Monday, July 9, 2012

Gerald Flurry Thinks America Overthrew Mubarak: Exposing A Dictatorial Mindset

Just listened to The Trumpet Weekly podcast, America Should Not Have Toppled Mubarak, by Gerald Flurry.

America toppled Mubarak? That is nonsense. The Egyptian people toppled him.

This statement exposes how Flurry is simply unable (or refuses) to believe that ordinary people, when they act together, are capable of overthrowing a mighty and established power.

The Egyptian people's brave protests are callously ignored.

The thought that ordinary people could overthrow someone like Mubarak is impossible for Flurry to comprehend, so he simply assumes that someone more powerful than Mubarak overthrew him, namely the United States.

Perhaps the thought of seemingly powerless people overthrowing those who rule over them seems scary to him. Maybe he fears PCG members could try to do something like that for themselves.

I believe the US government was wise to leave Egypt alone and let the Egyptian people and authorities deal with this matter themselves. Trying to force the Egyptian people to let Mubarak rule over them when they are unwilling to let him do so would have been a disastrous policy for the US government. That is what Russia is presently doing in Syria, but their support has been useless in preventing protesters and armed opposition groups from continuing their revolt against the Assad regime. The US avoided such a mess by letting the protests take their course.

At one point Flurry cites a statement from Mubarak who states that the protesters are striving to create an Islamic theocracy. Flurry cites this as evidence that Mubarak should have stayed in power to (supposedly) restrain Muslim fundamentalists.

It is more likely Mubarak was scared he would be overthrown and tried to scare people in order to weaken support for the demonstrators and strengthen support for himself.

Mubarak knew if you believed the protesters wanted democracy more people would support the protesters and not Mubarak. But if he could convince you that the protesters are striving towards a goal you do not like it would make you less likely to oppose him and allow Mubarak to stay in power.

Did Flurry ever discuss this possibility? No. He did not.

Throughout this broadcast Flurry denounces the Muslim Brotherhood in the strongest terms as terrorists, linked with Iran (which he teaches is to be the King of the South which will rally the Muslim world behind it and set the stage for the Great Tribulation), all in order to make people scared about what is happening in Egypt.

As far as I know it appears to me that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt no longer practice terrorism. I am under the impression that it was formerly engaged in such things or at least more open to that. But today it seems they no longer indulge in such practices. So I am willing to dismiss this accusation as crude fear mongering.

Flurry, it is called democracy. If enough people vote for them they get the right to rule. You and I may not like them very much (I certainly would never be a member of the Muslim Brotherhood) but enough other people are willing to support them and in a democratic society that means they get to rule for a term. It is absurd to so callously dismiss the considered opinion of so many Egyptians.

At one point Flurry says Mubarak made peace with Israel. Flurry is wrong. It was Mubarak's predecessor Sadat who made the peace treaty with Israel.

In this video Flurry speaks of Mubarak highly, that he made peace with Israel, that he called Iran a cancer and regarded them as an enemy, etc. He makes Mubarak sound like a swell guy. Why would anyone want to overthrow him? Flurry seems to be saying.

Flurry never mentions the 850 people who were killed trying to overthrow him. No, their blood does not matter to Flurry.

He never mentions how many Egyptian people lived in fear of an authoritarian police force that often abused their power and tortured detainees.

Once I read The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright, a history of Al Qaeda up to December 2001. It mentions that Ayman al-Zawahiri, the current head of Al Qaeda and the main ideologist for them, became radicalized and embraced terrorist tactics after experiencing torture by Mubarak's police force following the widespread suppression of Islamist groups after Sadat's assassination in 1981. Mubarak's crude suppression of dissent contributed to the radicalization of one of the main leaders of Al Qaeda. Does Flurry take any of this into account? No, of course not.

Why does Flurry give a dictator like Mubarak such sympathetic coverage? I cannot help but think that Flurry sees in Mubarak a kindred spirit. Like Mubarak before the revolution Gerald Flurry live in a group which revolves entirely around him and which he rules with power few outsiders can comprehend. And Flurry sees that even a dictator who ruled for nearly 30 years can be tossed out after 18 days of protests. This makes him fearful that something like this could happen to him. So he does everything he can to demonize this astounding achievement of the Egyptian people to blind his abused followers from learning from these events and applying its lessons for themselves.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Bigotry Towards South Vietnamese in Plain Truth

Recently I've been reading about the Vietnam War. In the course of this I looked through old issues of the Plain Truth to see what they had to say about it. I came upon an article in the May 1968 Plain Truth, 'Vietnam in Prophecy?' by Raymond F. McNair and C. Wayne Cole, pp. 9-15 (PDF pp. 11-7.).

