American Christians were told to pray for the safety and release of Pastor Brunson from a Turkish prison after being persecuted for being a Christian as the reports said. In a recent interview, Pastor Brunson has exposed himself as a lobbyist for the Ottoman war machine, claiming now that God is going to use Turkish tyrant Erdogan to “bless” Turkey, and that Erdogan’s personal enemy Fethiullah Gülen, who is elderly and sought refuge in the US, needs to be stripped of his legal status and sent to Turkey to be tortured to death:
Freed U.S. pastor Andrew Brunson has sided with Turkey in its request to have controversial Islamic cleric Fetullah Gülen, who resides in Pennsylvania, to be extradited.
“If it was up to me, send him to Turkey,” Brunson told the Hürriyet newspaper on Monday.
Brunson was imprisoned for two years in Turkey on terrorism charges, before finally being released in October. The pastor and his wife had served a Protestant congregation in Izmir for nearly 25 years before the arrest.
Brunson denied charges throughout his trial that he assisted anti-government groups behind a failed coup in the summer of 2016 in Turkey, and insisted he was being punished for his faith in Jesus Christ.
Gülen, the Islamic cleric in question, has been protected by the U.S. government since 1990. He has been being accused by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of staging the failed coup, a charge that he denies.
Erdogan had pressed the U.S. to extradite Gülen during discussions over the potential release of Brunson.
President Donald Trump refused to hand over the cleric, however, and punished Turkey with economic sanctions.
Brunson conveyed a message with the Hürriyet he received by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham while in prison, informing him that the U.S. does not plan on handing over Gülen.
“We want to get you back to America, but we have to go the right way. No barter for you. If we do something like this, it would be a bad precedent and Americans around the world would be at risk. Any regime can refer to this method to get us done,” Brunson quoted Graham as saying.
The question of Gülen’s extradition continues to be debated. Some, such as New York pastor William Devlin of Infinity Bible Church, who attended Brunson’s court hearings in Izmir, have argued that the U.S. should hand him over to Turkey.
“The Gülen Movement or ‘Hizmet’ (its Turkish name) is connected to two organizations that the U.S. government has deemed as terrorist organizations: the PKK or Kurdistan Workers Party and its Syrian affiliate, the YPG or The People’s Defense Unit. Both of these organizations are driven by Marxist ideology and, along with the Gülen Movement, have been involved with kidnappings, murders and narcotics trafficking,” Devlin wrote in an op-ed for The Christian Post earlier this year.
“Gülen, one of Turkey’s most wanted criminals, is currently facing multiple charges in his native Turkey including treason-and Turkey has submitted an extradition request to the U.S. government,” he added, positioning that the U.S. should agree to the request.
American Center for Law and Justice Senior Counsel CeCe Heil told CP in an interview back in July that the U.S. has extradition laws in place, however.
“I think the State Department has been very clear with Turkey that if they want Gülen to be extradited, then they need to provide evidence to support that. So that’s really a matter between the State Department and Turkey,” she said.
Heil further warned that had Brunson been released in exchange of Gülen, then that would make “every U.S. citizen traveling abroad a target. Countries start to think, ‘all we need to do is just nab one of these citizens, and we can trade for what we want.’ Basically [it would create] political hostages, just like what pastor Brunson has become.”
Despite all he has been through, Brunson said he is not regretful of his time in Turkey.
“To me, God will use my pain in favor of Turkey, [and] for Turkey’s blessing. I want God [to] use President Erdoğan. He is Turkey’s leader, even if some like him or not,” he said, adding that he hopes God will “use him to bless Turkey, bring wisdom and justice.” (source)
Ted warned that Pastor Brunson did not appear to be a “persecuted Christian,” but rather a possible American agent working to help the US revive the Ottoman war machine as part of its long-standing plans going back to the anti-Russian plans following World War II. The result of the “conflict,” which has now been resolved, was a continuation and deepening of US-Turkish relations while giving the appearance of a conflict for political reasons. As Ted wrote:
So, what is happening is exactly what we said will happen regarding Brunson in light of America’s foreign policy in Syria in collaboration with Turkey. Brunson’s imprisonment provided a way for the Americans to appear as though they are not completely on the side of Turkey in its expansion into Syria. The US, supposedly, imposed sanctions on Turkey to look ‘tough’ for the American people. With Brunson’s release, the US can now appear that they got justice and not have the appearance that they are fully in cahoots with Turkey in supporting its military presence in Syria. (source)
President Erdogan sees Gülen as a threat along with his followers, and wants him turned over to Turkey so he can put him to death in the tradition of a true oriental despot. A similar case happened with Erdogan in 2016 over German comedian Jan Bohmermann, who played the song “Erdowie, Erdowo, Erdowahn” (Erdo-who, Erdo-what, Erdo-crazy) on television. While Erdogan can say what he wants, the danger of his request to the US is that if Trump, who has already shown an open distain for the judicial process and who has praised Erdogan, could threaten the immigration system itself for those becoming citizens and even native-born citizens:
If America were to extradite a man who has gained permanent residence status on the basis of Erdogan’s baseless claims, it would automatically set a precident all over the world, that anybody who Erdogan demands arrested and is originally of Turkish citizenship can and should be deported to him. This would strike fear into Turkish people of good will who do not like Erdogan all over the world.
