Trijicon: Onward Christian Soldiers?

 “ We believe that America is great when its people are good.  This goodness has been based on biblical standards throughout our history, and we will strive to follow those morals.”  Trijicon Mission Statement

The trigger happy US gun sights manufacturer Trijicon  adopts the missionary position in its corporate statements. It also includes biblical references  on its Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight in raised lettering, added to the serial numbers.*  The ACOG Tactical Scope has the inscription pointing to John 8:12 “Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life”.

This doubles as a tract and a bit of cute self-promotion for the  day/night sight as demonstrated in a video review by Fun Gun* which shoots the line that the ACOG sight is indubitably A Good Thing in the sight of God.

 We‘re not talking here of religious bumper stickers or personalised ordnance signage but officially issued high tech weaponry used by American troopers and also, among others,  by New Zealand’s SAS soldiers in Afghanistan, who have been in the news recently more than any covert  military organisation would wish.

News of the inscriptions on the “Jesus guns”, for long, apparently, an open soldiers secret,  is just the  right calibre propaganda ammunition for recruiting dissident Moslem youth, with or without Koran-inscribed rifles, to target purported new era Christian crusaders.  As University of Canterbury historian Geoffrey Rice points out, the medieval Crusades are still comparatively fresh in the collective  Moslem memory.

Domestic critics point out that the US is already struggling against the image of a crusade in the Middle East. It is tricky enough to recruit and retain an all-cultures all- faiths American army, as last year’s US military base camp mass slaying demonstrated. The inscribed sights do no favour to the American military by potentially triggering a dissident recruiting backlash, nor to Christianity, as witnessed by the numbers recoiling from  the present proselytising position.     

Further afield, Al-Jazeera correspondent David Chater, says that the references are a “rallying cry for the Taliban. It gives them a propaganda tool. They’ve always tried to paint the US efforts in Afghanistan as a Christian campaign.”*

They reinforce the anti-American perception that religion rather than national security is at the heart of the US military presence abroad.

 The “war on Islam” issue is not confined to American troops.  New Zealand soldiers, also equipped with the ACOG sight, could also be in the gun as “Christian Crusaders”, as Mavis Emberson points out, “… are giving a perfect excuse for all those who pretend to feel that the NZ soldiers are “Christian Crusaders” to kill all NZ Armed forces where ever that are..”

 Since the concordance revelation the New Zealand Defence Force has been quick on the draw and ordered the removal of the letters from existing gun sights from its 260 Trijicon sights. I thought that such a hair trigger response would be unlikely to happen in the United States, where large numbers appear to believe that not only is God on their side but he speaks with a mid-Western accent, but just yesterday the issue had obviously become such an embarrassment for the Pentagon that it insisted that Trijicon send ‘removal kits’ that soldiers can use to file off the references.  Only the more muscular military Christians will  describe this as defiling the holy swords of salvation.

 It is hard to imagine the previous American government moving so fast- or even at all- on this issue. There has been a fundamental change at the top.  Is this the start of the War on Error?  Borat has the last word-se vieo clip*.

#Lyall Lukey 24 Jan 2010


ABC News –Revelations

Video review of  the Trijicon “ACOG” sights-3.43+ refers to the biblical inscriptions.

Al-Jazeera quotes its correspondent

Trijicon sights: How the ‘Jesus gun’ misfired    Borat Being a Real Man at the Gun Club

 OT and NT verses not used by Trijicon:

Ecclesiastes 9:18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war
1 Samuel 17:47 It is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves…
Matthew 26:52 All who take the sword will perish by the sword
Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers

6 Responses to Trijicon: Onward Christian Soldiers?

  1. Susan Hancock says:

    This, in the light of increased US interest in the Yemen, has a horribly ‘back to the future’ significance. I am currently writing on Yemen – didn’t know when I met you briefly at the U.of C. History dinner ( the pre-dinner drinks)that your own range of commentary was so global. Maybe you would like to correspond?

  2. […]  Meanwhile American soldiers in Afghanistan and elsewhere, together with their allies, including New Zealand, have been setting their sights on higher things. […]

  3. albert cog says:

    Ok so some sights have a slightly cryptic reference to a bible verse on them. Admittedly not the most politically sensitive inscription to have on a weapon in a war that some try to portray as religious in nature.

    But what gets me in all of this is how the media betray our military by even publishing stuff like this. If they would just STFU no taleban would have even heard about this in the first place. The situation could be quietly remedied without any fuss. Now thanks to the backstabbing NZ media, our troops are once again put at more risk. Anything for a story, eh? Dont worry about the boys overseas you wankers

  4. Acog Sight says:

    ACOG sight provides background and its product information. Developed mainly for M16 rifle, M4 Carbine, as seen in Call of Duty. It is by far the best comparing to its counter-peers.

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