It is your standard COG world news article which details the issues and at the very ends advertizes one of their booklets in the hope of tricking you into joining a high demand group that takes three tithes from members.

But in reading this article I was shocked and appalled to see these scornful and bigoted words directed at the people of South Vietnam.

The South Vietnamese people are a rather backward, semi-illiterate people. Many of them don't understand why the war is being fought. Many (if not most) of the Vietnamese people are very apathetic. They aren't willing to work hard to build their country. Neither are they able to bear the brunt of the fighting.

The Vietnamese just want to make sure they get their rice, and have freedom from fear of being attacked and killed by the Communists, the Americans or anyone else! They don't want to have to pay too heavy taxes. Beyond these points, they couldn't care less which government rules over them! (pp. 11-3.  PDF pp. 13-5)

Such dismissive condescension took my breath away.

A backward people? The Vietnamese are an ancient nation that have existed long before the Anglo-Saxons migrated to Britain. How dare Raymond McNair and C. Wayne Cole call them that.

Apathetic? Like Herbert W. Armstrong telling members not to donate money to ease the plight of refugees of the Biafran Civil War in Nigeria (1967-70). How does such words not encourage an apathetic outlook on world events?

And what is so bizarre and shameful about wanting to be fed and not wanting to be killed? They speak of these common human desires as though they are something to be ashamed of.

It amazes me that two men who lived in peace all their lives could be so dismissively judgmental towards a people who had had to endure over twenty years of on and off warfare.

Who was in charge of this magazine? Why didn't the senior editors, namely, HWA, GTA, Hoeh, Meredith, Albert J. Portune, David Jon Hill, etc, object to these statements and just left this nasty piece of bigotry in this alleged magazine of understanding?

This all goes back to the false idea of British Israelism. An idea HWA stole and pretended to have gotten from God. Claiming that white Americans have some special connection to God have historically caused many within the COGs to focus mainly on supposed descendants of Israel and view others as not as central to God's plan on Earth at the present time as the alleged Israelites.

Such bigotry is the disgusting fruit of this incorrect theory.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hope in Sudan (#SudanRevolts)

Recently mass protests (#SudanRevolts) have arisen in Sudan against the dictatorial regime of Omar al-Bashir, sparked off by the introduction of austerity measures. I think this is a wonderful development.

Omar al-Bashir, since seizing power in a military coup in 1989, has lead Sudan in waging a catastrophic civil war by the Muslim majority north against the predominantly animist and Christian South until 2005, aided the infamous so-called Lord's Resistance Army led by the most evil Joseph Kony, and then lead Sudan into another horrific war in the Darfur region which gained infamy all over the world and made Omar al-Bashir wanted by the International Criminal Court, and recently he nearly succeeded in plunging Sudan into another war with the South.

Frankly I had long ago given up hearing good news from Sudan. I heard about how some northern Sudanese abducted slaves from the Southerners. I knew Sudan's government as mainly a regime that was constantly at war, spreading death, slavery and misery in an already blighted region of the Earth.

Recently I heard about alleged attempts by Omar al-Bashir to make life impossible for non-Muslims in Sudan, even contemplating changing the name of his political party to the Party of God like Hezbollah. These developments made me think no good news would come from Sudan. I knew little about attempts to resist among the Sudanese people.

And so I am quite pleased to see that brave Sudanese people, such as Gifirna, have chosen to rise up against this irresponsible and blood strained government. As far as I know this revolution was first started from among the women's dorms of the University of Khartoum.

Although I am not Sudanese, I don't even personally know any Sudanese person, either from the north or the south, I wish the protesters well in their attempt to reorganize society. I hope this will be the first stage in better and brighter days for Sudan.

This weekend about 1000 Sudanese protesters were arrested and sent to 'ghost houses'. Like other authoritarian countries facing mass protests a wave of arrests have been unleashed by the dictatorial Sudanese government. May victory swiftly follow these brave protesters.