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Colson, Neuhaus, ECT and Blackwater

 in The White House

 

ECT Document Articulated

Vision Animating Blackwater’s

Corporate Strategy

 

In 2002, Colson gave a speech at Calvin College, where he said: “ ‘My friend, Erik Prince, who is here tonight, traveled with me recently to a prison in Texas that has been under Prison fellowship administration for the past eighteen months.’” –Blackwater, 17. 

In this speech ‘the former Watergate conspirator [Colson] talked extensively about the historical foundation and current necessity of a political and religious alliance of Catholics and evangelicals. Colson talked about his work, beginning in the mid-1980s, with famed conservative evangelical Protestant minister turned Catholic priest Richard Neuhaus and others to build a unified movement. That work ultimately led in 1994 to the controversial document ‘Evangelicals and Catholics Together: the Christian Mission in the Third Millennium.’ The ECT document articulated the vision that would animate Blackwater’s corporate strategy and the politics practiced by Erik Prince – a marriage of the historical authority of the Catholic Church with the grassroots appeal of the modern conservative U.S. evangelical movement, bolstered by the cooperation of largely secular and Jewish neo conservatives. Author Damon Linker, who once edited Neuhaus’ journal, First Things, termed this phenomenon the rise of the ‘Theocons.’  

 

ECT Document the Manifesto of

Movement Prince Serves and

Bankrolls – an Agenda Almost

Identical to Bush Administration

 

“The ECT document became the manifesto of the movement that Erik Prince would soon serve and bankroll. It declared that ‘The century now drawing to a close has been the greatest century of missionary expansion in Christian history. We pray and we believe that this expansion has prepared the way for yet greater missionary endeavor in the first century of the Third Millennium. The two communities in world Christianity that are most evangelistically assertive and most rapidly growing are Evangelicals and Catholics.’ The signatories called for a unification of these religions in a common missionary cause, that ‘all people will come to faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.’ …The ECT was not merely a philosophical document. Rather, it envisioned an agenda that would almost identically mirror that of the Bush administration a few years later, when Neuhaus would serve as a close advisor to Bush, beginning with the 2000 campaign.

 

“The signers of the ECT document asserted that religion is ‘privileged and foundational in our legal order’ and spelled out the need to defend ‘the moral truths of our constitutional order.’” –Blackwater, 20.

 

Prophecy Fulfilled

 

The servant of the Lord wrote, “The Protestants of the United States will be foremost in stretching their hands across the gulf to grasp the hand of spiritualism; they will reach over the abyss to clasp hands with the Roman power; and under the influence of this threefold union, this country will follow in the steps of Rome in trampling on the rights of conscience.” GC 588.

 

Here we have Richard Neuhaus, once a Lutheran minister who became a Roman Catholic priest, the leading theocon, who is in the inner circle of the White House, Chuck Colson, a Watergate conspirator, in the inner circle of the White House, and Erik Prince, once Dutch Reformed, who became an ardent Roman Catholic, who represents the armed wing of the combined Evangelical/Catholic movement, all on the inside with the White House.

 

ECT Document Concludes With

Responsibility of Evangelicals  

and Catholics to Prepare World

For Second Coming

 

The ECT document concludes,” ‘Nearly two thousand years after it began, and nearly five hundred years after the divisions of the Reformation era, the Christian mission to the world is vibrantly alive and assertive. We do not know, we cannot know, what the Lord of history has in store of the Third Millennium. It may be the Springtime of world missions and great Christian expansion…. We do know that this is a time of opportunity-and if of opportunity, then of responsibility – for Evangelicals and Catholics to be Christians together in a way that helps prepare the world for the coming of him to whom belongs the kingdom, the power and the glory forever. Amen.’” –ECT document quoted in Blackwater, 21.

 

A Vision of America’s Religious

and Political Future

 

“In addition to Neuhaus and Colson, the document was endorsed by one of the most powerful mainstream Catholic leaders in the United States, John Cardinal O’ Connor of New York, as well as the Reverend Pat Roberson and Michael Novak of the conservative American Enterprise Institute. The manifesto was years in the making and would greatly assist the unifying of the conservative movement that made George W. Bush’s rise to power possible. The ECT signers, according to Damon Linker – who worked for Neuhaus for years – ‘had not only forged a historic theological and political alliance. They had also provided a vision of America’s religious and political future. It would be a religious future in which upholding theological orthodoxy and moral traditionalism overrode doctrinal disagreements. And it would be a political future in which the most orthodox and traditionalist Christians set the public tone and policy agenda for the nation.’” –Damon Linker, The Theocons, pp. 85-86, quoted in Blackwater, pp. 21, 22. (emphasis mine)

 

Blackwater Serving As a Sort of

Armed Wing of the Catholic-

Evangelical-Neocon Holy War

 

Six years later, with Bush, the Theocons, president in power, Colson appeared with his friend Erik Prince at Calvin College once again. This time Colson quoted ‘a nineteenth century Calvinist scholar who said, ‘Rome is not an antagonist but stands on our side…Therefore, let me ask, if Roman Catholic theologians take up the sword to do valiant and skillful battle against the tendency that we ourselves mean to fight to the death, is it no part of wisdom to accept their valuable help?’ Erik Prince has been in the thick of this right-wing effort to unite conservatives Catholics, evangelicals, and neoconservatives in a common theoconservative holy war – with Blackwater serving as a sort of armed wing of the movement. As Prince himself once envisioned the role of his mercenaries, ‘everybody carries guns, just like Jeremiah rebuilding the temple in Israel – a sword in one hand and a trowel in the other.’” [Nathan Hodge, ‘Blackwater CEO Touts Private Peacekeeping Model,’ Defense Daily, February 23, 2005.] Quoted in Blackwater, 22.

