September 8th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

How the military is preparing for Quran burning

Editor's Note: CNN Pentagon Correspondent Chris Lawrence recently returned from Iraq. He filed this report from the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., looking at how the U.S. Military is preparing to deal with a planned Quran burning in Florida on Saturday and how it operates with heightened awareness regarding religious sensibilities when operating in majority Muslim countries.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Culture wars • Foreign policy • Islam • Military • Muslim • Quran

soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Qasim khan

    i condemn this so called fanatic preist,because no relegion allow to disgrace other relgion. this action will bring great hatered about america in Muslim world,because we think that U.S is not stoping him. if this act happen it will also the burn whole world.

    September 9, 2010 at 8:01 am |
  2. Just_Human

    @Reality – your statements sound biased and lack insight & wisdom to understand the scripture. First of all you call everything that's happening as "Islamic violence". Instead of foolish name calling, I would rather enlighten you with some common sense.

    Seems like you haven't read the bible to demand deletion of Islamic beliefs that are beyond your comprehension. If you do read it, you will probably rewrite whole Bible. As firstly it comprises of revelations to Jesus. And since you don't believe in angels, then you definitely don't believe in the miraculous birth of Jesus, then how can you believe in his revelations – as you say these are written by humans to humans. Quran makes sure that every muslim believes in "original" Bible, and Jesus. And prophet Muhammad did not bring anything new, he added to the teachings of Jesus under divine guidance like how Jesus added to the teachings of Moses. Moreover, he was an illiterate and to come up with a whole Quran – don't you think it's humanly not possible. Let's assume you were right and you being so educated could only find 5 mistakes in it? – This itself should clear baseless assumptions.

    If you believe humans are such good writers, and if you seem to have deep knowledge of the scriptures and sciences, why don't you write a book that will abstain people from all evil in this world? If you can't and don't believe in God and if we were not accountable for our actions, if there was no creator, if there was no Judgement day – then this place earth would be utterly disorderly and chaotic consisting of ppl. who commit crimes such as this pastor . If you believe in Jesus(pbuh), you probably believe in deeds and accountability!

    And if you are an athiest answer this – is there a difference between animals and humans? You might say Yes. If that's the case, we cannot live like animals preying on other animals without being accountable for anything. Our conciense and intelligence tells us whats right and whats wrong. What does mother nature have to do with conciense? If it created itself all of sudden, it will end itself all of sudden, so whats the purpose of doing good in this world? Without one SINGLE POWER that controls everything even mother nature- universe, orbits, planets everything following their course wouldn't have an order, get it?

    So even then you want to "Blame religion, all muslims – Islam is evil, muslims are terrorists, throw them out of the country, don't give them rights, snatch their freedom, burn their book, burn their mosques, change their book" – So doing all of this makes you what? A tolerant, peace following, non-terrorizing Pastor or a Saint? And what does this make of the beliefs you follow? spreading hatred will do no good for anyone. Being a pastor and burning a holy book shows of his ignorance and lack of morality and insensitivity to all of humankind. Someone who follows him would follow his traits and these satanic traits cannot exist in a God-loving person.

    September 9, 2010 at 7:24 am |
  3. Just_Human

    @John so you are saying there is no difference between third world countries (in which most ppl. are illiterate due to lack of educational systems) and America based on religious freedom? Moreover why didn't you think of this before we stormed into Iraq and afghanistan and destroyed millions including their economies and made them more illiterate and hungry and angry for generations to come? Why didnt we just go after the handful of radicals instead? Also, interestingly in this present modern day century we need military protection for handful of radicals spreading hate and violence.

    September 9, 2010 at 7:23 am |
  4. John

    Wait what is this? The military have to prepare for the burning? From a religion whose religious leaders in America say they are the religion of tolerance? The bible has been burned throughout the world without a concern that groups would be in danger. Why the concern? Surely we have nothing to fear. After all it was/is only a handful of radicals and not the majority of Muslims that we should be concerned about – right?

