The Treaty of Tripoli (Treaty of Peace and Friendship between the United States of America and the Bey and Subjects of Tripoli of Barbary) was the first treaty concluded between the United States of America and Tripolitania, signed at Tripoli on November 4, 1796 and at Algiers (for a third-party witness) on January 3, 1797. It was submitted to the Senate by President John Adams, receiving ratification unanimously from the U.S. Senate on June 7, 1797 and signed by Adams, taking effect as the law of the land on June 10, 1797.
The treaty was a routine diplomatic agreement but has attracted later attention because the English version included a clause about religion in America.
- As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
The treaty is cited as historical evidence in the modern day controversy over whether there was religious intent by the founders of the United States government. Article 11 of the treaty has been interpreted as an official denial of a Christian basis for the U.S. government.
The treaty in no way shape or form implies or otherwise is the definitive determination of the US as anything except a Christian nation.
The new and Navyless country was at the mercy of the muslim terrorist states that began piracy and enslavement of Americans after the French stopped being our protectors after we won the War of Independence.
In effect, we were practicing as a dhimmi country, paying the “tax” of appeasement as outlined in islam to get the terrorists to leave us alone (at least until we could get a Navy up and running and establish our superiority and end their terrorism toward the US. – reference the US Marines and the Marine Theme Song).
The reason this inaccurate section was inserted in the treaty was because the terrorist muslim countries rightly refused to sign as islam says specifically says not to engage in treaties with unbelievers unless it is as a deception to get an advantage before then breaking the treaty.
In other words, we lied to the terrorists just as they were lying to us, until we could overpower them.
Forward 200+ years and we are still fighting the terrorists.
(PS. The treaty, by government fiat, was in place more than a half a year BEFORE a copy even reached the US and “official” ratification could be voted upon. Due to this, it was NOT possible to make changes, send back, etc. – thus it was official before it was presented for a democratic vote. It was already defacto law.)
On Faith Under Fire, historian David Barton and secularist Annie Lauri Gaylor debated the question of whether America is a Christian nation.
Barton lays out what we mean when we speak of America as a “Christian nation.” We aren’t talking about a theocracy; the founders deliberately prohibited a theocracy with the First Amendment. America is not, never has been and no one wants it to be a church-run state or have a state-run church.
Rather, America is a nation founded by Christians on Christian principles. As is so descriptively outlined by French historian Alexis de Tocqueville in “Democracy in America,” “Religion in America takes no direct part in the government of society, but it must nevertheless be regarded as the foremost of the political institutions of that country; for if it does not impart a taste for freedom, it facilitates the use of free institutions.“
In other words, Christianity is the underlying and overriding philosophy that guided the founders when they set up our nation.
Barton also debunks the claims of secularists that America is not a Christian nation because we have a “Godless constitution.” The Constitution is not a religious document, but it was crafted under the influence of the Christian thinking of the founders–even to the point that it deliberately excludes Sundays (the weekly Christian day of worship) from the number of days a president has to consider signing new legislation. The Constitution also points out that it was signed not just in 1787, but “in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven.”
Gaylor tried to make the claim that because the Constitution does not specify “so help me God” in the president’s oath of office, this is somehow evidence that America is not a Christian nation. She made the misleading claim that “that was added later,” as if this statement was added to the oath many, many years later when in fact our first president established the tradition at his first inauguration. And then kissed the Bible upon which he made his oath.
She also tried the tried-and-false favorite of secularists by citing the Treaty of Tripoli. As secular revisionists usually do, she cited part of the treaty without providing the text around that language which provides the context:
As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion…
But an examination of the full text of Article 11 of the treaty
As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Mussulmen; and, as the said States never entered into any war, or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
Why did the writers of the treaty say the United States of America is not founded on the Christian religion (when signer of the Declaration of Independence John Adams says himself that “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were…the general principles of Christianity”)? Because, as is evident from our prohibition of theocracy, America, unlike many of the European nations that had either state-run churches or church-run states, had no theological quarrel with Muslim nations–which were virtually all theocratic. As the last sentence in Article 11 of the treaty states, since America is not a theocracy, we cannot have a state-to-state theological disagreement with these Muslim nations on the basis of religious opinions.
Interestingly, Barton also mentioned a treaty with the Indians made by Thomas Jefferson (misunderstoodpatron saint of atheists and secularists everywhere) in which Jefferson agreed to provide money for Christian churches and clergy for the Indians. Odd behavior for someone who supposedly believed the Christian faith of our nation should be divorced from our government.
That’s because, even though Jefferson was one of the least religious of the founders, he did not believe that at all. Jefferson attended church in the U.S. Capitol building and commissioned the Marine Corps band to play worship music for the services. Indeed, one need only look around the Capitol Building and across our nation’s capital to find a plethora of evidence of our nation’s Christian heritage.
Was America founded by Christians on Christian principles? Undeniably (unless you a rabid secularist who is uninterested in the truth, as experience has taught me some people are).
Is America still a Christian nation? We definitely don’t honor God as we used to, nor do we as a nation try to continue basing our laws on objective Christian truth.
But as Barton points out, more than 80% of Americans still identify with Christianity. We have been fed the secularist lie for more than half a century, with pop culture and academia selling us a revised version of history, telling us that Christian belief don’t belong in the “real world,” and media feeding us a steady diet of moral rot…and still more than 80% of Americans call themselves Christians. How frustrating that must be for those who despise our Christian foundations!
With her desperate clinging to “Well, the Constitution doesn’t explicitly mention God,” Gaylor reminds me of an obstinate child, stamping her foot and trying to avoid the discipline of her parents on the basis of “Well, when you told me not to go outside, you didn’t tell me not to go outside between the hours of 2:00 and 4:00.”
Secularists don’t have to like the fact that America was founded on Christian principles. They don’t even have to like the fact that after more than 50 years of propaganda, lies, deception and enticement from all the short-term temptations that the Godless life offers, most Americans still identify with Christianity. It’s their right as an American, if they insist, to not like any of this.
But they don’t have the right to rewrite history. And if most Americans are smart enough to rememberGeorge Washington‘s admonition to us that “Religion and Morality are indispensable supports” of our nation’s political prosperity, we will not allow them to rewrite our future and doom this nation along with our unique liberties, either.
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