The Soldiers Need Help

They need this equipment.

They don’t have enough.

It’s doubtful they can be successful in their missions without them.

And based on this ad I saw, victory is within our grasps as soon as the soldiers receive them:

*sigh*

I don’t care if the soldiers want Bibles. So be it. And I’m fine with Campus Crusade for Christ being the conduit for people to donate money so that Bibles can be sent to the fighters. That’s what they do.

But I’m surprised that if they’re taking donations for the Rapid Deployment Kits — $1300 for 400 kits — there’s not even a mention of offering anything that might be, *ahem*, more useful to the soldiers.

I mean, the soldiers may want their Bibles, but you’re telling me that they all want that in lieu of other comforts?

  • http://www.primordial-blog.blogspot.com/ Brian Larnder

    Like anyone who really wanted a bible wouldn’t have already brought one with them, or been able to get one from a chaplain. These are for proselytizing purposes only.

  • elbuho

    Miguel Hernandez from Oz has converted? Whodathunkit?

  • Richard Wade

    Well pass the Lord and praise the ammunition!
    The ad says that each Rapid Deployment Kit or RDK “contains a pocket-sized New Testament with Psalms and Proverbs, a daily devotional, and a booklet that clearly shares the Gospel.”

    You know, just to top it off, if they also just slipped in a loaded .45 automatic with two extra clips, some cash, a couple of food bars, a bar of soap, a map of Iraq and a ticket back to the States they’d have one helluva RDK.

    Want to support our troops? Bring them home and take good, honorable care of them.

  • Spork

    So, why not offer an alternative of your own? The God Delusion, The Greatest Story Ever Sold, The Selfish Gene, Why People Believe Weird Things, and some toothpaste.

    Slap something together of your own and make your own rapid deployment kit. Heck, why not make one out of Korans just to irk the rightwingnuts?

  • gringo

    Bibles are a dime a dozen here.

    We could certainly use battery powered fans due to all the power outages. That’s a real tangible need and comfort.

  • http://www.tuibguy.com Mike Haubrich, FCD

    I don’t know if this is such a bad thing. Haven’t you heard all of the stories about people whose lives have been saved when their pocket bibles stopped a bullet?

  • brad

    “I mean, the soldiers may want their Bibles, but you’re telling me that they all want that in lieu of other comforts?”

    If you think that the soldiers want something else instead of Bibles, why don’t YOU do something about it? Until then I think you should shut up about what other people send soldiers.

  • http://www.otmatheist.com hoverFrog

    Pass the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch.

    Why don’t soldiers have adequate equipment provided by the nation that they are serving? Seriously. They’ve been out there for years, surely they must know what they’re doing by now.

  • PrimeNumbers

    Pocket God Delusions made with kevlar paper, here we come!

  • http://maxhavok.blogspot.com/ Jason

    Brad said:

    If you think that the soldiers want something else instead of Bibles, why don’t YOU do something about it? Until then I think you should shut up about what other people send soldiers.

    We send care packages to deployed members of our squadron constantly, filled with magazines, snacks, provisions, etc. And, as far as I know, not a single Bible has been sent to them, because either: A) They are religious and would have brought their holy book of it mattered; or B) If they didn’t have one, they could get one from a chaplain.

    What have YOU sent to deployed military members that’s actually useful? Do you think that prayer and God’s Love will keep them from getting hungry or from missing their homes and families? Or worse yet, prayer is what keeps people safe?

    -Jason, an atheist in a foxhole.

  • Tolga K.

    If you think that the soldiers want something else instead of Bibles, why don’t YOU do something about it? Until then I think you should shut up about what other people send soldiers.

    We’re just explaining our disgust at the idea that there aren’t enough Bibles already in the sandbox.

    I’ve sent packages overseas before, and I’m sure others on this site have done so too.

    But think of the fuel and cargo space wasted by Bible packages. Considering the evangelical nature of many of the military’s leaders, I wouldn’t be surprised if Bibles are a priority shipment, despite the likely presence of more Bibles than soldiers in the Middle East.

    They could be sending hygiene tools or candy or fresh clothing or silly string. Instead, thousands of pounds of fuel are burned for literature that every soldier there already has access to from multiple sources.

    For me, this is not just about the content of the packages. It’s about the complete waste of resources that it takes to get them there.

  • http://perkyskeptic.blogspot.com/ The Perky Skeptic

    My friends and I baked twelve dozen homemade cookies to send to a deployed husband’s unit. There were sugar cookies with sprinkles, peanut butter cookies, almond cookies, danish wedding cookies, fruitcake cookies, and iced gingerbread-molasses cookies. He told us that our care package was extremely good for morale! :)

  • ObamaJamaMan

    Most soldiers are trained to be unthinking robots who obey orders. Most of them also come from the Midwest where Protestantism prevails.

    A bunhc of Bibles probably would sustain them. They probably wouldn’t even have to open them. They just need to know the books are there.

    Sad but true.

    Most people aren’t smart enough to handle a world without a personal deity.

    We have a LONG way to go.

  • brad

    “What have YOU sent to deployed military members that’s actually useful?”

    Nothing. But, of course, I didn’t write a blog post about how what some people are doing isn’t as good as it could be.

