General William "Jerry" Boykin’s June 2003 talk, dressed in battle fatigues, his pants tucked into his polished combat boots, in the Good Shepherd Community Church in Boring, Oregon was similar to ones that he had delivered around the country over the previous years. [source]
Boykin displayed slides of Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and North Korea’s Kim Jung Il. "Why do they hate us?" Boykin asked. "The answer to that is because we’re a Christian nation. We are hated because we are a nation of believers."
"The enemy is a guy named Satan. Satan wants to destroy this nation. He wants to destroy us as a nation and he wants to destroy us as a Christian army. I’m here on a recruiting trip. I’m asking you to join this army."
Many of the talks were part of a program called "FAITH Force Multipliers" organized by the Southern Baptist Convention, one of the largest religious denominations in the United States.
Boykin believes there really is no difference between the "Christian army" and the U.S. military. In his Oregon talk, Boykin said about George W. Bush: "He’s in the White House because God put him there... not only this nation but to lead the world in such a time as this."
So, who is this General Boykin? The day before he appeared on the pulpit in Oregon, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld had nominated Boykin for a third star and named him to a new position as Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence. Boykin was put in charge of the "High Value Target Plan" to track down bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, Mullah Omar and others.
The fact that a man like General Boykin occupies such a high position says a lot.
His anti-Muslim and Christian fascist remarks caused an uproar when they were reported in the major media in October 2003.
Immediately, groups on the Christian right mobilized their followers to defend Boykin. Focus on the Family Chairman James Dobson said, "It’s time we stood up and defended those who are saying the things most of us as Christians believe." Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist said General Boykin "is a soldier’s soldier" who has "a moral foundation" upon which he lives. Boykin’s civilian boss, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, praised his "outstanding record."
At the same time as Boykin’s comments were being investigated, Rumsfeld called on Boykin to play a key role in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
At the end of 2003 Boykin was sent by Rumsfeld to meet with Major General Geoffrey Miller, who was in charge of the military prison at Guantánamo. Boykin ordered Miller to fly to Iraq and extend the methods used at Guantánamo to the prison system there.
According to former CIA clandestine officers interviewed by Seymour Hersh, the Pentagon has been given permission by Bush to conduct covert commando operations in a large number of countries -in secret and not subject to Congressional oversight.
And who is being put in charge of this new program? According to Hersh, "Rumsfeld and two of his key deputies, Stephen Cambone, the Under-secretary of Defense for Intelligence, and Army Lieutenant General William G. (Jerry) Boykin, will be part of the chain of command for the new commando operations."
Boykin is hardly a lone nut. The reality is that such views are widespread in the government today, in the top levels of the ruling class, in the Congress, in the Supreme Court, in the military. And there is a Christian fascist social base of tens of millions of people.
It is lunacy backed up by, and serving, imperialism.