Officers’ Roles in Christian Video Are Called Ethics Breach

By Josh White
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 4, 2007; A08

The Defense Department‘s inspector general has found that four generals and three other military officers improperly participated in a fundraising video for an evangelical Christian group, inappropriately offering support for the religious organization while appearing to operate within the scope of their official government duties, according to a 47-page investigative report.

Investigators concluded that the officers should not have participated in the filming in 2005 of a 10-minute video for Christian Embassy, a nonprofit religious group, which ultimately used the video as a fundraising tool. While Christian Embassy has hosted prayer meetings at the Pentagon for years, the inspector general concluded that the officers’ endorsement of its activities — while in uniform, showing their rank and in the halls of the Pentagon — violated ethical rules.

“The overall circumstances of the interviews emphasized the speakers’ military status and affiliation and implied they were acting within the scope of their official positions as DoD spokespersons,” the report concluded.

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