NeverTrumpers and TrumpLemmings Both Abandon Christian Principles
This week President Trump abruptly announced that he would pull U.S. troops a few convenient miles out of Turkey’s way in Syria. (No, he’s not even bringing them home.) This enables Turkish tyrant Tayyip Erdogan’s thugs to bomb and ethnically cleanse our allies the Kurds, and their Syrian Christian comrades. In fact, that has already started. As Reuters reports:
Thousands of people fled the Syrian town of Ras al Ain toward Hasaka province, held by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces. The Turkish air strikes had killed two civilians and wounded two others, the SDF said.
A Reuters cameraman in the Turkish town of Akcakale saw several explosions across the border in the Syrian town of Tel Abyad, where a witness reported people fleeing en masse.
Large explosions also rocked Ras al Ain, just across the border from the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar, a CNN Turk reporter said. The sound of planes could he heard above and smoke was rising from buildings in Ras al Ain, he said.
The SDF said military positions and civilians in the city of Qamishli and the town of Ain Issa – more than 30 km (20 miles) inside Syria – had been hit, and said there were initial reports of civilian casualties.
The Christian Genocide About to Happen, on Our Watch
Soon, the al Qaeda militias that burned Christian churches and hunted down Christian Kurds in Afrin in January will be turned loose on still more victims. Here’s a video from that attack of a pastor, whose church was full of Kurdish new Christians, praying for deliverance. Pastors across Northeastern Syria are surely now doing the same. It seems they won’t get it from our president, however.
In case a Kurdish pastor doesn’t impress you, here’s what Rev. Franklin Graham has to say:
TODAY join me in praying as the Turkish army has invaded Syria in the area that the US military withdrew from. The Turks have a dismal record on human rights & they can’t be trusted. Pray for the Kurds, Christians, & other minorities in this region. https://t.co/f0LKuCeYLs
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) October 9, 2019
Betraying Our Allies
Trump’s cave-in to Erdogan comes just after the Kurds bore the brunt of the heroic mission against ISIS. They lost 10,000 fighters, while the U.S. lost fewer than two dozen. Kurds fought so we didn’t have to. In return, we promised to keep out a genocidal Turkish invasion. Now we’re finished our meal, and we’re walking out on the check.
Bring the troops home? Trump’s just shifting them around, in obedience to the Turkish dictator Erdogan. He’s moving our Special Forces from one Syrian town to another, to make room for a Turkish killing field. These troops weren’t even in combat. They served as advisers, and a deterrent. We have thousands of soldiers actually fighting in the hopeless hellhole that is Afghanistan. Trump isn’t bringing them home.
Those Kurds we’re betraying still stand guard over thousands of imprisoned ISIS fighters. That protects Yezidi, Christian, and other minority groups targeted for genocide in two countries, Iraq and Syria. Now the SDF will withdraw its fighters to defend their homes. And ISIS will be let loose on Iraq— a country so many Americans died to liberate and stabilize.
So Trump just lost the war against ISIS. He grabbed … defeat from the jaws of victory.
Listen to the Victims
I’ve been to Kurdistan. And I’ve lived with the victims of ISIS, just liberated by brave fighting Kurds. I’ve seen the trauma in the eyes of women just out of rape camps, watched the shame of fathers and husbands who simply couldn’t protect them. Trump’s decision is a betrayal not only of our warrior allies the Kurds, but of the vulnerable people they serve.
A Government of Laws, Not Men
Just last week I was defending President Trump against the preening, halo-polishing Pharisaism of #NeverTrump Christians.
Now, I’m defending the vulnerable against something just as phony. That is, the shrugging, lemming-like ethics of Trump supporters who pretend not to notice when their “leader” goes back on his own word.
“He’s bringing home the troops!”
“But he actually isn’t. Do you see any coming home?”
“LOL, I bet you voted for Hillary.”
When I argue against NeverTrumpers and TrumpLemmings alike, I’m moored by natural law and just war principles. Without such firm foundations, it’s too easy to become an opportunist, or a mindless partisan hack. In fact, I wrote a whole book on those principles, with Stream Senior Editor John Zmirak, The Race to Save Our Century.
Because of these principles I will never support a politician who won’t commit to the defense of the child in the womb.
Those same principles dictate this: If President Trump will not reverse this week’s decision, he no longer qualifies for my vote.
Siding with al Qaeda
How can I back a president who breaks his word to our fighting allies? Who leaves the vulnerable Christians, Yezidis, and Kurds that survived ISIS’s butchers to be victimized by al Qaeda, or even ISIS itself?
Would the most dogged Trump supporters still back him if he came out in support of partial birth abortion? From their tone in this current debate, I’m afraid that some of them would.
With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility
The fact is Americans are powerful. More powerful than virtually any other human beings in the history of the world. We are sovereign citizens of a Constitutional Republic. We have ready access to wealth and influence that the vulnerable people of the world can only dream of.
And as Christians we should know better than to squander our privileges. Instead, we have a responsibility to deploy our strength for the common good.
Trump’s disastrous decision this week puts vulnerable minorities at the mercy of jihadists. But he is not a dictator. We have the power to change this policy. And it’s our Christian duty to try.
Our political actions and inactions have powerful effects in the world, and can mean life or death for countless fellow human beings. Whatsoever we do unto these, the least among us, we do unto … Jesus Himself.