Editorial correction/clarification and a Hat Tip to US Army Chaplain (retired) Wayne MacKirdy: More has come to light with regards to the circumstances of the dismissal of Chaplain Gordon James Klingenschmitt. See the additional information at the bottom of this article*.
The US Department of Defense is on the ‘defense’… on the heels of what has been revealed about what the DoD knew about the Fort Hood Assassin Hasan and when they knew it and why did they make the decisions they made which allowed this Assassin to progress to the point of shooting down forty-three (43) human beings, killing thirteen (13) of them all the while shouting the Islamic Battle Cry ‘Allah Akbar!’ as he pulled the trigger again and again and again?
For sure there will be finger pointing between the DoD, the FBI, and the CIA as this story continues to unfold. But… the Assassin Hasan, who has been formally charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder today, worked for the DoD as a US Army Officer, right? Let the poop hit the fan… and see where it lands.
Let’s take a look back into the recent past, shall we??
Some events of the past…
Chaplain Lt. Gordon James Klingenschmitt has been court-martialed and dismissed from the U.S. Navy. His crime? Praying in Jesus’ name in uniform outside a chapel. You read it right. After 15 1/2 years of exemplary service, Lt. Klingenschmitt is being drummed out of the Navy.
Understand that Klingenschmitt has a meritorious military record. He graduated from the Air Force Academy and spent 11 years as an Air Force missile officer. He was promoted to the rank of Major and was offered a job at the Pentagon at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. However, Klingenschmitt wanted to be a chaplain. As such, he willingly took a demotion in order to serve in the U.S. Navy as a chaplain at the rank of Lieutenant.
Chaplain Klingenschmitt served in the Persian Gulf. While there, he and his men won 6 awards, including Best in the Navy, for outstanding Community Service. But now this fine Christian man is being discharged. He is losing his career (not to mention a million-dollar pension) for the “crime” of praying in Jesus’ name.
Then there is the matter of Muslim Navy imam Chaplain Abuhena M. Saifulislam:
Now, compare what the Navy has done to Lt. Klingenschmitt to this report from WorldNetDaily. “[T]he Pentagon recently promoted a Wahhabi-trained Muslim chaplain who catered to al-Qaida detainees at Guantanamo and fought to establish the first Mosque in Marine Corps history.”
According to WND, “Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England personally promoted Navy chaplain Abuhena Mohammed Saifulislam from lieutenant to lieutenant commander. Saifulislam also received a Joint Service Commendation Medal at the Pentagon ceremony held on the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Pentagon officials say the ceremony was unprecedented. ‘It’s unusual for a deputy secretary to personally promote an officer of that rank,’ said one official who wished to go unnamed. ‘No one has known of such a high-level dignitary doing that.'”
Furthermore, the WND report stated, “England also earlier this year personally dedicated a new Islamic center at Marine headquarters in Quantico, Va., on the advice of Saifulislam . . .”
Now get this: “The Muslim chaplain, who is stationed at Quantico, recited verses from the Quran in Arabic and English at the summer dedication ceremony, which included representatives from the Council on American-Islamic Relations, several leaders of which have been convicted on terrorism-related charges.”
Yet, it gets worse. According to the WND report, “Saifulislam, which is Arabic for ‘Sword of Islam,’ received his religious training at a radical Islamic school raided by federal agents after 9/11.” Terror expert Paul Sperry said, “The Pentagon is giving him a permanent, taxpayer-supported platform from which to convert grunts to Islam.” He also said, “With the Quantico mosque, the Pentagon is facilitating the study of the holy text the enemy uses, heretically or not, as their manual of warfare.”
*Additional Information concerning the dismissal of Chaplain Gordon James Klingenschmitt:
Navy Lt. Gordon James Klingenschmitt is an Evangelical Episcopal chaplain in the US Navy who came into conflict with a 1998 doctrine requiring chaplains to couch their expressions of religious faith outside worship services in a “non-sectarian” fashion.
Born 5 June, 1968 in Buffalo, New York, Gordon James Klingenschmitt was adopted at age three and raised in the Roman Catholic faith, by a loving family on a farm in Western New York. At age 18, while attending the US Air Force Academy, he became a born-again Christian through what he describes as “a powerful conversion encounter with Jesus Christ” at a Pentecostal bible study. He took a one-year leave of absence to perform missionary work throughout Mexico in “Youth With A Mission” and then returned to graduate from the Air Force Academy in 1991. He spent 11 years as an Air Force missile officer and was promoted to the rank of Major (O-4). He earned M.B.A. and Master of Divinity degrees from Regent University in 1998, and founded the 501(c3) nonprofit Persuade The World Ministries in 1999, for radio broadcasting, literature distribution, and to serve the homeless. He published his first book, License To Sin, in 2000, and was ordained an Evangelical Episcopal priest in 2001. Gordon James Klingenschmitt has been married to Mary Elaine Klingenschmitt since 1991.