Likewise, if this deportation was to take place, it certainly would not stop Erdogan, but only would embolden him, except this time to ask for actual citizens of non-Turkish background who have in some way “violated” Turkish laws to be extradited to Turkey. I am not saying the USA would do this in such a situation at the current moment, but if Erdogan knows that he can get a person who is for all intensive purposes a citizen extradited on the basis of his will, why not try for an actual citizen who is not Turkish?
This is fundamentally a power play in which Turkey is trying to assert herself on a global scale in the same manner as the USA. When the USA “demands” that someone is extradited, almost always other nations comply. Turkey is attempting to do for their context what the USA has done for decades, and if there are plenty of cases of questionable or politically motivated charges when the USA does this, one can be assured that Turkey will be far less noble in their intentions and much harsher in their intended punishments. (source)
As Ted noted above, the Pastor Brunson case was a show before the world to allow for joint US-Turkish collaboration while appearing to be enemies in the same game that Germany has played for centuries with Turkey and prior to that, the Byzantine Empire.
It is curious that Pastor Brunson, who was hailed as a “champion” of “religious liberty” and “freedom of expression”, and who was supposedly “imprisoned” for it, would now go out and lobby to have a man of a political-religious sect who sought refuge in America to be thrown in prison because of his beliefs and who without question will be put to death for it if he is sent back to Turkey.
The hypocrisy is sickening. This would be equivalent to St. Paul being released from prison just to turn to Caesar and say “Put this senator in prison, Caesar!”
Where it the Christian charity? Where is the care for the objective humanity of another man, who in the case of Gülen is old and sick and already near death?
It is the same place that one will find to verity Pastor Brunson’s family history and past associations outside of his own words or those of his immediate family, which is that it is hardly present if it is even present at all.
As I pointed out before, the issue with deporting Gülen extends also the the situation of US rights for citizens as well as for migrants regardless of country. If Gülen is deported in spite of his legal status, or if his legal status is stripped without strictly following the legal process- for example, by the direct order of President Trump -then it is a direct attack against the legal system’s integrity. Twice already in the past month has President Trump attacked the judicial system for making rulings that were against his favor, and they were so serious that Chief Justice Roberts, while he has many issues, criticized Trump publicly for attacking the integrity of the Judiciary and the separation of powers that define the relationship between the branches of government.
If Trump were to have his way, no immigrant who gets legal status, even naturalized citizenship, would be safe in the even of a demand from a zealous government to have him extradited. Even native-born citizens could find themselves being summoned and send overseas for “crimes” of another country, effectively subjugating themselves under a foreign law enforced by the legal system they live under because there would be a precedent set establishing the principle of extradition using the immigrant/asylum seekers as justification.
This is a major reason why it is important to give criticism of migrants balanced by mercy and justice, for while migrants do have many issues depending on their situation and problems can and do happen, their treatment is a test of structural integrity for the laws of a nation as well as a way to monitor the future development of said laws. The outright hatred of migrants being expressed today in the Western World, while much of it is understandable, has been directly encouraged by the government allowing and subsidizing and over-reporting on deviant behavior among them in order to generated hatred for political ends. That same hatred directed at the migrants does not disappear, and as it frequently is, will be redirected to the citizens of the nations of the western world to destroy not “migrants,” but native-born, internal enemies or rivals with violence. Thus those who were encouraged towards violence will eventually have the violence turned against them, as that is the final goal.
Brunson’s comments on God using Erdogan to “bless Turkey” and bring “justice” are a sick joke. If anything, Erdogan has embraced and continues to embrace the spirit of antichrist through his promotion of anti-Christian activity, his open desire to revive the Ottoman Imperial past, his despotic behavior, and his calls for pan-Turkic nationalism mixed with Islamic Sufism and the spirit of pan-Turanism. If there is any spirit that Erdogan wants to revive it is not that of the God of the Bible, but of the demonic Allah and Mohammed to march out across the Middle East and world to spread the Mohammedan heresy of Aryanism and wage war against what Christ came to save.
Brunson is a lobbyist, but what he is lobbying for is not the cause of Christ or the good will of one’s fellow man, but for the American military-industrial complex and her Turkish ally, and he certainly does not seem to mind if Gülen should die or the legal process which protects migrants, refugees, and native-born citizens is destroyed so long as the objectives set in place following World War II for the absolute expansion of power at all cost with respect to one continue without obstruction.