    September 9, 2010 at 5:49 am |
  5. Dennis

    The right to condemn another persons belief is only gained when you are righteous, which is an unattainable position in this world. Everyone sins and so this "pastor" guy is only out to show his ignorance and stupidity.
    The media on the other hand just perpetrate whatever they know is controversial, whatever the consequence.
    All in all the factors driving this issue cannot be controlled.

    September 9, 2010 at 4:26 am |
  6. Reality

    What the US military should broadcast from every jeep and humvee's loudspeakers in the languages of the local Muslims:

    NOW HEAR THIS!!!!!

    o Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

    "1. Belief in Allah"

    aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your cleansing neurons.

    "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

    Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

    "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

    A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

    "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

    Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

    Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

    Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

    "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)
    Mohammed spent thirty days fasting in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

    Accept these five "cleansers" and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

    September 9, 2010 at 1:03 am |
  7. Zari

    yea, i hear ya

    September 9, 2010 at 12:27 am |
  8. Matt in Oregon

    Looks like a clear case of the ham that organized religion can cause. If there is a swell in violence towards our troops then this ridiculous church is indirectly responsible. They are an unfortunate consequence of the 1st amendment.

    September 9, 2010 at 12:21 am |
    • kdc

      why wouldn't it be they guy with the bomb who is responsible? Who is to blame for 9/11 the USA or the guy with the bomb? same thing only at a bigger scale.

      September 9, 2010 at 12:45 am |
  9. Zari

    Would be nice if the president could intervene for the sake of our troops

    September 9, 2010 at 12:17 am |
  10. Zari

    He could be putting the troops in danger. God forbid.

    September 9, 2010 at 12:16 am |
    • Kate


      To be honest, I think at best he doesn't care if our troops get killed because of this, at worst that's something he's hoping for. Remember, the Joneses and Dove support and admire the Westboro Baptist Church when it's gone to desecrate the memory of our fallen heroes, and even participated with them.

      Our troops dying just gives them extra to celebrate.

      There is no way the Joneses don't know what the reaction of Muslims across the world is going to be to this. I think they're counting on it, hoping someone will do something in response so the Joneses can point and say "See? Evil!", omitting that they incited it to begin with.

      Just sayin'

      September 9, 2010 at 12:22 am |
  11. Zari

    I was saying that pastor should think, "What would Jesus do?"

    September 9, 2010 at 12:14 am |
  12. Zari

    That pastor that wants to burn Qurans is NUTS! A pastor is supposed to be about reaching the lost to bring them to Jesus. What would Jesus do?

    September 9, 2010 at 12:00 am |
    • Kate


      Looking at this? Probably quit in disgust and move to a hippy commune in Oregon.

      Just sayin'

      September 9, 2010 at 12:06 am |
    • Matt in Oregon

      No thanks! We have enough already. Tell him to try Cali.

      September 9, 2010 at 12:23 am |
  13. kdc

    Well, here in canada, we do not have the right to burn books or ideas, we are not as blessed as you american. We cannot speak out what we believe if it is proven to be hate driven. Now it is time for the president to call up this guy and tell him do not burn any books. But if he does have that right, then everyone in america should be rallying behind his right to speach and the muslim right to worship. At this moment in time America is appearing weak, because the government will not stand up to any radical group if it endangers US interests or US lives. Where is R Regan, wish he was pres now, he would have the guts to say, we will fight anyone anywhere for freedom, inside and outside the country. All you get from the the military or govt is, don't speak up because the radicals will bomb us, well they won this round and the next will be real, while you are cowarring in the corner hoping they will go away, like scared children in the closet while a burgler trys to break in. Stand up america, for freedom, for when you stand for the greater good, it is easier to die for it. and many people like me will fight for you too.

    September 8, 2010 at 11:37 pm |
  14. DoubleDoggII

    I am not sure what is worse a Christian radical or an Islamic radical. It's a tie. They are both ignorant, and I support neither. Religion is for the weak.

    September 8, 2010 at 10:33 pm |
  15. jean myrner

    Free advertising has been gained for both the Pastor's message and the Sufi's vision-both of their projects are now known worldwide. Emotions are flaring in all directions. We can't ignore either of these men. Will it help them? I think they are both pleased to have attention-problem is many other people are very upset and neither of them seems to care.