    Hemant basically said that even though the soldiers may want Bibles, they probably want some other things more than they want Bibles. But then he goes on (and this is where I have a problem) to criticize the group for not doing enough. (That is, he says they are giving the soldiers something they may want but they could be giving them something they want even more.) The same criticism could be said to you – “the soldiers may want their magazines and snacks, but you’re telling me that they all want that in lieu of ______”? (insert something they may want more than magazines and snacks)

    “Do you think that prayer and God’s Love will keep them from getting hungry or from missing their homes and families?”

    No.

    “Or worse yet, prayer is what keeps people safe?”

    No.

  • http://www.cvaas.org R.C. Moore

    Calladus covered this more fully here, note his analysis on whether this activity by Campus Crusade is even legal!

  • Andrew

    Most soldiers are trained to be unthinking robots who obey orders. Most of them also come from the Midwest where Protestantism prevails.

    Wrong. Try joining the military instead of spouting arbitrary “facts” out of your ass.

    I was active Army and went into the reserves after my last deployment ended last year. Soldiers are trained to follow orders, but “unthinking robots” would quickly get themselves and others killed. Thinking is all every good soldier does… Your ignorance makes me sick.

    I am an atheist and was when I was in Iraq. I think I was the only openly atheist person in my entire battalion, but the vast majority of my unit could have cared less about the topic in general.

    When we were getting ready to redeploy, we had briefings at the chapel (biggest place for meetings). I noticed shelves full of Bibles with a few Books of Mormon, Korans, and Jewish texts.

    They are religious and would have brought their holy book of [choice if] it mattered

    Exactly. I mean duh people.

    We got care packages every few days. Our clerk would just put them in our break room and we would tear through them. Many were from Church groups with everything from Bibles and devotionals to homemade crosses. ALL OF THAT went into the garbage which was subsequently burned. We basically only keep the food and the magazines. We also threw away homemade food if we didn’t know who made it.

    I would just recommend that people send their care packages (full of pre-packaged food or candy and other useful things) to Afghanistan. Iraq has a well-developed infrastructure of roads and cities. This means its a lot easier to supply PXs (“Post Exchange” – basically a small store) in Iraq than in Afghanistan. So soldiers can buy anything they need there from soap and DVDs to Doritos and Dr Pepper. They DONT NEED CARE PACKAGES. Afghanistan is different. There are many small FOBs that can only be accessed by helicopter. Those guys could use some help.

  • Spork

    “I mean, the soldiers may want their Bibles, but you’re telling me that they all want that in lieu of other comforts?”

    Oh yeah, I forgot.

    Nice false dilemma, there…

  • Jen

    I don’t know if this is such a bad thing. Haven’t you heard all of the stories about people whose lives have been saved when their pocket bibles stopped a bullet?

    Call me crazy, but maybe they would rather have a lead vest? Just because it happened on the Simpsons does not make it true.

  • http://thegreenbelt.blogspot.com The Ridger

    “This belonged to my great-granddad,” he said. “He was in the scrap we had against Pseudopolis and my great-grand gave him this book of prayer for soldiers, ‘cos you need all the prayers you can get, believe you me, and he stuck it in the top pocket of his jerkin, ‘cos he couldn’t afford armour, and next day in battle — whoosh, this arrow came out of nowhere, wham, straight into this book and it went all the way through to the last page before stopping, look, you can see the hole.”

    “Pretty miraculous,” Carrot agreed.

    “Yeah, it was, I s’pose,” said the sergeant. He looked ruefully at the battered volume. “Shame about the other seventeen arrows, really.”

    (Jingo, Terry Pratchett)

  • cipher

    Call me crazy, but maybe they would rather have a lead vest? Just because it happened on the Simpsons does not make it true.

    I heard a few years ago that they weren’t being supplied with enough Kevlar vests. I don’t know whether or not it’s still a problem (assuming it was in the first place, which wouldn’t surprise me).

    On the other hand – how many billions of dollars has the government paid to Halliburton?

  • http://www.mindblink.org Linda

    umm… With the government spending some $400 million per day on this war, I would hope that the soldiers at least have the necessary comforts.

    The way I see it, sending the Bibles is a way of providing words of encouragement, words of hope, words of comfort that all the food, clothing, and other material goods cannot provide.

    If someone should be comforted by the words written in the Bible, why should that rub you the wrong way?

    On the other hand, why only Bibles? Someone mentioned other books. Books contain words. They contain words of wisdom and experience gained from the writer’s pain, triumph, loss, despair and hope… or simply just facts and pragmatic views from one’s perspective. What encourages one may not encourage another. Perhaps you can write your own words of encouragement and send them to the troops.

    I am imagining how I would feel if I were in the shoes of a soldier in the war. Provided that my basic needs are met, no amount of food or clothing could comfort me the way the words of someone who seems to understand my thoughts…who seems to think like I do…can.

  • http://www.mindblink.org Linda

    This may not be relevant to what this discussion is about but fascinating nonetheless. Here are some interesting figures on what the war seems to be (it’s just one source) costing us:

    http://www.armscontrolcenter.org/policy/securityspending/articles/supplemental_war_funding/


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X