His seniority and O-4 rank made him ineligible for Air Force Chaplaincy, so Klingenschmitt volunteered for a demotion to O-3 (Lieutenant) and switched services to become a Navy Chaplain in 2002. While attending Naval Chaplain School, he opposed the mandatory lectures that he felt pressured him to censor the content of his public prayers, specifically discouraging prayers that end “in Jesus name, Amen.” In an academic paper, Klingenschmitt cited his rights under US Code Title 10 Section 6031: “An officer in the chaplain corps may conduct public worship according to the manner and forms of the church of which he is a member” and he continued to pray “in Jesus name.”
Onboard his first ship, the cruiser U.S.S. Anzio, Chaplain Klingenschmitt served alongside sailors during combat operations of Operation Iraqi Freedom. While in port, many sailors volunteered with him to feed the homeless in downtown Norfolk, and his programs won six awards, including the 2004 Good Neighbor award (small ship category), selected by the Chief of Navy Chaplains as “best in Navy” for community service. But his commanding officer, Capt. James Carr, disagreed with an evangelical sermon he preached at an optionally-attended Christian Memorial service in the base chapel (specifically his quoting John 3:36), and discouraged him from quoting the New Testament when saying “the evening prayer” onboard the ship’s microphone. Capt. Carr documented the sermon against the Chaplain as a performance deficiency, relieved him of duty and sent him ashore, and recommended a Navy board not renew his contract. Klingenschmitt appealed to the Chief of Navy Chaplains Rear Admiral Lou Iasiello, who denied his appeal by writing that praying in Jesus name “denigrates other faiths.”
In December 2005, after serving 14 years on active-duty as a commissioned officer, Klingenschmitt faced sudden termination of his active-duty career without retirement, and his family faced eviction from military housing. He wrote to the President, and held a press conference in front of the White House on December 20th, to announce a hunger strike “until the President of the United States gives me back my uniform and lets me pray publicly in Jesus name.” Klingenschmitt drank water only for 18 days, lost 14 pounds, and his story was reported on the front pages of the Washington Times, Washington Post, and New York Times. 75 Congressmen, 29 pro-family groups, and 200,000 Americans petitioned the President to let chaplains pray freely without restriction of religious content. The Navy renewed Klingenschmitt’s contract, and his shore-based commanding officer CAPT Lloyd Pyle gave him written permission to pray in uniform in front of the White House. On 7 January 2006, Klingenschmitt ended his hunger strike and declared victory, by praying “in Jesus name” in uniform in front of the White House.
His victory was short-lived. On 11 January, 2006, Rear Admiral Frederic Ruehe ruled that Capt. Carr had properly disciplined the chaplain for his optionally-attended sermon, and properly censored his prayers on the ship. Then on 21 February the Secretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter signed a new policy SECNAVINST 1730.7C (para 6c) that required Navy chaplains to use “non-sectarian” content during public prayers outside of a chapel setting, and empowered commanders to discipline chaplains who disobeyed. This policy redefined “public worship” as not including public prayers, leaving them unprotected by US Code. Klingenschmitt filed a formal whistleblower complaint against SECNAV Winter and the policy’s author Chief of Navy Chaplains Rear Admiral Lou Iasiello, and participated in another press conference. On 30 March, 2006, at an event hosted by Chief Justice Roy Moore in front of the White House, Chaplain Klingenschmitt wore his uniform to pray “in Jesus name,” directly contradicting the new policy that required “non-sectarian” prayer content. He declined to make other speeches or answer questions in uniform, he only read prayers and scriptures. Four weeks later his commander Capt. Lloyd Pyle filed charges against Klingenschmitt for disobeying orders, by wearing his uniform to voice partisan religious views at a political event. Rear Admiral Ruehe convened his court-martial, which is still pending today.
Klingenschmitt’s story has been reported in over 100 media outlets, over 50 radio shows, over a dozen television programs (see archives at http://www.persuade.tv), and perhaps 1 million people have now called the President, asking him to intervene. The White House spokesman has responded to questions about Klingenschmitt four times, stating the President is concerned about protecting freedom for military chaplains. The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 5122 (line 590) to let chaplains in every branch of the US military “pray according to the dictates of their conscience.” This legislation is pending in the Senate, and has not yet been signed by the President.
*Gordon James Klingenschmitt’s web-site
*Navy Chaplain to be punished for gospel message
*Navy chaplain at center of prayer controversy to be court-martialed – Navy Times, May 19, 2006
*Navy Charges Protesting Chaplain
*Navy chaplain’s complaint ruled ‘without merit’