All Badly Needed Christianity, Repentance, Accurate Analysis
By Al Cronkrite The Covenant News ~ August 8, 2007
Alexandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn is eighty eight years old and is living in a Moscow suburb. Recently, Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, visited him and gave him an award. (See a picture here) He had previously turned down several attempts to crown him with honor because the source was tainted. When in 1990, Gorbachev attempted to give him an award for the “Gulag Archipelago” he said, “I declined the proposal, since I could not accept an award for a book written in the blood of millions.” Later, in 1998, Yeltsin attempted to give him a citation from the Russian Government. He claimed he was “unable to receive an award from a government that had led Russia into such dire straits.”
The award Putin offered was accepted on the basis that it did not come from Putin or the government but from the Council on Science and the Council on Culture - people whom Solzhenitsyn apparently respects.
Solzhenitsyn is of particular interest to me because there are few individuals of his stature living today that possess the kind of integrity that produces such candor. He is willing to confront the powerful and the arrogant with blunt truth without regard for his own reputation or welfare.
With a sharp and capable mind he is still writing and interviewing and recently stated that “the perception of the West as mostly a ‘knight of democracy’ has been replaced with the disappointed belief that pragmatism, often cynical and selfish, lies at the core of Western policies. For many Russians it was a grave disillusion, a crushing of ideals“.
In the magazine Chronicles, Dr. Srdja Trifkovic writes, “At first, the United States tried to appease and accommodate the Soviets (1943-46), then moved to containment in 1947, and spent the next four decades building and maintaining essentially defensive mechanisms - such at NATO - designed to prevent any major change in the global balance. By the late 70’s the system appeared to be faltering, especially in the third world.”
Trifkovic goes on describing the unrealistic United States approach to the Soviet Union and the duplicity that has marred the relationship. President George H. W. Bush promised Mikhail Gorbachev when he agreed to German reunification that NATO would not be expanded eastward. A few years later President Bill Clinton expanded NATO to include the former Warsaw Pact countries of Central Europe. This NATO creep has continued in the George W. Bush Administration with the addition of three former Soviet Baltic republics. Bush II is also giving military assistance to Georgia and the Ukraine who aspire to NATO membership.
According to Trifkovic, Moscow has gotten the message and taking steps to parry United States policies by signing a new gas alliance with producers in Central Asia, testing a new nuclear missile, and developing new oil fields in the Arctic. After predicting future prices of $10 a gallon for gas at the pump, he quotes former Reagan Administration official Anthony Salvia, ”Sooner or later, US foreign policy will collide with reality - it may already have done so in Iraq - and Washington, shorn of its ideological blinkers, will finally embrace the foreign policy imperative of the 21st century: Solidarity and strategic cooperation between the United States, Europe, and Russia on the basis of their shared Christian moral, intellectual, and cultural traditions. This is the way forward in the face of profound challenges from a rising China and resurgent Islam.”
Solzhenitsyn describes Gorbachev’s regime as being “amazingly politically naïve, inexperienced and irresponsible towards the country” and says it engaged in a “thoughtless renunciation of power”. He credits him for restoring freedom of speech and movement to the Russian people but little else.
Yeltsin, he says, to the applause of the United States, privatized and separated the Russian state neutering its historical quest for international prominence. Granting Putin forbearance, Solzhenitsyn believes he is trying to restore Russian greatness and understands this will not be done with Western cooperation.
Solzhenitsyn’s love for Russia has allowed him in his advancing years to become more patient with her foibles. He has called on Russian leaders to repent for the millions of victims of the Gulag and government terror but has given up on the ability of current world political leaders to allow humility to overcome arrogance. He says, “We should clearly understand that only the voluntary and conscientious acceptance by a people of its guilt can ensure the healing of a nation.”
