Saturday, April 19, 2003

I was going to do a Good Friday post yesterday but found I couldn't really find the words. I've always found Good Friday depressing. I'm even more depressed this year. Maureen Dowd gets to the absurdity of this year's Easter holiday in light of recent events.

The Pentagon, a k a the International Trust for Historic Preservation, has once more shown the world its deep cultural sensitivity.

Franklin Graham, the Christian evangelist who has branded Islam a "very wicked and evil" religion, was the honored speaker at the Pentagon's Good Friday service.

After Kenna West, a Christian singer, crooned, "There is one God and one faith," Mr. Graham told an auditorium of soldiers in camouflage, civilian staffers and his son, a West Point cadet: "There's no other way to God except through Christ. . . . Jesus Christ is alive because he is risen, and friends, he's coming back, and I believe he's coming back soon."

When Muslim groups complained that the Pentagon was "endorsing" his attacks on Islam, Mr. Graham asked for a photo op with Muslim Pentagon employees. They declined.


Instead of hectoring those who expressed any doubt about the difficulty of occupying Iraq, the conservatives should worry about their own self-parody: pandering to the base by blessing evangelical Christians who want to proselytize Muslims; protecting their interests by backing a shady expat puppet; pleasing their contributors by pre-emptively awarding rebuilding contracts to Halliburton and Bechtel; and swaggering like Goths as Iraq's cultural heritage goes up in flames.

Talk about a baptism by fire.

If Franklin Graham wants to bring Jesus to Baghdad, I say let him go. Meanwhile go read this book.   

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