Saturday, March 29, 2003

Is the Pope a Pacifist?

A good reflection on the Pope and the Vatican's position on the Iraq war and war in general.

From William McGurn in the Wall Street Journal:

In short, what we have lost here is a tremendous teaching opportunity. And if the Vatican's problem is, as Archbishop Martino suggests and the pope's own words at times imply, not simply Iraq but a larger discomfort with just war in a modern world, it raises even more questions. Namely, how President Bush can be held in breach of moral criteria that (a) are in the process of being radically revised and (b) really can't be met anyhow.

In another remark on Vatican Radio made on the eve of war, Archbishop Martino characterized the American response to Iraq as replying with "bombs to a people that has been asking for bread for the last 12 years." The Vatican role, by contrast, would be to play the "the Good Samaritan who kneels to tend the wounds of an injured, weak nation."

Which begs a question: If the biblical Good Samaritan had arrived on the scene a little earlier and stumbled on the robbers instead of their victim, what would have been his obligation?

Given the current situation it is really more a case of the latter. In this case if the fallen towers of the World Trade Center and the innocents who died there are in fact the "man fallen by robbers."

At this point in the war wouldn't it be a great idea to ignore Baghdag as a target and set up the rest of the country as an American run regime where food, clothing and a better life are a part of the lives of the inhabitants. Wouldn't this lead to the fall of Baghdag?

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