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US Military Weapons Inscribed With Secret Bible Codes 93

Posted by samzenpus
from the what-would-Jesus-shoot dept.
Trijicon, a Michigan company that makes high-powered rifle sights for the military, has come under fire for inscribing coded references to New Testament Bible passages about Jesus Christ on their products. The sights contain references to Second Corinthians 4:6, "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" and John 8:12, "Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." The company has acknowledged that it adds the biblical codes to the sights sold to the US military, but says there is nothing wrong or illegal about adding them. Spokespeople for the US Army and the Marine Corps both say that they were unaware of the biblical markings, and are discussing what steps, if any, to take. I personally think this is ridiculous. Everyone knows that Jesus was such a good shot he never used sights.

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US Military Weapons Inscribed With Secret Bible Codes

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  • Way to just go out and hand a propaganda victory to every two-bit "zOMG the Americans are Crusaders!" holy warrior in the whole bloody sand trap.

    Also, I'm guessing that we won't be seeing any "Matthew 26:54" gunsights...
  • by Phrogman (80473) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @03:49PM (#30823508) Homepage

    By reinforcing the notion that the US and other NATO forces engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan are in fact "Crusaders" there to forcibly convert people to Christianity. There have been a few comments of a religious nature from US commanders in the past that probably helped reinforce the other sides propaganda efforts but this goes a step further. What more proof that we are engaged in fighting "Islam" the religion (and not Islamist terrorists) do you need to give to Al Qaida propagandists? What about the Muslim (or any other non-Christian religion) members of the US/NATO forces who suddenly discover they have been using a weapon with a religious quote that they might find personally find offensive?

    You will never win the hearts and minds of a population by making them think you are there to completely uproot their lives, starting with telling them their religion is wrong, and that getting your help is conditional on them converting to your religion. What you will do is help create even more opposition to your presence.

    I think the directors of this company should be fined the entire cost of the items sold to the military so far, from their own personal pocketbooks. What a hairbrained assinine and offensive stupid thing to do. I hope they pay for it.

    • what is their religion really IS wrong? Getting our help IS conditional, not necessarily on converting, but certainly on ignoring some of the more violent tenants of their religion.

      • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Their religion is no more violent than Christianity. Assholes pervert it as an excuse to advance their own agendas, just as Christian assholes pervert Christianity as an excuse to hate gay people.

      • what [if] their religion really IS wrong?

        We would like to take this moment to point out to all viewers that Islam, Judaism, and Christianity all worship the same 1 higher being. They have, in the past, lived in peace with each other.

        If it were not for the Israelis and Palestinians fighting over a piece of land, there would be very little war today that would even involve religion as an anecdote. The States picked a side in a religious conflict thousands of miles away, and ever since then any of their actions have been percieved as religious in nat

        • Honestly, I was going for the "arrogant atheist" tone rather than the "self-righteous christian" one.

          • The point remains that it is not their religion that is driving them towards these acts, its terrorists who want to attack the states, using Religion as a way to do so.

            Bin Laden and his crew were spreading the rumour that the US is over there to crush the Muslim religion and occupy the country. We over here have been told its a hunt for insurgents. The views vary greatly depending on who you ask. It unified a lot of the people against the US Military.

            Which is why over here we get this impression that it is

    • Who fucking cares? *Ring-Ring* Hi it's 2010 calling, the US is a Christian country. Yes you have the freedom of religion, but failing to recognize the fact that we are a Christian country gives you a fake and made up reason to be upset. Instead, you should simply ignore it, or be grateful for it.

      Also, I notice you seem to be intentionally avoiding mentioning the fact that many of the terrorists and/or people we are at war with are fighting a jihad [wikipedia.org] against the US. I'm not exactly sure if it's factually c

      • I'm sorry, but I just have to reply again. I'm not sure which bothers me more, the tone of your post or your +4 Insightful mod.

        The type of rhetoric you are engaging in is entirely designed by the terrorists. If you were the spokesperson for the US, I'd say the terrorists had won. What you never do when fighting terrorists, is alter your behavior based on their threats. Here you are preaching about how "if we were just a little bit less evil, they would all love us like the truly peaceful religious group the

  • Typical (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) <obsessivemathsfreak AT eircom DOT net> on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @03:55PM (#30823586) Homepage Journal

    Most hardcore religious types typically seek to impose their beliefs on everyone else. If they can't do it overtly, they'll adopt this kind of passive aggressive nonsense to get their way. Telling of their convictions is the fact that while they say they've done nothing wrong, they never bothered to tell the army exactly what they were getting.