United States may be a piker in the category of national murder but it has ample reason to heed the call to repent. The senseless killing of 45 million babies stains the nation and each of the individual participants. Abortion by itself cries out for sack cloth and ashes but there is much more. We slaughtered hundreds of thousands of Indians when our nation was young and as it grew older some of the same soldiers responsible for the slaughter of the Indians repeated the offense by killing of over 200 thousand Philippine men, women, and children in an effort to subdue that nation. We killed similar numbers of innocents in Dresden and at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The conquest of Iraq has involved the same disregard for innocent lives. Some half a million children died as a result of our embargo and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians have been killed by our bombs throughout the conflict. It is not only the acts themselves that offend God but the arrogant spirit that continues to allow their justification.
There have been calls for national prayer but the national repentance Solzhenitsyn is calling for seems to have evaded public discourse.
You may remember the prayer Pastor Joe Wright read before the Kansas House in January, 1996. Expecting the usual platitudes the startled members heard this:
“Heavenly Father, We come before You today to ask Your Forgiveness and seek Your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, ''Woe to those who call evil good,'' but that's exactly what we have done. We have lost our Spiritual equilibrium and inverted our values. We confess that; We have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it pluralism; We have worshipped other gods and called it multiculturalism; We have endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle; We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery; We have neglected the needy and called it self preservation; We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare; We have killed our unborn and called it choice; We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable; We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem; We have abused power and called it political savvy; We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition; We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression; We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. Search us, O God, and know our hearts today; try us and see if there be some wicked way in us; cleanse us from every sin and set us free. Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent here by the people of this state and who have been ordained by You, to govern this great state of Kansas. Grant them your wisdom to rule and may their decisions direct us to the center of Your Will. I ask it in the name of your Son, The Living Savior, Jesus Christ”.
The prayer got national coverage. Several legislators strode arrogantly out of the chamber. But in other quarters there was substantial agreement. Nevertheless, our pulpits were silent, the publicity quickly died down, and repentance was forgotten - humility had not yet overcome arrogance and the heart of our Lord had not yet overcome the hubris in the hearts of His servant leaders.
One hundred and fifty years ago that great Christian preacher Charles H. Spurgeon intoned to an audience of 24,000 at the Crystal Palace, “there are such things as national judgements, national chastisements, for national sins- great blows from the rod of God which every wise man must acknowledge to be, either a punishment of sin committed, or a monition to warn us to the consequences of sin, leading us by God’s grace to humiliate ourselves, and repent of our sin.”
In his recent book about Russians and Jews, 200 Years Together, Solzhenitsyn wrote, "Every people must answer morally for all of its past -- including that past which is shameful. Answer by what means? By attempting to comprehend: How could such a thing have been allowed? Where in all this is our error? And could it happen again? It is in that spirit, specifically, that it would behoove the Jewish people to answer, both for the revolutionary cutthroats and the ranks willing to serve them. Not to answer before other peoples, but to oneself, to one's consciousness, and before God. Just as we Russians must answer -- for the pogroms, for those merciless arsonist peasants, for those crazed revolutionary soldiers, for those savage sailors."
The road on which the United States is traveling at an ever increasing speed has a terrible precipice that promises to render it unrecognizable. It is time to apply the national brakes by recognizing our errors and repenting from them. The belligerent and stubborn among us who have been able to rationalize the conquest of other nations and the needless killing of hundreds of thousands of innocents need to recognize and repent from their support of an evil agenda. Patriotism does not trump God’s legal system where unconfessed and unrepented breaches always await retribution . We need a “voluntary and conscientious acceptance” of the need for national repentance.
Trifkovic and Solzhenitsyn are both knowledgeable reviewers of conditions in Russia but neither of these men made reference to the secret negotiations that account for all actions of Western governments without which no proper evaluation can be made.
When world government insiders like Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, Robert Rubin, Thomas Graham, Sam Nunn and Chevron CEO David O’Reilly travel to Russia to meet in secret session with Vladimir Putin we can be sure that decisions will be secular, tilted toward the new order, and inimical to the people of all nations. Read about that meeting here.