But Thomas Merton belonged to a generation that lived through real apocalypses brought about by political actors: Auschwitz, Hiroshima, and Vietnam. Mary Bryden, a specialist in modern literature, suggests that the recurrent apocalyptic motifs that surface in Merton’s writings reflect two somewhat contradictory notions of how the world might end: one emerging from religious expectation, and the other from a more plausible secular angst. In 1968, the year of his death (caused when an electric fan fell into his bathtub) he wrote in his diary that the news of the murder of Martin Luther King had pressed down upon him “like an animal, a beast of the apocalypse.”

But before this ends the article read:

This shift in doctrine clearly facilitates the cozy relationship between Mitt Romney, the first Mormon Saint ever to have a plausible shot at the US presidency, and his friend Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. During his recent visit to Jerusalem Romney delighted his hosts by calling the disputed city Israel’s capital, although the US and most other countries refuse to do so. He also suggested that because of their own cultural background (rather than the Israeli occupation) the Palestinians were incapable of showing the same level of ”economic vitality” as Israelis. Netanyahu was equally warm, praising and hugging Romney, clearly indicating that he wants Romney to defeat Obama in November. As the Haaretzcommentator Uri Misgav somewhat mischievously put it, the US-educated Netanyahu “doesn’t speak English or even American; he speaks fluent Republicanese.”

More alarming than “Republicanese,” however, may be the apocalyptic mindset both men share.

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