Focus on the Family founder James Dobson and about a dozen other pro-family leaders met privately with President Bush recently about Iraq, Iran and the war on terror.
As reported first by Max Blumenthal at The Raw Story, Dobson described a series of meetings in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />Washington on Monday’s Focus on the Family radio show, the first in a weeklong series of broadcasts devoted to “radical Islam’s impact on America.”<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office” />
“I was invited to go to Washington, D.C., and meet with President Bush in the White House, along with 12 or 13 other leaders of the pro-family movement, and the topic of the discussion that day was Iraq, Iran and international terrorism,” Dobson said. “We were together for 90 minutes, and it was very enlightening and in some ways very disturbing, too. In a roundabout way, that led to today.”
Dobson described the president as “upbeat” and not beaten down by political battles, as well as “determined and convinced that his mission is to protect this great nation from those who have threatened us, and to let history be his judge for the way he has dealt with the crisis in the Middle East.”
Dobson said he isn’t at liberty to quote the president directly but could “report the general tenor and tone” of the White House meeting. “I saw again how we’re living in very perilous times, and the future generations of Americans depends on how we rise to that challenge today,” Dobson said. “I’m absolutely convinced of that.”
“Iran has promised to blow Israel off the face of the earth, and they’ve made no bones about that, and then they plan to come after us,” Dobson said. “They’ve said it repeatedly. They don’t care if they die in the process.
“We’re not speaking of all Muslims, of course, but we’re talking about the leaders of Iran and perhaps Syria and other places around the world: jihad is their sacred duty. As I personally believe, the leaders of Iran, especially the president of Iran, fully intend to wage war on us. They’ll do it when they have the nuclear and biological weapons to do so. And they’re working on that feverishly at this time, and no one questions that.”
Dobson said he doesn’t understand why the news media isn’t talking more about the story.
“It was the same thing before Pearl Harbor, and there are a lot of parallels there,” he said. “I heard about this danger not only at the White House but from other pro-family leaders with whom I met during that week in Washington. Many people in a position to know are talking about the possibility of losing a city to nuclear or biological or chemical attack. And if we can lose one, we can lose 10. If we can lose 10, we can lose a hundred, especially if North Korea and Russia and China pile on.”
“I don’t want to create panic, and I don’t want to overstate the case, but as we read in First Chronicles 12:32, the men of Issachar understood the times and knew what Israel should do,” Dobson said. “I think that’s what we need to strive for. We don’t have all the information. We’re trying to piece it together like everybody else, but I think we, especially as believers in Western countries, should seek to understand the times and figure out what we ought to do, because there are some implications here for us.”
Later the broadcast, during a discussion about Iran with evangelical author Joel Rosenberg, Dobson drew a parallel between current Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad and Adolf Hitler.
“We didn’t take Hitler very seriously, either,” Dobson observed. “As a child I remember this, and I’ve talked about it on the air, and I just see the parallel. The name of Hitler’s book was Mein Kampf. You know what that stands for? It stands for my struggle. You know what jihad means? My struggle.”
“The world looked at Hitler and just didn’t believe him and tried to appease him the way we’re hearing in Washington today,” Dobson remarked. “You know, the president seems to me does understand this, as I told you from that meeting I had with him, but even there it feels like somebody ought to be standing up and saying, ‘We are being threatened and we are going to meet this with force–whatever is necessary.’ Some of our listeners are not going to like that, but I tell you what, if somebody hadn’t stood up to Hitler, we’d be speaking German today.”
It wasn’t the first time Dobson has seen Hitler’s specter in current events. In April Dobson praised the Supreme Court for “banning the Nazi-esque barbarism that is partial-birth abortion.”
On Aug. 3, 2005, Dobson compared research using embryonic stem cells to Nazi experiments conducted on live human patients during and prior to the Holocaust.
“In World War II, the Nazis experimented on human beings in horrible ways in the concentration camps, and I imagine, if you wanted to take the time to read about it, there would have been some discoveries there that benefited mankind,” Dobson said. “We condemn what the Nazis did, because there are some things that we always could do but we haven’t done, because science always has to be guided by ethics and by morality. And you remove ethics and morality, and you get what happened in Nazi Germany.”
In his 2004 book Marriage Under Fire, Dobson likened proponents of gay marriage to the Nazis.
“Like Adolf Hitler, who overran his European neighbors, those who favor homosexual marriage are determined to make it legal, regardless of the democratic processes that stand in their way,” Dobson said.
Robert Parham, executive director of the BaptistCenter for Ethics, criticized Dobson’s penchant for playing the “Hitler” card.
“When Dobson compares everything he fears to Hitler, he waters down the evil of Hitler,” Parham said, “especially the evil arising from racial pride that birthed nationalism and militarism.”
“Iran is no Nazi Germany with industrial power,” Parham said. “Stem cell research is no Nazi German system of death camps. Gay marriage is no prevailing Nazi ideology unchecked by counter-veiling forces.”
In Tuesday’s broadcast Dobson asked Rosenberg–author of two best-selling novels based on Bible prophecy, who just came out with his first non-fiction book, Epicenter–what Americans should do about the threat posed by international terrorism.
Rosenberg said God is calling Christians to share the gospel in countries of the Middle East. “Our job is to do four things,” Rosenberg said, “to learn, pray, give and go.”
“You left one out,” Dobson said, “to vote.”
“This is a representative form of government, and you’re going to have a chance to choose your leaders next time,” Dobson counseled listeners. “Find out what they believe about this. Find out whether they support the military and to what degree. Find out how they would deal with Iran and Iraq and the Middle East, and then vote accordingly.
“I’m not going to tell you how to vote, but to sit it out, like some did in 2006, at this time would be foolhardy.”
Parham, who has a Ph.D. in Christian ethics, suggested: “As a psychologist, Dobson needs to manage his own deep anxiety, instead of sharing his anxiety on a daily radio program and creating false fears to buck up support for President Bush.”
Bob Allen is managing editor of EthicsDaily.com.
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