Matching Grant Challenge
BruceMatch
We’re slowly making headway in our annual fund drive, but not nearly fast enough to meet our make-or-break goal.  On the bright side, a generous CounterPuncher has stepped forward with a pledge to match every donation of $100 or more. Any of you out there thinking of donating $50 should know that if you donate a further $50, CounterPunch will receive an additional $100. And if you plan to send us $200 or $500 or more, he will give CounterPunch a matching $200 or $500 or more. Don’t miss the chance. Double your clout right now. Please donate.
 unnamed

Yes, these are dire political times. Many who optimistically hoped for real change have spent nearly five years under the cold downpour of political reality. Here at CounterPunch we’ve always aimed to tell it like it is, without illusions or despair. That’s why so many of you have found a refuge at CounterPunch and made us your homepage. You tell us that you love CounterPunch because the quality of the writing you find here in the original articles we offer every day and because we never flinch under fire. We appreciate the support and are prepared for the fierce battles to come.

Unlike other outfits, we don’t hit you up for money every month … or even every quarter. We ask only once a year. But when we ask, we mean it.

CounterPunch’s website is supported almost entirely by subscribers to the print edition of our magazine. We aren’t on the receiving end of six-figure grants from big foundations. George Soros doesn’t have us on retainer. We don’t sell tickets on cruise liners. We don’t clog our site with deceptive corporate ads.

The continued existence of CounterPunch depends solely on the support and dedication of our readers. We know there are a lot of you. We get thousands of emails from you every day. Our website receives millions of hits and nearly 100,000 readers each day. And we don’t charge you a dime.

Please, use our brand new secure shopping cart to make a tax-deductible donation to CounterPunch today or purchase a subscription our monthly magazine and a gift sub for someone or one of our explosive  books, including the ground-breaking Killing Trayvons. Show a little affection for subversion: consider an automated monthly donation. (We accept checks, credit cards, PayPal and cold-hard cash….)

pp1

or
cp-store

To contribute by phone you can call Becky or Deva toll free at: 1-800-840-3683

Thank you for your support,

Jeffrey, Joshua, Becky, Deva, and Nathaniel

CounterPunch
 PO Box 228, Petrolia, CA 95558

Happy Easter?

Christianity, Guilty as Charged!

by ANDRE VLTCHEK

Motto: verse from Colossians 3:22: “Slaves, obey your masters.”

It is Easter and I am mourning for all those hundreds of millions, perhaps billions, who were forced to ‘die for Jesus’… They vanished so the Christian dogma of some crucified man from Nazareth, could be lubricated and substantiated with red oceans of human blood, and reinforced with a tremendous mountain of bones. Colossal flames have burnt countless millions of those who have found this entirely psychedelic tale, thoroughly unbelievable, even ridiculous.

Nobody asked Jesus to die for this world, or to wash away all of its ‘sins’ (always, always those ‘sins’!). But hundreds of millions had to vanish to give way for those ‘following him’; who held their crosses while cutting down people with their swords!

“In the name of the cross!” “In the name of Jesus!” Slaughter and torture, burnt flesh, mutilated bodies, beastly rapes. The history of this world, Mr. Fukuyama! It is mainly a history of Christian conquests, the enslavement of the planet, and murder in the name of the cross. Is it over; is it the end of such a history, really?

***

Today I want to remember, to mourn, those centuries of human sacrifice. That pointless, unnecessary, vile human sacrifice!

I want to commemorate those who have vanished; I want to do it with with red wine. Not with the wine that symbolizes ‘blood’ of someone, but with the wine of the Chilean people who produced it. As simple as that!

And I want to ask one simple but urgent question: “Isn’t it time to stop, to say enough? Isn’t it time to scrap that more than 2,000 years old violent dogma, which is most definitely responsible for the insanity, and for the arrangement of world as it today?”

On Saturday and Sunday, believers and non-believers will be packing tens of thousands of churches in North America and Europe, in Latin America, Africa, Oceania, and even in some parts of Asia. For many, this ‘celebration’ has nothing to do with god, or God, or any philosophical, even spiritual concept. For many, maybe for the majority of the patrons, this is just a habit, a custom, or something much more sinister: The reinforcement of a sense of belonging to something that they are told (or hinted to), is the right direction on the highway to righteousness and superiority.

