Osama bin Laden is dead. President Obama spoke with clarity and resolution when he addressed the American people last night: “Tonight, I can report to the American people and to the world that the United States has conducted an operation that killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda, and a terrorist who’s responsible for the murder of thousands of innocent men, women, and children.”
That single sentence, delivered in a nearly unprecedented late-night Sunday address by an American president, encapsulates the moral context of the action. First, the President took responsibility for the act that ended bin Laden’s life. Osama bin Laden did not die an accidental death, nor a death by natural causes. The United States “conducted an operation” that resulted in his death. Second, the operation ended the life of one who was “a terrorist who’s responsible for the murder of thousands of innocent men, women, and children.”
In his short and historic address, the President justified the military action in terms of an act of war. In reality, the operation was a stunning affirmation of the effectiveness of American military expertise, combined with a remarkable intelligence achievement. Bin Laden was killed even as he was within a highly-guarded, encircled compound with walls and defenders. The act was fully justified by the demands of just war theory, the historic Christian means of moral reasoning that measures the justification for acts of lethal force. more >>
LAHORE, Pakistan – An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan’s Faisalabad district on Monday sentenced to death a Muslim man who had gunned down two Christian brothers accused of blasphemy on July 7 last year. The court also imposed a fine of $47,784 on the convict.
Maqsood alias Soodi was convicted of killing the Rev. Rashid Emmanuel, 32, and his 30-year-old brother, Sajid Emmanuel, and injuring police inspector Mohammad Hussain.
The convict was also sentenced to 10-year imprisonment each under Section 7-C of the Anti-Terrorism Act and 324 of the Pakistan Penal Code and a fine of $2380. Under Section 337-D, he will pay $5,950 compensation to the injured inspector and serve a 10-year term. more >>
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – At least 22 people have been killed in Afghanistan so far in a series of violent protests against the burning of the Quran by two Florida pastors, according to reports coming from Afghanistan.
Two people were killed and dozens injured on Sunday as new demonstrations erupted in the country over the burning of the Muslim holy book by extremist Christian preachers Terry Jones and Wayne Sapp.
The burning initially passed relatively unnoticed in Afghanistan compared to its volatile Muslim neighbor Pakistan. But after criticism from Afghan President Hamid Karzai and calls for justice during Friday sermons, thousands poured into the streets in several cities to denounce Jones this weekend. more >>
A new poll shows that a majority of Americans would be okay with a mosque in their community.
Sixty-nine percent of surveyed Americans agreed while 28 percent disagreed, according to the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, released Thursday.
Opposition mainly comes from the South where half of the rural population is against mosques in their area. more >>
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light. - Isaiah 9:2
That's how the first lesson of Christmas Eve opens. It's familiar and comforting, as the familiar words go on to say that light has shined on those who live in deep darkness, that God has brought joy to people living under oppression, for a child has been borne to us. The name of that child is Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace - and God is bringing an endless peace through an heir to the throne of David (vv 3, 4, 6, 7).
This year we're going to hear a bit we haven't heard in Episcopal churches before, in that missing verse 5. It's pretty shocking, but it helps explain why the hunger for light is so intense, and the joy so great when it comes: "For all the boots of the tramping warriors and all the garments rolled in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire." The coming of this prince of peace will mean the end of all signs of war and violence. An occupied people will finally live in peace, without anxiety about who or what will confront them the next time they go out their front doors. more >>
LONDON – The U.K.-based English Defense League has dropped plans to have a Florida preacher who threatened to burn copies of the Quran speak at one of its rallies next year.
Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center had been scheduled to speak about his views on Islam at the right-wing group’s rally in Luton in February.
In a statement on its Facebook page, the EDL said it was sympathetic to Jones’ views on Islam but had decided not to allow him to speak at its rally because of his views on homosexuality and race. more >>