When an Iranian citizen was imprisoned and facing the death penalty for his Christian faith, the Obama administration and State Department made a number of pleas to the Iranian government for his release. Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani had been in jail with a death sentence for three years before finally being acquitted and released last September. Several members of the government made statements concerning his release and how they were pleased at the outcome of their efforts.
Now a US citizen, Pastor Saeed Abedini, is facing a death sentence for being a Christian in Iran. He is scheduled to be tried before a notorious judge who has a record of being extremely harsh against Christians.
The White House and State Department have been almost completely silent and have only made one single statement asking for his release. The American Center for Law and Justice, who was heavily involved in getting Pastor Youcef released, said that the only official statement they know of is one made by the National Security Council asking for the release of Pastor Saeed. They report that the State Department has acknowledged that Pastor Saeed is a US citizen who is facing serious charges in Iran, but at the time of this writing, they have said nothing and made no requests for his release.
Look at how hard the Obama administration fought for the hikers that were arrested along the border in Iran. The White House and State Department kept constant pressure on Iran to release them until finally they were released. However, they weren’t Christians trying to preach Christ to the Muslims, so Obama cared about them. In the case of Pastor Saeed, he is a Christian and he was preaching Christ to a lost people, but Obama seems to care less. Is it that he sides with Iran’s laws against Christian preaching, because he is a Muslim himself?
Wednesday, January 16, 2013 was Religious Freedom Day. Overshadowed by the voluminous edicts on gun control, President Barack Obama managed to issue a proclamation for the religious event. In that proclamation, he stated:
“Today, we also remember that religious liberty is not just an American right; it is a universal human right to be protected here at home and across the globe. This freedom is an essential part of human dignity, and without it our world cannot know lasting peace.
As we observe Religious Freedom Day, let us remember the legacy of faith and independence we have inherited, and let us honor it by forever upholding our right to exercise our beliefs free from prejudice or persecution…”
If Obama truly believed those words from his proclamation, he would have done a lot more and said a lot more to free Pastor Saeed, an American citizen who has been imprisoned BECAUSE of his faith. Obama said ‘protected here at home and across the globe…free from prejudice or persecution’, but he’s not backing up those words. Obama’s proclamation was just hollow words of rhetoric that are lost as they float aimlessly and meaninglessly in the air.
I encourage all of you to flood the White House and State Department with your demands that they take immediate action to save Pastor Saeed, an American citizen!
P.S. – A sad note, Pastor Youcef has been re-arrested in Iran. He was yanked away from his family on Christmas Day while celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The Iranian court originally told Pastor Youcef that the remaining 45 days of his sentence would be served on probation. However, the courts disregarded that and now insist that he serve the remainder of his sentence in the same prison he was in earlier. And I suspect it was no coincidence that his re-arrest just happened to take place on Christmas Day.