The American Lieutenant Colonel who said Pat Tillman’s family thinks their son is “worm dirt” has something in common with with Islamic jihadists.
I was thinking about writing about belief in the hereafter and how destructive it can be after I listened to an NPR show about a small neighborhood in Moroccan village which sent as many as 30 jihadist suicide bombers to Iraq. ( Listen here. )
I knew I had to write about this when I heard about the Lt. Colonel who thought that the family of Pat Tillman was not at peace with his death because they are atheists who believe their son is now “worm dirt.”
He said that they found it hard for them to get their heads around Pat’s dying “for nothing.”
My understanding is that Pat felt he was fighting and risking death for his country, but apparently this officer thinks that is “nothing”.
Islamic jihadist martyrs aren’t afraid to die because they believe that a special honored place in Heaven awaits them. They certainly kill those they consider infidels, or unbelievers, with relish.
Granted it is certainly far less extreme, but being convinced that Heaven exists can, in thankfully rare instances, lead to repugnant thinking and hurtful comments.
Mary Tillman, Pat’s mother, testified on Tuesday in the hearing before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that she was “appalled” by comments from Lt. Col. Ralph Kauzlarich, an officer in Tillman’s unit, who suggested that the family was not at peace with pat’s death because they are atheists who believe their son is now “worm dirt.”
Rep. Henry Waxman, aghast, suggested Kauzlarich’s remarks should be punished as “conduct unbecoming an officer.”
It was also terribly unbecoming of a Christian.
This is what Kauzlarich is quoted as saying in an artile on ESPN.COM:
“When you die, I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right? Well, if you are an atheist and you don’t believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to? Nothing. You are worm dirt. So for their son to die for nothing, and now he is no more â€” that is pretty hard to get your head around that. So I don’t know how an atheist thinks. I can only imagine that that would be pretty tough.”
Asked by ESPN.com whether the Tillmans’ religious beliefs are a factor in the ongoing investigation, Kauzlarich said, “I think so. There is not a whole lot of trust in the system or faith in the system [by the Tillmans]. So that is my personal opinion, knowing what I know.”
Asked what might finally placate the family, Kauzlarich said, “You know what? I don’t think anything will make them happy, quite honestly. I don’t know. Maybe they want to see somebody’s head on a platter. But will that really make them happy? No, because they can’t bring their son back.” LINK
I think the majority of our soldiers are like most of the Muslim members of the Iraqi army in that they believe in God and Heaven, only they are Christians.
They are fighting side by side for a God and country of peace.
However I think there are some, hopefully a very few, Christians in our military who are more like the al Qaeda jihadists than they would ever admit. They may think all Muslims are unbelievers, and are intolerant of those who believe differently than they do. They are callously insensitive to their feelings.
I don’t know whether Pat Tillman believed in God or Heaven. His brother has been quoted as saying that Pat wasn’t a religious man.
I agree with Henry Waxman that this holier than thou Lt. Colonel should be formally disciplined for making this remark.