    September 8, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
  16. RightTurnClyde

    Decent people do not support a Koran burning or a Bible burning or any kind of spiteful behavior. But Muslims being what Muslims are it will lead to an even more spiteful retaliation (etc.) They do not have even one civilized brain cell in their heads either. So the rest of us have to watch an idiotic play unfold into violence AND the FBI cannot call it a hate crime (as in the case of somebody using the "N-word" or painting a Nazi symbol) (and why is that? Why are only SOME people prohibited from hate crimes? and not others?)

    September 8, 2010 at 7:14 pm |
    • onlykahncan

      so did your dad tell you that or the media? either way, thats the thought of many americans which after watching propaganda media decide that muslims are wanting to force their way on the west etc etc.. if u had 1 brain cell u may realise that rather than muslims, its the american government who want to force their way of thinkin onto the rest of the world.. but it does take at least 1 brain cell. 1 simple question for programmed ppl like u.. SHOW ME 1 MUSLIM WHO U KNOW FITS THE IMAGE OF THE MEDIA (not wat u've heard over n over again in the news bcuz u wont hear good stuff abt any1 except ureselves) JUST 1 MUSLIM WHO YOU PERSONALLY KNOW that knows how to build bombs or wants to force you to his way of thinking... THE REALITY IS.. YOU CAN'T!

      September 9, 2010 at 12:19 am |
    • onlykahncan

      isn't it amazing that ppl like you feel so strongly against muslims without any real evidence.. yet the more you provoke muslims, the faster islam grows and its growing faster in america than it has ever done in the past... WHY? bcuz ppl become curios into know what the muslims actually believe hence buy the quran and try reading it with understanding... and what do you know? everything just makes perfect sense... from members of the clu clux clan to scientists, judges and more than ever, learnered ppl from christianity...just type new muslims in youtube n see for ureself, but why? why? why? what does the quran say abt jesus? abt mary? moses? abraham?

      September 9, 2010 at 12:28 am |
  17. Mark from Middle River

    So the next time south park makes fun of Christians or any other faith except for Islam we can then have the writers of south park arrested?

    Be careful of that hate crime definition because many define hate speech and actions differently.

    September 8, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
    • Kate

      @Mark from Middle River

      The First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech and freedom of association, it's protected (and should be).

      It's when that speech leads to actions that are against the law it becomes an issue.

      Anyone know if sedition is still on the books? That is one of the grey area laws that hits this problem square on – when does protected speech become incitement to criminality?

      We have a bullseye painted on Al-Awlaki's forehead, but he's never directly attacked the US. Instead, his speech has incited others to do so. Another grey area case, even though no-one can deny the man is a traitor to America and by standing with our enemies has declared himself fair game.

      In the case of the Joneses and Dove, I firmly believe that their purpose is to incite Muslims to violence, in order to fan the flames of hate. Does that go from speech to action?

      I sincerely hope that none of my brothers and sisters in arms are harmed as a result of the violence the Joneses will set off, but if they do, I will place the blame directly at the feet of these poor excuses for Americans.

      I hope they realize the hornets nest they're poking – not Muslims, but Americans. If someone dies as a result of this act, then I hope the Joneses are prepared for being blamed for it, and what people will do to these people who join WBC in desecrating the memory of our troops.

      Just prophesyin'

      September 8, 2010 at 8:09 pm |
  18. Pastor inciting violence

    If the Rev. Jones burns the Quran, and in so doing incites violence (or worse), can he be prosecuted for both inciting violence as well as hate crimes?

    Kevin Woodbury

    September 8, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  19. mi.i.siraj

    the man he will burn quran tommorrow .it will realy realy bad.he have no religion respect.he is a sick man.bad people in every religion its not mean u do silly things.inshallah nothing happen tommorrow thats my belive as a muslim

    September 8, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
  20. Cher Jack

    Impress me Pastor go on Iraq soil and burn the Quran... Let's see how much of a statement that will make. I will personally raise the funds to send you to Iraq.

    September 8, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.