Honors for hosting the most controversial book signing of the week go to Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, which Friday night hosts retired Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin, who famously said George W. Bush was not elected by a majority of Americans but "appointed by God," and that America is hated around the world because it is "a Christian nation."
As detailed in Never Surrender: A Soldier's Journey to the Crossroads of Faith and Freedom, the new book he co-authored with Lynn Vincent, Boykin has found himself at the center of some of the country's most contentious military actions. He does have quite a resume.
After joining the U.S. Army's elite Delta Force in 1978, William G. "Jerry" Boykin was in on: the 1980 Iranian hostage rescue failure; the 1989 invasion of Panama and capture of brutal dictator Manuel Noriega; the 1992 hunt for notorious Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar; and the 1993 seige of the Branch Davidian complex in Waco, Texas (where Boykin served as special advisor to Janet Reno). Boykin was also at the center of operations in Iraq, Grenada, Somalia and Mogadishu. When then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld elevated Boykin to deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence, his job was to track down Osama Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and other top terror suspects.
The Guardian UK has also connected Boykin to secret Israeli counterinsurgency assistance in Iraq, allegedly including assassination squads, and brutal prison tactics that were transferred to Abu Ghraib. Meanwhile, Seymour Hersh claimed Boykin under Bush was plotting strikes of nuclear facilities in Iran.
Boykin's Christian ministry website, KingdomWarriors.net , is promoting Never Surrender and its author's Calvary Chapel appearance with a video link to his speech at April's Epicenter 09 conference in San Diego. Aimed at explaining "today's global crises in the light of Bible prophecy," the conference also featured Calvary's founding pastor Chuck Smith.
As is the case with all evangelical Christians these days, Boykin is portrayed as a victim. This is also on KingdomWarriors.net:
Boykin's powerful story will keep you riveted as he reveals how his military duty and faith worked in tandem to bring him through the bloody storms of foreign battle--and through the political firestorm that ambushed him in his own country.
Poor, poor Jerry Boykin!
But don't feel too sorry for him because his most lethal weapon has been his mouth. Here are the Top 5 Wacky Things to Come Out of Lt. Gen. (Retired) Jerry Boykin's Mouth:
-"Heres the way I want to enter the gates of Heaven. I want to come skidding in there on all fours. I want to be slipping and sliding and I want to hit the gates of heaven with a bang. And when I stand up and I stand before Christ, I want there to be blood on my knees and my elbows. I want to be covered with mud. And I want to be standing there with a ragged breast plate of righteousness. And a spear in my hand. And I want to say, 'Look at me, Jesus. I've been in the battle. I've been fighting for you.' Ladies and gentlemen, put your armor on and get into battle. God bless you."
-Of Osman Atto, a top lieutenant in Mogadishu of Mohammed Farah Aidid: "He went on CNN and he laughed at us, and he said, 'They'll never get me because Allah will protect me. Allah will protect me.' Well, you know what?" I knew that my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol."
(Amid outcry in the U.S. Congress and the Muslim world, and after finally being blasted by the Bush White House, Boykin backtracked somewhat: "As a Christian I believe that there is a spiritual war that is continuous as articulated in the Bible. It is not confined to the war of terrorism." )
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-"Ladies and gentlemen I want to impress upon you that the battle that we're in is a spiritual battle. Satan wants to destroy this nation, he wants to destroy us as a nation, and he wants to destroy us as a Christian army."
-"George Bush was not elected by a majority of the voters in the United States. He was appointed by God."
-"[W]e're a Christian nation, because our foundation and our roots are Judeo-Christian... and the enemy is a guy named Satan."
The author event is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa is at 3800 S. Fairview St., Santa Ana. Phone (714) 979-4422.