Mike Pompeo reflects on efforts to further religious liberty, vows to stay in ‘important fight’ for ‘soul’ of US

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reflected on his efforts to further religious freedom and promote peace during his time serving under the Trump administration and vowed to “stay in this important fight that we are all in for the soul of our country.”

“One of the things that I’m most proud of that we did is that we addressed the world that we saw, not the one we wished existed. We were very realistic about the things we could have an impact on,” Pompeo told Jewish-evangelical author Joel C. Rosenberg during a Thursday morning interview at the annual National Religious Broadcasters convention.

From addressing the Middle East to condemning the “true evil of the Chinese Communist Party,” the former CIA director said the Trump administration sought to identify and condemn human rights abuses around the world and promote religious liberty. 

“When a nation won’t protect its own, when it puts a million Muslims in camps and forces abortions, forces sterilizations, imprisons them, separates [them] from their family, when it knocks down Christian churches inside of its own country and abuses Catholic leaders … what we did as a foreign policy matter was recognize that evil [and] call it out. So I declared that genocide was taking place and is ongoing inside of China,” he said. 

“We did the same thing with the Iranians: We recognized that you should listen to the things they say, observe the actions that they take, and that we should have an understanding of the dignity of every human being because they’re created in the image of God. Those nations that refuse to acknowledge that, we should watch them.”

“We should be prepared to make sure we not only defend ourselves but make sure that problems don’t occur someplace else,” he added, stressing the importance of putting “America first.” 

Pompeo, who served under Trump for four years, also reflected on the administration’s “crushing defeat” of the Islamic State in the Middle East. 

“Among the first things that we did was to take down this threat to the United States that came from radical Islamic terrorism. They had a territory roughly the size of Delaware, and we eliminated it,” he said. “So we worked diligently, we began to build out to religious freedom efforts, protection of Christians in Iraq, and then we turned to the larger set of issues.” 

But the Biden administration, he said, has a “different take” on how to address conflicts in the Middle East.