***

Religions, most of them, are actually like some sort of huge private club with inflexible rules, rigidly defined membership guidelines, and fees.

Except that, while you can be kicked out from the club, religions can actually kill… and they do – which is especially true of Christianity.

Those who are gathering during these days, and celebrating the resurrection of an individual they call Jesus, are clearly overlooking, and even forgetting the price, which humanity has been paying, all over the world, for millennia. For just a single crucifixion and for the short agony of one person (who perhaps never even existed), entire nations were placed on the sacrificial altar.

How primitive and brutal, and how immoral!

Almost the entire North and South America, in the era of the arrival of the priests, shuttled to the “New World” by that arch criminal Christopher Columbus (Colon) and his fleet, got ruined, massacred, cheated and contaminated by all sorts of diseases. The Cross – the symbol of Christianity – was always at the front and above all that carnage. There was really ‘no coming back’ for the conquerors. Those holding the cross were too intoxicated by vile righteousness; they were too overwhelmed by greed, too sadistic.

Unbridled greed, religious fanaticism and oppressed sexuality (those very pillars of Christianity) played the most terrifying role in ruining this, (and many other) parts of the world.

The great majority of people from the so-called New World simply vanished.

“When Columbus landed in this hemisphere, there were probably 80-100 million people with advanced civilizations: Commerce, cities, etc. Not long afterwards about 95% of this population had disappeared”, explained Noam Chomsky, during our conversation, which led to our book “On Western Terrorism, From Hiroshima to Drone Warfare”.

Those who were not killed were brutalized savagely.

Abel Posse, a great Argentinian writer and diplomat, the author of the novel “Dogs of Paradise” (“Los perros del paraíso”), once wrote and also explained to me personally:

“The conquest was sick… And religious ‘guilt’ played a tremendous role in the violence. Local women were willing to engage in sexual acts with those pathetic conquerors who wore crosses and heavy armor in the tropical heat… And the conquerors were possessed by desire… but also by terrible guilt. They saw the willingness and desire of the local women as a sin… Therefore, they dragged those beautiful women into deep forests, tortured them for hours and days, and then raped them brutally!”

Whoever survived was forcefully converted to Christianity.

Both sexual torture (for which ‘ingenious’ instruments were invented and manufactured) and rape were not the only types of violence administered by ‘pious’ Christians, but they were the most common ones, for which they are remembered, until now, in Peru and elsewhere.

In the era of conquest, the much more advanced culture of South and Central America was ruined, people were captured and enslaved. Their languages were banned or made irrelevant.

Men and women were forced to take apart, stone by stone, their tremendous temples, and then build cathedrals and churches. Then, these Christian temples of worship were decorated with looted gold and silver, extracted by de facto slaves, chained in appalling mines around places like Potosi. This was what the great Uruguayan writer, Eduardo Galeano, described as the “Open Veins of Latin America”.

And slavery was, of course, always one of the trademarks of the Christian conquerors. And the Bible itself was conveniently quoted buy those beasts clad in metal armor and huge crosses: “Slaves, obey your masters.”

Entire continents and whole nations were enslaved. Proud people, who used to be free and proud, were chained. They were hunted like animals, by European Christians and then taken by the millions in order to build, for free, the ‘new continents’ (millions died on high seas)… The Brits and French pioneered this horrid practice, but there were many others, including Belgians and Germans.

As was honestly confirmed by R. Furman, a Baptist, of South Carolina: “The right of holding slaves is clearly established in the Holy Scriptures, both by precept and example.”

The Church, particularly the Vatican, but not alone, financed (and ‘invested in’) those countless crusades and colonial expeditions. Its approach towards the world was greedy, ruthless, and murderous, or more precisely, genocidal.

Absolutely no religion on earth has ever managed to achieve such preposterous levels of brutality with such disregard and spite for fellow human beings, such racism and bigotry.

At one point, the Spanish aristocracy was so appalled with Christianity, that it sent its ships to Africa, and begged Muslim armies standing in Ceuta, to liberate Spain from Christian terror. Which happened, and Muslims established, among other oases of tolerance and calm, the Caliphate of Cordoba, where in a tremendous mosque, Christians, Jews and Muslims were allowed to gather, pray and openly discuss almost any topic they desired.