    The rifles should all be refunded. They've essentially all got graffiti on them.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      moron!!!! it is only the sights. not the entire rifle. a small part of the gun that is sold seperately.

    • by clarkn0va (807617)

      Most hardcore religious types typically seek to impose their beliefs on everyone else.

      Citation needed. Seriously, if it offends you to learn that somebody put a nearly-invisible bible reference on a rifle sight, I would love to see your reaction when you find out that American currency has "In God we trust" stamped on it.

      And now this from the BBC article:

      "Everyone is worried that if they were captured in combat that the enemy would use the Bible quotes against them in captivity or some other form of propaganda."

      That's just retarded. Now I'm sitting here trying to imagine how the enemy is going to use a scripture reference on my rifle sight against me. Please, help me out here.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Actually, this should be an issue with the religious authorities. When you think about it, it is just pure blasphemy to put references to Jesus on a weapon. It always strikes me as strange, that the people who claim to be the most religious seem always to stray the furthest from the teachings of the faith they claim to practice. Jesus and references to him do not belong on a weapon. There is definitely no turning the other cheek there, or "not doing onto others" what you wouldn't want done to you. No "

        • by clarkn0va (807617)

          Jesus and references to him do not belong on a weapon.

          You mean like a cross?

          Yes, I'm a Christian, and yes, I pretty much agree with you that it seems like a silly thing to do, but reactions like the GGP are just stunning.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by vlm (69642)

          When you think about it, it is just pure blasphemy to put references to Jesus on a weapon.

          Theres a long enough history of it... St Constantine did it in AD 312.

          "According to Lactantius, Constantine was visited by a dream the night before the battle, wherein he was advised "to mark the heavenly sign of God on the shields of his soldiers...by means of a slanted letter X with the top of its head bent round, he marked Christ on their shields.""

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constantine_the_Great [wikipedia.org]

          It's all about imposing your faith on others, which also runs contrary to the basic tenets of said faith.

          Sounds like you're new to this whole "religion" thing.

      • I've seen lots of 'citation needed' posts, but this is the first I've seen that goes on to provide one in the next sentence.

      • by g0bshiTe (596213)
        What I would love to know is how many of those "captured" rifles have been used by the enemy.

        I mean how stunned would they be to learn that was on the weapon?
    • They've essentially all got graffiti on them.

      They have part numbers on them (which end in a reference to bible verses). It's up the manufacturer to come up with part numbers. There's no graffiti or anything like it. Looking at the part number, I couldn't figure out what the big deal was until someone literally pointed at the offensive portion.

  • At least the manufacturer isn't inscribing "JN3:16" or "MAT6:27-31".
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      At least the manufacturer isn't inscribing "JN3:16"...

      Actually, that is how they are inscribing the verses. Only there is no colon, so JN316. And they put a bunch more alphanumerics in front of it, so AB123456JN316. And they call it a part number, and the whole string can be used to identify the part.

      A company wants to end all its part numbers in a veiled reference to New Testiment verses? What's the big deal.

      • Only there is no colon, so JN316.

        For someone named "Actually, I do RTFA", you've done a bang up job here.
        From TFA, where you can actually see the evidence in the picture:

        At the end of the serial number on Trijicon's ACOG gun sight, you can read "JN8:12"

        • I've seen several pictures. The one's I saw outside the article either did not have colons or I didn't notice the colons.

          Same poitn applies though, sorry for getting the details slightly flawed. The part number is "alphanumerics plus a colon". Consider this an erratum.

      • A company wants to end all its part numbers in a veiled reference to New Testiment verses? What's the big deal.

        None to me, since I'm Jewish. But if I were a Christian, I'd be plenty upset. The whole thrust of the New Testament is about the Prince of Peace, and someone's associating it with weapons? It wasn't the church vs. state issue some made it out to be, it was a question of profaning the holy.

    • I think you mean Luke 6:27-31
  • Now, if I could only get them to inscribe 1 Timothy 5:23 on my wine bottles. ("Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities.") I believe my father had this quote on the front of his wine log.
  • BBC Article Link (Score:5, Informative)

    by Phrogman (80473) on Tuesday January 19, 2010 @09:16PM (#30827204) Homepage

    Here:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8468981.stm [bbc.co.uk]

    Seems the issue came up when some muslim members of the forces complained and asked why these inscriptions were there. Article has some good comments.

    Why is this in Idle btw? Its not all that geeky but its not trivially unimportant either.

