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[image, above: Manga Messiah illustration suggests a Jewish rabbinic alliance with Beelzebub]

[image, right: Rabbis, as depicted in Manga Messiah]

"these "Manga Messiah" comic books have been distributed liberally across all the service branches and on military bases and naval vessels all over the world including the combat zones of Afghanistan, Iraq, and at many other U.S. armed forces bases in the Area of Responsibility (AOR)." - From Military Religious Freedom Foundation press release, January 7, 2012, 4:45 PM EST
Here's my extended analysis of the anti-Jewish and anti-gay themes packed into Manga Messiah, a comic book which makes Mel Gibson's "Passion of the Christ" look tame. Printed in 22 different languages including Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Indonesian, Thai, Tagalog, Russian, Spanish, French, and German, Manga Messiah depicts the life of Jesus and portrays sinister, murderous Jewish rabbis in league with the devil and clamoring for the death of Jesus.

The 288-page full-color comic, originally conceived to appeal to preteen boys and girls, also features virulently anti-gay content. According to the publisher, millions of copies of the Manga-style religious comic have been distributed worldwide.

In 2009 I showed noted researcher Chip Berlet images from Manga Messiah. Berlet called the comic,

"[a] colorful comic training manual for motivating young leaders of the next pogrom against Jews. Not just offensive -- ghastly and horrific in content with a clear enemy scapegoat identified for venting apocalyptic religious bigotry."

Yesterday, I happened upon a blog post by a U.S. Army Sergeant named Justin Griffith, who states that in November 2011 he was given a copy of Manga Messiah by a military chaplain.

[image, below right: Manga Messiah portrays Jews mocking Jesus during his crucifixion]

Disturbed by this, because I had researched the comic and written several stories about it in 2009, I contacted Mikey Weinstein, founder and head of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, which fights for the freedom of worship and freedom of belief rights of U.S. armed forces members. He was also disturbed.

Weinstein sprang into action, tapping MRFF's extensive network of tens of thousands of clients in the military who have turned to MRFF over the years because of improper, ethical, or illegal religious coercion, usually from superior officers. Soon we had the answer - Manga Messiah could be found on U.S military bases around the world.

Anti Semitic themes that historically have helped incite pogroms and massacres of entire Jewish communities, from 1096 during the 1st Crusade up into the 19th Century, themes that helped feed hatred that culminated in the Holocaust as well, are now being spread widely within the United States military.

I have written an extended essay, also linked in the MRFF press release below, that explains the depth of anti-Jewish hatred to be found within Manga Messiah. And the anti-gay content? Well, for an in depth analysis see the link above. But for a start, Judas, who betrays Jesus, is pictorially presented as effeminate, and wears purple earrings.

The heavy-handed suggestion is that Judas is gay. Manga Messiah also presents him as a money manager or financier, and speculates that Judas might belong to a Jewish group of revolutionary Zealots who specialized in assassination via hidden daggers. As a gay banker-assassin who betrays God, Judas embodies a toxic concatenation of modern and historic anti-Jewish stereotypes.

Today at 4:45 PM, MRFF sent out a press release, reprinted below:

MRFF Demands Immediate DoD Corrective Action on Distribution of Anti-Semitic "Manga Messiah" Christian Proselytizing Comic Books Throughout Military

Monday, January 7, 2013

Please see below for MRFF's demand letter, which
was sent to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta,
the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force,
and the Joint Chiefs of Staff

