between fanatical secularists and leaders in the Pentagon…under which the U.S. military would officially consult with someone with such foaming-at-the-mouth passionate hostility toward traditional Christians…
God help us now when someone with such visceral hatred of conservative Christians…is helping develop policies for how to deal with Christians in the military.
Too bad he left out Weinstein’s claim that Christians in the military are really trying to create an American Holocaust, and that’s why he wants the wrong kind of Christians — those that don’t meet his definition of a “true Christian” — to be run out of the US military on a rail (or convicted of treason, as Klukowski highlights). Yes, that’s the guy meeting with US military Generals about “religious issues” and future policy.
Weinstein’s publication of the meeting will likely leave some Air Force leaders a bit red-faced, especially given the timing: Congress has previously been asked to investigate the unusually free access Weinstein has to senior military leaders, and in just the past few weeks the DoD has been hammered by accusations of hostility to Christianity — which is, of course, Michael Weinstein’s forte.
Of course, the ego-boosting revelation is par for Weinstein’s course of milking every opportunity for self-aggrandizement, even at others’ expense. (The one bruise to Weinstein’s ego is the fact General Welsh, with whom he certainly demanded an audience, didn’t relent.) He will likely do the same with the newly revealed “blue book” to be published “in a few weeks.” Weinstein will claim to be the influential reason the Air Force published it (thus, he’s “kind of a big deal”) and use its “restrictions” to his advantage, but he will simultaneously claim it is insufficient (thus, he can continue to play the oppressed victim).
Some people think there is a perception the US government treats Michael Weinstein as someone with special influence and access to the military. Whether or not that’s true, he continues to play that role to the hilt.