August 26, 2015

IRD: NCC Support for Iran Deal ‘Utopian’

Institute on Religion and Democracy Press Release
August 26, 2015
Contact: Jeff Walton office: 202-682-4131, cell: 202-413-5639, e-mail:

“The NCC letter continues a longtime religiously utopian tradition of addressing the world as it wishes it to be instead of reality.”
-IRD President Mark Tooley

Washington, DC—The National Council of Churches has organized a letter of religious voices praising the Iran nuclear deal and urging Congress to support what it describes as the “most robust monitoring and inspection regime every negotiated” and “moves us a step closer to a world without nuclear weapons.”

Signer Jim Wallis has separately commented that there should be “no illusion that Iran will instantly change its destructive and disruptive behavior because of this agreement.” And he urged the U.S. to “insist that Iran cease funding armed groups throughout the Middle East, improve its human rights record, and end its hostility toward Israel, through “focused diplomatic and economic pressure.”

The NCC letter does not acknowledge any shortcomings in the deal with Iran’s government. Instead it insists that “rejection of this deal would be a rejection of the historic progress our diplomats have made to make this world a safer place.”

IRD President Mark Tooley commented:

“Is there any diplomatic accommodation of a nasty regime that the NCC and likeminded groups would NOT support under any circumstances? Would the NCC have supported the Munich appeasement of the Third Reich, for example? Indeed, much of American Protestantism in the 1930s was pacifist and did support accommodating the rising Fascist powers.

“Then as now Mainline Protestant elites, although much less influential now, naively believed in a world where every dispute even with mass murderers can be negotiated amicably in route to a global harmonic convergence. Christian teaching about human sinfulness vigorously instructs otherwise.

“We can all pray and hope that the Iran nuke deal, if not stopped by a Congressional vote, will prevent a nuclearized theocratic Iran. But it must be admitted, as Wallis noted, that Iran’s ‘destructive and disruptive behavior’ will not likely change. The deal may actually precipitate war instead of preventing it, as weak diplomatic accords often do.

“Already Iran is effectively at war with many of its neighbors through proxies in Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and elsewhere, which this deal will help underwrite.

“The NCC letter continues a longtime religiously utopian tradition of addressing the world as it wishes it to be instead of reality. Such illusions, if treated seriously, undermine the pursuit of genuine peace with justice.”

One Response to IRD: NCC Support for Iran Deal ‘Utopian’

  1. Mark Bell says:

    Amazing that the name “National Council of Churches” is borne by a little covey of left-wing bureaucrats who are totally ignored by most Americans, including most Christians. Their press releases probably evoke lots of e-mails from the bureaucrats in the declining denominations (“Thanks so much for your courageous stand!”). A “Christian” organization that is no longer promoting Christianity should lock its doors and move on.

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