“It Is As If He Has Saved All Mankind” – Egypt and America and the Intertwining of Faith and Freedom
Michael Henry Dunn, Ph.D.
© 2014 Michael Henry Dunn. All International Rights Reserved.
Michael Henry Dunn is a human rights advocate, scholar, author, musician, and a globally recognized commentator on issues of human rights. His advocacy for the movement to support national sovereignty embodied in the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) and BRICS alliance led to his current position as Senior Editor for The Alliance Journal, a university educational institution which serves as an academic journal, digest, news source, and debate forum, to facilitate the realization of a more free, peaceful and abundant world for all of humanity. (www.thealliancejournal.org) (profile: www.linkedin.com/pub/michael-henry-dunn/4b/181/397/)
(An anti-Morsi Egyptian protestor holds aloft a cross and a Koran, July, 2013)
“The discipline of an established church might make individuals more governable, but sincere devotion to God makes them capable of governing themselves…may the happy day dawn ere long when Old Europe imitating Young America, a single cry will arise from earth to heaven – a saving cry – God and Liberty!”
–Eduoard Rene de Laboulaye, “The Father of the Statue of Liberty”
“It is true that former president Morsi came to office with 51 percent of the people’s vote…The Egyptians felt sympathy for people who had been humiliated and oppressed by the previous regime. They believed in their goodness, in their religious appearance, and they gave them their votes… They did not imagine that this leadership would deal with them the way it did throughout the year. The Muslim Brotherhood have their own values, but they look at their own values as those that should be followed and imposed upon the Egyptians…Are the values of freedom and democracy exclusively exercised in your countries but other countries do not have the right to exercise the same values and enjoy the same environment?”
–Egyptian Gen. Abdel Fatah al-Sissi, Armed Forces Commander and Deputy Prime Minister, in an interview with The Washington Post, August 5, 2013
“The Holy Koran teaches that whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a person, it is as if he has saved all mankind.”
–U.S. President Barack Obama, Speech in Cairo, Egypt, 2009
Once upon a time, in the long ago days of the Clinton Administration, before the American Constitution was trashed by the Patriot Act, before “Homeland Security,” before arbitrary driver’s license checkpoints on peaceful highways, before the phrase “false flag” became the underground watchword of an awakening minority, before the West’s undeclared war on Islam devastated Iraq, Libya, and Syria, before rebel filmmaker Michael Moore famously asked, “Dude, where’s my country?”…and long before Nobel Peace Prize laureate Barack Obama personally approved a dramatic increase in drone strikes which he knew with certainty would kill hundreds of innocent Muslims – yes, long ago in the thick of that rather sordid but now comparatively innocuous administration, the decidedly secular young staff of President William Jefferson Clinton debated over the best time and day to deliver what they regarded as a crucial message to the American people. When someone proposed an Oval Office address for mid-morning on Sunday, there was swift agreement. After all, who does anything in America on Sunday mornings?
They were shocked to be told by the keepers of such statistics that a vast majority of Americans actually still spent Sunday mornings in church. The young Clintonites assumed that the rest of the country spent Sunday morning in the manner they themselves did: recovering from overwork or overindulgence, camped in a vegetative state in front of their television sets.
Despite the falling attendance at organized religious services in the last decades, a larger majority of Americans profess faith in a Supreme Being than in any other industrialized Western country. A recent NBC poll inquiring whether it is time to delete the phrase “one nation, under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance, found that an overwhelming 84% of those polled affirmed their preference to retain the wording, which was added to the pledge by President Eisenhower in 1954 at the urging of the Knights of Columbus.
American history from its earliest days has often been called a succession of “Great Awakenings,” during which the people’s innate religious devotion would periodically surge to the forefront of national life. Increasingly, Americans are looking beyond organized religions to the deeper guidance of transcendent spiritual values rooted in reverence for a Divine Source.
Whether the secular Beltway likes it or not, America was founded by seekers of religious freedom, and the intertwining of those two words remains deeply embedded in the national character. It is largely thanks to Thomas Jefferson that this strain became institutionalized into a firm separation of church and state, such that for more than a century a colossal statue of Liberty holding aloft a torch of freedom would become a genuinely inspiring symbol to generations of immigrants of all faiths, rather than the sad satire it has become today, grieving the loss of America’s soul in the ghostly shadows of the vanished World Trade Center.