 

A Great Network

 

An examination of Erik’s connections reveals a great network. He has been contributing heavily to evangelical Christian causes, “including large donations to a slew of Protestant schools and colleges,” including $200,000 to the Haggai Institute in Atlanta, which has trained more than sixty thousand [that’s 60,000] evangelical leaders’ around the globe. He has served on the board of directors of and donated to Christian Freedom International, whose board of directors includes Blackwater lobbyist Paul Behrends.

 

School Vouchers

 

__________________        

 

Of course, it was not Jeremiah, but Nehemiah, that Erik meant. “They which builded on the wall, and they that bare burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work, and with the other hand held a weapon.  For the builders, every had his sword girded by his side, and so builded.” Nehemiah 4:17,18. But Nehemiah’s builders did not compromise. Nehemiah and his men signed their covenant, and here was part of its content:

 

‘They clave to their brethren, their nobles, and entered into a curse, and into an oath, to walk in God’s law, which was given by Moses the servant of God, and to observe and do all the commandments of the LORD our Lord, and his judgments and his statutes; And that we would not give our daughters unto the people of the land, nor take their daughters for our sons: And if the people of the land bring ware or any victuals on the Sabbath day to sell, that we would not buy it of them on the Sabbath, or on the holy day:” Nehemiah 10:29-31.

 

One of the favorite causes is school vouchers [Blackwater, 23], a leading wedge to continue breaking down the wall of separation between church and state.

 

Blackwater’s WPPS Contract:

The Elite Private Guard of the

Global War

 

“In June 2004, at the end of Bremer’s tenure, Blackwater was handed one of the most valuable and prestigious U.S. government contracts on the market, through the State Department little-known Worldwide Personal Protective Service (WPPS) program. State Department documents describe the WPPS program as a government ‘diplomatic security’ initiative to protect U.S. officials and ‘certain foreign government high level officials whenever the need arises.’ In the government documents, the work is described as ‘providing armed, qualified, protective services details’ and, if ordered, ‘Counter Assault Teams and Long Range Marksmen teams.’ The companies might also provide translators and perform intelligence work. The State Department warned the companies to ‘Ensure that contractor-assigned protective detail personnel are prepared to, and in fact shall operate and live in austere, at times unsettled conditions, anywhere in the world.’ The contract also said that if necessary, personnel, who are American citizens, will be issued an appropriate, official or diplomatic passport.’ Private contractors were also authorized to recruit and train foreign nationals and to ‘conduct protective security operations overseas with them.’…

 

“For Blackwater, the WPPS contract was a milestone that solidified the company’s role as preferred mercenary firm or the U.S. government, the elite private guard for the administration’s global war.” Blackwater, 165, 166.

 

The Permeable Membrane Between “Overseas”

and “Back Home”

 

The Osmotic Membrane

 

What is taking place overseas in the military and mercenary armies will all eventually come home to roost. The membrane between “overseas” and “back home” is very thin indeed, and completely permeable.

 

“The membrane between foreign and domestic policy is quite osmotic. The use of torture, write the editors of the Washington Post, carries enormous dangers for us, because our willingness to engage in it corrodes democratic values. The administration can talk ‘democracy’ all it wants, but if you are practicing torture, it becomes unclear in what sense you are still a democracy. The whole thing is a slippery slope. If you entertain the moral argument that if you have a captive who knows of an imminent attack that will cost thousands of lives, torture is justified, the question then arises as to where the cutoff point is. Why stop with the captive, after all? Why not his family, or his friends?” Morris Berman, Dark Age America: The Final Phase of Empire. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 2006, p. 226.

“It was precisely in this way that the practice of torture rapidly spread through the French security apparatus in Algeria. In Israel, it went from rare exception to nearly standard practice, in a misguided effort to prevent civilian acts of terrorism. And once it becomes common, it undermines a society’s democratic norms, whereby a nation is defending what it stands for by subverting its own values in order to defend them.

 

If Torture is Justified, Why Be

Exercised Over Curbing of Civil

Liberties?

 

“Furthermore, if torture is justified in the defense of our way of life, then why get exercised over the curbing of civil liberties. Which is obviously a much milder issue in comparison…at least for the time being…The curbing of civil liberties associated with the prevention of terrorism actually got under way with Janet Reno in 1996, when the government passed the Effective Death Penalty and Anti-terrorism Act, authorizing the Justice Department to prosecute individuals based on their political beliefs and associations, loosen the carefully crafted rules governing federal wiretaps, criminalize fund-raising for lawful activities associated with unpopular causes, jail permanent residents merely for their affiliations or political activity, even when lawful, with no judicial review, and use secret evidence (that only the judge can see) in trials and detention hearing (the burden of proof being placed on the accused).    


 

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