  • The manufacturer put abbreviated Scripture references on its parts. So what? If you didn't know anything about the Bible, it could easily be seen as just another part number. They're not forcing anyone to read the Bible or look up the Scripture reference. If a manufacturer wanted to put HHGTTG42 or THX1138 on parts or some other geeky reference, people would think it's cool. It's just as cryptic to anyone without "inside knowledge", but since it's a Bible reference, everyone gets their undergarments in
    • Maybe before they knew about it, it wasn't, but it sure as hell is now:

      "I'm not a Nazi, my buddies had that tattooed on me while I was drunk and I decided to just leave it there."

      Uh huh...

  • Is this CEO of this company Roboute Guilliman of the Adeptus Astartes?
  • by CBob (722532)

    Just wait till they find out that "Have a Nice Day" is inscribed around the muzzles of some .50 caliber rifles. (another not joking, sorry)

  • The Muslim and Hindu soldiers of the British Raj rose up in mutiny [wikipedia.org] because lard was used to lubricate the cartridges. Pig fat is haram for Muslims. All animal fats were haram for Hindus.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Hognoxious (631665)

      Haraam does not apply to Hindus. It is an Islamic concept.

      And while vegetarianism is considered a good thing among Hindus, eating meat is not expressly forbidden. Cows represent motherhood so beef is generally off the menu.

      That still leaves lamb and chicken.

      Oh man, I totally want a saag gosht now.

  • Do they produce grenades (hand), holy, Antiochish, blowing thine enemies to bits in Thy mercy for the purpose of?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOrgLj9lOwk [youtube.com]

  • by cfalcon (779563)

    This is *really* stretching for a church/state link. The manufacturers are clearly believers, and they put references to their beliefs in their products. The references aren't even intolerant or violent ones.

    Anyone crying about this is just keeping in practice at crying about stuff.

    Sure, it's silly. But it's just free expression. You can't tell me with a straight face that this is coercive.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      It is free expression on Trijicon's part, but whether the US military should be purchasing rifles inscripted with references to Bible verses is another issue entirely.
    • by iamhassi (659463)
      "This is *really* stretching for a church/state link."

      Agreed. It's not forcing a religion on anyone. I really don't understand this quote from the article:
      ""It's wrong, it violates the Constitution, it violates a number of federal laws," said Michael "Mikey" Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, an advocacy group that seeks to preserve the separation of church and state in the military....."This is probably the best example of violation of the separation of church and state in this c
  • Their motivation (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kwiqsilver (585008) on Wednesday January 20, 2010 @07:51PM (#30840034)

    For the most part, Trijicon sells "night sights": tritium lit, light amplification, etc. Given that, their choices of quotes (about shining light) seem apropos. If it had been a Shakespeare quote about light, would anybody be complaining? Before crying about religious oppression, realize that the Bible is a work of literature. Quotes from it are not necessarily for religious purposes.

    If you really want to get upset about something military related, might I suggest the expense of trillions of borrowed dollars to kill unthreatening foreigners and police the world?

    I have Trijicon tritium sights on most of my pistols, and a Trijicon ACOG on one of my AR-15s. I've never noticed the quotes (I'll look tonight), but they haven't subliminally converted me to Christianity yet. The only people who really have any justification to complain would be the customers, and most gun owners I know (Christian or not) wouldn't care.

    • Good luck finding the quotes. It's not in text, but rather the end of the part number. That is, ________JN316 as a part number (I don't know if that was a real verse, but it is the convention

  • People need to lighten up.

    If the quotes were instead from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe, perhaps something pithy like "Mostly Harmless", we'd be applauding their sense of irony. Instead they were from another book, just one arguably more well-read.

    The issue here is that these sorts of things will be taken as evidence of some sort of religious crusade. But Muslims around the world already have more than enough justification to be pissed off, this is just another drop in the bucket. And even if th

  • by jockeys (753885)
    Trijicon does NOT make rifles, they make illuminated sights and illuminated 'scopes. (all of their products are luminous, hence the choice of verses, I imagine.) anyhow, they have not marked any rifles. RTFA
  • "Thou Shalt Not Kill" would be by far more appropriate. But then, they would not produce those arms anyway, would they?
    It seems to pay to be a hypocrite.
  • How about "Kill em all, let ME sort them out" written in red?
  • a.k.a. Ezekiel 25:17.
  • People complaining about this being unconstitutional are blowing smoke. Find something from the text of the constitution that says a business cannot put references to a passage of a book on their products. If the complaint only exists because this product is being used by the government, then go complain to the government for buying that product instead of a different one. Don't put all the heat on the company when the government is the one that chose to spend money on it. And anyone who says this infrin

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