To illustrate the contrast, “One of the mottos of the first European migrants to what is now New England, was ‘Convert or Die!’” explained a Czech/American artist and filmmaker from Boston, Milan Kohout.

***

Based on facts that are readily available to any person who is willing to study and read, Christianity should be banned. The ban should be simply based on the countless crimes against humanity, which have, by hundred-fold exceeded even those crimes committed by Nazism (Christianity and Fascism/Nazism are actually very closely connected).

No dogma, no ideology, has enslaved the world, like Christianity. No religion or ideology has murdered more people.

The only reason why it has not happened yet, is because Christianity is actually still clearly in charge of the world order; its ‘culture’ is the dominant philosophy of Empire, and its self-righteousness is almost never allowed to be openly questioned in the mass media.

Milan and MK (1)

By Milan Kohout

In ancient eras and in modern times, Christianity has been deeply and negatively involved in almost all the chapters of history, in the most despicable manner.

It came out in full support of colonialism, slavery and racism, and then it collaborated with, and endorsed Nazism in Germany, Mussolini’s fascism in Italy, General Franco in Spain, and the ‘fight against Communism’ in Eastern Europe.

Adolf Hitler was inspired by Christianity, and by its hate for everything from secularism to Communism, from ‘pornography’ to homosexuality.

In 1936 he declared: “Providence withdrew its protection and our people fell… And in this hour we sink to our knees and beseech our almighty God that He may bless us, that He may give us the strength to carry on the struggle for the freedom, the future, the honor, and the peace of our people. So help us God.”

He had it all very clear two years earlier:

“National Socialism neither opposes the Church nor is it anti-religious, but on the contrary it stands on the ground of a real Christianity… For their interests cannot fail to coincide with ours alike in our fight against the symptoms of degeneracy in the world of today, in our fight against a Bolshevist culture, against an atheistic movement, against criminality, and in our struggle for a consciousness of a community in our national life…These are Christian principles!”

And of course, a part of Christianity has always been ‘charity’. After massacring millions of innocent men, women and children, or after robbing entire nations of all that they possessed, the Christians happily gave back. If it took 90%, it gave 10%, or much less than 1% (in case of the United States, when it comes to foreign aid). Again, to quote Adolf Hitler, a Christian:

“With a tenth of our budget for religion, we would thus have a Church devoted to the State and of unshakable loyalty.”

Even before Hitler, those German genocides against the Herero and Nama tribes in and around of what is now Namibia, came with the clear blessing of the clergy.

Perhaps in the most intense genocide of the 20th Century, the rule of the Belgian King Leopold II took approximately ten million lives, or roughly half of the population of the “Congo Free State”, according to investigations by the anthropologist Jan Vansina and others. After his death, King Leopold II was interred in the royal vault at the Church of Our Lady of Laeken, in Brussels.

No wonder the King supposedly argued “bringing Christianity to the country outweighs a little starvation…” Ten million people mutilated and burnt alive is clearly nothing too scandalous for Christian sensitivities, as long as it helped to spread true teaching to those ‘barbarians’, in the ‘heart of darkness’.

Of course, most of the Latin American dictators were deeply religious and ‘moral’, including General Pinochet, who reigned brutally with the determined support of the United States, Opus Dei, and other extremist Christian clans.

In Argentina, Christianity was one of the pillars and justifications of the terror administered by Jorge Rafael Videla and his military junta. He used to say: “We consider it a great crime to work against the Western and Christian style of life: It is not just the bomber but the ideologist who is the danger.” He also periodically clarified his deep and compassionate inclinations: “As many people as necessary must die in Argentina so that the country will again be secure.”

One of the most brutal men of the 20th century, Francois ‘doc’ Duvalier, went even one step further, and declared that he is part of God and Jesus Crist. His posters used to declare: “Papa Doc: One with… Jesus Christ and God himself”.

The Western Christian demagogues and propagandists implanted a fear of secularism and atheism, to many regions of the world, with mostly horrifying results: Jihadist cadres were financed and introduced into Afghanistan during the war with the Soviet Union. The 1965 US-backed military coup in Indonesia which took between one and three million lives (mainly atheists and secular intellectuals, murdered by the military, Muslim cadres, but with the clear involvement of other religions) was one of the most horrific orgies of terror from which Indonesia has never recovered, and gradually degenerated into a religious and thoroughly unproductive, ignorant archipelago of environmentally plundered and devastated islands. The British Empire used the “divide and rule” strategy, which led to the awful ‘Partition’ of the sub-Continent.

