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Did USAFA Cancel Operation Christmas Child?

A few news sites reported last week on the US Air Force Academy’s participation in — and then reconsideration of its participation in — Operation Christmas Child, in which shoeboxes with basic sundries and gifts are given to needy children around the world by Samaritan’s Purse.

The situation is fairly complex, as evidenced by the fact a few news organizations had to edit and reissue their news articles to correct misunderstandings about what really occurred.

Undisputed public statements indicate cadets at the US Air Force Academy came up with the idea to participate in Operation Christmas Child.  They made an announcement in Mitchell Hall (the wing dining facility, with all cadets present) and subsequently sent out a wing-wide email explaining who to contact to participate.

A cadet who “didn’t think much about it at first” later forwarded the email to Michael Weinstein calling it part of the ”religious problem” proving the US military “support[s] one religion, which is of course Christianity.”  (Weinstein published the email, complete with the names and personal information of the cadets involved, though he redacted his supporter’s information.)  Less than 24 hours later, Weinstein was in the local news

accus[ing] commanders of crossing the line by Continue reading