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October 4, 2021 10:32 am
This week on Family Policy Matters, host Traci DeVette Griggs sits down with Family Research Council’s Arielle Del Turco to discuss how religious freedom is a national security issue, in particular as it relates to the recent turmoil in Afghanistan.
Policy matters and engaging in weekly radio show and podcast produced by the North Carolina family policy Council hi this is John Rustin, presidency, family, and were grateful to have you with us for this week's program is our prayer that you will be informed, encouraged and inspired by what you hear on family policy matters and that you will flow better equipped to be a voice of persuasion for family values in your community, state and nation, and now here's our house to family policy matters. Tracy Devitt Griggs thanks for joining us this week for family policy matters as the United States pulled out of Afghanistan recently ending a 20 year military effort, the world watched images, videos and read stories that were heartbreaking, but this was more than a military effort. It was a cultural effort that resulted in more religious freedom for the people of Afghanistan. America's withdraw is having a dramatic affect on that and this has implications for us as Americans and as Christians in America. Arielle Del Turco joins us today to talk about this. She is assistant director of the Center for religious liberty at the family research Council in Washington DC Arielle Del Turco. Welcome to family policy matters and gravity. Sosa said that religious freedom is a national security issue.
Why is that effective international religious freedom that a lot of people ignore ignore it to our detriment, religious freedom on religious tension and hatred and violence motivated because certain group.
Will he religious minority or Christian violence really does great harm to regional security and he cannot have worldwide. In fact, one of the lessons that America learned on 9/11 with terrorists living in caves far far away can affect us greatly, so it's really in American interests. These are diplomacy to foster religious freedom around the world and work against some of the engines that endanger us, even in recent history at Warwick, a country that respects religious freedom as robust religious freedom protection for like 12 or kill for this is clearly a factor national security and all security professionals should not be ignoring do you feel like they are ignoring. I feel like they are and American foreign policy, generally the culture at the State Department and needs other agencies are so secular is often even a lack of understanding about religion and how the rest of the world views religion especially in the lead in Muslim countries undermine and not fully grasp religious tensions that are at play about that one of the benefits of religious freedom, not just for religious minorities, but for the broader community yet. Will has been tied to economic benefits. We see growth and prosperity in countries that embrace religious freedom and partly because I'm religious family promote stability and promote peace in these things allow an economy foster when there is not religious discrimination allowed more people to participate in the economy. For example in Pakistan. Christians are heavily discriminated, even in the workplace. People don't want to hire them. And so, actually, most Christians are very poor there by a Pakistan allowed Christian to participate in other religious minorities to participate more fully in the economy.
I think that the economic benefits I think they see other benefits as well. That's an interesting concept. So is the idea of religious freedom just an American or Western idea where did that come from is an American idea, not uniquely, but ingrained in our heritage right. The pilgrims traveled on fleeing your with religious persecution wanting to come to America, practice their religion freely laid in the religious community as they thought God was calling you and even in the First Amendment. We see the very first right that the Bill of Rights protects his religious freedom, but more a human right and trying the Universal declaration of human rights that the UN find in almost every country has signed on to because it's so basic even know country, even bad countries. They don't openly no right to religious freedom because it's so intrinsic, I think our founders might call it an inalienable right can't deny that it's the right and we have leveraged advocate for religious freedom worldwide because it's not just American and is a universal something out of all people. So let's talk about Afghanistan more as a case study because that's a good country to look at is in it because they've had periods where they've had very little religious liberty and then over the last 20 years, while the US was in there. They had quite a bit more what are the lessons we learned there are clearly impacted so so much in Afghanistan militarily and economically. In many ways, but one thing they think that we failed to get the come from the culture right, the United States can't force a democracy in a country the company culture the NSA can't just force a culture, religious freedom, or even women's right things have to come from within.
We can however encourage and foster. I think we probably needed to do a better job of fostering the values he values that are universal by we were quite able to enshrine desire to take away then from for you, that really we failed in kind of instilling some of those values and why successful because so many I think especially of women's rights under that hell man in the 1990s, when he had essentially no right they could barely leave the house they currently without a male guardian they could go to school and get careers over the last 20 years. Even though there was still some cultural discrimination. We specially in urban areas had all of this opportunity for coding to go to school and 60. They went to college, they started careers by now that the Taliban back in all of that is over within a day or so women in Afghanistan are watching their careers crumble and fade in the nothing official young girls.