And this is just to name few of the deadliest religious implants, orchestrated by the Christian West.

***

In today’s world, Christians are siding with the most appalling regimes, supporting the most dreadful oppressions.

I spoke to several priests and believers in Cairo, not long after the brutal pro-Western military coup of al-Sisi and his clique, which, on July 3rd 2013, overthrew the democratically elected moderate Islamic government. All of them were staunch supporters of the coup d’état that killed several thousand people in just a few weeks.

Even Time admitted: For Egypt’s 8 million Christians… the coup seemed little short of a miracle. Some hailed al-Sisi as a messiah…

In Africa, most of the extreme violence has religious, Christian connotations. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, which has lost, since 1995, between six and ten million people, some of the most brutal militias fall into the bracket of Christian fundamentalists.

A close ally of the West and one of the most brutal dictators in Africa, Yoweri Museveni, responsible for millions of lost lives in the Democratic Republic of Congo and in his native Uganda, and a self-proclaimed crusader against homosexuality, has been for decades, a staunch Christian and is associated with the American fundamentalist Christian organization, “The Fellowship” (also known as “The Family”).

And there is, of course, The Lord’s Resistance Army, originally from Uganda, but operating in the entire region. It uses child soldiers; it has been accused of committing numerous crimes against humanity; “including massacres, abductions, mutilation, torture, rape, and uses forced child labor as soldiers, porters, and sex slaves”. Its commander, Joseph Kony, proclaims himself the spokesperson of God and a spirit medium, primarily of the “Holy Spirit”.

One of the most brutal actors in the Congolese genocide, former warlord Laurent Nkunda, is an ordained Christian preacher and an ordained minister. Most of his troops had been followers (not that they had much choice). His men are responsible for some of the most horrible crimes in modern history, including mass rapes in the city of Bukavu. The Motto of his militia is: “Rebels for Christ.” He is a Seventh-day Adventist. He also claims to receive help and guidance from American “Rebels for Christ” who visit the Congo spreading Pentecostal Christianity.

Christianity still plays some of the most negative roles in both Africa and Oceania (Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia), where it is responsible for the physical (mostly sexual) and mental abuse of both children and adults, for defending oppressive family structures and the status quo in the society, as well as for spreading disinformation and ignorance. It is also extracting funds from the congregation, rich and poor, financially ruining its members.

Outrageous financial extractions are also common in countries such as the Philippines, as well as in several Christian pockets of Indonesia, where Christianity is corrupt to the extreme, siding, for decades, with the most extreme ‘free-market’ dogma, and heartless business practices. There, it actually forms the ‘Fifth Column’ – it is helping to plunder the country on behalf of foreign companies – mostly those that, of course, come from the Christian West.

It goes without saying that places that have recently undergone pro-Western and ‘anti-people’ ‘reforms’ and ‘uprisings’, are witnessing increasing religious, often Christian zeal, most cases implanted and supported from abroad. This is true of Ukraine, Cuba, Venezuela, to name just a few.

The Ukrainian fascists, who overthrew the elected government in Kiev, are now giving speeches in Maidan Square, surrounded by huge crucifixes and a statue of the Virgin Mary. Both the Orthodox Church and Protestants (I was told that the present leaders explained that true global power is in the hands of Western Protestants, which resulted in quick conversions) are gaining power.

But the Empire is the one that performs most of the crimes against humanity. These crimes are habitually committed in the name of Christianity.

That very Empire is mainly governed by deeply religious, dedicated Christians, mostly Protestant (all 41 Presidents of the United States have been Protestants, except for J.F. Kennedy, who was a Roman Catholic).

‘Exceptionalism’, is a deep belief that the West has been given some sort of mandate “from above” to govern, judge and police the world – it all comes from the fundamentalist Christian faith.

Coming back full circle to the original point that this essay is making, almost all the horrors this planet has experienced, actually come from that intolerant, racist and ‘exceptionalism’ belief, clearly propelled by Christian faith, and by, other less influential, monotheist religions.

