Conversation Corner
St. Francis of Assisi, Patron of Peace

Does the military action the U.S. is contemplating against Iraq meet the standards of a just war?


Date: 4/7/2003 4:22:15 PM
Name or Pseudonym: Dr. John
Subject: To CP

Dear CP,

What your argument fails to understand is that times have changed. Terrorism is an act of war that is unlike the presence of two nuclear-armed powers facing each other across a hostile border. Terrorism hides and attacks innocents. It is not simply a bogeyman with which to scare your children on halloween night. It is a serious threat that most definitely justifies a war to stop future terrorist attacks. This liberal argument against "pre-emptive" war is unsupportable.

To take this concept to the liberal conclusion, no offensive use of military force would EVER be justified. You could only stand on your borders and wait for the opposing military to attack you and then simply fire in self-defense - if they stopped attacking you, then you’d need to stop firing and go back to your own boundaries and replant all the flowers.

This is a war. The justification is absolutely not a moot point. You fight it until it is over. It isn’t meant to be pleasant, and it shouldn’t be anything other than a last resort. We waited for 12 years - put that in perspective, my friend - TWICE AS LONG as World War II! Iraq still hadn’t complied, and 3000+ US citizens were killed in an act of war. This war is completely just, the comments of the Holy Father on his personal opinion notwithstanding.

Where do you get some of this nonsensical stuff? "The US has no right to send an army there" unless the Iraqi people ask us to? I love that! What altitude are you living in that the oxygen is so rarified that your brain is producing this? The Iraqi people had NO rights under Saddam, period! The US has EVERY right to defend itself against acts of war, conventional and nonconventional. Who ever made the ridiculous claim that the US President has any authority over the Iraqi people? The liberation of the Iraqis is a secondary benefit to the primary goal of defending the US against terrorist aggression. Because we are such a wonderful country, we will willingly help the Iraqis rebuild their poor country with their own resources, just like we did with Germany, Japan, and the entire eastern bloc.

As ar as the Pope’s personal opinions on the war, could you point out anything in which the Holy Father has made any reference to the teachings of the magisterium regarding this war? From what I have read thus far, he has only made statements that essentially boil down to, "The US is bad for using war." Where is the Magisterium providing theological underpinnings for such statements to be proclaimed as anything other than the Pope’s personal opinion?

Here is what it boils down to:

President Bush, having sworn to protect and defend the Constitution of the US (and hence all her citizens) from all enemies, foreign and domestic; after having reviewed highly classified intelligence data unavailable to the Holy Father during the 18 months or so since 9/11, has made the decision granted to him in his authority as President and with the consent of the US Congress, to respond to unconventional military aggression of Iraq against the US.

The anti-American and anti-war groups disagree with that statement.

Over 70% of the US public agrees with it.

After 19 days of this war, the US and coalition forces have overthrown the regime of Saddam and are trying to assist the Iraqi people in building a free country for themselves.

Are you telling me that God WANTED the Iraqi people to continue suffering rather than have the US unleash military power to bring an evil tyrant to justice?

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