It's especially tragic growth. You have every expectation that they would be going to high school and college. Now it looks like they're not going to be so we can accomplish her goal was to create a democracy that weighs welcoming human rights. We didn't quite succeed and not right succeed because that government that we backed was not strong enough we could have helped create the family government also help foster these things in culture like respect for women and respect religious minorities that I think would've gone a long way towards making succeed was also a weekly radio show and podcast. This is just one of the many ways is educating citizens across Mr. a lot about policy issues that impact families vision is stated in the legislative forces which draw more information about his family and how you can help us to achieve this vision for state and nation's website and see family.org and see family.org and be sure to sign up to receive our email updates functional works.
Of course, our flagship publication family North Carolina magazine would also look for you to follow us on Facebook and Instagram are some policy options available to the United States going forward in efforts to promote religious freedom both in Afghanistan and other areas around the world hard enough so much more leverage around the world. We have a huge foreign policy apparatus with a lot of tools that will not agree with our foreign policy and with our national security strategy. All of these things can be incorporating an understanding of religious freedom and fostering religious freedom even in our diplomatic interaction with both our enemies and our friend. We should be highlighting that we believe religious freedom would be helpful for you at the country even countries that are are bad on religious freedom a country like India, especially to our friend.
We should be saying hey we religious freedom would really benefit you and you would not see mob violence and problems with rule of law. If you had more robust protections for religious freedom, actually all the foreign policy tools that the United States uses already.
We should be using religious freedom as well simply because it interests so that was about government policies. Are there things that we can do as individuals in the face of the persecution that were seeing in the religious freedom that is falling away in many parts of of our world is a great question and encouraged when I talk about persecution around the world and people's response are. I want to help.
What can I do highly encourage people to use the opportunity that we have every day to make these issues more now so we social media every day. We can share articles about the persecuted church and problems people are having around the world. We can ask our pastors to pray in church about persecuted with whatever's going on in the world for Afghanistan and we can rate in our small group. All the things that we do every day. We can also use to advance religious freedom and I think that's really valuable and helpful way here from the persecuted ally is that they just want to be remembered and to know that people are praying about them and we should both be remembering and praying for them also be making known publicly that were doing so when you talk about praying in, and I agree that that's one of the most valuable tools that we have is there a way or is there a resource available for people so that they can no house to pray specifically for some of the needs that many organizations that work with the persecuted church officially open doors of voice to the martyrs. These organizations have fantastic prayer resources, sometimes even like devotional greed can have a devotion and pray for the persecution.
Those are very valuable to also from hearing the news and paying attention to world news, you'll get a good sense of what's going on what humanitarian disasters are happening, what religious freedom problems are occurring around the world and we can just be praying because that's fresh and people are hurting all the time you mentioned earlier about the status of religious liberty in Afghanistan. Now that the US has withdrawn the Taliban's back in their mixed news from their what is your sense of the status of religious liberty in Afghanistan now US backed government of the last 20 years, still significant religious freedom problems and can't stand open doors on its Worldwatch list of most dangerous places to be a Christian. Afghanistan was number two in the US backed government by who were the worst because the Caliban we know for a fact looking for Christian threatened that they'll kill them. Certainly the Afghan government that we support it with hunting down Christian trying to kill them and even, because so many African Christians have fled very little Christian representation in that country and for the Christian to remain there going to be deeply underground in great peril brought their beards, just as the town instructs them really try to blend in, and it can be really hard for them to stay hidden. We've heard reports where the Caliban is checking to make sure. Like all male villagers are going to mark every week. Of course the Christian going to be a problem and they'll be found out they're not going to mom never really in an impossible situation. Closing lessons for us that we can learn as Americans and American Christians from watching religious persecution important lesson is just know that America has something to offer the rest of the world. I think it's very popular now costs are to be increasingly isolationist on to say that the rest the world doesn't want what we have so we should just ignore them and let them live under tyranny and suffering really think that's true, and I think the fact that religious freedom just for one example of benefits national security points to the fact that our values have something to offer the rest of the world that we should shy away from promoting religious freedom in our foreign policy because it will ultimately eat a lot of suffering around the world were just about out of time so this week but before we go.
Arielle Del Turco where listeners go to learn more about this issue and about your work there at FRC that everything is been closely tracking Afghanistan invalid history and situations around the world and you can go to our firstname.lastname@example.org Arielle Del Turco's thank you so much for being with us today on family policy matters. You been listening to family policy matters. We hope you enjoyed the program employment to them again next week to listen to the show on lawn and to learn more about NC families work to inform, encourage and inspire families across been through a lot of good or website and see family.award that's in see family.org. Thanks again for listening and may God bless you and your family