This belief is encoded in Christianity and in the Bible, and has been put to work by all the generations and almost all Christian theoreticians. It is not, as so many naïve people say: That bad people kidnapped an excellent idea and faith.

According to this belief, nothing really matters much, as long as the ruling Christian culture stays in power, as long as the Christian West continues to rule over the world. As in the middle ages, no human sacrifice is high enough, as long as the system is upheld. As long as the victims are ‘the others’ – Arabs, Jews, Southeast Asians, Chinese, Pacific Islanders, Chinese or Japanese (and the system uses collaborators from the ranks of these ethnic groups, as well. The carrot consists of; making them think, that by serving the West through Christian religion and business, they are actually gaining an exclusive status, that of local ‘elites’).

The sacrifice of ‘the others’ is expected, even welcomed: Seven or even ten million people in Indochina – not a big deal. Three million in Indonesia – it is irrelevant. Ten million in Congo – who cares, they are Christians, but in reality some second rate niggers, just to borrow the vocabulary of the British Christian Prime Minister Lloyd George. Tens of millions all over Africa, from Somalia to Mali – who are they? Un-people, just filthy Muslims! Millions of broken lives all over Latin America – good for them! They were mainly Communists, and atheist hordes. Twenty million Soviet people died fighting and defeating Nazism – they were mainly white, but their atheism made them worse than those niggers!

Christian ‘logic’ was clearly implemented in all the colonialist adventures and genocides of modern days; in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya, to name just a few.

As has always been reflected by the ‘Monroe Doctrine’ – the US has the right to determine the fate of people and nations all over Latin America.

Such a belief has also been easily detectable in all former and present colonialist expansions, in the slave trade, and in the extermination of entire nations. As is evident in how the West is treating two enormous nations: China and Russia.

Many analysts and thinkers were naively waiting for some glimpse of real logic, based on facts, morality, and international law… They waited in vain. The Empire acted religiously. The Empire IS religious! It demanded total obedience and faith. It was ready to burn millions of those who were prepared to resist- even question – metaphorically and in real terms.

That is, naturally, nothing new! Many have noticed that the West is in fact a fundamentalist Christian entity. Its people are mainly secular (except in the United States, the most religious industrialized country on earth) – they don’t care much about practical religious aspects, about visiting churches or about symbolism. But their brains, minds and tolerance to the brutality committed by their societies, are conditioned by Christian dogmas and by the ‘theories of exclusiveness’, by the profound belief that they, and only they, have the right to hold the fate of this planet in their hands.

***

On one of the many Internet sites dedicated to the crimes committed by Christianity, young people mainly, are compiling the list. In simple terms, saying the same thing that is being argued in this essay.

“Mental and Physical abuse of children”, writes one.
“Ignorance”, jumps in another writer.
“…Mental abuse of children and adult alike, murder, torture, sexual abuse of children and adult alike, several hundred years of stupidity and the humiliation of other nations and ethnicities (including the slavery of Africa and the creation of the idea that “black is inferior”), actual killing and righteousness… for degrading black people, homosexuals and Jews… demonizing people for being an individual with critical thinking…”
“The crusades…”
“The delusions, fears and wasted lives of billions of followers.”
“Remember the crusades? There was a children’s crusade. It was pretty nasty. Christianity never had a problem with killing babies in the name of their vicious god. That’s why it’s so ironic that they’re always screaming about being ‘pro life’.”
“Those nasty pretend nice women who maltreat everyone else who is not like them, and teach their children to do the same.”

And so on. The list of grievances is endless.

***

The Last Supper, which is one of the main symbols of Christianity, has most certainly been relived worldwide, in the countries battered by the Western ideological dogma, based on the Christian views of the world.

But those millions, who were metaphorically crucified (they most often died a much worse death than that caused by crucifixion), were not sons or daughters of a god or the God; destined to be resurrected at a later date. They were simple men and women who were taken to terrible prisons or camps, in order to be exterminated… or simply shot to death like stray dogs. They were raped and then cut to pieces, they had heart attacks and strokes from electric shocks, they had their bones crushed, and they were burnt by cigarettes, and often, later, burnt to death, alive.

