[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Thursday, 19 August, 2004, 22:50 GMT 23:50 UK
US general 'censured' for remarks
Lt Gen William Boykin
Lt Gen Boykin has a glittering military record
A US general who provoked outcry by describing the "war on terror" as a Christian campaign against Satan broke Pentagon rules, an inquiry has found.

Top-ranking intelligence officer Lt Gen William Boykin made the remarks at several church gatherings last year.

The Pentagon report has yet to be officially released but leaked copies of it have been seen by the media.

It says Lt Gen Boykin violated rules by failing to show he was speaking in a personal, rather an official, capacity.

The deputy undersecretary of defence for intelligence generally wore his military uniform when he addressed the evangelical church audiences.

Apology

He was quoted as saying radical Islamists detested the US because "we're a Christian nation, because our foundation and our roots are Judeo-Christian... And the enemy is a guy named Satan".

Describing a battle against a Muslim warlord in Somalia in 1993, the much-decorated general said, "I knew my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol."

Lt Gen Boykin apologized to those he had offended after his comments drew a storm of criticism from US lawmakers and Muslim groups.

Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has refused to criticise Lt Gen Boykin.

The general has retained his post - as the intelligence chief in charge of investigating al-Qaeda - throughout the inquiry.

'Minor' violations

The Pentagon has said it will not comment on the report until it is officially made public, after a review by Acting Army Secretary Les Browlea.

However, an official, who spoke to the Agence France Presse agency on condition of anonymity, said the violations were "minor".

The probe says Lt Gen Boykin did not seek adequate clearance before making his remarks.

But it advises the army to bear in mind that he asked military lawyers about his speeches beforehand and was not advised against making them, according to the Associated Press news agency.




RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific