The Pope’s tragically mistaken intervention on the jihad

Pope Francis has captured the hearts of many around the world. But to capture our minds he will have to do better than his de facto apologia for Islamist violence. He has made a tragic error of judgement

The Pope’s decision last week to wade into a debate on free speech proved most unproductive. Instead of offering robust support to Charlie Hebdo and its many supporters, he inadvertently aided Islamic jihadists and undermined western values in the process.

It was a spectacularly ill-timed intervention.

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  • winniec

    Even with his experience of living under the fascist Junta in Argentina, Pope Francis did not learn the importance of free speech.
    We must be free to protest oppression IN EVERY WAY so the vulnerable will not be victimized by the ruthless and strong!
    His ideas are not even Christian! Jesus did not say ‘act like a weakling when the bully kicks sand in your face’. Jesus said, ‘BE WISE AS SERPENTS’.
    The role of Christian satirists is to go after the powerful tyrants and the sources of their power and debunk them. It is urgent to debunk and mock Mohammed, the vile source of Islamic terror.

    • He set a very sorry example.

      • Una Salus

        He’s a fraud

    • Bert_1

      Jesus told us to turn the other cheek.

      • old gent

        Jesus also drove out the money changers when they defiled the house of God.

        • Bert_1

          I know. I was just addressing the statement “Jesus did not say ‘act like a weakling when the bully kicks sand in your face'” In a way, He did say just that.

          • Minicapt

            A differing interpretation:
            http://dharmagates.org/other_cheek.html

            Cheers

          • Frau Katze

            Interesting.

          • Una Salus

            Not really, because if you’re not in a position to do anything about it then Jesus’ statement is more or less redundant anyway.
            And of course he never said we should seek to place ourselves in such a position as a matter of principle.

          • Bert_1

            Absolutely untrue. Most sins are internal – ie they are not actions but thoughts. If the actions of someone causes me to hate them, then I have not turned the other cheek and have sinned.

          • Una Salus

            Maybe for you it’s impossible to be truthful without hate but all we’re asking for here is an honest assessment.

            Let me make this simple.
            See, for example if somebody breaks your nose for no reason or lets just say he doesn’t like thin people and then you don’t tell the next thin person you meet about it because you don’t want to confront the reality of the situation.

            Well, then when the next thin person gets his nose broken you’ve sinned because you mistook forgiveness for amnesia.

          • Bert_1

            Who said I can’t be truthful without hate? I simply said that if there is hate in my heart, I have sinned.

          • Una Salus

            Who said most sins aren’t internal? Although lets be honest – internal sins don’t require anybody to turn the other cheek.

          • Bert_1

            If you fail to forgive, you have not turned the other cheek internally. That’s where the hatred comes from.

          • Una Salus

            How will you generally ever know if somebody has sinned against you internally? Clearly when Jesus was making this statement he was not primarily thinking about internal sin. This is how you’ve internalized it.

          • Bert_1

            I am not referring to someone else’s sins. I am not qualified nor authorized to make such judgement calls. I can only eal with my own sins.

          • Una Salus

            OK, so you’re supposedly slapping your own cheek by not forgiving? Is that what I’m supposed to surmise here?

          • Bert_1

            Jesus was talking to us all individually. He didn’t tell me to turn someone else’s cheek, just mine.

          • Bert_1

            Jesus said that if I lust for a maiden, then I have committed adultery in my heart. An internal sin.

          • Una Salus

            Also no you haven’t sinned if there is hate in your heart. It’s a natural emotion. In fact if there is no hate or anger in your heart then there’s generally not so very much to forgive anyway. Perhaps you’ve sinned if you don’t try to forgive as Jesus admonished but at least you know you’re not painting by the numbers.

            Grow up. Jesus wasn’t talking to abstractions of people or people who want to be abstractions of ideal unblemished innocence. That ended when we were cast out of the garden of eden.

            Forgiveness costs you something. It’s not a punch card you clock in and out with.

        • Una Salus

          He certainly did and since the Pope is only issuing statements and has said (or with him it’s always closer implied that force of arms is justified in certain circumstances) that’s all that’s really relevant here.

          We are dealing here with the mentality of the heard.
          Now Jesus insisted that his followers be good shepherds but he knew full that his words were lost on the sheep. That’s why many of his statements weren’t directed to them.

          “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”
          Now, however you interpret that. It wasn’t directed at sheep.

      • Una Salus

        When exactly did he say lie about Islam though? Anyway this pope has already said he would smack a colleague if that colleague said anything about his mother. That was in relation to what happened with Charlie Hebdo. So whatever this is about for the pope. That ain’t it.

        • Frau Katze

          Wrong man at the wrong time.

          • Una Salus

            Unfortunately yes

        • Bert_1

          He didn’t.

          • Una Salus

            “Pope Francis told reporters that equating Islam with violence was wrong

            Benedict
            said he had been misunderstood and apologised. But this year, the image
            of a violent religion has once more been promoted by Islamic State.”

            He’s in over his head I’m afraid.

          • Bert_1

            How do you know that he was wrong? I am not Muslim so I can’t tell him that he was right or wrong but I keep coming across people talking about Islam and how what the terrorists are doing in the name of Islam is wrong. I can kill people in the name of Jesus but that doesn’t mean that Jesus called us to kill people. That’s like saying that since Clifford Olsen was a Canadian, you are also a child molester and murderer.

            I hope and pray that the Muslims claiming that Islam is peaceful will prevail. It appears to me that Islam has been hijacked to fulfil the satanic goals of others. It is the “others” who have to be stopped.

          • Una Salus

            Muahmmed is not Jesus. Why don’t you try to find out something about the people you’re defending?
            Why won’t you show them even that respect my fine friend?
            Would it get in the way of turning the other cheek?

            Muhammed cut off the hands and feet of Christians from opposite sides. He didn’t wash them. Simple enough for you?

          • Bert_1

            I am defending the truth, nothing more. Since I am not Muslim, it makes no difference to me whether Islam flourishes or withers and dies. I just don’t like seeing people vilify something or someone based upon innuendoes. If Islam is violent, bury it. If it isn’t, why destroy it?

          • Una Salus

            You’re defending an obfuscation you think is more beautiful than the truth.
            You don’t like. You’re not Muslim. You’re not interested in having a clue. What you feel is right. Just do what you do.

          • Bert_1

            Try reading.

          • Una Salus

            Now I’ll turn the other cheek.

      • Unless someone starts in with the “yo momma so fat” jokes. Then it’s on.

        • Una Salus

          So he says

  • Jim Horne

    There is no “but” in freedom.

    We need another Martin Luther. This time to nail his thesis on freedom to the doors of the Vatican. Lest we forget that basic freedoms (speech, expression, thought and association) are the foundation of the Western world.

    • No, we need another Saint John Paul II and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Cardinal Pell.

      • Frau Katze

        Just someone with backbone.

  • simus1

    When you get down to bedrock, Flaky Frank the popehead
    is just another meddling empty cassock.
    No great difference from those lefties who elected him.

  • Norman_In_New_York

    The Vatican is joining the rest of western Europe in their resolute swan dive into the dustbin.

  • chayisun

    The pope is an idiot. Now, off to confession to repent my sins…..

    • Bert_1

      You don’t’ repent your sins in Confession, you CONFESS them. Repentance must come before Confession.

      • chayisun

        Oh. So I have to repent first. Which means I must take back what I just said. Well, let me think……….Naw, I’ll confess that I called the pope an idiot. Then I’ll be excommunicated and I’ll become a muslim.

        • Bert_1

          Have at it…

          • chayisun

            Well, maybe not a muslim. Maybe a Lutheran type.

        • daox13

          no you will just look like a tool on a public forum….
          I think you take this stuff too seriously

          • chayisun

            Too seriously? ME??? By the way, what kind of tool would that be? I’m going to issue a fatwa! So, there!!! Bet you’re scared now….

          • daox13

            hardly… not even remotely amused infact

          • chayisun

            Thank you so much for replying. I shall just do what I usually do to “tools” like you and ignore you. You know, like a bad odor.
            Have a nice day.

          • daox13

            except you didn’t ignore me… so yeah……

      • TotallyPeeved

        Why do catholics need a middleman?

        • Bert_1

          Because Jesus said so (John 20:23).

          • Una Salus

            Obviously this is open to interpretation or all Christians would be
            Catholic.

            Clearly this does not mean that every Christian has authority to forgive sins on God’s behalf.
            Also what Jesus said to the apostles does not in my mind confer similar authority on any Church.

