[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]
One of the more potentially nasty political coalitions on the Right is the on-again-off-again flirtation that goes on between the Patriot/militia movement -- which likes to cast itself itself as secular, but is riddled with deep (and often extremist) veins of fundamentalist Christianity -- and the Religious Right, which likes to cast itself as mainstream but is riddled throughout with veins of extremist right-wing paranoia.
It also gives creatures like Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin -- the modern-day General Ripper whose exploits range from the Waco disaster to Abu Ghraib, and who makes his living nowadays promoting the theory that Islamic radicals are secretly promoting Marxism, complete with appearances on the Glenn Beck show in support of his 'Islamic caliphate' theory -- plenty of opportunity to pitch their wares.
It also makes for some moments of high comedy, such as this exchange (via >Digby) that Kyle at Right Wing Watch happened to catch, with Focus on the Family's Tony Perkins egging Boykin on:
BOYKIN: We reflected on that, we also reflected on the fact that there was a famous battle at a place called Thermopylae where the Greek King Leonidas fought against the massive armies of Xerxes with 300 men. But as Tony pointed out in our discussions, they not only saved their homes, their villages, they saved democracy. They preserved democracy for all eternity, if we leverage that and take advantage of it.Nevermind, of course, that these guys are promoting the movie version of Thermopylae, which has only a passing resemblance to the actual history -- namely, the reality that it was Sparta that was the great slaveholding society then (there is no evidence the Persians under Xerxes owned slaves) and the version of "democracy" they were preserving was not exactly one that preserved people's freedoms.
And one of the great things that I like about that whole story is the fact that when Xerxes said to Leonidas, with his 300 men there, and Xerxes with his massive army said to him, 'Lay down your weapons,' Leonidas sent the message back, and said, 'Molon labe!' 'Come and take them!'
Well, I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm at the point now where I am sayingady to say 'Molon labe!' to those in Washington, to those in the special interest groups that want to take my liberties, that want to rob my grandchildren of the ability to have the kind of America that I grew up in. I'm at the point where I'm saying, 'Molon labe!'
Because I will not be silent. I will not sit on the pews, confident in my salvation -- I know that I'm going to heaven, I know that I'm redeemed of my sins. But that's not enough.
Of greater significance, though, is that "molon labe" has become the battle cry/slogan of the new militias, cropping up in all kinds of places -- including that incident in which that Glenn Beck fan was arrested while scoping out a supposed federal detention facility.
As I explained awhile back:
A common organizational theme popping up among the new militiamen -- you'll find it scattered throughout the above site -- is "Μολών Λaβέ" -- or "Molon labe," which is Greek for "Come and get them." As Wikipedia notes, it's the sentimental equivalent of "Over my dead body."One website even offers all kinds of "Molon Labe" clothing items you can get -- such as these fine ladies' panties:
I have voted in Safety Joe's poll for the next friend's list he should make and I have suggested a state by state Μολών Λaβέ so that those who are near each other can prepare a response plan.Another glimpse into this mindset can be found at the MySpace website for Come and Take It Radio:
We grossly outnumber them - if we organize. How can 5, 10, 20, or even 30 cops stand down every Μολών Λaβέ patriot who bands together in defense of each other?
Talk is nice but now is the time for action. Organize with your geographically close Μολών Λaβέ friend and prepare a response plan.
Join hosts Matt Conner and Erin Cassity as they proudly lead the way into the dark bleak abyss that will be the Obama Presidency as the drum beating leftys that have joined with us for the past eight years run off into the shadows to back pedal and support Obama's wars for the Elite. We will speak the truth that the true "Conservative" will be so desperately seeking in this new age of world governance. Everything from preserving our gun rights to how to prepare for the fun of the looming depression, these Texas Nationalists will cover in this Sunday evening show.If you scroll around the site (recommended only for those with a shower handy), you'll find posts from likeminded souls, such as the white supremacist who posted this:
[Full-size version here.]
I wonder if this is what Jerry Boykin has in mind too. Purity of essence and all that.