By Vince Dhimos
Christians commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus on this date in 2018 based on a complex formula. Basically, that means Christians think of today as the day Jesus was crucified in 33 AD by a religious-ethnic group who induced the world’s most powerful empire to do its dirty work.
I am always moved to compassion on Good Friday, when a just man who spoke truth to power was murdered just for being what he was and speaking the truth as He understood it, defying the hypocrites of His day who claimed to be the keepers of God's law but only traded in religion for their own personal gain.
It is a day when I don’t have much to say and, quite honestly, prefer to be alone. Because what happened that day was unspeakable. Words fail me.
Particularly since nothing has changed since then. Nothing. They are still murdering innocents in the name of the empire.
Today, a great empire, incited by a statelet in the region where Christianity got its start, supports the overthrow of a small Middle Eastern state that played a major role in the birth of Christianity and whose leader is known as a protector of Christians in the region. The empire, purporting to be “Christian,” supported a movement that brought forth terrorists from over 80 nations to tear this region apart, kill and banish its people, and subject it to authoritarian and violent rule by followers of a religion that is the most violent and intolerant in the world. The leader, known as a protector of Christians, is condemned by the great empire for allegedly killing his own people even though it is the great empire that supported, via the Arab Spring, the terrorists who did, and still do, the killing.
The great empire has illegally invaded the small terrorist-infested state under the flimsy pretext of fighting the terrorists but still breathes hatred for its leader. Until September 2015, this great empire was unable – or unwilling – to defend the small state, whose army was about to be driven into the sea despite the presence of the empire’s air force, which was not there to help the people.
Meanwhile, another world power has entered the small state for the purpose of fighting these terrorists, and within a short time, the small state’s army was quickly winning back their own territory thanks to the air power of this second world power. When the terrorists were finally under control, the great empire claimed victory over the terrorists, even though it was the state and its allies, notably the second world power, who had vanquished the enemy on the ground. The great empire also established illegal bases on this territory and prevented the other power and the state army from entering its own territory there, even killing national soldiers, all the while self-righteously condemning the state’s president for supposedly causing all the murders that the great empire itself had caused by supporting the terrorists in the first place, calling them moderates and rebels.
The great empire is not backing down, still pretending that the invaded state, Syria, and the other world power, Russia, are somehow in the wrong. Yet the only “wrong” is the fact that Syria and Russia, and their terror-fighting ally Iran, refuse to bow down to the great empire, the US.
Just as in the year 33, most adherents to the popular religion – Christians in this case – simply take the path of least resistance and stand by the empire in its murderous invasion. They speak of God and country, but these are weasel words. Their country is their god and, while they may pay lip service to God Almighty on Sunday morning, there is no other god but the empire in their hearts and minds.
As it was in 33, so it is in 2018. Nothing has changed.
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!