A recent Internet report that a battle was shaping up between the U.S. military and the White House because of executive plans to have soldiers pledge allegiance to the president instead of the nation and its Constitution raised alarm among the patriotic this week.
But it didn’t seem to include the detail that the Department of Defense knew nothing about the “issue.”
Among the first places the claims apparently appeared was the JumpinginPools blog, where it was reported: “A spokesman for General James Cartwright, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, states that the Obama Administration wants to have soldiers and officers pledge a loyalty oath directly to the office of the President, and no longer to the Constitution.”
When WND called the Joint Chiefs, Lt. Col. Brad Bartelt said he’d seen the report, but there was no substance because the issue wasn’t under discussion and hadn’t been under discussion.
But the report spread quickly, implying that the new pledge policy soon would become official.
“The Defense Department, including the Secretary, will not take this laying down. Expect a fight from the bureaucracy and the brass,” the report quoted an unidentified official saying.
It also quoted a “memo” from the White House, saying, “The president feels that the military has been too indoctrinated by the old harbingers of hate: nationalism, racism, and classism. By removing an oath to the American society, the soldiers are less likely to commit atrocities like those at Abu Ghraib.”
Among the immediate reactions from Internet forum participants were comments such as:
- I’m absolutely horrified. If this doesn’t wake up a lot of people, we are sunk.
- Praying that the TRUTH will come into the light for all to see.
- The main problem I see (and many of you are in the choir!) is that by swearing loyalty to the president, he has these tens of thousands of troops to do HIS bidding. Besides, he thinks the Constitution is outmoded and probably wants to do away with it…
One of those who acknowledged the report was Orly Taitz, the California lawyer whose cases at various levels of the court system are challenging Obama’s qualifications for the Oval Office under the Constitution’s requirement that the president be a “natural born” citizen.
She later explained why the report didn’t seem far-fetched.
“Why do we believe everything bad, illegal and unconstitutional when it comes to Obama?” she wrote in a followup.
“Will Obama really change the military oath? Will there be changes to the Constitution? We don’t really know. The main reason is that Obama has zero credibility. When a man spends [a] reported $800,000 on attorneys to keep [his] original birth certificate sealed, you know that this birth certificate shows him as ineligible for presidency, otherwise he would’ve shown it to us,” she wrote.
“I hope each and every member of the military or any other citizen for that matter should write to him and demand written assurance that he will not be making any changes to the Constitution and demand to see all of his records under FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) in order to find out what is his legal name and what is his citizenship. Until BO steps up to the plate, the citizens will believe anything and everything about him, and rightfully so,” she said.
In fact, WND has reported in the past on Obama’s desire to change some ideas in the Constitution.
Columbia Christians for Life, an organization that also had alerted its constituency about the report, apologized for what appeared to be “satire.”
“On the other hand, I wonder if it may have been fabricated and the
story floated on the Internet to see what kind of a response there would be (e.g., in the blogosphere) if such a thing were to be attempted,” an organization spokesman said.
“It still makes me wonder … if someone did not learn of this
issue actually being discussed by the WH and Pentagon and then building (fabricating) a believable news report around it?” the organization said. “If you are a Christian, pray such a thing never does come to pass in
America, as it did in Hitler’s Third Reich.”
Another report about a different Pledge of Allegiance controversy also came through the Internet, and has yet to be proven or disproven.
The report on a forum called TheTreeofLiberty said teachers in a Nevada school district were having students stand and face a projected image of Obama – instead of the flag – at the beginning of class while the Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
The report’s authenticity was questioned because no school, no city, no names were cited.
The forum participant followed up with:
“Since publishing this story, I am receiving e-mails and phone calls calling it a hoax because the story didn’t detail the names of the people, teachers, principal or school. Unfortunately, they just want to shoot the messenger and instead of seeing this as a situation that was amicably resolved, it is seen as an attack on Obama, which it never was, and an attack on the flag, which it never was.
“Here is my answer – and it will have to stay this way until the school or district want to release some information. My guess is that eventually, some of it will get out – but I’m not going to do it without permission.
“It is a true story. The reason for the scant detail is to protect the school and the parents and children and I realize it could be seen that way but I am committed to their privacy and to not opening the school, principal, teachers, parents or kids to ridicule.
“The problem now is that this can get really messy if nothing more is released, so I hope the school district or school will admit this happened and give my story a second reference before this goes off into direction we don’t want it to,” the forum participant said.
Following was a brief statement that the issue was resolved.
“[The principal] said that in the morning that she would get with their audio/video tech and have him turn it off in my son’s classroom. I asked her about the rest of the school and she said that she will make it for the whole school!”
Screen capture from finale of celebrity pledge video
The procedure of projecting Obama’s image on a school wall during the pledge raised worries about what one blogger cited as the “dangerously inflated messianic status’ to which Obama has been elevated by some.
There have been a number of other similar incidents on which WND has reported, including a recent video by several celebrities in which they directly pledged allegiance to Obama.
Other incidents have come up with Nation of Islam chief Louis Farrakhan said about Obama: “The Messiah is absolutely speaking,” and when an artist in Iowa created an inaugural parade with Obama riding on a donkey, complete with waving palm fronds.
Celebrities have been reported to have imputed qualities to the president.
“I would say that he would be Joshua going across to the Promised Land,” Don King was reported saying.
Clark’s Obama sculpture, riding a donkey at the Iowa Capitol
The Bible describes Jesus’ procession into Jerusalem in the 21st chapter of Matthew as the fulfillment of the prophet Zechariah’s words, “Behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass,” or as the New International Version paraphrases, “gentle, and riding on a donkey.” As the celebrated Messiah entered the city, the Bible also tells of adorers spreading their cloaks at Jesus’ feet and waving palm fronds.
Fred Love, a reporter for Lee Enterprises whose account was published by the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, witnessed a strange sight recently, as a sculpture of Obama marched down Des Moines’ Locust Street in similar fashion.
“Progressing slowly down Locust and holding up traffic was a rubbery Barack Obama sculpture saddled on the back of a donkey,” Love wrote. “A pair of black SUVs led the procession and two more trailed behind, Secret Service-style. A couple of the SUVs were decked out with tiny American flags.”
Love continued, “A few men led the Donkey down the street and a woman made her way along the sidewalk, keeping up with the procession and handing out palm branches to the few perplexed onlookers who had gathered on the sidewalks to see what the fuss was about.”
As WND reported, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan declared in October that when Obama talks, “the Messiah is absolutely speaking.”
And a YouTube video produced by Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Productions features dozens of celebrities – television and movie actors, sports heroes, musicians and more – describe how they will pledge to “be the change” and “be a servant to our president.”
Actors Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher begin the closing scene by saying, “I pledge to be a servant to our president and all mankind.”
The video is posted below: