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COMMUNITY VOICE

Consider the suffering Crimeans will endure under iron fist of communism

Monday, May 5, 2014 - 8:39 am

I am particularly interested in the developments in Crimea and the Ukraine because I was there recently when the people were allowed to vote themselves back into slavery to Russian communist dictators.

I was teaching day and evening classes for a Christian ministry training program. Every night the people gathered in hundreds of church groups in Crimea to sing the Ukrainian anthem and pray that God would let them keep the taste of freedom they had enjoyed since the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1989. My impression was that about 80 percent of the people wanted desperately to stay with Ukraine, but this was a Russian-controlled election. The 52 delegates from the U.N. who came to monitor were gruffly turned away at the Simperofel airport, so only the Russians saw or counted the votes. As in any election, it’s not how many vote one way or another, it’s who counts the votes that matter.

I could not write this column or say anything about this over the telephone when I was in Crimea, because the Russian DHS — er, KGB, or whatever they call it now — was monitoring every email and phone conversation going out of Crimea. The U.S. Embassy in Kiev was urging me to get out of the country, and I did leave soon after the vote on March 16.

The Simperofel airport was closed to all flights except those to and from Moscow, so my host pastor had to drive me to Odessa, Ukraine, all night to catch a morning flight to Istanbul. On the way we were detained at two Russian army checkpoints. Many of the people in Crimea were talking about escaping to mainland Ukraine, and they were turned back. The Russian army officers also had a list of everyone who had said anything negative about Putin or Russia, and they were checking my passport against that list. I had been careful to keep any such comments off the record, so I was allowed to get out.

As in other countries, which for the moment shall remain nameless, the socialists had been bombarding the region with propaganda. “If you let us take over, you’ll get Russian pensions. We have plenty of rubles, so you won’t have to work.” Of course, once socialists are in power, their promises are worthless.

Russia is building a massive military, while the U.S. is unilaterally disarming.

There is no money to back up communists’ promises. The Christians in Ukraine know that life back under full communist rule will be far more difficult and dangerous than it has been the past two decades.

While in Crimea, I stayed with a delightful Christian family: a young pastor and his family. Unfortunately, my translator went home after school, so our conversations were limited to my 50 or so Russian-word vocabulary and their equally poor English. After rebuffing their many attempts to kill me with calories and kindness, I would retreat to my assigned room for a few hours of solitude.

I had taken along some DVD World War II documentaries, which I found particularly fascinating. I’m sure it was largely because my late father was a tail-gunner in a B-24 in the war with Japan in the Pacific. He was one of the men on the island of Okinawa who was scheduled to participate in the invasion of Japan. Even though Japan was losing on every front, Hirohito stubbornly refused to surrender. Japanese soldiers were all trained to fight to the death.

I thought back to the posters I had seen in American public schools about Hiroshima. Students here are now taught about the evils of American imperialism and the two horrible bombs that the U.S. used to murder those 80,000 innocent Japanese. Our textbooks now tell almost nothing about our Christian founding fathers or the Revolutionary War, choosing to focus rather on the evils of American slavery. They speak of Karl Marx as a great man and a brilliant thinker, and subtly promote the virtues of a world government.

I grieve when I think of the suffering my friends in Crimea will endure under the iron fist of communism. I also see that America is getting much of the same propaganda about class envy and racial divisiveness that sets the stage for a government takeover and the further erosion of the freedoms our children will not appreciate until they are completely taken from them.

Let’s get the word out and teach our children the truth about America. I am so grateful for what happened in Hiroshima, because my father would probably have been killed invading Tokyo, and my sisters and I would not be here today. Let’s stop teaching our children deceitful anti-American propaganda that is at the core of Common Core. Forget Hiroshima. Remember Pearl Harbor.

Ernest Weaver is a resident of Fort Wayne.