            In this regard Churches have often acted as a bureaucracies conferring indulgences.
            In fact that was one of the main factors that lead to the reformation.

          • Una Salus

            Clarck’s commentary affirms this I’ve just found

            “Clarke’s Commentary on John 20:23
            Whose soever sins ye remit –
            See the notes on Matthew 16:19; Matthew 18:18. It is certain God alone
            can forgive sins; and it would not only be blasphemous, but grossly
            absurd, to say that any creature could remit the guilt of a
            transgression which had been committed against the Creator. The apostles
            received from the Lord the doctrine of reconciliation, and the doctrine
            of condemnation. They who believed on the Son of God, in consequence of
            their preaching, had their sins remitted; and they who would not
            believe were declared to lie under condemnation. The reader is desired
            to consult the note referred to above, where the custom to which our
            Lord alludes is particularly considered. Dr. Lightfoot supposes that the
            power of life and death, and the power of delivering over to Satan,
            which was granted to the apostles, is here referred to. This was a power
            which the primitive apostles exclusively possessed.”

          • Bert_1

            This is referred to as “Apostolic succession”. Simply put, in this passage, Jesus was talking to the Apostles and He conferred upon them the authority to forgive sins in His name. That authority has been passed down through Apostolic succession to the Priests of the Church today. Since St. Peter was the first Pope, that succession has been through the Catholic Church.

        • Because it’s in the Bible.

  • Bert_1

    I have yet to see the compete statement of the Pope. I know that he said, basically, that we cannot insult other’s faith but was there anything after that? I think that it is fair to say that we can’t insult other’s faith and not expect some sort of backlash (his reference to a punch). That would be a fair statement and not anti-free speech. It could be interpreted as a justification of the Charlie Hebdo attacks but I don’t think that is how the Pope intended it.

    And, I don’t think he intended it as an admonition to curtail our free speech. I don’t believe that we *should* write the stuff that Charlie Hebdo is famous for but I *do* support their right to publish that garbage.

    • TotallyPeeved

      Pretzel much?

      • Bert_1

        Nope. I thought that that was fairly straightforward. I could reword it with smaller words if you like.

    • Una Salus

      “It could be interpreted as a justification of the Charlie Hebdo attacks”
      – Given the timing it’s pretty clear that it was open to that kind of interpretation which he must have know unless he’s a complete idiot.

      Now, I don’t believe he’s that smart but I also don’t believe he’s that stupid.
      Neither do you really if you’re honest.

      • Bert_1

        This whole thing has been blown out of proportion in my opinion. Yes what happened to the Charlie Hebdo folks was reprehensible but making a comment about them playing with fire or not republishing the cartoons hardly qualifies as an affront on free speech. Even Stephane Charbonnier said “This may sound pompous, but I prefer to die standing up than live on my knees”. He knew very well what the stakes were and he decided that it was worth the risk. That is not the same as saying that it was their own fault or that the terrorists were right. It is just recognizing a simple fact. Does that fact imbue a degree of culpability on the Charlie Hebdo staff for what happened? I don’t know but like the Pope said, if you insult someone’s religion, they may respond in a negative way. Simple fact of life.

        There is more to this, though. I was watching a video earlier in which some Muslims were interviewed about some of the facts surrounding Islamic terrorism. I am not a Muslim so I cannot refute or vouch for anything said but one lady who was presented as someone knowledgeable in Islam said that there is nothing in the Koran that prohibits drawing images of Mohammed or anyone else. She said that Mohammed admonished the Muslims to not draw any images and worshit them, which is similar to the Protestant 2nd Commandment “You shall not make unto you any graven images”. That is interpreted to mean that we are not to make an image and worship it as a god. In Islam, though, sometime after Mohammed died, the Islamic elite decided to introduce a rule forbidding the creation of ANY image of Mohammed or God. So, we have a departure from the original and it is that departure that seems to be fueling the radicals.

        There is a lot more to this than most people believe.

  • Scaramouche

    He seems a bit addled to me. Are we sure he isn’t in the early stages of Alzheimer’s?

  • The man who heads two billion Catholics should not side with Islam – the work of the devil.

    A quite sad day.

  • TotallyPeeved

    It’s not an error in judgement. He is EVIL and complicit in the work of lucifer.

  • Is anyone else experiencing a new found urge to insult the Pope’s mother?