Can a nation’s lost soul be restored? Is the collective guilt of a complacent people – manipulated, deceived, lulled, seduced, and frightened into ignorant complicity in a host of war-crimes – so thick and muddy a veil on our eyes that we’ve forever lost sight of the ideals that made “The Mother of Exiles” a beautiful reminder of who we aspire to be?
If we take Judge Matthew Greene’s counsel, as worded in his devastating report on the Egyptian people’s victory over US-led NATO crimes of destabilization, we need only peacefully rise up to demand that our governments be held accountable to international human rights laws which are legally binding on all members of the United Nations – laws which were in many ways inspired by the historic example of the Declaration of Independence and the American Bill of Rights.
When the Egyptian people twice rose up against tyranny – first against an oppressive thirty-year US-puppet dictatorship, and a second time against a budding tyrannical theocracy (covertly backed by NATO) – they won for themselves a chance to allow their innate spiritual maturity to reshape and reclaim control over their national destiny. As the courage of Egypt shocked and inspired the world, the whisper went through the awakening population in the States – “that’s us in ten years.”
Ten years will be too late.
It sometimes seems as if the rest of the awakening world is watching and waiting for America to throw off the oligarchy’s chains of debt and deception to reclaim her heritage of freedom, to become again a government “of the people, by the people, for the people,” to become again a haven for the unfettered cultivation of spiritual communion and spiritual community, rather than a people so stressed, deadened, and deceived that we never cease to acquiesce in (and pay for) the horrors committed in our name – and in the name of a liberty that we long ago surrendered.
Judge Greene points out that the Egyptian people eventually saw through the false choices they had been offered in the post-revolutionary presidential election – a choice of candidates pre-selected to serve the interests of the Western oligarchs, regardless of who is elected:
“…the same tired old dirty trick that still works today in the West – stack the decks,
and rig the game, so that the people can only “democratically” elect a President by
choosing the lesser of two evils, from a pool of all the same people, who every time are
proven to work for all of the same people, the very same Western banking oligarchs
who promote their private globalist interests at the expense of humanity.”
When Barack Obama was elected to the White House in 2008, the world experienced a brief season of hope that America had indeed restored her soul after the horrors of the Bush years, that the first African-American president – this eloquent and seemingly visionary young leader – would make the much vaunted “moral example” of the United States something other than a cruel joke.
But time has shown that the oligarchy simply installed a more palatable puppet, no less captive to their interests, no less committed to NATO destabilization of truly free countries (as evidenced by the massive and illegal eight billion dollar bribe reportedly paid by Obama to the Muslim Brotherhood), and no less willing to lead the charge to defeat the emerging global alliance against the cabal. For the most recent example of NATO’s crimes detailed by Judge Greene, we need only look to the travesty in Ukraine, in which a fascist-led coup (employing rooftop snipers and cabal agitators) against a democratically elected president was swiftly endorsed by the White House, followed by a rush to demonize President Putin and impose sanctions against Russia, while the IMF proceeds to plunder the resources of a gullible Ukraine.
Greene’s first-hand account of Muslim and Christian Egyptians standing shoulder to shoulder, protecting each other’s times of prayer during the revolution, shielding each other’s places of worship against NATO’s state-sponsored terrorist attacks, could still (perhaps) serve as a reminder to the slumbering spiritual maturity of America to stand up for the twin virtues of religious tolerance and political freedom on which the nation was founded.
Religion has been used to divide us – sect from sect, faith from faith, race from race, dogma from dogma. Authentic and mutually respectful spirituality holds the potential to free us. A meeting of manipulated fundamentalist Christians, fundamentalist Muslims, radical Zionist Jews, and fundamentalist Hindus would end in a riot. A convocation of saints and mystics from those same faiths would end in an embrace. But we must peacefully rise up as did the Egyptian people, and demand that the values of human rights be upheld – and the binding international laws based on those values. The rampant violations of those laws by the oligarchy are (as Judge Greene reminds us) crimes – crimes punishable under international law. In the name of Spirit, of God, of Allah, of Buddhist compassion, of Impersonal Light, of the Goddess, or in the name of the atheist’s right to deny them all – through any of the multitude of prisms through which humanity perceives our Source – may we be inspired by the heroes of Tahrir Square and demand our divine heritage of freedom by the banner of justice and the rule of law….and may we do it now.
Michael Henry Dunn