They were resistance fighters struggling against Christian-backed dictatorships in Chile, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Kenya, and so many other unfortunate corners of the globe. Or they were simply free-minded men and women, unwilling to live those dreadful lives, under Christian hypocrisy and its dismal dictates.

They had their last meals with their loved ones, before the bell rang, before the door was kicked open, before they were taken away, before they were never resurrected, before they never returned home.

I propose a toast, to those hundreds of millions of victims of Christian terror. And especially to the millions of those who resisted it, and died with honor and great dignity, fighting for humanity!

I salute the men and women of the Western Hemisphere who fought the European invaders; those who have always come armed with their deadly weapons, crosses, and terrifying visions of total doom, and hell.

Claiming that it brings love, Christianity offers fear and suffering to the planet. Enough! Truly, enough!

They advise us to offer our other cheek? Yes, they do. OUR cheek, of course, not theirs. If you slap them, they will machine gun you down, blow you to pieces. If they come and rape your children in front of you, as they have been doing for centuries, you are supposed to serve them dinner, afterwards.

Their charity, too! It is like their foreign aid. Loot everything, and then give 0.02%!

And their last, and final dogma: “It is not really religion, which is bad. It is the ‘people’ who kidnapped it.”

This is the worst, the wildest lie – the most predictable, the cheapest, and the most insulting of lies. Insulting to logic, and insulting to all those victims of Christianity!

It is the religion! It is their priests, preachers, dogma and theories; it is even, sometimes, those simple, ‘good’, singing, brainwashed followers.

First of all: People created that Christian religion. And it has been serving fatefully, their desires and their urges. In the Christian religion, there is plenty of violence and injustice; it is all encoded. In fact, so much violence and injustice, that for millennia, each and every brutal ruler, cardinal, priest and crusader found enough ‘inspiration’ and ‘justification’ for his terrible deeds.

And the Empire is still feeding on that dogma and on the Bible, it keeps finding endless justifications and excuses for the terror that it is spreading all over the world. As all Christian Empires, for the last two thousand years, has been spreading fire and pain, reducing nations and people to pitiful slaves, and this planet, gradually, to… to what you know it is now!

As put brilliantly by G. W. Foote and J. M. Wheeler in their book “Crimes of Christianity”: Both Catholic and Protestant have to face the fact that the triumph of Christianity was the triumph of barbarism, and that the doctrine of salvation by faith, is in each Church, the logical basis and sanction of persecution.

It is Christianity, the religion, not just the individuals. Christianity is guilty as charged!

***

I salute the men and women of the Middle East who fought the Crusaders.

I salute the African people, who did not allow themselves to be slaughtered and enslaved, shackled, and instead opted to die standing, than to live (or die anyway) on their knees.

I salute the revolutionaries of my beloved Latin America!

You kept our humanity alive. Thanks to you, I am still writing this essay! Thanks to you, countries like Venezuela and Cuba are standing, defiant and proud. Thanks to you, people all over the world are now waking up!

And I salute Christians, all over the world, who have realized that their religion is, always was and always will be, synonymous with crime, rape and plunder, even with countless genocides, and who have proudly divorced themselves from the Church and its ‘heritage’!

This is my Easter salute! To the victims of Christian terror, and to those who have fought this the most fundamentalist, gloomy and destructive ideology on Earth, one that is closely associated with fascism, colonialism, racism and imperialism!

This is my Eastern celebration. Today I celebrate the lives of the heroes of the resistance against Christian terror!

And rest assured: “No one is forgotten, and nothing is forgotten!”

Andre Vltchek is a novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. His discussion with Noam Chomsky On Western Terrorism is now going to print. His critically acclaimed political novel Point of No Return is now re-edited and available. Oceania is his book on Western imperialism in the South Pacific. His provocative book about post-Suharto Indonesia and the market-fundamentalist model is called “Indonesia – The Archipelago of Fear”. He has just completed the feature documentary, “Rwanda Gambit” about Rwandan history and the plunder of DR Congo. After living for many years in Latin America and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides and works in East Asia and Africa. He can be reached through his website or his Twitter.

One Response to “Christianity, Guilty as Charged!”

Pingback from Welcome to ITCCS.ORG and The International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State | The Scavenger Economy
Time October 2, 2014 at 7:28 am

[…] genocide in argentina (opus dei) […]