Sometimes lost in the “scandals” regarding religion in the US military is the fact that religion is still practiced frequently, and freely, by US troops around the world.
For example, in a variety of locations the US military supported Christmas celebrations, operations, and events. Notably, the camera often pointed away from some of the more direct Christmas iconography — but it was there.
Such discretion apparently wasn’t necessary for the worldwide celebration of Hanukkah, in which US troops were photographed celebrating the Jewish holiday from Japan to Afghanistan. Yes, even though Read more
Wise men still seek Him.
Have a wonderful celebration of the birth of our Savior. Read more
Sailors onboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz did take the time to celebrate Christmas along with their families while in port.
A facility in Qatar was decked out in a “winter wonderland” complete with Christmas tree.
Business Insider did a photographic piece on Christmas in the military, which Read more
In a summary of how Christmas was treated around the military this year:
Air Force leadership wished their Airmen “Happy Holidays“, without expressly saying to what holidays they were referring.
Fort Stewart had an actual Christmas tree with Christmas carols, though the quotation about the meaning of the season — “a time to grow and reflect” — was a bit off.
Schofield Barracks managed to only light a “Holiday Tree,” though seeming to tacitly acknowledge there was only one holiday that was celebrated with a lit tree in December.
The US Air Force continued its annual tradition of supporting Operation Christmas Drop.
Fairchild AFB managed to use the word “holiday” five times in a single caption — and didn’t use “Christmas” once, despite referring to songs, trees, and Santa Claus, all on Read more
The 2017 official White House Christmas card actually says “Merry Christmas” — for the first time in 8 years.
Via the Associated Read more
It’s Christmas in February…
Michael “Mikey” Weinstein has joined forces with the ACLU to accuse the US Marine Corps of being anti-Semitic.
Because the Marines said it was “premature” to answer a demand to put up a Menorah next winter:
On Jan. 17, the [MRFF] petitioned Marine Brig. Gen. William Jurney — commander of the boot camp and the Western Recruiting Region — to let troops of other faiths put up religious displays near the creche…
On Feb. 10, Jurney’s staff judge advocate general, Lt. Col. Jeffrey Munoz, told the foundation in a letter that such concerns were “premature” because there’s no longer a creche on the depot grounds and “the (next) holiday season is months away.”
Weinstein’s MRFF claims this response is “religious bigotry.”
That’s just asinine.
How many different Read more
An official Air Force article describes how a US Air Force KC-135 crew celebrated Christmas day:
Holiday songs emitted from a Bluetooth speaker while the four aircrew members and two crew chiefs prepared for preflight inspections. A lieutenant cracked open a plastic container of care-package-cookies and passed them around…
Stereotypically, no commander wants to send his troops into combat on Christmas day. Besides the typical holiday traditions and emotions, no one wants a casualty that day of all days. However, one of the pilots explained the need for American airpower to be overhead all the time, even on Christmas: Read more
December 24th was Christmas Eve, but it also marked the first day of Hanukkah — a day celebrated even by the US troops stationed in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan:
At sundown on Saturday, Navy Lt. Lauren Sucher of Annapolis, Md., and Navy Chief Petty Officer Kent Frosch of Washington, D.C., stepped outside at Resolute Support headquarters in Kabul to celebrate the first night of Hanukkah.
The short Stars and Stripes article is a reminder that regardless where the US military sends its troops, it generally supports their ability to practice their religion — even if some people might find it uncomfortable.
In this case, these Jewish US troops are surrounded by an Islamic nation and Read more