Hanoi Jane At It Again

Jane Fonda, better known to my generation as “Hanoi Jane”, has now been chosen to play Nancy Reagan in Mrs. Reagan’s life story and to put icing on the cake, Hanoi Jane is promoting her new book about how it feels for her to be in her 70’s. Honoi Jane has no remorse about her treason during the Viet Nam era.
Hanoi Jane today
…Barbara Walters said:  Many died in Vietnam for our freedoms. I did not like Jane Fonda then and I don’t like her now. She can lead her present life the way she wants and perhaps SHE can forget the past, but we DO NOT have to stand by without comment and see her “honored” as a “Woman of the Century.”
Hanoi Jane
Think of the many who served in Viet Nam and of all the families that suffer from losing someone in that war. The parents of those who were killed in action are mostly gone but the spouses, sibling and relatives remain. Jane Fonda was and is a traitor and now OBAMA wants to honor her! She caused the death and suffering of many American service men: she does not need to be honored. Men like LT. C. Thomsen Wieland who spent 100 days in the Hanoi Hilton [Prison camp where our men were tortured].BARBARA WALTERS WRITES: Unfortunately, many have forgotten and still countless others have never known how Ms. Fonda betrayed not only the idea of our country, but specific men who served and sacrificed during the Vietnam War.The first part of this is from an F-4E pilot. The pilot’s name is Jerry Driscoll, a River Rat.
In 1968, the former Commandant of the USAF Survival School was a POW in Ho Lo Prison the ‘ Hanoi Hilton.’ Dragged from a stinking cesspit of a cell, cleaned, fed, and dressed in clean PJ’s, he was ordered to describe for a visiting American ‘Peace Activist’ the ‘lenient and humane treatment’ he’d received. He spat at Ms. Fonda and was then clubbed, and was dragged away. During the subsequent beating, he fell forward on to the camp Commandant ‘s feet, which sent that officer berserk.
Hanoi Jane in gunIn 1978, the Air Force Colonel still suffered from double vision (which permanently ended his flying career) from the Commandant’s frenzied application of a wooden baton.

From 1963-65, Col. Larry Carrigan was in the 47FW/DO (F-4Es). He spent 6 years in the ‘ Hanoi Hilton’…the first three of which his family only knew he was ‘missing in action’. His wife lived on faith that he was still alive. His group, too, got the cleaned-up, fed and clothed routine in preparation for a ‘peace delegation’ visit.

They, however, had time and devised a plan to get word to the world that they were alive and still survived. Each man secreted a tiny piece of paper, with his Social Security Number on it, in the palm of his hand. When paraded before Ms. Fonda and a cameraman, she walked the line, shaking each man’s hand and asking little encouraging snippets like:

‘Aren’t you sorry you bombed babies?’ and ‘Are you grateful for the humane treatment from your benevolent captors?’ Believing this HAD to be an act, they each palmed her their a sliver of paper. She took them all without missing a beat… At the end of the line and once the camera stopped rolling, to the shocked disbelief of the POWs, she turned to the officer in charge and handed him all the little pieces of paper… Three men died from the subsequent beatings.
Colonel Carrigan was almost number four but he survived, which is the only reason we know of her actions that day. I was a civilian economic development advisor in Vietnam , and was captured by the North Vietnamese communists in South Vietnam in 1968, and held prisoner for over 5 years. I spent 27 months in solitary confinement; one year in a cage in Cambodia; and one year in a ‘black box’ in Hanoi . My North Vietnamese captors deliberately poisoned and murdered a female missionary, a nurse in a leprosarium in Banme Thuot , South Vietnam , whom I buried in the jungle near the Cambodian border. At one time, I weighed only about 90 lbs. (My normal weight is 170 lbs.)We were Jane Fonda’s ‘war criminals….’ When Jane Fonda was in Hanoi , I was asked by the camp communist political officer if I would be willing to meet with her. I said yes, for I wanted to tell her about the real treatment we POWs received… and how different it was from the treatment purported by the North Vietnamese, and parroted by her as ‘humane and lenient.’ Because of this, I spent three days on a rocky floor on my knees, with my arms outstretched with a large steel weight placed on my hands, and beaten with a bamboo cane.I had the opportunity to meet with Jane Fonda soon after I was released. I asked her if she would be willing to debate me on TV.  She never answered me.These first-hand experiences do not exemplify someone who should be honored as part of ‘100 Years of Great Women.’ Lest we forget….’100 Years of Great Women’ should never include a traitor whose hands are covered with the blood of so many patriots.

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No One Practices What They Preach

If I practiced all that I preach, I would not preach much. My subject matter in the pulpit is the Word of the Living God. This Word is perfect but I the messenger am not. Am I to bring the word down to my level of practice or am I to preach the inspired and inerrant word of God. Jesus was the one and only preacher/teacher who had perfect integrity. I admit that Job and Joseph are closer than most but none of us are perfectly integrated. We all have a crack in the armour somewhere. We are never to allow what’s wrong with us to keep us from telling others about what is right with Jesus.

Some of you will not like my example but since I am convinced beyond a doubt that I am right, I am going to use it anyway. Paul was the most zealous Christian in the history of the church in my opinion but he was not perfect. I read Acts 21 this morning and every time I read this passage, the same questions come to mind. Why was he so determined to go to Jerusalem when none of his friends wanted him to go and no one in Jerusalem wanted him to come? Why did he hurry his mission work in Asia to get to Jerusalem for Pentecost? Did he not tell the Galatians that these Jewish feast days were fulfilled in Christ and that they no longer had merit. Is this the same Paul who calls Peter out at Antioch for trying to appease or placate a group of Jews from Jerusalem? In Acts 21 Paul is guilty of the same sin that he laid at Peter’s feet. The Holy Spirit speaking through Agabas the prophet warned Paul not to go. Everyone on his mission team begged him not to go. He was the team leader and very important to their mission effort. They needed Paul’s leadership. Jerusalem neither needed it or wanted it.

