Thoughts On The Planned Koran Burning

As the pastor of a small church in Gainesville, Florida continues to threaten to stage a mass burning of the Koran, Islam’s holy book, it is interesting to consider some of the implications. Since 2001, when Muslim terrorists flew planes into the World Trade Center in New York City, tensions between the U.S. and the Islamic world have remained moderate, if not high. And with the U.S. continuing to wage war in both Iraq and Afghanistan, many countries have chosen to condemn President Obama for what seems like opportunism. Interestingly, unlike many other Western countries, freedom of speech is so strongly protected in the U.S. by the U.S. Constitution that it is completely legal to burn bibles, Korans, or any other document. However, it would be foolish for the pastor of the church to carry out his threats for a number of reasons.

Protecting U.S. Troops

As anger has spread around the world at the news of the planned Koran burning, Obama’s plea to the pastor has been to voice his concern that such as burning may put the lives of U.S. troops in danger. With tens of thousands of U.S. troops stationed around the world, it is easy to imagine that Obama’s concern is justified. Even though U.S. troops are well-equipped to defend themselves, the areas that they are stationed in would probably experience varying degrees of unrest. To maintain stability, some troops would certainly be called upon to help quell the unrest, and in doing so, they would become targets of violence.

Protecting U.S. Lives

When we think about the correlation between the U.S. invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan and world terrorism, it is logical to conclude that the U.S. is making enemies by waging war. Though some war is unavoidable, it seems clear that the main reason that the U.S. is in Iraq and Afghanistan is that the U.S. is going to be in Iraq and Afghanistan after the war – for monetary gain. Burning Korans would only further inflame the anger toward the U.S. held by those who resent the U.S.’s transparent military motives.

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