To view the letter as sent on MRFF letterhead, click here

Monday, January 7, 2013
The Honorable Leon Panetta
Secretary of Defense
1000 Defense Pentagon
Washington, DC 20301-1000
Transmitted via email and UPS Overnight Delivery
Re: Anti-Semitic "Manga Messiah" Christian Proselytizing Comic Books Distributed to U.S. Servicemembers
Dear Secretary Panetta,
I am writing you on behalf of numerous active duty United States military clients of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF:militaryreligiousfreedom.org) who have complained to MRFF about their unwanted and unsolicited receipt of the so-called "Manga Messiah" Christian proselytizing comic books at U.S. military installations both domestically and abroad (please see Appendix A, attached herewith, for an e-mail received just yesterday regarding this).
Please visit tinyurl.com/aoosso9 to view multiple examples of the abhorrent content within the "Manga Messiah" comic book.
It is quite clear, for a plethora of incontrovertible reasons, that these comic books are blatantly anti-Semitic. For instance, one of the main themes of these horrible books is the wretched, age old libel that Jews are directly responsible for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and, further still, that Jews have conspiratorially consorted with the devil in that crucifixion "plot" and other nefarious anti-Christian endeavors. Our MRFF clients do not know whether it is DoD chaplains or our clients' chains of command who are behind the distribution of these bigoted materials. What MRFF does know is that these "Manga Messiah" comic books have been distributed liberally across all the service branches and on military bases and naval vessels all over the world including the combat zones of Afghanistan, Iraq, and at many other U.S. armed forces bases in the Area of Responsibility (AOR).
Additionally, it has been reported that these "Manga Messiah" comic books may also include anti-gay and homophobic content.
Mr. Secretary, MRFF demands that you expeditiously and comprehensively investigate this sordid matter. Further, MRFF demands that you swiftly and aggressively punish all responsible DoD personnel that have either directly or indirectly facilitated the distribution of these heinous "Manga Messiah" comic books.
Sincerely,
Michael L. "Mikey" Weinstein, Esq.
President and Founder
Military Religious Freedom Foundation
Enclosure: Please see below for Appendix A (MRFF client email)
CC:
John M. McHugh, Secretary of the Army
Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy
Michael B. Donley, Secretary of the Air Force
General Martin E. Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Admiral James A. Winnefeld Jr., Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
General Raymond T. Odierno, Chief of Staff of the Army
Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert, Chief of Naval Operations
General Mark A. Welsh III, Chief of Staff of the Air Force
General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps
Randal G. Mathis, Esq., MRFF Lead Trial Counsel
Katherine S. Ritchey, Esq., Jones Day

APPENDIX A
From: U.S. Army Soldier's E-Mail Address Withheld
Subject: Help! 'Manga messiah' in the CENTCOM AOR
Date: January 6, 2013
To: Mikey Weinstein
Mikey and MRFF,
HELP! I am an active U.S. Army soldier. Service members are receiving this dreadful 'Manga Messiah' Japanese comic. This thing goes way beyond your standard tract, it depicts homophobic and racially bigoted hatred. It's clearly aimed at children and teenagers, such as young impressionable US service members.
I personally received a copy under my bunk in the transient area of Camp Arifjan, Kuwait – 'The I Building' in zone 1. This is often the last stop service members have before entering or leaving Iraq (pre drawdown) or Afghanistan. It was in a plastic bag bundled with other standard tracts that you find in stacks on every chaplain's desk. It's clear that there are boxes of this shocking material somewhere in the CENTCOM AOR. Perhaps hundreds or thousands of copies have been distributed to military personnel. I'd hate to see one of them fall into the hands of a local Muslim, as there are vile depiction – (think Danish cartoon scandal.)
I'm not sure if it was deliberately placed under my bunk to build a case for plausible deniability, but it fits the pattern. Every day I showed up, more and more pamphlets were piled on my desk, and only on my desk. It was because of a Chaplain. He zeroed in on me because I requested he stop giving me pamphlets, as I am not a Christian. He said he "reserved the right to evangelize the unchurched." I can't link him or anyone directly to this Manga Messiah, because I received it in such a weird way (where I sleep rather than where I work).
Please, Mikey, you've gotta do something. Nobody understand just how WRONG this thing is. I know the Military Religious Freedom Foundation has dealt with similar things in the past. Please get somebody to find the chaplain(s) responsible for distributing this, and also destroy all copies! Most of my fellow soldiers that ARE Christians are shocked when I show them just how crazy this thing is!
Very respectfully,
(U.S. Army Soldier's name, rank, MOS, assigned military installation and military unit all withheld by request)

[disclosure: I was employed by the Military Religious Freedom Foundation in 2007]

 

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