So instead of keeping his mission team in tact and spreading the gospel to the world, Paul pulls away to fulfill a personal goal of placating the leaders of the Jerusalem church. He is going to deliver to them in person an offering taken from the Gentile churches for the poor in Jerusalem. Anyone could deliver the offering. Jerusalem wanted the money and probably needed the money but it did not matter who made the delivery. Any person could do this simple task but Paul would not listen to reason. He insisted on doing it himself against the advice of everyone on his team. Who is right and who is wrong. His team was right and Paul was wrong. They were thinking of the team and the mission; Paul was thinking about placating the Jewish Church leaders.

The general rule of thumb is do not kiss up to people who don’t like you. We cannot make people like us. It is their choice to like or dislike who we are and we have no power to change the way they think. I am sure that Paul was hurt but going to Jerusalem made everything worse. I know he wanted to be loved, appreciated and accepted by James and the Elders at Jerusalem but it did not happen. They listened briefly to his mission report and then immediately changed the subject. They cut right to the chase and told Paul that he had a bad reputation among the Jews and that he needed to demonstrate his loyalty to their customs. They not only ask him to go to the temple and make a vow but they ask him to pay for five others. There would be no sin in Paul going to the Temple to worship Yahweh but to go as a Jew under the old covenant was idolatry. Paul was a Christian, not a Jew. He had preached to others to let go of the old and embrace the new and now he does the very thing that he has preached to others not to do. Jesus has fulfilled the law and all the Jewish feast days. There is no need for sacrifices, vows, and the celebration of feast days. You would think that the Paul we know would violently react to James and the Elders and say, “There is no way that I am going to the Temple as a practicing Jew; this violated everything I preach and stand for and I will not compromise my integrity.” That is what we wish he had said but that is not what he said.

What is the problem? We do not think of Paul as being weak or lacking in boldness, so what gives? This is 100% conjecture but I think Paul was hurt. I think he was a little man with a big chip on his shoulder. I believe that he desperately wanted to be considered one of the insiders. I think he wanted to be included in the fellowship of the Jerusalem Elders. He is like the guy in the movies that has a woman madly in love with him but he doesn’t want her, he wants the woman who will not give him the time of day. We always want what we cannot have for some strange reason. This avid desire to be accepted by the Jerusalem in crowd was Paul’s weakness. He wanted their acceptance so bad that it blinded him to reality. He did not accomplish one thing in Jerusalem. All he did was get arrested and his mission work was basically over.

Now for the rest of the story: not only does James and the Elders hang Paul up for failure, they leave him out to dry. Paul does nothing wrong yet he is arrested and accused. There is no record of James or anyone from the church coming to his defense. There is no record of prayer meeting such as they had for Peter when he was in jail in Jerusalem. What is going on here? Paul had the reputation as a trouble maker and stink stirrer and they just backed off and remained uninvolved. Can I prove that they were disloyal to the Apostle? Can you prove that they were not? If they tried to help, why didn’t Luke mention it.

I don’t think Paul was driven by vain glory. I don’t think he went to get credit for the offering. I do think he wanted to be loved, appreciated and accepted by the church in Jerusalem and I do think that his subconscious guilt caused him to have a kind of death wish. Paul had so much grief about his past sins that I think he wanted to be a martyr. I think he was well aware of the danger in going to Jerusalem but that did not matter to him. If he died there by the hands of the Jews and the Gentiles, he would glory in that death. Like Christ he was betrayed by his own people the Jews and turned over to the Gentiles.

Was it God’s will for him to go to Jerusalem? I don’t think so. The Holy Spirit said no and I don’t think there is a division in the Godhead. The thing that keeps this story from ending badly is Romans 8:28, And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. God took a bad situation and transformed it into something good. Paul got an all expense paid trip to Rome which was the center of the known world. Paul’s incarceration gave him an opportunity to witness to judges, kings, guards and soldiers. While in Rome a guard was handcuffed to him for a full shift. You know that every one of them got a full dose of the gospel. I sure you are thinking that if going to Jerusalem was a mistake, Paul would have mentioned it. How well do you know Paul? How many times have you read the N.T.? Paul was a type-A, heavenly driven personality: in his mind, he did not make mistakes, others did.  Did he ever apologize to Barnabus, Peter, John Mark or anyone else? It is easy to be too proud to admit that we made a mistake. Personally, I am not shocked that Paul never brings the subject up.

What are the morals of the story? [1] Don’t spend your life trying to please folks who don’t like you. Play to the audience of ONE, Jesus. Don’t worry about what folks think. What they think will have no weight in judgment. [2] We must stay focused on the mission which is to get the gospel to the world. We cannot afford to be distracted. [3] No servant of God is perfect: we all have our weak moments. I wish this was not true but it is true. David had his, Peter had his, I have had mine and Paul is no exception, he had moments of weakness also.  He was close to Jesus but he was not perfect. Twenty-five years ago, it put a ton of guilt on me when some self-righteous, fault-finding hypocrite would infer that I nor other preachers practice what we preach. Now I laugh in their face and tell them they are right. If gives me the opportunity to tell the what is right about my Savior. I am not going let what is wrong with me keep me from telling folks about what is right with Jesus.